Posts Tagged ‘barbecue’

It’s not always bad news…

As the COVID-19 pandemic raged, the polarizing 2020 Presidential campaigns were being waged and merely living in America was becoming a gloomy prospect, I attempted to mitigate the dread surrounding us by focusing on the many joys and delights we could still enjoy, hopefully lifting spirits and soothing the soul. While carefully researched, every essay in this collection includes personal reactions that supplement and enhance the factual content. The result in interesting reflections and an affirmation that we can be positive and find joy in the most difficult of times.

I especially need these affirmations right now, as many of you know, since I lost my wife to cancer in December. I hope you enjoy them- my book info is at the end.

Reason #1- Food

If you ever wonder if food makes people happy, all you need to do is walk through a campground on a Saturday morning and let the smell of sizzling bacon and hot coffee fill your senses.  OK, maybe not if you are a veggie person, but I’m sure you understand.  Food is behind only air and water in our day-to-day survival needs and we as a species have made the most of it (with the help of fire, of course).

What about food makes me happy?  As a carnivore, I am optimistic for the brilliant future of meat production.  Not only are more humane and natural processes being put in place, but I am very much looking forward to mass-produced lab-grown meat. When they perfect the texture, taste and consistency, which isn’t too far off, it could drastically scale back raising and killing livestock.

Second, have you ever stopped by a restaurant and ordered a dish that ended up being very similar to something your mother used to make?  I have had the occasion to experience this and have enjoyed the memories immensely.  It seems that sound, smell and taste can take you right back to a point in your past, no matter how remote, and food encompasses two of those.

Food can be a comfort, no doubt.  Sometimes this can become a problem, but most of the time it just lets you deal with life.  There’s a reason men become grill masters and women spend the entire day making spaghetti.  Before you complain about stereotypes, I concur.  There are women who barbecue and men who make killer pasta.  But the stereotype about those foods being comforting can’t be denied.

Let’s not forget the importance of a balanced diet.  What comprises a balanced diet has continually changed with the science, but the old food pyramid was taught for generations.  Per Wikipedia, “A food pyramid is a representation of the optimal number of servings to be eaten each day from each of the basic food groups. The first pyramid was published in Sweden in 1974. The 1992 pyramid introduced by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) was called the ‘Food Guide Pyramid’ or ‘Eating Right Pyramid’ … The pyramid was divided into basic foods at the base, including milk, cheese, margarine, bread, cereals and potato; a large section of supplemental vegetables and fruit; and an apex of supplemental meat, fish and egg. “

Last, I’ll say that there is little in life that is more satisfying as enjoying one of the best steaks, fried chicken, corned beef and cabbage, grande burritos, or whatever you fancy as your favorite meal, that you’ve ever had.  I’ll grant you that it doesn’t happen often enough, but when it does, bliss.

Growing up in my Southern California neighborhood, there were seven different fruit trees we all had access to.  We had lemons, avocados and plums, two doors down were loquats and kumquats, one more house away was a green apple tree, and across the street had peaches, though I didn’t like them.  Most of these trees produced fruit year-round, but the summers were especially fun — having such variety of fresh fruit every day were good memories.


I’ll leave this topic with a quote from Robert Frost:  “Laughter is brightest where food is best.

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