|Sausage... or hate crime?|
When I was a kid, my mother cooked most of the family's meals. Dinner was primarily a family affair, devoid of TV, video games, comic books, or fun in general. The Worstblogger family would gather around our wooden dining table (in the dining room that shared space with the living room and the kitchen, we were neatly efficient like that), hold hands and say Grace before setting upon the food in front of us like wild jackals. I like to think that someone was creeping behind our terrifyingly ugly sofa, documenting us for some future report on the eating habits of white lower-middle-class America.
My mother was, and still is, a very good cook (although I heard that this wasn't always the case, and Granny Rabbit said there was a time that mom could manage to burn water). She could cook the hell out of some good southern food - but looking back on things, her repertoire was pretty limited. You could probably have set a calendar to our dinners. "Ah, meatloaf and green-beans, it must be the 6th - trash goes out tonight!" My mother could do her shopping for the entire month without a list (even though dad would invariably write the same list, without fail, every month) - so ingrained was our dining menu.
So it was always something of a treat when we got something different. The occasional Soupy Mac and Cheese night, the rare Stromboli dinner, and the make-your-own-pizza evening were all highlights of my youth (these were before we had the Internet). But not every deviation from the norm was relished, particularly when it came down to my father's favorites.
One of these was Kielbasa. These long, suggestive sausages from some sadistic village in Poland terrorized me. I despised the taste of them for some reason or another and I flatly refused to eat them - full stop. This was problematic because when there was Kielbasa for dinner - that was it. I never quite understood why but these sickening sausages always seemed to take the main-dish slot on the night they were served. They were never surrounded by something to help you push it through - just served whole, sometimes sliced, and taking up the lion's share on the fake-china. I'm sure my mother must have prepared something for me on the side (thanks mom, it's probably the reason I'm such a fussy eater today! I accuse my parents!) - but it was very clear that this was a meal made for my father - for his enjoyment - and the rest of us would just have to grin and suffer through it.
There was no leaving that table until you had finished everything on your plate. To make matters worse, our family dogs were traditionally the sort of small terrier that couldn't discretely finish food in such proportions without attracting attention. There was nothing for it, you ate - or you sat at the table until your food had gone as cold and hard as one of Medusa's admirers. Kielbasa night was always a battle - and I am still waiting for an apology from the Polish.
Two things from Poland that I enjoy:
Polish Winged Hussars (Not a sexual position)
The protagonist of Wolfenstein was Polish!
But did you know: A terrible Lech founded their nation?