Wow. Who would’ve thought that all we had to do to kick off one of the biggest responses we’ve ever received was Weird Al Hamilton...which kind of Normal Al’d Biggie’s “10 Crack Commandments.”

Y’all RESPONDED. Y’all responded big time. You lifted our spirits like George Wendt lifting an exhausted Tom Skeritt on Season 6 of Cheers so Rebecca could escape from under his bed, y’know? You know what we mean when we say that? Yeah, you do. Though some of you who always complain about how we’re young are probably like “Why does this jerk know so much about Cheers?”

Anyway, as we are sometimes wont to do, and in an effort to prove that we’re reading all your emails, we wanted to take the time to share a couple with the extended Forknatics(TM) and to respond to them with words that come spilling out of our fingertips like so much wine into the amphoras that are your ears. Or, as our main woman Gillian Jacobs might say, feast your eye tongues on these response pops:

So sayeth Michael W: “I adore The Fork! Who would imagine such clever writing would emerge from this arid high desert rather than NYC (for instance)? And now to stir up a ruckus myself: please don’t tell me that “sky-blue waters” (in that weird Hamm commercial) is “mildly racist.” Would you be happier with “waters of color”? Or is it the drums that get your panties twisted? (Not to assume in a sexist way you wear panties.) Cultural misappropriation - is that your concern? Best to take your own advice and chill. Drums are just drums. No need to demonstrate how sensitive your racial antenna are.”

Yes, Michael—it was the appropriative drums that weirded us out. And we’re just gonna keep on doing whatever the heck we want. Did you not read the sweet raps?

So sayeth Nanci E: “Hey, your turkey flavored candy corn link has been a big hit on my Facebook feed. I’ve managed to gross out all my friends. Although I don’t read you for these kinds of tidbits, I do have a lot of fun with them. Loved your column this week...even emailed it to my brother in San Diego.”

Hi, Nanci! We were also thrilled by repeatedly telling people we know about those AWFUL sounding corns. We’re also glad you shared with your brother. We had the best fish tacos of our life in San Diego. Then we hit up Bellmont and rocked The Giant Dipper (which also, btw, exists in Santa Cruz, CA). Boom-San Diego/Santa Cruz knowledge. Oh, also, there’s video someplace of Vincent Price riding the Giant Dipper, just so people know.

So sayeth John O: “What the heck happened? Sounds like you guys really got hurt. Forget about it, I enjoy your stuff, keep going, peace.”

Well, John, we were hurt. Hurt bad. Some of our readers think they can change us, but we prefer to dance on the wind! DANCE ON THE WIND!

So sayeth Bob T: “Your newsletter was a little upsetting this morning…sounds like you are fed up with Santa Feans bitching and moaning, as we have a tendency to do. No worries, it will pass and you guys, whomever you are, will help us get there. I absolutely love your newsletters. They lift me up and I am so proud that you are a part of my community. Please hang in there.”

We will, Bob, but only for you.

So sayeth Sara E: “I loved Rob DeWalt’s work and your too! Hang in there!”

We miss Rob every day, Sara. He was such a wonderful and impactful arts and food journalist about whom we never heard a bad word. We do this in his memory, and we’d like to think that while he was a very different kind of writer, he’d approve. Shoutout to his husband Jason, too, whom we also love.

So sayeth Paola V: “I’ve always found your emails to be quite rad, and I’m sorry that others have made you sad.Today you’ve gone and shot for the moon, and can I just say I’m ecstatic as a loon.A thrilling read with suggestions for tasty mead (and vittles ;-)Please forgive my lame attempt at verse, this was not at all rehearsed.”

Ohmygod, we love you, Paola!

So sayeth Betsy C: “Haha haha! That was the best ‘fuck all y’all’ ever!”

You should see how we do it outside of work. It’s brutal.

