O, little town of Bethel, Alaska. Things were finally looking up for you.
Denali, the Great One, soaring under the midnight sun.
A spicy kick to crisp northern air.
A whisper—a promise of foreign taco seasonings.
Yellow fliers announcing the opening of a Taco Bell franchise had begun appearing around town.
They promised jobs and excitement by Independence Day.
A world outside the bun for a population of 6,000.
Parents looked in from bedroom doorways on their sleeping children and smiled.
A silent prayer of thanks that sons and daughters would never know a life devoid of local fast food offerings.
"You bring a McDonald's or a KFC, people will go crazy out here," said Tatiana Dotdot, a Bethel supermarket employee, to The L.A. Times.
But it was not to be.
It will never be.
"An evil hoax," declared the Anchorage Daily News. "It's not known who is behind the hoax or why."
A fake website and phone number posted on the devil's fliers.
The nearest Taco Bell: in Anchorage, 400 miles away.
Did Denali Foods Inc., the Keeper of Taco Bells for all of Alaska, have plans to open a franchise in this place reachable only by sea or sky?
And yet, on a tundra of misery, dreamers remain:
"Maybe now they'll think about it," said Bethel Chamber of Commerce director Bonnie Bradbury.
They will not.