Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN

Commentary

April 16, 2013

Can't we all just get along?

I look around and I see a country divided, two sides facing off in bitter opposition, neither showing the slightest inclination to compromise or indicating any interest in closing the rift between them.

I wonder: Is there any way, any way at all, to bridge the gap between Mayonnaise People and Miracle Whip People?

No kidding: When it comes to the white stuff people put on their bologna sandwiches and in their potato salads, people act like there is religion involved. It's almost as if Mayonnaise People hold themselves to be keepers of the One True Faith, the abiding and unchanging rock to which American lunches are anchored, while Miracle Whip People believe a new covenant was formed when Kraft introduced the product in 1933, at the Chicago World's Fair.

In fact, people can be more religious about this than they can about religion.

My brother-in-law married into a Whipped Cream family but will allow nothing but Cool-Whip on his pumpkin pie. Similarly, his kid (also known as Denephew, of Deniece and Denephew) has to have his own boat of made-from-an-envelope gravy at Thanksgiving dinner, and will not touch the homemade gravy lovingly prepared each and every year by his talented uncle (also known as me).

Mustard gets even more complicated. First, you have to negotiate the doctrinal minefield between Brown Mustard People and Yellow Mustard People. Then you have to preside over the disagreement between the Church of Grey Poupon and Mister Mustard Tabernacle, or Our Lady of French's and Plochman's (Reformed). I've witnessed serious marital discord on this very simple question: Do you want mustard on your hot dog?

Far be it from me to say mixed marriages never work, but I do think Condiment Compatibility is something we ought to be looking at in pre-marital counseling.

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