So sayeth Matthew Z: “Your most recent newsletter is basically a long whiny screed about people who misunderstand you and your intentions and goals as a food newsletter writer, and how said people shouldn’t/do not deserve to have expectations because your “newsletter” is free. You also state, “We read your words and wonder who told you that this or any other newsletter owes you.” I take your point--but you’re not a blog. You’re not a freelance journalist or a kid in his basement with a website, a mailchimp account and a lot of opinions. You’re someone (even if we don’t know who) writing under the umbrella and the auspices of a publication with aspirations to credible journalism, and as such, someone who, by association at a minimum, has obligations to the standards of credible journalism. I find this especially poignant considering your last number of newsletters have contained the SFR appeal for donation to and consideration of the cause of quality journalism. Participate in the cause, or don’t, that’s up to you. If you’d rather start a blog, please do so. But if you’re writing under the auspices of a respected engine of true journalism, then yes, you do owe something, and you’re expected to contribute.”

Well, it looks like we DO know who’s in a basement not getting paid to write long-winded statements. Thanks for the feedback, Matthew, but we’re good—they like us here. And we’d point to the literally every single other thing we do that’s got credible journalism coming out of its ears...we truly apologize, however, if one funny (or meant-to-be-funny) newsletter is too much for you. We have no misconceptions about the content of The Fork (although we do let our Pulitzer speak for itself—go ahead, look it up). Meantime, we just hope you’ll be OK. Truly. Oh! And thanks for the Dolina patio tip. We love that place. If that’s OK with you, that is...?

So sayeth Kathy K:Don’t despair. People are so messed up now. I have a license to diagnose and am grateful to have hung up my therapy spurs. I couldn’t listen to it all day now. But, you’re offering me a bit of joy every Thursday. I cope when you take time off because I know you deserve it.”

When an analyst tells you you’re alright, you pop Cheers on (to the Frasier episodes, anyway) and celebrate.

So sayeth Beverly M: “I love The Fork, always have. Lets me know about restaurants I might have missed and about what’s happening in places I already know about. Please, do drop using the F word. You’re a better writer than that!”

Thanks, Bev. Unfortunately, we took an impromptu poll, and “fuck” is objectively the best word. It really is. As consolation, we invite you to read this interesting piece about how people who swear more are highly intelligent (it’s science!), and we invite you to revel in its use—for it is glorious!

So sayeth Diane K: “I LOVE the FORK and I am an old white woman who rarely does anything exciting. Gripers should stop griping and get with a new attitude.”

Oh, Diane—like Diane Chambers (from Cheers), we think you’re adorable and the whole thing just kind of falls apart without you.

So sayeth Richard H: “The Fork, have I detected a bit of possibly Vegan-related pugnacitility in your recent columns? Hate mail and haters exist to troll you and anyone who sticks their neck out in print. Be of good cheer, build your lists and spread your opinions, and remember the similarity between opinions and assholes.”

Richard H, we love you.

So sayeth Scott B: You’re trying too hard to be funny here‚—‘we ain’t stupid’—chill a bit and just be your own self; that’s all we want.

We’re trying, Scott, but you won’t let us!!!!

So sayeth Ricki D: “Wow, pretty unpleasant reading. Just unsubscribed.”

Have fun with rap-free newsletters, we guess.

We’ll leave it at there for now. We have some others, but this is a lot and you’ve already read a lot and when it’s a lot like that, we don’t wanna just pile on, y’know? Thanks so much, everyone, for your letters—even the ones who chastise us (especially since we choose to believe they tried to research whether or not we actually won a Pulitzer only to learn there’s no Pulitzer in newsletters and also, to whom would they have awarded such a bauble? Would it have “The Fork” carved into the plaque? Hahahaha! Get real).

Anyway, it’s all a rich tapestry.

Patio Update!

