Friday, January 29, 2010

Outsider Art

I picked a piece of drift wood out of the Flint River yesterday (although my mom warned the rangers would shoot me). It reminded me of when my Dad and I would spend an afternoon combing the woods by the Santa Fe River in Florida, or else out by some creek near Gainesville, hunting along the banks for driftwood. We'd collect an armload and dump them into the back of his El Camino or whatever he was driving. Then we'd cart them home and glue some eyes on them and shellac them and transform them into deer, or raccoons, or armadillos. The plan was always to sell these at the flea market in Waldo (also near Gainesville) or to have some hifalutin Yankee come down and declare them outsider art (I'm sure he was joking about that). The one I picked up looks a bit like a horse head without the ears or back of the skull so I think I'm going to buy a plastic eye and if we go to Omega where my dad's buried, set up my own piece of outsider art on his gravestone.

Amidst chaos last night, my sister prepared one of her signature Southern meals--fried yellow squash, collards with fatback, mashed potatoes, biscuits, creamed corn, and pork roast. It was so good it'd make you want to slap your mama--an old saying. Of course, we all get ready to slap each other without food instigating it. In the car on the way to the barbecue restaurant last night, I was riding with my niece, Caylyn, her husband, Michael, and my mother.

Michael: Where are we going?
Caylyn: Y'all aren't listening.
Mom: If you don't know where we're going then why are we going there?
Caylyn: Y'all aren't listening! We're going to that barbecue place down past Griffin! I can't exactly remember where it is.
Michael: I just want to know where we're eating!"
Caylyn: The barbecue place!
Mom: Well, you can't drive around and around 'cause you don't have a tag and the police will get you.
Caylyn: It's right up here!
Mom: I thought you didn't know where it was!
Caylyn: I don't but it's right up here.
Mom: You're going to run out of gas. And you're going to get a ticket.
Michael: Do you know where we're eating?
Caylyn: It's right there. I see the sign.
Mom: I don't see it.
Caylyn: It's right there! Southern barbecue!
Michael: That barbecue is racist, then.
Caylyn: It is not!

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