I’m not sure of anything anymore

We learned today that blowing out the candles on a birthday cake sends some 1,400 bacteria into the icing. My thoughts are, why didn’t we know that 50 years ago, and aw shucks, there goes another tradition.

Years ago, when I was a kid, I thought my grandfather knew everything. Now that I’m his age, “old white guys” are being blamed for most of the world’s ills.

Heck, I’m sitting here in my house writing novels and short stories and generally minding my own business when I learn that (a) I’m complicit in everything bad that happened in the world back to the days of Moses, and (b) That if I don’t admit to that and offer up a variety of atonement and reparations, I’m pretty much chopped liver.

I never liked liver, so that’s a fate worse than–well, I’m not really sure.

If you’re an old white guy, do you feel this way: that you’re irrelevant and/or a criminal? Or, that you’re the neighborhood joke but the last one to find anything funny about it?

Used to be, when an old guy of any race, religion, or culture spoke, people listened. Okay, there was a hiatus in that during the 1960s when we were taught not to trust anyone over 30. But generally speaking, age was presumed to be a time of wisdom. Now it’s considered a time of archaic beliefs that are holding back the world from progress.

Old white guys held out a little longer before the world accused them of being generally incompetent. But now they’ve joined the crone, the woman once considered wise, who is now put in a home somewhere because she’s no longer hot to trot and/or a viable member of the PTA. If it weren’t for global warming and a scarcity of ice floes, I think most of us over 70 would be rounded up and sent out to sea. Basically, we don’t know anything anyone wants to know any more and we’re in the way of progress. The old white guys with a billion dollars in their checking accounts are hurting all of us because their money still talks while our social security checks are hardly even a whisper in the wind when it comes to influence.

I’m okay with all this. I don’t want the responsibility of saving the country from itself. Like the sophomores in college years ago who thought they knew everything (but didn’t), a new breed of lawmakers is running amok with this proposal and that, and my view (which is irrelevant) is that those lawmakers are trying to outdo each other with crazy ideas. As an old white guy, I don’t hear anyone speaking to the moderates, just to the extreme left of the Democrats and the extreme right of the Republicans.

Hell, even Bernie was called an old white guy and he’s more “out there” than most of us. So, what chance do we have to say anything worth saying? Slim to none, as my grandfather said.

And that’s just as well because as I read the daily news, most of it doesn’t make any sense, and I have to wonder where that lack of sense is “just me” or the people running the country. Years ago, I knew the answer. Today, I’m not sure.



Suddenly the blog is like chopped liver.

There are weeks when a hundred or so people show up. And there are weeks when almost nobody shows up. One is tempted to ask, “What am I, chopped liver?”

If you love chopped liver, no offense is intended even though I might wonder if you were brainwashed.

Mother tried to sneak liver into our menu about once a month. Nobody liked it. Maybe she learned about it in Home Ec. Maybe her parents forced her to eat it and she was carrying on the tradition. Even ketchup couldn’t save it.

Chopped Liver with Egg – Wikipedia photo

If you know how search engines work, I have a question for you. When the subject of a post, often one written several years ago, isn’t part of the national debate, what causes people to suddenly click on it, seemingly in groups? It would make more sense if they left comments or posted links to those posts on Twitter or Facebook. But, they aren’t doing that (I don’t think).

This week it’s my Seminole Pumpkin Fry Bread post from March 2015. I grew up in Florida and often made fry bread. So, when I included fry bread in one of my novels, I wrote a post about it. Now, the post is getting more hits. What’s that about? Do clubs have meetings, pick a post, and then go out and look at it in droves to confuse the blogger? If so, those people are eating too much chopped liver. (By the way, if your mother is serving you liver, a half teaspoon of Tabasco sauce will kill the taste.)

Every week, my post The Bare-Bones Structure of a Fairy Tale gets hundreds of hits. I wrote that post in 2013. The number of hits surprises me. Perhaps more people are reading, writing, and studying fairy tales than I suspected. So many people have stopped by that post, that I’ve updated it with more information and links. Maybe I should add a subliminal spell to that post that draws fairies into every reader’s house. All in good fun, of course. What could possibly go wrong?

The answer, of course, is that those fairies bring you steaming plates of chopped liver.  (By the way, Sriracha sauce makes liver even worse. It makes everything worse. I know, I know, I’m in the minority of people who didn’t jump on the big Sriracha sauce bandwagon, opting to stay with Tabasco.)

Okay, let’s agree to disagree if you like chopped liver or Sriracha sauce, don’t send me any recipes, pamphlets, white papers, or how-to books featuring those things. In fact, if you’re a fan of chopped liver or Sriracha sauce, my advice is to become a contestant on the cooking show called Chopped. That show features mystery baskets of hideous ingredients that regular people have never heard of, much less would even eat.

According to The Weirdest Ingredients Ever Used on ‘Chopped’, here are a few of the show’s strange offerings: Dried fermented scallops, Eyeballs, Scrapple, and Caul fat. If you want to know what any of these things are, click on the link. I’ll warn you now that the article includes pictures. The chef contestants on each show must include all of the mandatory ingredients in each appetizer, entree, and dessert. And, as the show’s host Ted Allen tells them something like, “If your food doesn’t cut it, you’ll be chopped.” (Eliminated in that round of the show.)

In general, Mother made good meals. So, I probably would not have voted to chop her from the family kitchen for serving liver. I came close to saying I was going to start having meals on campus (you have to be crazy to do that) when mother–and apparently everyone else in the neighborhood–went on a weird food fad: baby bees, chocolate-covered ants. My brothers and I were told we had to taste everything on our plates. We forced down the liver with Hunt’s Ketchup (we never ate that swill called “catsup”), but we drew the line at the bees and the ants.

So, now I’m curious: Will people who tend to follow this blog see this post as just more chopped liver?


I do most of the cooking in our house. I have never served liver, chopped or otherwise. It goes without saying that I wouldn’t try to “elevate” the meal, as chef contestants would say, with something hideous like dried tarantula powder.