Thursday, October 30, 2008


I owe my mother plenty, to be sure. She raised me by herself from the age of eight. She instilled in me an intense work ethic. She made untold sacrifices so that my sisters and I could grow up without wanting for anything except basic cable. She was always there for me, no matter what. But perhaps the greatest thing she ever provided me with was gravy.

Gravy. That strange elixir of flour, fat, and milk. Simple. Wholesome. Delicious. A staple of the Southern diet, gravy graced a large percentage of our daily meals, and thankfully so. Why, you might ask, has gravy been such an important ingredient in my life? There are many comfort foods such as spaghetti, chili, meatloaf, and chicken soup. My mother made all of those, and they were all delicious. But the flavor and texture of rice and gravy, pork chops and gravy, chicken and gravy, bread and gravy, have made me who I am today. Unhealthy though it may seem, gravy has shaped my life. And I will forever be grateful for it.

I was thirty years old, and had all but given up on the prospect of marriage. Then I chanced upon a store bought redhead that would change my life forever. She was young and beautiful. Impetuous and intelligent. Sensuous and seductive. She was everything I was looking for, only I had no idea what she was capable of. Until one morning, when she went into my kitchen and made me biscuits and gravy for breakfast. From scratch. It was love at first bite.

A couple of weeks later, at Thanksgiving dinner, dining with my family, apart from my newly beloved, feasting upon turkey, dressing and, you guessed it, gravy divine, I asked my dear mother about diamond rings and set into motion the events leading up to my engagement. My family was quite astonished, not having met this wonderful woman who's culinary musings spoke to my familial urges, yet they were supportive and hopeful, perhaps thankful at last that I had found someone who could tame me; grateful that I was finally considering settling down.

Now I shall not pretend that it was gravy alone that led me down the aisle. She had plenty of other tempting traits upon which to hitch my star. But it was gravy that opened the door to my heart, that allowed me to see her bountiful offerings. And although it has not been entirely without it's lumps, our marriage is still as rich and flavorful as my favorite childhood delicacy. Yes, my life, it seems, is just a bowl of gravy.

1 comment:

Sassy Molassy said...

You should read Bastard Out of Carolina. It says that very thing about the power of gravy.