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The Weekly Mailbag has some thoughts on Runza and stuff.

Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images

Good morning and welcome to your weekly dose of sighing exasperatedly at the OTE staff and our thought process. As you may have noticed, everything was wild and dumb this week. Perhaps even more surprising was that I was somehow surprised by this. (Never be an optimist, kids. You’re setting yourself up for disappointment every time.)

Anyway, as you glide into your weekend of football (Offer not valid for tOSU or Maryland or Coastal Carolina), get some coffee and a Milky Way, read through these, and let us know where we really messed up in the comments. Have a great weekend, and please don’t get stabbed by anyone wearing a hockey mask today.

It’s officially the time of year when every single person in Arizona asks me “Aren’t you cold?” Got any good responses to that? - LL Sota

MNW: Same as I say when my students in Texas ask/tell me the same thing: Pull out my phone and show them (1) the weather forecast in Minnesota and (2) pictures from my backyard right now. Then tell them the glory of snow and how I got married in the Blizzard of April 2018.

pkloa: There was a time when I’d be in a t-shirt as long as I could, telling people I was getting ready for when it was actually cold. I now wear appropriate clothing for the weather because I’m old.

Beez: It’s been 13 years since I left Wisconsin for the northern South, and I’m a giant baby when it gets even a little bit chilly now. So I’m not gonna judge too harshly. If you’re looking for a good response, I’d go with, “No.”

WSR: Go for a run without a shirt. Just steer all the way into it.

Townie: I live in Florida. Not only am I not cold, we’re in the 3rd OT of Hurricane Season. As I write this, fucking ETA is going over the house.

Stew: Just look at them. Stare at them. Don’t blink. Either that or ask them to explain why you would be cold.

Thumpasaurus: “no, pleb, unlike you i have actually adapted to my environment. Get darwin’d n00b”

Candystripes: This sounds like a good reason to buy a t-shirt that says “No, but thanks for asking.” Saves a lot of time.

BRT: Start singing “Let it Go” from Frozen. They’ll leave you alone quickly enough.

BrianB2: Maryland has been unseasonably warm thus far...fuckin’ liberals. I would generally answer this question with, “aren’t you warm?”, just to make everyone uncomfortable.

MC ClapYoHandz: Something so sarcastically corny they regret ever noticing you existed, like “No, I’m LL Sota hahahahahaha.” Don’t bring your eager eye contact, that’s an important part.

Did the guy from Nebraska who invented the runza think, “Man, you know what this Hot Pocket needs is some cabbage.” or did he think, “I’d like to tried an egg roll that is baked instead of fried.” - He was a high school quarterback

MNW: yeah I have a lot of questions number one how dare you

WSR: So I’ve had one (1) Runza, and you know what? They’re pretty good. Is this what happens when you have a Midwesterner that’s a combination German and Irish? Yeah, probably. But I liked it, and their fries were pretty good as well. I therefore feel that we should leave the best things about Nebraska there is alone.

Beez: I’ve never had a Runza, but I’d definitely be down. Re: Hot Pockets, I’m just waiting for the other shoe to drop on those. Like “if you or anyone you know ate hot pockets in your youth and now have a rapidly dissolving stomach, you may be entitled to compensation” is something I expect to hear any day now. Hot pockets and Diet Coke.

Townie: Never had one, never seen one.

Stew: I refuse to answer on the grounds that I might say something nice about Nebraska.

Dead Read: I said I would comment on this if it made the mailbag. It did, so here it is.

Runza for Dummies: First, nobody in Nebraska “invented” the Runza. This particular delicacy is derived from Eastern European cuisine, something akin to pierogis and Russian pirozhki (“little pies”). The food came to the Heartland via the Germans from Russia, particularly the Volga Germans - who emigrated to Russia during the reign of Catherine the Great. This group began settling in the Upper Midwest and Great Plains in the nineteenth century. Those who got out made the right move. The Russians/Soviets did not treat ethnic Germans well in the 20th century, for obvious reasons.

A “guy” is not responsible for the modern Runza. The person who elevated the dish to fame was Sally Everett, establishing her first restaurant in 1949. Her son Don Everett expanded the chain in the late 60s into the 70s. His children, fraternal twins Don and Dawn (no, I’m not joking) are running the chain last I checked. I went to high school with them.

Since the Runza has old country roots, it is doubtful that it was influenced by the eggroll. It clearly predates the Hot Pocket.

The Everetts are litigious when it comes to protecting their brand (someone said they quashed a local joint selling a “Ronza,” and I believe it). The Lincoln Public Schools used to have ‘Runzas” in their lunch menus, but the family stepped in sometime in the late 70s. The dish was still served, but it was renamed “Krautburger” - not nearly as appetizing.

To sum up - not invented in Nebraska, made famous by a woman, not derivative of Asian cuisine or stoner food.

Runzas are delicious. Nothing quite like one on a brisk football Saturday. If you come to Lincoln for a game in the after-times, have one! They are sold at the stadium.

BrianB2: Have y’all tried a loose meat sandwich?

