FAQ #1

Question: What about Kurt Wiese? Was he part of the conspiracy against you in Centerboro? How was he able to draw Martians that look just like the one in your drawing? Did he see them himself?
Answer: I'm not sure about the conspiracy part of your question. I don't think so, because his drawings depicting me in the Freddy books, while not exactly complimentary, were reasonably accurate in a cartoonish sort of way. He didn't go out of his way to create an insulting caricature of me (as Mr. Brooks certainly did), so I guess he may not have been part of  the conspiracy. Now, as you can see, his drawings of the Martians were pretty accurate, too. You've noticed the similarity to my own true-to-life rendition. I don't believe he ever saw them in person, because he was never in Centerboro. Unless Wiese encountered the Martians independently elsewhere, I think he got his idea from Walter Brooks. Here's how I see it. Brooks, under the influence of the Martians at the time, contacted Wiese through Knopf with suggestions for the illustrations for the two Freddy books featuring the Martians. The Martians, working thus through Brooks, were able to mask their very real presence in Centerboro as a figment of Brooks's and Wiese's imaginations. Anyone (such as myself) saying, "Here's what a real Martian looks like" could be (and has been) countered with, "Oh, you must have seen the illustrations of Martians in those Freddy books. There aren't any real Martians."  How clever those little creatures are! One simply has to appreciate their cunning, doesn't one?

Question:  Will we be hearing from you ever again at the Freddy the Pig list?
Answer: Only if someone else starts an interesting discussion (i.e., not about book trades and books for sale). And if I do pipe up, it will not be under my real name, as I have unsubscribed from the list as Mr. Eha (saving a certain individual the trouble of trying to do that for me again). Right now I'm just "lurking" in the background (like everyone else) waiting for someone to say something interesting or to stir things up.

Question:  Have you and Herb Garble patched things up?
Answer: My lawyer has advised me not to discuss my dealings with Herb any more than I already have until the legal difficulties between us are settled.

Question: I've tried all the Dixon Diner recipes you published at your site, and you were right. They're delicious! Will you give us any more?
Answer: Well, I suppose one more wouldn't hurt anything but your cholesterol level. This will be the last freebie, though, as I plan to collect the recipes into a book and sell them. This is one of my favorites, an artery clogger for certain, but so tasty that you'll risk your health again and again to make...

Dixon's Puffy French Fries

Ingredients
Potatoes cut in desired pieces
Friture for frying
Regular or garlic salt

Note: Friture is a clear fat made from the suet which encloses the beef kidney. You should be able to get it from a butcher. Remove all of the membrane and cut it into pieces. Soak the pieces in ice water for 24 hours. To cook it, cover the pieces with cold water and simmer until the water cooks out. Strain it into an earthenware vessel and, unless you're going to use it right away, keep it in a cool place. I know that friture sounds disgusting, but this stuff is good and worth all the trouble of preparing. It doesn't impart an odor to foods and you can strain it and use it a few more times.

Now, peel and cut your potatoes. Soak them for a half hour in cold water to get rid of the starch. Wipe the potatoes dry and fry them in deep, hot fat until they're yellow, at which time you remove them from the fat and let them cool for 5 minutes--no more, no less. Return them to the hot fat and brown them. (The interrupted cooking makes the potatoes light, dry, and puffs them up.) Try garlic salt on them sometime.

One of my favorite treats before I had to start watching my weight was a big basket of the puffy fries and a dozen or two of Dixon's chicken wings (Mrs. Bean's recipe). As a historical note, the idea of chicken wings as food, not as something to be thrown away with the head, feet, and tails, did not originate in Buffalo, New York, as some have claimed. It started in Dixon's Diner in the late 1930s as a local novelty. It would have stayed that way, too, I think, until some restaurant owner from Buffalo passing through Centerboro took the idea home and eventually turned it into a craze there. Now you can get so-called "Buffalo wings" just about anywhere, but they really should be called "Centerboro wings" or "Dixon's wings." I do have Mrs. Bean's recipe and it will appear in my recipe book.

Question: I noticed in your Last Will and Testament that you have 41 Freddy books. Do you have any to trade or sell? Or are they all copies of Freddy Goes to Florida and Freddy the Detective?
Answer: I miscounted. At this time, I have over sixty Freddy books and this number includes an older complete Knopf set. I use these books for research purposes as I find very little that's entertaining or amusing or remotely redeeming about the series. Even so, I have no plans right now to trade or sell any of them as I do not wish to be associated with the spread of Freddyism. If you want any of my books, you probably will have to wait until I really pass away and then head right to the next Centerboro Public Library used and discarded book sale (usually scheduled in the fall--you can call for the exact date, I'm sure) where you will be able to purchase one title (for research purposes only, I hope) on a first come, first served basis as per my agreement with the library. Now, to all of you--please do not ask me again about Freddy book sales or trades. Number one, it's boring. Number two, the answer will be the same, unless I really need immediate cash for one of my projects. In that case, I may part with a Freddy book or two.

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