Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Ketching Up

When I was in junior high, our family added another brother in an unconventional way.  Kwame joined us as an exchange student from Ghana.  He was the kicker on our high school (American) football team.  Our small school didn't offer soccer, where he would have surely been a star.  We teased and laughed and occasionally fought with Kwame.  In other words, he fit right in with the rest of us.

With a core family of seven plus Kwame on a pastor's salary, we didn't go out to eat often.  But there was once we all went to a fancy restaurant together.  You know, the kind where a waitress takes your order and the ketchup and mustard have their own special holder at the table.  No individual packets there!  I don't remember what our newest family member ordered, except that there must have been french fries.  What we all agree upon, is that he had to ask for another bottle of ketchup.  I swear, he could drink it straight from the bottle!  We might have egged him on a bit, but he would have found his way to the same result even without our encouragement.

Last weekend, my kids and most of the grandkids gathered for a cookout at our house.  There were eleven of us.  I know because my husband and I kept asking each other, like maybe the number was a moving target.  Eventually we all gathered around the same table, where the eating and the talking and the laughing mingled together.

I was seated with a grandboy to the left, one to the right, and the loan grandgirl just around the corner.  Maybe I was supposed to be keeping a better eye on the lot, but I was really just making sure the dogs didn't look too happily overfed at my end of the table.  So when Josiah asked for more "sauce," I correctly assumed ketchup and obliged.  Presumably he was dipping pieces of his burger into the tomato staple.  Two minutes later, he asked again - and then again almost as quickly!  Now he had my perhaps belated attention.

Apparently the love of tomato-y goodness runs in the family - it just skipped a generation.  Josiah has never met his great uncle from across the pond, but the two of them are definitely related.  Forget the burger, that grandboy was shoveling forkful after forkful into his mouth: just ketchup with just a fork!

When we go out to eat, Josiah, I will order an extra bottle of ketchup for you as soon as the wait-staff first greets us.  French fries will be optional...

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