Thanks, Sue, for starting the caramel-apple tradition


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Posted Online: Oct. 29, 2013, 9:39 pm
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By John Marx, jmarx@qconline.com
MOLINE -- As I strolled through my company's distribution center, I could see the box. It was covered to protect the valuables inside.

"Sweet,'' I said. "It's 'that' Monday.''

Thursday is Halloween, and 'round these parts, the Monday before Halloween means one thing: caramel apples.

Not just any caramel apples, but the juiciest, most perfect caramel apples to ever fall from a tree and into a pot of tasty caramel goop. I have spent 28 falls with the Moline Dispatch Publishing Company, and for as many as I can remember, Sue Gramling has provided the building -- top to bottom -- with the aforementioned delights.

It's like yummy with a capital "Y.''

I am aware it is not right to expect someone to be gracious enough to do something like this, but I have come to expect caramel apples every fall from Sue. If my memory is correct -- and it has its share of foggy days -- the caramel apples arrive the Monday before Halloween.

In some worlds, those who do something as wonderful as what Sue does every fall will walk about expecting you to recognize their generosity. This is not -- and I cannot emphasize this enough -- the case with Sue, who heads our company's data processing department. To thank her, you must find her, because she is busily taking care of her duties to keep our company boat afloat.

Not wanting to invade her working space, I have never asked Sue, a 40-year veteran of the Moline Dispatch Publishing Company, how long it takes her to prepare a hundred-plus caramel apples, or how she delivers them without staffers knowing they are coming. I don't have the heart to ask what goes into making the best-tasting -- and I have had my share of them -- caramel apples on the planet. They are Rachael Ray-Martha Stewart TV good.

Sue might have some special science to her carmel apples, but I'm guessing it's more time, patience, feel and care. She finds the best carmel-holding apples, the kind of carmel that stays gooey for days, and is wildly accurate with her dipping and placement on the wax paper where they rest.

And let us not forget the secrecy with which she works. I work Sundays, have since they gave me a key, and I have never seen Sue slip in to place the caramel apples around the building. But first thing on caramel-apple Monday, they are here. There's a lot of Santa Claus in Sue's approach.

I am aware of the caloric content of these morsels from heaven, and I am keenly aware of the work that goes into consuming such a delight. It is also not lost on me that dentists cannot wait for caramel-apple season.

And that's OK. Dentists be darned.

Thanks, Sue.

Columnist John Marx can be reached at 309 757-8388 or Jmarx@qconline.com
















 



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  Today is Monday, April 21, the 111th day of 2014. There are 254 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: The female sex seems to have gone crazy on the subject of dry goods. When high prices keep them from increasing their wardrobes, they turn to stealing. Yard goods, hats, shoes and other items are being picked up and carried home.
1889 -- 125 years ago: Members of Everts Commandery No. 18, Knights Templar, under Commander H.C. Cleaveland, marched from the Masonic Temple to Trinity Episcopal Church for their annual Easter services.
1914 -- 100 years ago: Nate Hultgren pitched the Augustana College baseball team to a 10-3 victory over Carthage, striking out 11 men and allowing only four hits.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Marvel Leonhardi, a Rock Island High School senior, was the winner of an essay contest on advertising sponsored by The Argus and Advertising Age, a national advertising publication.
1964 -- 50 years ago: The Augustana College band drew a crowd of 1,200 people for its annual home concert in Centennial Hall. The size of the crowd was indicative of the fact the band is rapidly approaching the stature of the Augustana Choir.
1989 -- 25 years ago: A benefit to raise money for extracurricular activities in the Rock Island Milan School District will be April 27 at the Quad City Downs harness race track. People buying $17.50 tickets to the second annual "Night at the Quad City Downs" will be entitled to an evening of harness racing and dinner.






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