The party half was off the chain. I smoked meat all day and we had a grip of people over to just chill. In some ways it was a day of vindication for me, because a couple of weeks ago I wasn't completely happy with my Meat Day performance. The turkey was too dry for my liking which really irked me because it has become somewhat of my calling card.
At first I was just going to do turkey, but as we added more people to the get together we had to add more meats. It grew and grew until we had an entire menu. That being the case, I had the great inspiration in the shower right before everyone showed up to make snappy little names for all of the meat dishes. Man, some great things are invented in the shower. Like the following titles:
*Oxymoron (boneless ribs)
*For Mature Poultry Only (turkey breast)
*El Classico (ribs)
*Man's Worst Nightmare (sliced sausage)
*No Fat Fair Trade Grande Ribs (ribs with a coffee rub)
Now that final dish was my first real branch out in my meat smoking career. I got the idea from a wonderful Canadian chef who served espresso encrusted steaks at an event I was at, so I decided to add some ground up coffee beans to my rub for one of the rib racks. The people who tried it seemed to like it, so I think it's getting added into the regular rotation.
And as much as I enjoy parties, there is this certain internal debate I always have on patriotic holidays. It's the dissonance that occurs when my faith collides with my politics and I think about what it looks like for me to honor my country on days like The Fourth. There are things I love about this country. There are serious changes I would like to see in this country. And because some people are more poetic than I am, I quote them here. There's a great song by Matt Kearney, where he sings metaphorically about America. It's great. He was about to get really big this summer when he was scheduled to open for Kelly Clarkson's arena tour. Then the American Idol bubble came back to reality, and she didn't sell enough tix so the tour got put on ice. So read the lyrics here, go buy his cd, and then maybe he can headline another club tour this summer.
Girl America by Matt Kearney
My girl America is just a youth in this world.
Her smile is more precious than the sparkle of pearls.
And though her age reads she's just a young girl.
The age behind her eyes show the pain that she's swirled.
Through the hand that's been dealt though it's quiet as kept.
The weight that she felt last night when she slept.
And as she crept into the dreams of the things of her past.
Seems to have grown so fast, way beyond her own class.
Though they're right there with her, her brothers and her sisters.
A natural born leader even when her peers dis her.
My girl, she's at a crossroads, people praying for her.
Some are preying on her magazine ads, sex, drama.
Smoking marijuana, longer for a father to call her, 'daughter'.
She's part of a generation longing for reconciliation.
And this future that they're facing and this poison that they're tasting.
My girl, I know this love you're chasing.
My girl America's crying when she's lying on her bed at night.
I can see that she's screaming when she's dreaming for her freedom.
My girl America's dying while she's trying just to stop this fight.
Don't stop believing, my girl America.
Boys with hungry eyes have been beating her door.
Telling her that's what she's for, trying to rob at her core.
Then leave calling her a whore, but still she knows there's more.
I know she knows there's more because there is a voice she can't ignore.
'Cause it was founded in the foundations, from the day of her creation.
In God we trust engraved on the treasures of her nation.
And the void that the boys can't fill.
With the tipping of the bottle or the popping of the pill.
But still most of her friends don't care as they glare.
Ready to drown down the funnel as they frown down the tunnel.
They stumble and they tumble breaking down into rubble.
My girl America, stop can't you see?
It's not the circumstances that determine who you're
gonna be.But how you deal with these problems and pains that come your way.It's for you that I pray with hope for a brighter day.And so I say, your deliverance
Faith like a child from your first birth.
You left it in the dirt on your worst hurt.
And I see each tear and every scar.
The hands that have held you where you are.
And I can see we've strayed so far.
A king born under that morning star.
As a crown of thorns was placed to erase.
Each tear that's touched your face.
And his palms and sides were pierced with spears.
He hung in love just to draw you near.
My girl, out of this whole world.
Can't you see this is where we started?