Now you dweebs are getting it—we’ll add to the list! Thanks much to those of you who reached out with more places, they’re up in there. We’ll keep updating weekly, but here’s where we are as of today:

Also

-Zozobra (that weird pagan festival during which we burn a puppet and scream) is back, as is the Zozorita, an annual special margarita dedicated to Old Man Gloom (Google it if you don’t know, we don’t have the time or energy to explain it all). You can get yours while patio dining at places like Tomasita’s, Del Charro, Plaza Café Southside, Rio Chama, Santa Fe Capitol Gill and Santa Fe Bar & Grill, and if you go to this link, you can get yourself a special Zozo glass.

-Sad news on the outskirts as Harry’s Roadhouse was forced to temporarily close following two employees testing positive for coronavirus. But don’t be too sad for too long, because Café Pasqual’s is reopening for takeout.

-Usually if someone asked about our competitors at the Santa Fe New Mexican, we’d say that rag’s not good enough for our bird cages, but this-here piece about the pavlova (with a recipe!) from Marianne Sundquist rules. Also, if you work over there and you’re reading this, we hope you realize we’re joshing. JOSHING!

-Meanwhile, at the Rosewood Inn of the Anasazi’s outdoor dining space, a gaggle of local artists created beautifully painted concrete divider thingies with cool style. We’re talkin’ JP Granillo, Shakti Kroopkin, Joel Nakamura and lots more. You can walk by the hotel on Washington Avenue in downtown Santa Fe to take a gander.

-Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced earlier this week that restaurants in New Mexico can start serving indoors again at 25% capacity and...something about churches. We’ve got a story about that riiiiiiiight here.

More Tidbits

-Good news from the James Beard Foundation as it was announced the org will not name winners at its Sept. 25 awards ceremony. Why? Well, the ol’ JBF came under scrutiny for a perceived lack of diversity, and in a recent press release, told all us food writers that it will begin a year-long audit to its awards process with the intent to root out and expunge any systemic bias.

-Thanks to Forknatic Joanne, we know that Krispy Kreme has been planning on opening a totally bonkers Times Square location in NYC. And now it’s here. Yikes.

-McDonald’s is releasing spicy chicken McNuggets, its McFirst McNew McChicken McNugget McFlavor in America since Mc1983. The worst part is, someone reading this just thought “Finally!”

-Speaking of new items, the Del Taco folks have introduced new crispy chicken tacos and burritos and stuff to their Albuquerque menus. Also, we’ve been looking through the “News” section of the Del Taco site, and it’s a McTrip.

-If freeze-dried marshmallows that taste like sawdust, cause a squeaky sound against your teeth and make your skin crawl are your thing, note that Lucky Charms is now selling just the marshmallows. We’d point out you can get all kinds of marshmallows, and certainly plenty brands are bound to be better than these.

-As of two days ago, the pumpkin spice latte is back at Starbucks, making this two weeks in a row we’ve had to talk about fucking Starbucks. Word up to Ohori’s and to Iconik and Java Joe’s and to all the killer local coffee shops who just make good coffee.

-Didja hear about the new executive editor at Bon Appétit? You will. Turns out Sonja Chopra’s pretty cool and penned a brief but powerful “What’s up, readers?” piece recently. We salute BA and Condé Nast for putting their money where their mouth is and can’t wait to see what Chopra cooks up. Boom. Food jokes. Anyway, read all about it here.

Finally

In the print edition of SFR, learn why rolled ice cream makes scooped ice cream look like a bunch of bologna.

A Totally Scientific Breakdown of The Fork’s Correspondence

Number of Letters Received 137 *We can tell who among you likes raps, especially super-sweet raps.

Most Helpful Tip of the Week (a barely edited letter from a reader) “Shut the fuck up.” *Naw.

Actually Helpful Tip “Put some Oreos in a coffee mug, add any kind of ice cream you like, mash it all together.” *We assume this works with rolled ice cream?

There was a time when readers were kind, when the world was a song and the song was inviting; there was a time...but then it all went wrong, The Fork

Just good old Smoking Popes doing Les Miz.