Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Soul Food: Cornbread, Mack, And Me

I wanted to share with you guys a little of my family life. Over the weekend, my family got together for a little reunion. My uncles, Mack and Carlton decided that the family doesn’t get together enough so they invited everyone over for some good ol' southern cooking. I’m talking they roasted half of a hog. You ever heard of a “pig picking?” I realize this may be disgusting to some, but some of y’all out there know exactly what I’m talking about. Yeah, Soul food!

There was corn on the cob, mac and cheese, cornbread, fried chicken, grilled chicken, ribs, string beans, collard greens, pasta salad, and baked beans with strips of bacon across the top! Haa haa!! I mean a real trip to the doctor, but it was so delicious! Oh, and you can't live in the DC/Maryland area without trying some of the Chesapeake Bay's finest crustaceans! Yes, Crabs!

This was also a chance for the family to meet my wife because I was just married at the end of 2005. They loved her and they loved the South African dish she fixed for the occasion. I learned some things about me as well at this family gathering. One of my younger cousins who attends FAMU (Florida A& M University) wanted some advice on what books to read. I suggested Aimé Césaire's book, Discourse On Colonialism. There was also a moment when we were all sitting in the family room just catching up. We were having discussions about current events and various topics. This sparked conversations about black history and culture. They started asking me questions and I gave my 2 cent. If I didn't know the answer they were surprised! In other words, I have a reputation of being the family smart guy. I honestly don’t know how I got this reputation? Perhaps some of the family are speaking well of me. Nevertheless, I like the reputation because I love to talk about history and culture. It’s the reason I first went into teaching. I was also told that I was a man who loves his family whether we’ve met or not. This is true. I've met more than a couple of cousins I’ve never met before and I embraced them instantly. It might be a different story if I had to live with them, but the love is there upon initial contact.

Overall, it was good to see everyone. I hope that you all get a chance to see and get together with your family this Summer. If you haven’t then maybe you should be the one to get everyone together. Peace and enjoy the rest of this Summer. It’ll be over before you know it.
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