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  1. Memorial Birthday

    Saturday, May 25, 2013

    By Lisa Harmon

    Memorial Day is at the wrong time of year. May is springtime, a time of renewal, not remembrance. Yet right in the middle of all the birthdays, all the nature, all the sunshine, Memorial Day is juxtaposed - a time we remember the dead.

    It sure seems like the wrong time. The joy and youth of spring never seemed to me like an appropriate time to remember the departed. And my birthday is on Memorial Day. Again - a juxtaposition of a frivolous enjoyment on top of a somber and reverent, if not absolutely sad and depressing, holiday. Memorial Day kind of makes my silly birthday seem extra stupid.

    Somehow, the one thing that draws all these mixed emotions together is barbecuing. The act of getting together to cook meats over charcoal and then eat them over a red and white checked tablecloth on the lawn encompasses the rare amalgam of human sentiment experienced only on Memorial Day.

    Confusion, despair, frivolity, itchiness, awkwardness, sweatiness, all of these are part of a Memorial Day barbecue.

    With barbecuing there is no time to feel sad or guilty - you have to get the charcoal. OK you got the charcoal and now you’re starting to miss Granny a little. Well cut it out, because you have to get the ice.
    You got the ice, and you’re feeling silly because today’s your birthday even though we’re remembering war heroes? Well forget it because you’ve got to flip the burgers!

    Barbecuing is the perfect Memorial Day tradition because it’s tough and everyone has too much work to do to start feeling too awful about stuff.

    And all the hard work and smoked meats hit us right in our caveman soft spot - making us drowsy, and happy.  We are sated with burgers and warm memories of those loved and lost.  We are happy for the chance feel the sun on our skin.  Memorial Day is always a beautiful, bittersweet day. It is always a good day for some hard work and smoked meats, always a good day for a barbecue.

  2. 4 comments:

    1. RHC said...

      Happy Birthday!

    2. happy birthday, Lisa Harmon.

    3. She So Funny said...

      Great blog! Happy Birthday!!! ~S

    4. Anonymous said...

      Thanks everyone! xoxo

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