The middle of the night. I cannot sleep. I am lying awake, staring at my ceiling.
My wife is not snoring. It’s important that you understand this because women do not like to be told that they snore. It makes them very angry, and they will inflict physical pain upon those who accuse them of this vulgar thing. Which I am not doing. Nor would I ever do.
As a boy, whenever I couldn’t sleep I would think about food. Some kids counted sheep, some added prime numbers, or recited their ABCs. I counted casseroles.
Before drifting off, I would visualize a grassy meadow filled with little church ladies, all carrying casserole dishes, taking turns leaping over livestock fences while the sheep watched them at a distance. And I would count.
“One casserole, two casserole…” And so on.
If that didn’t work, I would move on to counting pound cakes. When pound cakes didn’t work, I would count field peas.
Which is the point I am at
I should probably stop here for anyone who doesn’t know about field peas. I meet a lot of people who hear “field peas” and think of English peas. Which are green pellets often served in sketchy buffet-style restaurants with glass sneeze-guards that do not protect anything from small children who are literally at nostril-level with the mashed potatoes.
Field peas are different. There are billions of varieties of field peas. I’ll name a few:
Crowder peas, Purple Hulls, Big Red Rippers, Whippoorwills, Stick Ups, Turkey Craws, Mama Slappers, Old Timers, Cow peas, Mississippi Silvers, Shanty peas, Iron Clays, Wash Days, Triple Ds, Sermonizers, Butt Kickers, Polecats, Pinkeyes, and Zipper peas.
You haven't lived until you’ve tried Zipper peas with ham hocks and bacon grease.
Years ago, I visited a no-name cafe outside Atlanta. The menu featured only one meal. It was written on…