Kielbasa for Our Casa

By Rita Buettner  |  Photos by Malia Leary

After the initial thrill of winning our bet with Notre Dame, we felt a pang of guilt.

We came home with the NCAA Division 1 Men’s Lacrosse Championship, a gleaming trophy to pass around, and bragging rights over our new pals in South Bend. On top of that, we didn’t have to shell out a penny for crab cakes, and we got to look forward to a kielbasa delivery. It just didn’t seem fair.

So, in our quest to be men and women for others, we picked up a few items and shipped a consolation prize out to Notre Dame Magazine.

We threw in a note that said:

No matter what the final score,
Enjoy a taste of Baltimore.

Our new friends were ecstatic. It’s amazing how much joy can be triggered by a few crab chips and a couple Berger cookies.

When our victory kielbasa arrived, we found this lovely handwritten poem inside:

The Fighting Irish were clearly trying to blow our first verse out of the water. But the Greyhound doesn’t just hold the 2012 NCAA Championship trophy for Division 1 lacrosse. He has the largest heart of any dog.

And so we doggedly offer this response to our Notre Dame friends:

We offered you cakes made of tender blue crab,
“And we’ll send kielbasa,” you said, “If you grab
A victory from us, but we doubt that you will.”
Then our Greyhounds romped right past the Irish with skill.
So you sent us a taste from the Polish South Bend,
We—Hounds that we are—tracked it down in the end,

Though here, I’ll admit, I had made quite a mess,
By supplying you with—oops—a faulty address.

Still, we found the kielbasa, and boiled it well

And baked it—it crackled!—but it was the smell

Of garlic that filled every inch of the room,
We think it will smell like that into next June.
We gobbled it down, everyone got a taste,

And we ate it so fast we forgot to say grace.
Thank you, dear friends, for the sausage and fun.
Perhaps one day we’ll wager yet a new one.
And, though this was yummy, let’s make no mistakes,
Not much can taste better than local crab cakes.

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