Lagos or Bust

“Nothing just happens. These are things that I’ve always believed in, and everything you believe in finds expression in how you live.”

Electric Jell-O

I’ve long believed in the alchemical properties of Jell-O, a powder made from ligament and bone.

Flag Pizza

For a group of children I once made an oblong pizza that depicted the American flag, using food coloring for the blue field of stars with alternating stripes of cheese and tomato sauce. My wife said it was the ugliest pizza she’d ever seen, but I didn’t mind. The kids loved it.

Cornpone: A Borrowed Term for a Borrowed Staple

Sometimes, during the course of researching the relationship between language and culture, a single word or concept emerges that seems to carry with it the whole of history. Take “cornpone.”

Fulani Journey

Guelel Kumba’s Afrissippi food truck in Oxford, Mississippi, seeks to keep multiple traditions alive without sacrificing the spirit of any of them.

Goodnight, Mrs. Calabash

There were and are very few constants in my life, locational or otherwise, but the land between Wilmington, North Carolina, and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, is an exception. It is the coastline to which I belong.

Ham to Ham Combat

“Listen. Their whole house could burn down, they could lose all their presents, but if their refrigerator made it through the fire with that ham in it, that Christmas would be fine.”