Saturday, July 4, 2009

This post is not about Jake.


A neighbor's son, totally dolled up (by his artistic mom) for the parade on the National Mall.

In DC, we seriously celebrate the fourth of July. Here on Tennessee Avenue, it's my favorite holiday of the year. The neighbors come over, we drink beer and laugh, exchange stories and relax. Sometimes we read the Declaration of Independence aloud, though we haven't done that for a few years. Have you ever read it? Whoa. Our founding fathers were mighty cheeky.

My specialite de la maison for the fourth is a carnal extravaganza: spice-rubbed spareribs, grilled for many hours over a very low fire, then doused with a tangy sauce right before serving. My roommate John makes his "gay coleslaw" (I think "gourmet" is a better adjective - but he's proud of his sexual identity, and proud of his coleslaw, so he should call it anything he wants.) Manuel bakes rhubarb/strawberry pies. It's our tradition, very very fun.

Though to be honest I'm not exactly looking forward to handling all that meat today, I am really glad that there will be a gathering, that we will feast and laugh and make merry. No doubt someone will lift a glass to toast the passing of my dog.

Oops. Wasn't going to write about him today.

May we all be liberated from the things that oppress us; our fears, our worries, guilt, bouts of the shoulds. May each of us muster the nerve to declare ourselves independent, may we find within ourselves the confidence to get out from under the thumb of whatever weighs us down. May freedom ring. Cheers!

34 comments:

Rain said...

Great Reya! That little boy is so cool! Enjoy your day and the yummy eats!!!
:)

John Hayes said...

Hope you have a happy 4th!

JC said...

Sounds like you have a Grand tradition going ...

We are at the beach. Going to do fireworks in the evening. My 16 yr old son had fun buying them yesterday.

steven said...

hey reya, an awesome meal assembled collectively. how fitting for this day of all days in america. enjoy it all! steven

Madtexter said...

Woo-hoo! Happy Fourth! How did your neighbor's kid spray paint his hair. Now, THAT is something I would totally want to do! Cool!

Getting ready to eat my hot dog quota for the year.

Have fun!

Reya, be sure to stop by my blog to see uber Americans Bang Bang and Boom Boom.

ellen abbott said...

Husband and granddaughter just left to buy our share of the fireworks that will be exploding tonight.

Buy 1 get 11 free. How can you pass that up?

Happy 4th and here's to freedom.

Elizabeth said...

Tell that kid he is waaaaaaay cool
and that the kidz in NY would envy him.

Have a super fabulous day.

Guess what they have changed the fireworks to the HUDsON this year
so we can just go on our roof.

love and cheers
and a hug
and a quietly wiped away tear.....

lakeviewer said...

You created a layered picture that is most intriguing. Care to share the technique?

Happy Fourth!

Nancy said...

Thanks! I needed that today!

Hope you have a great day.

Lizzy Frizzfrock said...

Beautiful photos!!! Happy 4th of July... have a fabulous day!

Sandra Leigh said...

The Fourth of July in D.C. must be quite a treat - especially this year. I hope it is full of joy for you, Reya.

"May we all be liberated from the things that oppress us....may we find within ourselves the confidence to get out from under the thumb of whatever weighs us down. May freedom ring. Cheers!"

May I quote you? That is amazingly powerful.

Oh, and is John willing to share his Gay Coleslaw recipe? I do love coleslaw.

Mrsupole said...

Sounds like a fun day and can I come, I will bring those cookies I made you. The little boy looks awesome and patriotic. The food sounds great and love those ribs, with coleslaw.

Have a blessed day and a toast to Jake is just fine. Grandpa will tell you so. That is how he will live on and never be forgotten.

Happpy 4th of July.

God bless.

Teri and the cats of Furrydance said...

To be surrounded by friends, to uplift and comfort you...I am glad you have this reason to celebrate, so close to losing Jake. It will help to be among friends who knew and loved him too.

Carolyn said...

Reya, your day sounds like so much fun. Your neighbour boy is doing it up as he should...we each need to be proud of place we call "home". Blessings to you and have a wonderful 4th of July, eh!
Smiles

Tom said...

I'll bet D.C is decorated to the nines for the 4th...what fun, and the fireworks probably don't give up until the wee wee hours of the morning! Been reading over the past few days, time to enjoy the festivities and wig out!

Dani said...

"And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor."

Mutually pledge to each other our Lives.... I love that line. Makes me feel connected to something special and something bigger.

Happy Fourth!!!

mum said...

As social animals, for humans the tension will always be between the group's needs and aspirations and those of the individual's. Finding the appropriate ways to acknowledge both? That may be the biggest challenge of all, no matter what the century.

Here's wishing the people of Washington D.C. a great day. The neighbor's son is adorable. I bet the food and the company will be great too.

Enjoy.

Best from Graulhet, France

Mary Ellen said...

I love the celebrations that develop over time with found-families. I have a group of families (now the kids are young adults) that meets on New Years for a talent show. LOVE the kid pics - I'm going to try to figure out how to do those slide-show things.

Reya Mellicker said...

Sandra - PLEASE quote me. How flattering.

Lakeviewer, I take a bunch of pictures, then put them together in photoshop like a collage. Thanks!

Mr. Dexter I will definitely check your blog. Haven't had a lot of focus to look at anyone's blog regularly this week. I miss you all!

Phoenix said...

Happy Independence Day! Enjoy the day!

Ali said...

LOVE those photos - how cool!

Happy 4th to you!

Cynthia said...

Have fun today, Reya. Enjoy the positive connections with your neighbors and friends. And go ahead and lift a glass to Jake, the Gold Puppy!

Barry said...

"May we all be liberated from the things that oppress us..."

Amen, Reya!

Have a great 4th. Yours sounds like the perfect celebration to me!

The Bug said...

So I didn't read my blogs until late & now I don't have time to rush to D.C. & eat ribs. How sad - I made do with a hot dog & some potato salad.

LOVE your neighbor's hair!

Gemel said...

Happy holiday

Pam said...

Happy 4th July Reya! - great photo assemblage at the end of the post!!

California Girl said...

Happy 4th!

SearchingSoul said...

I find the picture very interesting because he is an Asian boy proudly sporting an American Flag all over his head. I know he is an American.

It's a beautiful testimony that America is not only a country of the White and Black Americans but also all the other races as well.

Happy 4th of July....from a proud Filipina living in the Philippines.

Ronda Laveen said...

What great traditions! The kids mother has outdone herself on his hair. It has been a long, long time since I read the Declaration of Independence. I used to read it a lot and often.

CHEERS to YOU!

Dave King said...

Fascinating blog. Thoroughly enjoyed my browse.

Natalie said...

Hope you enjoyed your day, Reya. A certain Australian, may have raised a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon to a certain Mr J., and also toasted a Divine Ms M., while she was at it.xx♥

Reya Mellicker said...

I believe the moms of the kis with the fabulous mohawk adopted him from China.

lettuce said...

may we all indeed reya.

Barbara Martin said...

Belated Happy 4th, Reya.