I love to eat. When I die, I want eternal life to include home grown tomatoes, cucumbers, Neese’s Sausage and hot sauce. If it doesn’t, I’ll know I’ve gone to Hell. (Is it wrong to want biscuits and gravy in eternity?) Food is important to me. If I’m going to eat, whether at home in a restaurant, I want to enjoy the experience. Who doesn’t? I choose my covered dish dinners by the churches and the culinary reputations of their United Methodist Women’s group. Why bother to go if you know they use inferior green beans and generic French onion soup mix?
So how do I describe my culinary experiences? Over many years and countless church suppers, I’ve developed a complex system of responses to rate meals and religious dining encounters. Granted, I’m not a professional food critic. I’m a sanctified redneck with refined tastes. Here’s my scale of rating covered dish meals:
1. Not too bad. (translation: I’ve died and gone to heaven)
2. That was pretty good. (translation: Baby, you’ve outdone yourself)
3. I liked it. (translation: It was almost as good as my grandmothers.)
4. I might have a bit more. (translation: With salt and Texas Pete, I could survive on this through the apocalypse)
5. That was alright. (translation: That’s for making the effort to try and follow a recipe. I applaud your ability to read English.)
6. Mmmm. (translation: I don’t think I’ll do that again.)
7. I’m not sure I can put a finger on what was in that stew. (translation: let’s have less Brunswick and more stew.)
8. You know it. (translation: please don’t make me eat anymore.)
9. I’m full. (translation: can we stop by the gas station and get a snack.)
10. I loved it. (translation: that was the worse meal I’ve ever eaten.)
*If I’m told to “save room for cake”, I expect the main course to fall between, “you know it!” and the yet to be categorized “you don’t say!”.