Jack's Beacon Heat Pepper Sauce
One day Captain Jack was landlocked at home, quaffing an inexpensive ale, and came down with a sudden attack of nostalgia. Seeking out his old sea-chest (quartered in the garage), the Captain began to rummage through the souvenirs and mementos collected from his many, many years of sailing around the world. He squinted back eyeball leakage as he handled the stuffed Rainbow Lorikeet parrot he won in an all-night card-game during a storm layover at Port Moresby in Papua New Guinea. Oh, the Captain struggled between extra-salty tears and uproarious guffaws of laughter as he recalled the various situations when and where he acquired the shrunken head with a Mohawk haircut, the Gurkha switchblade (it never did work right), a small-scale and (supposedly) accurate reproduction of the Gordian Knot, a jar of pickled jellyfish from Osaka, Japan (still unopened), the “Pirate” typewriter with one key (the letter “R”), and so many more useless delights. However, there was one tchotchke, a bobblehead Marilyn Monroe eating-a-hotdog doll, which caused Jack to sob like a landlubber who had just lost the keys to their car. It was a gift from Simon the Strong, a craggy and crude deckhand he'd sailed with for nearly two wonderful decades until Simon's forced retirement (he'd lost his right foot from infection due to an untreated wound caused by playing mumblety-peg drunk). Simon was a competent seaman, loyal friend, and with his Popeye-like forearms, just the man to have your back in a brawl. The adventures that the Captain shared with Simon were denied repeating, as they were a marvelous mixture of unbelievable and outright fictitious, though the memories remained some of Jack's favorite. Simon, who had never married, was the only child of an only child, and had no immediate or distant family he was aware of, had retired to a rundown SRO at the corner of Joy and Myrtle Streets at the top of Beacon Hill, as it was close to Boston's oldest immigrant-era synagogue, the Vilna Shul on Philips Street (and just a couple of blocks away from where Simon had lived as a child with his parents. The Captain was at-sea for almost a full year before he was able to visit his dear friend. Simon was no longer “Strong” in body, but was still crude and reckless. Together, they cabbed to Chinatown and the Combat Zone where they ate well, drank too much, wasted money at a couple of strip-clubs, and at the end of the evening they both got anchor tattoos. Neither the Captain or Simon had gotten a tattoo in all their time visiting exotic ports, as the Captain didn't believe in volunteering for pain and Simon followed Jewish tradition. Simon had joked that God would understand or find a way to get over it. When the Captain again visited two weeks later, he was told by the desk clerk that his friend had passed on several days before and was buried at City Poor Lot in Hyde Park. The quiet curse that escaped his lips was the last negativity the Captain would allow himself concerning Simon's passing and he vowed for evermore to place celebration in front of grief. Toward honoring his friend's life, the Captain took a long walk around Beacon Hill, then raced back home and prepared a delightfully awesome sauce. Recommended for those who don't discriminate: Captain Jack's Beacon Heat Pepper Sauce. Welcome to the Hub of Hot!
Available at select stores in Boston or purchase online at: shop.capjacksauces.com
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