MC: Brian The Loose Meat Sandwich

Had a very soggy bun

Inspired by seeing Rocky Lombardi throw a touchdown pass* If you wanted to saddle your son with the expectation that he would be a successful quarterback, what would you name him? - Atinat

MNW: uh I named my son Feagles so you can guess what he’s growing up to do

pkloa: You’ve got to have foresight to predict who will be the most prolific QB when your son is coming of age. Worked great for the 25,000 Peytons in Indiana. For this next generation, I’m going with Trace.

WSR: Why the hell would I ever allow, yet alone want, my kid to be a QB? A better question would be “If you wanted to saddle your son with the expectation that he would be a successful flex TE/edge rusher, what would you name him?” And for me, that answer is Ghengis.

Beez: I’d probably go with Matt Saracen. Talk about a guy who had no business being any good.

Townie: Only Touchdowns Townie...but we’d call him Frank, because all the men in my wife’s wholly Italian family are named Frank.

Stew: Might depend on the team he’s playing for. For example, Texas is never getting any better than Colt McCoy. You’d think Gunnar would be a contender, but with a name like that you’ve got a bit too much Favre/Jeff George. I’m gonna go with Sniper Johnson.

BRT: Staubach Penix

BrianB2: Hunter McWrestleson

Thumpasaurus: It’s pretty inevitable that a Qwartyrbach will start a D1 college football game some day, but if you want someone who’s a versatile ATH, take your pick:

Appendix 1: That dude is Reb Brown, who played fullback for the 1967 USC Trojans against Indiana in the Rose Bowl

Appendix 2: Every time I meet someone named “Dallas,” I expect them to be a hifalutin rootin tootin son of a gun. I have never not been disappointed.

what’s your favorite dumb guy football phrase to repeat over and over and why is it “gotta get off the field here”? - Jon Ross

pkloa: I see Jon enjoys the classics. I don’t want people to think I WANT our defense to give up a shit ton of yards on the way to six more points, but they can’t read my mind, so…

Beez: “A big momentum shift.”

WSR: “Flipping the field” after a B1G punt.

Townie: “Gut Check”

BoilerBettor: “Kicking is for Losers.” Oh, wait, you said dumb. Then it’s clearly, “HOW THE FUCK IS THAT insert penalty here?”

Thumpasaurus: “C’mon defense, ONE STOP RIGHT HERE,” he said knowing damn well the offense would take over and go 3 and out if they managed to avoid turning it over

“Bring the heat here!” he said as though Lovie Smith would literally ever do that.

“Somebody missed an assignment badly there,” he said for the 20th time of the day

“WATCH THE BLITZ!” he said to nobody in particular.

Dead Read: “Game of inches.”

BRT: “Just… don’t do anything stupid here.”

MC: When I played I was told to do things “on the hop” constantly and have yet to hear that phrase in the wild since. And my all time favorite to hear in the stands is simply, “tackle him!” They know, bud, they know.

Does this season actually count? - dlrhawks

MNW: I will answer this question after the Northwestern-Purdue game.

pkloa: It counts, but all the surprisingly horrible teams get a pass.

WSR: Nah. This is the aspartame of football seasons.

Beez: Check back once we know whether Wisconsin gets 6 games

Candystripes: If this season doesn’t count, I reserve the right to claim that no football season has ever counted. (Yes, I’m counting it because my team’s actually good for once. Deal with it.)

BoilerBettor: Yes, it counts. Unless Wisconsin or Indiana makes the CCG. Then no, it does not.

BRT: I’m leaning a hard no on this one.

Thumpasaurus: ...That’s a question for the Illini AD

MC: Wait. You guys have been playing football?

Sooooo......How good is anyone or is anyone actually good? - GreatValueCrimson

MNW: Ohio State is elite. Indiana is good. (What the fuck did I just say.) In the West wisconsin is probably good. Northwestern is there — pulling the Joe Biden once again.

Everyone else is trash. Them’s the rules.

pkloa: If your team does not start with an O and end with hio State, you’re not good at football. Even if your team does meet that criteria, it still isn’t as good as all those southern teams, where football just means more. Drink up.

WSR: As I said on twitter last Saturday, there’s Ohio State. And then you can throw 13 names into a hat and pull them out and you’d have just as much luck getting 2-14 that way as you would any other. Between COVID completely screwing with rosters and teams getting ready for the season with changes, there’s almost nobody that has their shit together.

Beez: It’s clearly OSU then a tiny gap then Wisconsin then a huge gap then everyone else tied for last, except for the actual last place teams (PSU, Illinois, Northwestern)

Townie: I believe that the polling data may be flawed…(see PSU in top 5 preseason).

Stew: Fuck’m all. Just various degrees of garbage. Ohio State, notwithstanding.

BoilerBettor: Everyone is trash and we should not be playing football.

Thumpasaurus: I know only these truths: Ohio State is better than the rest of the conference by miles, and Illinois is the opposite.

MC: I abstain, courteously. And also Alex Trebek is good. Real, real good.


Runza. Wouldja?

This poll is closed

  • 54%
    (60 votes)
  • 15%
    (17 votes)
  • 30%
    Maybe? Could I split it with somebody just in case I don’t like it?
    (33 votes)
110 votes total Vote Now