This morning I came into possession of something I can only term a “mess” – a glorious mess.
You see, Brother called me and said that he’d been given a gift, a downright boon if you ask me, but since he was going out of town, he’d be unable to partake in said gift and did I want it. My answer was an unequivocal you’dbetterbelieveitIamonmywayrightnowdon’tdoasinglethinguntilIgetthere!!!
What was this benevolence? This act of kindness? This good fortune hidden in a garbage bag?
I was a mess of raw goober peas!
Just as fresh and purty as you want ’em to be. Brown, knobby, just smellin’ like green. Why, they still have the stems on them!
Now you may not be aware that we are currently faced with a peanut shortage and the price of this lovely legume is about to flat skyrocket. So to get a whole mess of them, why…why I nearly became verklempt. Choked up, I tell you!
Just how much is a “mess,” you ask? Well, when this descriptive unit of measure automatically popped into my mind as I received this windfall, I wondered the same thing. I do know a bushel is a definite unit of dry measure, about 8 gallons, and I know a bushel is made up of 4 pecks, there are 2 gallons in a peck, and so on into the high math of cups. But what about a “mess?”
I know you can have a mess of greens (and don’t I wish I did!) which I think would be about an armload – as many as you can comfortably tote without a sack. But you can also have a mess of fish, which belies the dry measure concept. I think a mess of fish (again, I reiterate, don’t I wish I had one!) would be about a full stringer, maybe a dozen or so. Given these parameters and some general life experience, I would have to surmise that a mess is enough to feed your family and maybe have a little left over to share or put up for later.
Here’s something I know do for sure. Those grand goobers are going to spend a few hours swimming in a boiling, briney bath this very night so that come Saturday, when all our kith and kin are coming to watch the football, we can gobble up this glorious mess, the juice running down our chins and our arms until we are absolutely sick with good fortune. I can’t wait.