ColeSlaw Theft Investigated
Early Saturday (August 30), just as Labor Day weekend festivities were about to really get rolling, police were notified that the supply of coleslaw for the entire East End had been stolen. As has been true for many years, the East End receives its coleslaw supply from the Mid-Atlantic Cole Slaw Supply Depot (MACSSD), located in Elizabeth, New Jersey. The coleslaw is delivered in refrigerated tanker trucks to the Regional Cole Slaw Supply Depot (RCSSD) in Remsenburg early on Thursday mornings, though, for holiday weekends when additional coleslaw supply is needed, the East End Cole Slaw Authority (EECSA) has overflow coleslaw storage capacity in Baiting Hollow. (This cooperative arrangement was worked out after the infamous walk-out by the Cabbage Cutters Union Local 692 that lasted from May to October, 1988 and shuttered the local coleslaw factories for good.)
Local licensed coleslaw delivery services, arriving at the depots at 5 a.m. on Saturday, were the first to notice that the coleslaw was gone. The consequences for local restaurants and delis, and their customers, were obviously devastating. An emergency shipment of replacement slaw from Buffalo was turned back at Ronkonkoma on Sunday when it was discovered that it had been made using Miracle Whip—which is illegal in Suffolk County. Many visitors were reduced to eating potato salad, which is universally agreed to be a poor substitute for coleslaw. Police determined the coleslaw had been siphoned out of the RCSSD storage tanks under cover of darkness sometime Friday night, but no further clues were found pertaining to the fate of the missing salad. Meanwhile, local officials reassured residents that coleslaw supplies would return to normal by Wednesday, and they called on the Cole Slaw Authority to step up security at both coleslaw depots.
Where Are the Party People?
On Tuesday morning, police began receiving calls about “an ominous quiet” that appears to have descended upon the area. One person called in a panic to report that he “was able to walk across Route 27 in Amagansett without a Range Rover trying to run me over.” Another reported going to her local bagel shop and finding it “all but deserted” except for herself and the counter help who “seemed to be in a sort of daze.” Several callers told police that they had walked down empty Sag Harbor sidewalks and had been unable to find ANY free glossy magazines with “pictures of smiling people wearing white pants and drinking wine in some rich guy’s backyard.” Police issued a statement assuring residents that the “mysterious calm that has overtaken us is currently the subject of intense investigation.”