Thursday, July 22, 2010

Food Court: BBQ

Today there was meat. It was gloriously seasoned, completely unidentifiable, tomato-ey barbecue --probably pork, but maybe a mix of beef and pork or pork and raccoon for all I know.

After the past couple of days, I thought, well, lunch is going to be vegetarian --not Vegan-- just vegetarian and that seemed OK. As much as I try, I don't get enough vegetables --other than beans. I get a lot of beans, primarily pintos which are cheap and eat because everybody else in the house will typically eat them.

Not so much on northern, cranberry or black beans, which I like, but pretty much everybody else hates or gets tired of pretty fast.

And mostly, when I have meat these days, I have it in small amounts. It's a little bit of sausage or hamburger that goes in with the beans. Every now and again, I'll get something to use in a stew.

It was good to have the barbecue, whatever it was made of (pork and possum? pork and dog?).

Today, I sat with a few people. Nervously, I asked if it would be all right if I took a chair. They shrugged and nodded. I grabbed a seat and the man across from me looked up, smiled and said, "Oh, wait. A prayer."

He bowed his head, closed his eyes and said grace. I wasn't sure if he was saying a blessing over my food as well, but I went along until I realized I had no idea who I was praying to. Still, I took it that he meant to bless my food. I appreciated it.

The other man at the table never stopped chewing.

We didn't talk. I wasn't sure what to say. We might have talked about the barbecue or discussed the lack of ice in our little glasses or anything, but conversation just didn't ignite. Instead, we piled through our food very businesslike and I watched the crowd. Heated discussions were being held at the the next table about the government --mostly what to do if U.S. soldiers came kicking through the door during the end-times, right before Jesus shows up with his flaming sword or his cosmic fishing pole or whatever.

They agreed they would meet violence with violence because probably that's what the Lord would do.

At another table, they were talking about work or getting work and I noticed a fair number of people prayed before their meals. There is gratitude in a place like Manna Meal, but of course, the barbecue was pretty good. I almost went back for seconds, but I had the potatoes, too.

Leaving and crossing the corner, a young guy tried to hit me up for a dollar. He sang and rapped at me about how my life would improve if I gave him a dollar. I smiled and wished him luck. He and his friends left me in peace, though probably a little disappointed. I like money, too.

They walked a few feet, turned and took my place inside the church.

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