On Dirtman's side of the family, the New Year tradition is to eat black-eyed peas on New Year's Day. On my side of the family, the tradition is that the first thing you eat in the New Year has to be herring ("Many different herrings.").
Up to this time we have ignored both these traditions. In fact, I don't believe we even have a New Years tradition. Now that the kids have social lives of their own, we pretty much stay home and stone cold sober in case we are needed. So far, we never have been.
This year we figured, ya know, flying in the face of tradition hasn't gotten us very far; and who are we to argue with hundreds of years of fish and beans? So I sent Dirtman to work with the directive to collect these bizarre talismen.
Well, we are apparently not the only ones falling back on susperstition this year. There was no herring to be found -- sold out, both the herring in wine sauce and the herring in sour cream. He was considerably more successful with the black-eyed peas -- and we didn't even have to resort to dried or canned.
So this morning I went on line to find the least painful black-eyed pea recipe and decided -- in for a penny, in for a pound -- on Hoppin' John.
"Ya know," I pointed out to Dirtman as the recipe emerged from the printer, "if this works and we have a good year, it means every New Years Day for the rest of our lives we're going to have to choke down black-eyed peas."
"We've never had black-eyed peas on New Years Day before?" he asked.
"Nope. I haven't had black-eyed peas on New Years Day since the New Years before I met you," I said casually.
Then I said -- because the realization took me unaware and I blurted it out before I knew what I was saying: "Oh no! I think you are the result of the last time I ate black-eyed peas."
I'll spare you his response.