Transcendental burger

Yesterday brought trip #4 to Ray’s Hell Burger and my third burger off the house-special list, The Dogcatcher. A description is short but clearly hard-driving: “Roasted Bone Marrow, Persillade, Lettuce and Tomato.”

Persillade is just seasoning, Google tells me. Bone marrow, Wikipedia says, “has fallen out of favor as a food in the United States.” The brief “bone marrow as food” section manages to pass without a description of taste. To take a stab at one here… Hell Burger’s bone marrow looks like a jam made of crab meat, tastes like a butter sauce that magically lightens a burger’s flavor, and sounds like you have to go down to the junkyard, throw down your dogcatching net and fight snout to snout.

Or, as America’s most famous bone marrow-eatin’ literature¬†declaims:

I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practice resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartanlike as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms, and, if it proved to be mean, why then get the whole and genuine meanness of it, and publish its meanness to the world; or if it were sublime, to know it by experience, and be able to give a true account of it in my next excursion.

Thoreau concludes we bear a “strange uncertainty” about whether life comes from the devil or from God and “somewhat hastily” decide to go with God. Yesterday’s burger — yesterday’s Hell Burger — was similar.

The only failure of the trip? No photos. Four times now, I have taken a camera and planned to capture my Ray’s burger. And four times, I have forgotten. Eyes and gut have consistently beaten mind and processes. Unphotographed so far are the Burger of Seville in late 2008, a regular in September, a Soul Burger No. 1 in January, and now the Dogcatcher.

Seven specialty burgers to go at Ray’s. Next — the Let’s Get It On?

2 thoughts on “Transcendental burger”

  1. I’m happy to go to Ray’s with you and order something you’ve already had in the name of photojournalism.

    I’ll even bring my snazzy camera to make life easier.

  2. There are ethics considerations. Maybe we can document *your* journey through Ray’s menu… in one afternoon. We’d visit you in ICU.

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