Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Gumbo Aforethought


So, Tyler invited me over for some delicious Cajun Gumbo last night.

She didn't know this, but I've had a long and fruitful association with various Gumbo dishes since my childhood. An unusual predilection for a 3yr-old; you'd be correct in thinking that Gumbo at that tender age must have been the result of some unhealthy encouragement.

You'd be right.

Enter: my maternal grandfather.

The brunt of my gustatory warp was primarily due to the varied tastes of my maternal Grandfather (known far and wide as "Granddad"), who simply would not bypass Gumbo on a menu. He may have gone in for banana pudding, but the gumbo would come along for the ride. He's also the only educated modern person I know who bought jars of pickled pig's feet at the store.

Now that I think about it, I'm not sure what "store" he was referring to, but I can't recall having ever seen pickled pig's feet at Kroger.

Dad often called him a "scavenger" and, in somewhat less graceful moments, a "buzzard" but I prefer to think of him as an "open-minded omnivore." Which, to my way of thinking, is a much more highly developed animal.

So, with that family history firmly in place, when Tyler suggest "gumbo", naturally I accepted.

Little did I know the horrors that would soon befall me.

I walked in the door and smelled the delicious smell of long-stewing, multi-layered, complex, delicious gumbo. It took me back, it really did. Then, we sat down to dinner and I had a nibble or two. Delicious.

Then I noticed a slightly unusual texture somewhere in the dish. "Sweetheart?" I said lovingly, "What sort of a meat is this in the gumbo?"

"Why do you ask?" she said, sweetly.

Now, I'd like to pause here for just a second at "why do you ask" because, friends, as a man - its at this point in a conversation with a woman that you realize something is definitely amiss. Its a "tell" not unlike a poker player nervously scratching his nose, or clearing his throat at a good hand. A person with nothing to hide would never say "why do you ask?", but a person with a calm exterior, frantically clawing at the edge of reason for a clever lie, would.

Feeling the black shroud of gourmet doom closing about me, I continued.

"I believe something is amiss" I said, "and I believe it is the sausage."

"Oh?" she said, innocently.
"I think the sausage is delicious."

"It's turkey sausage isnt it" I said, defeated; "You've fed me turkey sausage again."

"It's turkey ssauuuusssasaaaggeeeeeeee!!!!!!" she crowed, gleefully.

"It's terrible" I said.
"It's ground-up bird paste."
"Also, there is no shrimp in it. Why have you done this to gumbo?"

"It's soooo gooooodddd for you" she chortled, svelte runner's legs and toned physique fairly humming with delight.

"No, its not good for me; and Granddad is spinning in his grave right now" I responded, corpulently.


"Nevermind, I just hate it. And the chicken was frozen I can tell! Don't lie to me!"

"Oh? Why would you say that?" she said, innocently.

Then, with great cunning and malice aforethought she leaned gently in, brushed a crumb off my lapel, and said these four terrible words:

"Would you like THIRDS?"

1 comment:

Kitty said...

SOunds like a gumbo I'd eat! Thirds...heeheehee!