For years, people of faith have journeyed from their homes to special places in the world. Jerusalem. Mecca. Camino de Santiago. Brunson Crossroads. Wait, Brunson Crossroads?
In South Carolina barbecue is a faith. And Brunson Crossroads is the home of Scott’s, a legend in the whole hog denomination.
It’s 3 a.m. and most people are in bed, providing their body the daily nourishment it needs from sleep. But somewhere, around the crackle of a carefully-built fire, there is someone preparing to provide your soul the nourishment it needs. That person is a pitmaster. These people have existed for generations, and have the unique ability to create something that truly unites...barbecue. A plate of smoked meat has the ability to bring people together regardless of race, socioeconomic status, religion or political affiliation, and provides a sense of true community. Something that has the powerful ability to unite like barbecue is not easily prepared. Long before you enjoy subtle nuances of smoke on your tongue, the pitmaster has been artfully manning a fire, adding a log at just the right time. They work so hard to provide us a place to gather, talk, share, laugh with people from all over our community.
The middle school years are a time of awkward change for children, both emotionally and socially. So it makes sense for parents to enroll their children in the most awkward extracurricular activity imaginable. Of course I am talking about Junior Cotillion. This program does a great job of teaching manners and proper etiquette, and they have even modernized to include “Netiquette”, which involves cell phone use and the perils of social media.
National parks have been called America’s best idea. My family loves them, having been to several of the great Western parks in the past couple of years. So when Carrie suggested Great Smoky Mountains NP for fall break I was intrigued. When she told me we would be glamping I knew I might have a blog post. When she told me we were spending the last day at Dollywood I almost called the whole thing off.
I have never understood why anybody would want to go to a supposed regional theme park named after . . . Dolly Parton? Really? To cut right to the chase, I was a hater. This did not sound like a great plan for fall break 2019 - our first ever fall break trip as a family with kids - and I wasn’t having it, not on my watch.
. . .
It’s football season.
Last season did not go very well for Carolina, but this season was supposed to be different.
The offense has a new, highly anticipated running back from the Upstate who was Mr. Football in high school. The first game was scheduled away from home against a beatable North Carolina-based state university that plays in the ACC. The defense has talent. New uniforms. The opener is nationally televised on ESPN on the Saturday before Labor Day. But the win slips through our fingers, and the Gamecocks start the season 0-1 and leave their fans searching for answers. Looking down the schedule, the harder games are still to come.
And, a hurricane is threatening the coast of both Carolinas.
Think I am talking about 2019?
I’m talking about 1999.