September 11, 2008
First day of the new year
Originally published January 1, 2002
I woke up in my own bed this morning. That wasn't the game plan, but neither my date nor myself became overly intoxicated last night, despite the delicious oysters (which she doesn't eat), the exquisite fried turkey (which she doesn't eat, either) and the assorted fireworks that exploded in unison from several different directions around midnight. Stuffed baked potatos, taco salads, cheeses and crackers (which she DOES eat) were readily available, but I believe she drank enough diet cola that she had no room for the food. I pigged out.
We were sitting in front of the largest of the five different campfires burning in the yard when the sky lit up with rockets and voodoo balls bright enough to obscure the full moon that had smiled down on the evening from the time we arrived. Young'uns set off firecrackers and sparklers, couples kissed, and I almost needed a cable and chain to retrieve my friend, Willie, when his large self overdosed on Scotch liquor and began reeling around dangerously close to the fire. My son knows the "stop, drop and roll!" drill for when you catch on fire, and Willie had everything but the "stop!" down pat last night. His wife took him home shortly after the fireworks display and I pity his head today. I believe he has a bucket of Bloody Marys prepared as a palliative measure for those who overindulged last night, but he may drink it all if he doesn't upchuck in the bucket first. All in all, we welcomed in the new year in fine fashion.
Now, I'm cooking Hoppin' John and turnip greens, which are supposed to bring good luck if you eat them today. My house smells like dirty sweat pants, nasty armpits and stinky feet, which is the aroma that black-eyed peas produce when you cook them with a large ham hock thrown in for seasoning and a pot of greens simmering beside them on the stove. Maybe that smell brings the good luck by driving all the evil spirits out of your life. I don't know, but I feel good, my house smells like an underfunded homeless shelter, and the sky is crystal blue. I love it when that happens.
It's cold outside for south Georgia, but the sky is so clear and blue that it hurts my eyes to look at it.
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