The end of a writing slump or the beginning of a cookbook?

By Gerre Joiner | Published Wednesday, November 23, 2016

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I’ve been in kind of a writing slump lately. But I’ve learned a few things in the past several weeks. Maybe they’ll be worthy of your consideration.

I learned that my Jo’s surgery took priority over all things. Nothing could have been on the calendar that I wouldn’t have scratched off. Nothing could have been put on the calendar to compare to or to compete with the importance of Jo’s triple bypass surgery on Friday, Sept. 16.

I learned that world events, political races, local sporting events and even church events take a back seat to this one thing.

I helped plan a 50th class reunion that turned out to be the weekend after the day of Jo’s surgery. Some of my old friends came to be with us. I couldn’t leave Jo to be with them.

I’m not sure, but I think I might have missed a haircut while Jo was in the hospital.

Things are getting back to normal now. I went to the coffee shop today, sat down by myself and checked my email. Not long after I sat down, the guys started showing up. I think I might have answered the “What have you been doing today” question with a story about getting a roast out of the freezer and needing to buy some potatoes and onions to add to the slow cooker.

Anyhow, that story prompted several cooking stories. We heard stories about how to cook a roast, where to buy the best meat, how to season the meat and how long to cook it. We were all hungry when we left, having a “hankering” to try out a new recipe discovered at Whataburger.

What follows is a short list of the manly-man cooking stories that came up during the conversation:

  • One of our guys said, “My favorite food groups are: 1. Not good for you, 2. Bad for you, 3. Terrible for you and 4. Get your affairs in order.”
  • James Stutt said, “My family heads for the table every time they hear a fire siren.”
  • One of our cowboys (I think it might have been Cody Morrison) said, “I wish McDonald’s would add a new item. They could call it ‘Rocky Mountain McOysters.'”
  • Ross Mueller asked Kenneth Hunt about the thermos from which he was drinking. Kenneth said, “Ross, it’s a thermos. It keeps hot things hot and cold things cold.”

Ross asked, “How does it know”?

Then, after the laughter died down, he asked, “Ken, what do you have in there now?” Kenneth said, “A cup of coffee and a popsicle.”

  • One of the guys said, “I figure anything that makes you gag is spoiled.”
  • Bobby Wilson said, “I’m such a lousy cook. After dinner, my family members don’t brush their teeth. They count them.”
  • Ken Jones, a great dog trainer and possum hunter asked, “How do you guys like your possum? Falling off the bones tender or with a little fight left in it?”
  • Bobby Watts mentioned his mother’s cooking routine. “The thing I remember most about eating my mom’s cooking is that she never served us anything but leftovers. The original meal has never been found.”
  • One of the guys said, “I read a cookbook like I read science fiction. I get to the end and say to myself, ‘Well, that’s not going to happen.'”
  • Curtis Anderson said, “I won’t eat anything that my grandmother wouldn’t have recognized as food.”
  • Now from a famous cook: “Barbecue sauce is like a beautiful woman. If it’s too sweet, it’s bound to be hiding something.” (Lyle Lovett)
  • And one last quote from a famous southern-fried comedian: “It’s difficult to think anything but pleasant thoughts while eating a homegrown tomato.” (Lewis Grizzard).

I made up quite a bit of what you just read, but I sure wasn’t kidding when I wrote about Jo’s surgery taking priority over everything.

She’s doing really well.


Gerre Joiner is a semi-retired church musician and has lived in Decatur since 1999.

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