Welcome to a new kind of horror. Again, it’s hard to have a food blog today. I’m not going to have a discussion about guns on the FLB, but yesterday, five police officers were killed by two snipers firing from elevated positions, in broad daylight, in downtown Dallas. A total of twelve were shot, but when I went to bed, the police were still engaged in an armed standoff. This morning that person is dead.
One of the perpetrators claimed to have planted bombs throughout Dallas. And the police chief was not certain that everyone responsible for the shootings was in police custody.
Last night, downtown Dallas was a war zone. Today, downtown Dallas is a crime scene.
I know I said I was going to try and stay off social media yesterday, and it worked pretty well. But I got sucked in a little bit. Yesterday, I was focussed on how hard it must be to be a person of color in America today. Those feelings don’t go away, when now I’m struggling with how hard it must be to be a police officer.
Today, I promise to bring this back around to food. Because dammit, this is a food blog. And even in the grips of tragedy you have to eat.
Although first I wanted to share a video from The Daily Show.
Trevor Noah argues, and it should be obvious, that despite the polarization of discourse in America these days, you don’t have to be anti-cop even if you are pro-black.
Here is the part that really gets to me. Each side of seemingly every contentious position facing America today, seems equally aggrieved. I don’t even know how that’s possible. Each feels like it’s losing. Each feels like the other one has the upper hand. Each feels hopeless.
Feelings are interesting. Because feelings are very real, even if what they are based upon isn’t. As a parent of two children, I have to deal with this all the time. Here’s an example. If a child is worried about something ridiculous, you can’t simply tell them not to worry about it. The worry is there. It’s a feeling. It’s not logical. But it needs to be addressed head on.
My hunch is that we all feel like we’re losing, because we’re all pretty much on the same side. We all want to live in peace and prosperity and to create a better world for those who come after us. We’re all against the senseless killing of innocents. And theoretically, we can all get behind the golden rule. You know, treat other people the way you would like to be treated.
But instead, as the video above points out, we live in a world where if you say “I love vanilla” it now carries an implication that you hate chocolate. Even though I have argued that chocolate and vanilla aren’t opposites at all.
Fortunately, chocolate and vanilla can be swirled together, and you can get both flavors harmoniously commingled in a cup or a cone. It’s the best of both worlds. You can try them both and not have to live life with just one or the other. And when you combine the two, they may even be better together than either was on its own.
This will be part of my process for the Tour de Soft Serve 3.0 tomorrow. I’m going to once again get chocolate and vanilla swirls. But for the sake of my diet, they will be kids cups only. However, I may opt for a crushed nut topping. My plan is to take a bite of the vanilla side first, because it’s the more delicate flavor of the two. Then I try the chocolate. Then I try them together.
Saturday may rain. There may be lightning and thunder. But nothing is going to stop me from my afternoon of ice cream. It may be the one thing that makes me feel better during these dark times.
It’s called comfort food for a reason.
If you want to come along, it’s not too late to throw your hat in the ring. For a few hours, we can try and leave the world behind and focus on the joy of eating soft serve at five different places in one afternoon. And if you want to order just chocolate or vanilla, I promise that I won’t judge.
As far as tonight goes, I think I’ll slip an extra prayer for peace into our regular Friday night rituals.