Juneteenth

When I went to Galveston for Mardi Gras a few years back with my friend Taavi, I heard about a magazine called Garden and Gun; a Southern Martha Stewart kind of publication.

The south is so full of surprises. And secrets.

Back when I had my restaurant, I came into a piece of southern history that needs more attention, Juneteenth. It’s a holiday in thirty seven states.

 It’s celebrated with strawberry soda and barbecues, The New York Times featured recipes in the food section today, with a little history.

It’s not a federal holiday and it should be.

Read up: “On June nineteenth, 1865, Union soldiers landed in Galveston Texas, with news the war had ended and the enslaved were now free.”

THIS WAS TWO AND A HALF YEARS AFTER THE EMANCIPATION PROCLAMATION.

What took so long??

They do move slower in the south, I was just there. In April this year, I went to the Legacy Museum in Montgomery, Alabama with my besties.

We all read Just Mercy last summer by Bryan Stevens, and we were compelled to go.

The experience is in two parts; the museum learning journey through the history of our systemic racism (which was brutal) and below, the monument.

Every one of those tomb like hanging pillars represent lynchings.

Not one, but several murders are represented on each rusted metal box, suspended from on high.

The experience was raw, exposed and heartbreaking.

There were history lessons along the walls. Crime stories.

I’m sharing some from the 1900’s because I was born in the 1900’s. Almost in my lifetime.

This is our history. Land of the free?

1921

Embarrassing.

1942

Shameful.

1919 with an audience.

Vindictive.

1922

Hideous.

1920

Ingrained into the fabric of my life. My homeland, Pennsylvania.

Hysterical.

1916

Sickening.

1909

I have so many more and every time I read them, I am gutted.

Here’s the thing.

Racism in America is systemic, it cannot be avoided, it’s not new.

White people, It is here, sitting in all of us.

We are all racist. I see it in myself, in how I was raised and educated, it is in our systems, and as a result, in me.

I know I can do better. We have all got to do better.

We need to see it, admit it, and be that change.

Let’s talk about it. That’s how we do it, we talk.

And maybe a little food.

 

It’s Party Time, Elysian Park Lovers!!

Elysian Park is my spirit place. I’ve taken to walking Marla June at 6:30 AM everyday. It’s a blessing on both of us. It’s a two and a half mile loop and it takes us an hour, door to door. It’s often the best part of my day.

It’s a magical place in the center of our fair city. My legs look so long there.

I’m super excited to be catering the Annual Banquet for

The Citizens Committee to Save Elysian Park.

I’ve been a little jealous, my Johnny gets to ride in the Echo Park Holiday Parade with his cabbage truck and the president’s dog. Lucky.

Now, I can do my part!

So friends…

The party is this Sunday!  And there’s music!  I’ve heard something about an  Oingo Boingo Person and a new band…

 

You can order your tickets old school by mailing Dan a  check, but they also have on line tickets available this year! YAY!

It’s going to be a big old Barbecue feast for omnivores that’s vegan friendly.

So maybe I’ll see you there? Elysian Park is the oldest park in Los Angeles.

If you feel like hanging out in the middle of it, listening to good music and eating well, come along and I’ll buy you a drink!

Look at my cute dog. Poser.