“Rhubarb Queen” and the TV disaster

Moments with Strangers

We were chatting about rhubarb.

It’s not her favorite anymore; but back in the day, she was a SERIOUS baker and made a killer rhubarb pie. People in her neighborhood used to call her the “Rhubarb Queen.”

She told me how in 1965 she and her best friend were invited to demonstrate how to make “the best rhubarb pie” on national tv. It was part of cooking special featuring “The Future Farmers of America.” They were 12.

The feature went horribly.

They burned the first batch of jam and had to redo it on air. She described it as being both terrifying and exhilarating.

The thing that kept it fun was being there with her best friend. “We were such dorks. Thinking back that far is exhausting. You know what, I’ve changed my mind. I’ll get a pecan pie instead.”

After finishing the rest of her shopping. she came back for another pie.

“You know, I kinda want to see that again. I wonder if the footage still exists. It was embarrassing at the time, but I bet now it’d be really funny to watch.”