Saturday, May 11, 2024

(Banter) Who Are Our Grandmothers?

I am not getting old. I am old.

So, I question articles about recipes that brainwash readers into making recipes because they are grandma-approve-and-tried.

I doubt they are telling the truth. Time is on my side.

And, I wonder which grand(mother) are they talking about? What generation? The same with "old-fashioned." Who, or what,  exactly, defines old-fashioned? What are the qualifications?

Would you want a tooth pulled "the old-fashioned" way, without the aid of medicine or anesthesia? I wouldn't. I had a friend whose aunt bled to death after having a tooth extracted. Imagine that!

Grandmothers who cook(ed) are in short supply! Alas, today, many have grown up on fast food. For many, holidays mean buying desserts and sides from fancy supermarkets--sometimes the entire meal! Or, with the proliferation of restaurants, and fast food,  just go out. Let someone else do the cooking!

Were you asked to bring a dish? Chances are you purchased it and did not actually make it from scratch.

And, exactly what generations are we talking about here: X? Y? Z? Depression Era? WWII? Post WWII? Vietnam? Prozac?

Gone is the Norman-Rockwell image of Grandma in an apron, a big smile surrounded by grandkids and slaving away in the kitchen over family-favored meals--along with her own mother!

Gone is an incredibly-set table complete with favored fabric cloth.

Gone is using the "good" dishes.

Gone, in fact, are dishes! Most now use paper plates. Plastic "silver"ware and cups. Styrofoam. Disposable and easy.

Is that the image of your grandmother? I don't know. Should we care?

I grew up with familial, daily sit-down dinners. And chores. My sister washed the dishes. I dried them. The arrival of a dishwasher was a miracle! If we allowed them to "drip dry," my mother filled a pot with hot water and doused them. She didn't like "spots . . ."

Special Sundays were spent at my grandparents. Fantastic, unforgettable memories, especially as I get older ... Uncles. Aunts. Cousins . . . Amazing, time-consumed recipes only prepared for unique occasions! And always accompanied by conversation where everyone was expected to contribute ... or listen quietly while trying between savored mouthfuls of dinner to decide on desserts yet to come.

Today, many children, especially minority children, are, in fact, raised by their grandmothers. No moms. No dads . . . So, who is the grandma? 

My grandmother was larger than life. During WWII she was "Rosy the Riveter" and literally bolted wings on bombers! I adored her. Loved her. She was an incontrovertible worker who never complained. She loved all of us unconditionally.

And she could cook. 

Words play on our emotions. Put an "s" in front of "word" and you have a weapon: sword. Today, world governments and deviant corporations are making food into a weapon. They want us to eat bugs. Own nothing. Be happy. That is neither appetizing nor bodes well for our future as a civilization or our bountiful planet.

Borders are invaded with total strangers ... No families. Children disappear.

Beware. Resist. Don't go there.

We need the safety and security of family--not a dumbed-down version. And we need the nutrition of healthy food. America has fed the world. It still can. No nation or country should replace family. We are neither a fatherland nor a motherland. We are, quite simply, landed. Why do people what us unearthed? 

I fear we are losing the comfort and knowledge of the feminine. Just witness how easily we are politically and legally turning females into males and males into females. Not good. And each are often caricatures. Clowns.

We are losing the miracle of farmers. Jesus was a carpenter, not a farmer, yet he miraculously fed hundreds. Every Sunday, he feeds billions. Don't forget that.

To me, "grandmother" and "old-fashioned" are recipes with the forgotten ingredients of WORK combined with LOVE and SELF- SACRIFICE. It's what communion and religion is all about. Family. Country. Food. Comfort. Safety.

I fear we have forgotten the virtue and importance of effort. How to garden. Get our hands dirty in the beauty of Emerson and Thoreau who defined our young nation.

The media is deceptive--especially the food media. Today, astoundingly, I watch cooking channels "open and dump" unread chemical-laden ingredients into a bowl or dish and call it dinner. Food as a Jackson Pollack painting; splat! No thanks.

I am encouraged to see canning making a comeback. It's not difficult. Yes, you can do it ... You need to do it. Now, those were grandma's and old-fashioned recipes that saved generations. Do you want to be saved?

Is western culture throwing away the image of Grandma? And mother? Are governments, in fact, trying to destroy it? Do corporations only use it as a gimmick to sell products to make a profit; governments, to win votes?

This Mother's Day if you are a grandmother (or a mother) go ahead and do something out of the ordinary. Set a nice table. Prepare at least one family-favorite recipe from scratch. Share the recipe. Insist on a half-way decently-dressed washed-and-clean family. Insist on manners and standards.

I subscribe to several You Tube channels where male gay couples have legally adopted children to nurture a family on their own. Not an easy process. They model family on grandmothers and mothers, brothers and sisters, whom they always include. So, no, I am not exclusive.

On this Mother's Day, say a prayer before dinner . . . for the future of our country and that of your family and children and grandmothers to follow . . . Dear God, keep us safe and happy. Well-fed. Keep our paths easy. 

YOU, be proud of your recipe. Share the source and joy of who you are.






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