Humanoids are stupid. Laugh at them.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Hansen: Centenarian celebrates with women, wings

John Persinger turned 100 Wednesday and did what few new centenarians do.
He celebrated at Hooters, the politically incorrect restaurant chain known for hot wings served by young women in hot pants.

Persinger is a widower, so his wife didn't mind. Truth is, Vi wouldn't have minded anyway.
"We opened the place in 1993," he says in a low, sandpaper rumble. "We went for the shrimp and chicken wings."
And they became regulars. They'd been married almost 72 years when Vi died at 89.

Persinger doesn't exactly fit the Hooters demographic, but so what? You don't hit the 100 mark by paying strict attention to convention.
He's different from most of the 40,000 centenarians in the United States. All but 6,000 are women.

"I don't know how I did it," he says. "Good living, I guess. A lot of good food. Steaks, fried potatoes. I sip a little Royal Crown now and then."
Don't get the wrong idea. He means Crown Royal.

Persinger tells me it's hard to beat his onion rings, chili, pancakes, meatballs and, of course, his famous fried mush.
"Fry till it gets brown," he says, "add syrup and butter. Oh, it's really good."
I'll wait for meatball day. At 120 pounds, Persinger doesn't weigh much more than a plate of meatballs.

He was sturdier in his prime, during World War II when he watched a Japanese kamikaze pilot carry out a suicide mission.
"I was the oldest sailor on the USS Nashville," he says. "They called me 'Pops.' "

On Dec. 13, 1944, the ship was a few miles from the Philippines when a single-engine fighter came crashing down, two bombs strapped to the wings.
The plane hit, the bombs exploded. Flames and bodies were everywhere.
"He came right over the trees and hit us behind the stacks," says Persinger, who escaped injury. "Killed 133 sailors and wounded 197. But he didn't sink us."

Not everybody thinks Hooters was such a perfect party location. Some, apparently, would have preferred Chuck E. Cheese's.
"One guy at the church said, 'Didn't you hear the message this morning about looking at girls and everything?' I told him I was going to Hooters to eat chicken wings."

It's the truth, but maybe not the whole truth. Persinger has been known to ask the women if they'd like a 100-year-old kiss.
Talking about it, the 100-year-old man lets out a 100-year-old laugh, which seems like a decent consolation prize.
for pic



Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home