Check-In: Feb. 25

What I’m working on – I posted my weird squidy design yesterday. This week I also made something a little “prettier.” (I mean, pretty is subjective. I happen to think spooky ocean critters are beautiful in their own special way.)

0225

I’m also working on maybe getting a freebie up on the blog next week. Nothing big, just a little somethin’.

What I’m reading – I finished The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up this week. I’m not one for self-help in general, but I am fired up about KonMari-ing the house. My husband is working most of Sunday, so I’ll probably spend the whole day on Step One: Get All Of These Clothes Out Of My House.

I’ve started two other books, Unseemly Science and Wicked Temper. Unseemly Science is the sequel to a book I read for our book club. So far I think I like it better than the first book. It moves a little bit more quickly and I care more about the main conflict. Wicked Temper I just started today and I’m not very far in, but I like the style so far.

What I’m watching – Tonight, I watched the first episode of Michael Pollan’s “Cooked” documentary series. It was fine. Fairly interesting. I’ve watched a lot of food+culture shows (Holla atcha girl, Anthony Bourdain.) so I don’t think Pollan was imparting anything terribly revelatory. To me anyway.

But. He spent a lot of time with some guys who were making barbecue. Specifically Eastern Carolina style barbecue. And, I swear this is the truth, it made me cry a little. I was watching a man chop up slow-cooked, vinegary pig meat… and I got seriously choked up. I don’t know if I’m particularly emotionally fragile today and I just didn’t realize it or maybe I’m feeling some sort of genetic nostalgia.

My mom’s family is from East North Carolina. Carolina-style barbecue is something I only ever got when we’d go to Grandma’s. I didn’t really appreciate it all that much as a kid. The first time I had it I was baffled. I’ve lived in Mississippi my whole life. Barbecue is ribs covered in sweet red sauce — not tangy pulled pork. (And then there was the Christmas at Grandma’s where we all got a stomach bug and the first thing I threw up was that vinegary barbecue. It put me off the stuff for years.) But now, I love it. I don’t know if my palate has matured or if I recognize the specialness of it now or if something in my DNA has finally awakened to the barbecue of my mother and my mother’s mother and my mother’s mother’s mother… but I am all about it.

So maybe my little barbecue breakdown was a combination of  general temporary oversensitivity, genetic memory and the fact that I really, really like Carolina-style barbecue. Who knows. Hopefully the next episode doesn’t cover braised beef tips. I may lose it all together.

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