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The arabbers of Baltimore.
October 12, 2006 11:19 AM   Subscribe

"Holler, holler, holler, till my throat get sore.
If it wasn't for the pretty girls, I wouldn't have to holler no more.
I say, Watermelon! Watermelon! [Also see the other pic links to the left.]
Got em red to the rind, lady." - Earl Dorsey, Arabber
Descriptions and pictures of Baltimore's disappearing horse and cart arable goods vendors.
posted by OmieWise (9 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

Of course anyone who remembers the first season of Homicide remembers Bayless's first case, a Red Ball.
posted by OmieWise at 11:21 AM on October 12, 2006 [1 favorite]

I remember them from when I was a young kid. We used to buy soft-shell crabs from them, among other things.
posted by me & my monkey at 11:27 AM on October 12, 2006

They continued to come thru my neighborhood until last week, when I noticed that they now use a pickup.
I recommend "We Are Arabbers", a documentary interviewing and following arabbers as they struggle to make a living and maintain their unique culture.
posted by Heatwole at 11:31 AM on October 12, 2006

Yeah, I haven't seen the documentary yet, but it's the fifth link.
posted by OmieWise at 11:37 AM on October 12, 2006

This is too damned cool.

Excellent post, OmieWise!
posted by jason's_planet at 1:08 PM on October 12, 2006

I remember being so confused by this when I first moved to Baltimore. "Shouldn't this be down by the Inner Harbor? What's this doing in my down-at-the-heels 'hood north of Patterson Park? Huh?" The coolest thing is that it's certainly not a tourist-type deal. Saw one just yesterday at Charles and North Ave.
posted by zoinks at 2:03 PM on October 12, 2006

Excellent post, thank you!!
posted by sidereal at 5:40 PM on October 12, 2006

Well, to quote Jonathan Richman:

...I wanna keep my place in this old world
Keep my place in the arcane design
And I still love the '50's and I still love the old world

It's nice to know that there are yet traces of the arcane design out there.
posted by y2karl at 9:04 AM on October 13, 2006

Of course anyone who remembers the first season of Homicide remembers Bayless's first case, a Red Ball.

But what's the brand of dope that the modern-day arabbers are selling in the current season of The Wire?

Big Yellow Bird?
posted by PeterMcDermott at 5:54 AM on October 14, 2006

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