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Where do I even begin? My name is Joseph Colins. I have been lonely and seeking for sometime. Now I know that sounds like some kind of week start to a tinder profile. It is an accurate representation of my life if you can accurately represent a life in two descriptors.
I am lonely because I have walked around the city of Longview Texas for 36 years, basically a ghost. I work a job that I like but feel lost in. I meet people that have full lives and I am that ship that everyone talks about passing in the night. I go about keeping up appearances only to realize that somehow I have slipped quietly out the back of society, and though people are careful to be be kind, they always move on past me through me.
I don't tell you this to make feel sad for me. No far from it. I tell you so you can understand the **seeking**. Life needs meaning. It almost demands to be more than you can see. Everyone feels it. Scientist spend their lives trying to see the unseen. Philosophers spend their lives exploring the unseen. Theologians spend their lives knowing the unseen. Then there is me unseen and blinded by it.
Just a few years ago something wonderful happened to my town. A little microcosm of culture sprang up in downtown Longview. A downtown that had sleepily accepted its lot of closing up before the sun went down. In amongst the old buildings full of stale businesses and the occasional odd shop that opened, only to close a year later, sprang up The Oil Horse Brewery. And in the same way a musical chord needs more than one note, the Silver Grizzly Espresso opened across the street. Suddenly downtown had a pulse. A small weak one but it was strengthening. This new beat called out and in reply an impossible happening took place considering the city councils notoriously difficult permits in our old streets, food trucks appeared. There were not many but I was so excited and being the invisible go getter wannabe I am I started this website and resolved I would create a podcast.
I wanted to review as many food trucks as I could and cover every item on every menu I could get my hands on. The night of my maiden voyage, hungry and full of excitement for my new venture, I entered downtown. There standing like a jewel at the end of tyler street the pulsing colony of night life with its well lit coffee shop and brewery sat. Several of the aforementioned food trucks were scattered about. The humm of their respective generators filled the street with noise. Their chefs filled the air with wonderful smells. To the side of the Oil Horse there was a food truck I had not seen before. Mind you food trucks had not been around very long so a new comer was a really big deal.
The Nameless Taco sat with a complete stainless steel exterior. Along the sides were painted green and purple, tendril like designs, with a neon Technicolor taco The taco had an all seeing eye on the outside and stygian sauce rising up out of the shell.
I thought "oh a new one!" I decided that I would let them be my first review. They only had a few items on the menu.
The Call of Cholula - braised octopus tacos with a healthy dose of Cholula Hot Sauce
The Color out of Shrimp - A shrimp taco whose shrimp had been seasoned with something that made them almost magenta.
At the Mountains of Mahi-Mahi - House Special interstellar fish tacos. Literally out of this world.
At least those are the ones I remember. That last one sticks out in my mind because it is what I ordered. I really love Mahi Mahi. The girl at the counter whose face stayed obscured in the shadow of her red ball cap took my order. The chef in the back always writhed in steam and whose face I never really saw but it shone so brightly; got to work.
The fish tacos looked fantastic. The cabbage was the brightest purple I had ever seen and the sauce was an almost pink pesto. The fish I guess had been blackened and its black seasoned crust sparkled like it was full of stars.
I sat on a near by bench and took a few notes about the smell of the tacos. Lets see here I have my notes from that evening.
They smell really good. A spicy mix of seasonings with a sauce that has a vinegar tinge to it. They are beautiful.
I took a bite.
Have you ever learned something but then felt like you had always known it. Not that you forgot it but you had somehow always been aware of whatever it is you just learned but you could not put it into words or would have never formed it as a complete concept unless someone had shown you the connections?
I know what it sounds like. Oh Joseph you learned secrets of the universe from a magical food truck. I bet you can even guess that the food truck was gone when I turned around.
Well it wasn't.
When I took a bite of the taco I was overcome with a hunger so deep and vast. I ate the rest of the two tacos like I had never eaten food in my entire life. Then I knew I saw for the first time knowing I saw but had always seen, the world and all the unseen things they are everywhere and nowhere.
I sprung up and immediately went back to that food truck as it was only about 10 feet behind me. I asked what they had just done to me. The girl whose face was always obscured by the shadow of her red ball cap smiled. Her teeth glinted in the street lights, they had been filed to points giving her smile a more menacing bite. From the kitchen portion of the food truck the chef writhed in steam pointed to a sign. She closed the window on the food truck. Took her place at the driver seat and drove off into the night. Technicolor all knowing taco and all.
The sign read Tacos so good they will push you to the brink, of what is up to you.
Now I don't tell you all this because I want you to believe me. I fully expect that everything that comes next is truly unbelievable. The stories, they fill my head, the letters of others, they find me. They paint a picture of our world much more weird, much more wonderful, and much more meaningful than the prevailing miasma of everyday life would lead us to believe.
I am Joseph Colins and this is The Longview Food Truck Podcast.
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