The Power of Potatoes


Potatoes are a tuber of particular importance to my family. According to the Bones’ family legend, the Bones left Bone County in Ireland during the potato famine. With nothing to grow and even less to eat, the options were slim pickin’ for their future.

So like so many before and after them, the Bones left in search of a new land to sow and harvest new fields of barely nutritious, starchy vegetables. The funny thing with family history is that although the past is the past, it is guarded by a select few who may or may not be willing to share. This is the extent of early Bones’ history as people of the potatoes.

One way or another, the Bones landed on Alabama’s shores of plentiful opportunity. Filling in the gaps with my imagination, I can only imagine a bunch of grimy faced potato farming relatives packed into a raft, as inspired by the recent images of the Syrian refugees, floating up to a sandy, white beach.

No one stopped the Bones from crawling onto the shore and standing up to claim their new lives as farmers and later sharecroppers. The oppression of the working poor is another post, altogether. The Bones were able to create a new life, one in which their basic needs were met so they could go onto to attain greater success as bootleggers and furniture makers.

This brings me to the point, we were all immigrants at one time or another. Of course, that excludes our real forefathers, the Native Americans, whom I haven’t heard speaking out against our current immigration situation. So live and let live, or go a step further to help others to live better. Immigration should not be a political issue, it should be one of the human right to live free of hunger and hate, to have shoes and housing, and to grow potatoes if you darned well please.

Real News


Once again, I am looking out my window and see a news reporter in front of a camera man. Their truck is parked innocently enough on the side of the street. The reporter is sitting on a chair in the middle of the road as easy and natural as he might sit at a kitchen table. It’s a very strange sight but then again I don’t get out much. Perhaps street sitting is the new thing to do?

The pair appears to be covering the ongoing saga of our city’s road construction, or lack thereof. The city workers, bless their hearts, started on our road, got distracted and moved on with their hard hats and heavy-duty equipment. However, they did not flit away until after they chopped up the street outside of our house and left orange safety cones and blocks in their wake.

Directly in front of our house, they left a particularly attractive pile of sewer tubing and broken pallets. Yes, life must be good for those silly distracted workers who never have to finish a project. This reminds me of my mom’s loser ex-boyfriend who was infamous for the same thing. Once, he pulled the inner panel off of her car door to fix the automatic window which wasn’t broken. Like the construction workers, he found something more interesting and never returned, leaving the wires and inner workings of the door exposed. The thought of the beloved station wagon of my childhood, left used and abused, makes my blood boil at a much higher temperature than the stripped road.

I am holding myself back from going out to the reporter to offer the following real news stories. If broken-up roads and unfocused construction workers are news, get ready to be blown away by my ideas to truly inform and entertain the masses.

First story, I have poison ivy on my hands and arms. He could report what the vile poison ivy vines and leaves look like, in addition to exposing its nasty cousins, poison sumac and oak. He could give natural treatments for outbreaks and creative ways to stop it from spreading (insert series of pictures of people with poison ivy wearing socks on their hands to from scratching).

Second story, how about these mosquitos from the heavy rains earlier this summer? They are practically big enough to carry off small dogs and children. Someone should look into just how they got so big and hungry and full of the West Nile virus.  Could this be related to Monsanto?

Last story, to leave the people with a warm and fuzzy feeling, a close up of the couple who used to always walk their poodle with its bad knees and hips. They continue to walk their poodle, but now the dog rides in what appears to be a custom made wagon, enjoying the fresh air and sunshine for just a little longer.

How is that for real news?