Happy National Cheeseburger Day!

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I wrote this during my stint at the San Benito News. One of the writers noticed that National Cheeseburger Day was coming up, and she asked the editor if I could write a column about the day. I happily agreed. A half-hour or so later, this was wrote up.

Keep in mind that since is a column, I make references to local places. Pay no mind, and instead enjoy. This was dated in 2012.

During the times I have been walking around San Benito, I have come across many a cheeseburger.
These are not specifically here but also in Harlingen, Rio Hondo and Los Fresnos. I’m not talking about the burger chains either, but those little places in the corners of the city, neatly tucked in the by-ways of the town.

How many of you remember the burger booth that was next to Fred Booth Elementary ages ago? The white one with the red trim, I mean. I remember being taken there to sample their wares when I was much younger, which usually consisted of a top-heavy burger loaded with pickles and grilled onions and with tater tots on the side. That combination hooked me in for the rest of my life.

During high school, I had another hamburger craze, this time at the little bistro that was across the school. They had this double-decker burger: two thick slabs of beef, two fat slices of American cheese between them, toasted bun, add your own fixings. And I did add them: onions and pickles and mustard. No fries added, much to my sadness, but the burger itself didn’t need it.

Of course, the ones that I had in college were, I think, one of the best I had. I would regularly walk to a cafe that would have everything cooked in butter: The buns, the meat, the bacon. Oh yes. It was then I had my first taste of a bacon cheeseburger. They also had a double-decker burger, but instead of cheese, they had bacon freshly cooked and warm. I fell in love with the place and that burger for years, often visiting them until they closed a few years ago.

Today, there are not many mom-and-pop burger places in the city, but I am always on the lookout for them. And when I find one, I usually order the usual: a cheeseburger with onions, tomatoes, pickles, mayo on both sides, and a batch of fries on the side. Fix that up with an iced cola, and you have yourself one of the happiest guys on the planet.

So I salute you, cheeseburger, for making my journeys throughout the city indescribably delicious. May we meet always again, hopefully with a bottle of mayo and of ketchup on the side.

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