Monday, February 24, 2014

Artichokes and Skateboard Parks = Family History

You read the title and are now possibly asking, "What in the world do artichokes and skateboard parks have in common and how are they related to family history?"

Well, last week we had two of our grandsons over.  Actually only for 3 days, because Monday was driving and Friday was driving.  During the 3 days we went to 4 skateboard parks (although the boys ride scooters), went to some of their favorite restaurants (Red Lobster, Chompies and Herb 'n' Flavors (for hummus and baba ghanoosh)) and to the movies with Grandpa and a friend to see Monument Men.  And, yes.  We ate artichokes, even though I had to pay an exorbitant price for 4 of them.

So, I started wondering what our descendants would think about skateboard parks: these large cement holes in the ground, with mounds, steps, bowls, ramps, and a variety of other shapes.  I remember when skate boarders rode in old swimming pools.  Now we build these elaborate creations.  Kids spend hours in them.  Does it make sense?  It definitely is good exercise.  And it's great for balance.  So, if an alien from outer space came to visit, what would they think? 

And then, the artichokes.  Our grandchildren LOVE artichokes and they only have had them at Grandpa and Grandma's house.  So, I started wondering, how did we learn to eat these thistles?  How did we learn to take the outside leaves off, one at a time, and dip them before scraping them against our teeth?  Isn't this family history?  In the past when I've questioned why we eat something, or how we learned that a strange looking food was good, I didn't think about it as tradition.  But in our family artichokes are tradition, just as eating turkey at Thanksgiving, or having hamburgers on Memorial Day. 

Have you wondered about the foods we eat?  How we started eating them or preparing them in a particular way?  And are they part of your family tradition?  And what would your descendants think?