Weird stories from the previous generation

Have there been any stories somebody of a previous generation told you that sounded weird or left you thinking WTF? Like when Grandpa Simpson talks about the days when nickles had pictures of bumblebees on them?

Yesterday I was at dinner with my friend and his parents. His dad Jerry knows how to cook meat of any kind. He knows the best temperature, the best rub, the best cooking time, the best spices and oils to use, the whole kit & kaboodle. He’s a country gentleman who always has a tale to tell. He was telling us cooking stories, like when he field cleaned and cooked deer, made gumbo, cooked for a big party, and so on.

He talked about one party where he made chitlins. I’ve never had chitlins, but if Jerry cooked them, I’d eat them. I heard they’re practically the same as sausage, but I haven’t investigated. He then mentioned a guy named Jack who was a big prankster. “Everybody at that party got real sick because Jack poured hominy into the chitlins!” While he was saying the last few words, he broke out laughing.

Everybody else said “ew,” but I didn’t really understand why Jerry was laughing so hard. Chitlins are pretty disgusting by themselves, but somehow adding hominy made them even more disgusting.

The only time I remember eating hominy was in grade school. It’s the vegetable the lunch room served when nothing else was available. It was kind of gross, but that’s because it was cheap industrial-grade crap served out of burlap sacks. It wasn’t pig endocrine system-level gross. How could it have made chitlin eaters even more sick?

Chitlins are guts. Hominy in chitlins means the pig ate hominy and the guts were not cleaned properly. I think. I would never, ever eat chitlins. I watched a women wash them one time. It looked and smelled like a sewer. Which is what it was. Yuck!

In my youth I once had an elderly chemist explain how to use benzine to remove water from ethyl alcohol. Apparently, the idea of drinking alcohol that was merely 95% pure was not acceptable to the graduate students of the past.

WTF were you people thinking?!?

(You can do the same sort of thing with sodium chloride, without any of the risks.)

Also, if you want to go back a century or more, one of the ways that chemicals were identified - apart from color, physical state, odor, etc - was taste. Seriously. From their descriptions, you’d think they were tasting wine or cheese.

OK, that makes sense. Nice to know I ate pig slop in grade school.

You got some old school country livin’ cred there Beck. :slight_smile:

That’s what happens when you live the outback of Arkansas.

I’m sorry, it doesn’t make sense to me. First you said the hominy was poured/added to the chitlins, now you agree they were already in there due to incomplete cleaning. Which was it?

Perhaps what was said was more like “there’s hominy in the chitlins” and the OP’s memory of it was “you put/poured hominy in”? But hominy is pretty big and you would think it would be a very bad cleaning job indeed if something that size were left behind.

I think the idea is that Jack (that rascally prankster) poured some hominy onto the chitlins so that people eating it would think that the hominy was residue of the pigs last meal meaning that the pigs guts hadn’t been cleaned.
Disgust ensues.
Jack laughs heartily…

[Exeunt All]

ETA: Knowed out only said they were added. He/she never said hominy was there because of incomplete cleaning.

I assumed that was the reason for the gross out. I wasn’t there. But pigs are fed hominy and grits and corn products all the time at the end nearing slaughter. You know the term ‘cornfed’. That’s what it means.

To add, a pig will eat anything. Slop, snakes, bugs, grass, straw, poop, acorns and survive and thrive on it. That’s why feral colonies are so successful. Back in the day a farmer would turn his marked pigs loose to eat ‘mast’ which means acorns and roots, to fattened up for fall slaughtering. But they ate any and everything. A marked pig being butchered by the wrong family is what started the infamous feud of The Hatfields and McCoys.

Hominy - one of my favorite Elton John songs.

Correctamundo, ILMVI. I’m guessing the rascally Jack poured hominy on the chitlins before they were served. It’s like putting a dead rat in a bucket of KFC before dinner.

Does that mean they are like sausage casings?

Yep. Same beast.
Fancy-schmancy chefs call all those guts, sweetbreads. They’re guts, folks. Nasty, yucky guts. I ain’t eating any, tripe, kidney, liver, lung, haggis, or chitlins. Funny though, a pig would eat it all. They even, in close quarters, eat each others anus’ out. I’m not even kidding.

One that got passed down in the family.

The Old Family Farm was sold and traded between cousins for a couple hundred years. The story was always passed down that Old Great-Grand-Uncle Kopek tried to enlist for the Civil War and got turned down. He thought it was because he didn’t have a military background so he went home and got out his uniform from the Old Country, put it all on including medals, and went back to Kingston (PA) to try again. The language barrier was overcome and he found out that he got turned down because of his age – somewhere around 65 – and not because of past experience. He got pissed, went home, stripped off his uniform and tossed it all down the well.

Fast forward to 1980. Me and the cousins had heard this story for all our lives. So we knew where the farmhouse was, where the well roughly would have been, and decided what the heck. We did a serious archeological-style dig --------- and found the medals and sword remnants. I still have the medal for the pacification of Hungary and Transylvania we found within reach as I type this.

Sometimes odd stuff is actually true.

Is this what you’re talking about kopek? It’s dated 1849, from the Hungarian Revolution, so technically your ancestor had experience fighting in civil wars.

Yeah although the ribbon was long gone. Fighting he knew; speaking English he wasn’t quite so good at. :wink: There is also some dispute over his age at the time (1861), a family tradition my Dad carried on. Along with that fighting thing.

When Dad died I wanted to put down for date of birth on his tombstone “sometime in the early 1920s” or add a question mark after the date because we really are not sure just what year it was. His original records were all lost in a courthouse fire so he had to fall back on other things. He had Father forge a baptismal certificate making him older than he was so he could join the Chinese Air Force (AVG) even though he was a couple years too young to do so and after the war he had some more papers created making himself younger than he was so he could work longer before he was considered “too old”. Depending on what you believed he was born sometimes between 1922 and 1927. My mother decided to split the difference and call it 1924 which really is just a “best guess” based on what his siblings remembered.

As regular Dopers know, I am a strange person. And like I always say ------ in my case its genetic! :smiley:

My grandfather told me a story of how the family’s horse barn burned down so they had several scorched horse carcasses to haul off and get rid of. So to simplify the process, they drove their pigs over to the carcasses for a dead horse smorgasbord. They got some well fed pigs, and they only had to cart away the bones instead of the whole carcass. Win-win!

I’m a city boy, so I thought that was kind of an odd story at the time.

There was family lore of my Grandfather being a bit eccentric. He made a type of hooch that was pretty lethal. He was admonished and charged, fined and finally arrested for it. He never sold it or sent in across state lines. Thats the only reason he didn’t end up in the penitentiary.
One story is he got drunk on a Sunday morning and rode his horse into his wife’s church to tell her to get home and cook. He was tackled and the sheriff arrested him. He was sent to the lockup to sober up. He sued and got off because there was a law they couldn’t arrest you in a church building. It sounded a bit farfetched to me. But, no. My brother found old newspaper articles about it. It was mostly true. The lawsuit part is still debatable.

Can’t recall who the story was about, my great grandfather maybe, who while dining with some native Americans was advised to dig down deep in the pot on order to get to the puppy.