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I was watching an old George Carlin comedy special on HBO Comedy tonight and I began thinking about someone I used to work with when I worked at Domino’s in high school and college. I worked with this guy for about 5 years and got to know him really well. One thing that we both had in common is that we were both huge George Carlin fans. This always surprised me because he was a bit conservative and typically voted for Republicans. If you have never seen George Carlin do stand up or read one of his books, he is a really liberal guy. He hates government (Republicans and Democrats), he hates the Right Wing, hates religion, and is all about the freedoms that make this country great. Maybe it’s just me, but in order for me to like something, I have to relate to it. Could my friend have related to it even though Mr. Carlin makes fun of the very things that my friend believes in?

I once knew a guy who was the same way with music. He listened to a lot of hip hop and one of his favorite rock bands was Rage Against the Machine. They were a really liberal band, some might even say socialistic, yet this guy loved them. Sure, you can enjoy the sound, but if you don’t enjoy the lyrics, how could you enjoy the music as a whole? I know I don’t listen to music who’s lyrics I’m not particularly fond of. One might, and rightfully so, argue about the lyrics in hip hop and if you listen to it, you’re supporting the content. There’s no argument for me there. Yes, there are songs I’ve enjoyed that have lyrics I might not necessarily agree with. Heck, my favorite rapper is 2pac and I know he’s had songs I don’t agree with on content, but he’s also had songs in which I can fully stand behind the content. Typically, if I don’t relate to the music in any way, or don’t like the message in the music, I’m not going to listen to it.

So I guess my question is, what makes people enjoy things that usually go against their ideologies? Why does my conservative friend like Mr. Carlin when Mr. Carlin stands up (pun intended) against everything that most conservatives value? There’s no simple answer to this. Just a thought I had while watching the very funny Mr. Carlin.

I was talking to my friend Trix today and we were discussing what’s on the menu for dinner tonight. She is having Chinese and I’m having BBQ hamburgers. This confused her a great deal. She asked if I meant grill. I asked her to explain the difference. I’m always curious to see how terms are interchanged depending on region (soda vs pop vs coke for example).

11:09:58 AM trix wants to go home: maybe i’ll get chinese food tonight
11:10:11 AM shep: oh, that sounds delicious
11:10:19 AM shep: i’m going to BBQ some hamburgers
11:10:31 AM shep: cause it’s supposed to be like 64 today
11:10:34 AM trix wants to go home: bbq them or grill them?
11:10:46 AM shep: what’s the diff?
11:10:57 AM trix wants to go home: doesn’t bbq involve bbq sauce?
11:11:02 AM shep: yes
11:11:06 AM shep: so i’m bbqing them
11:11:09 AM shep: hence why i said bbq
11:11:10 AM trix wants to go home: ahhh ok
11:11:13 AM trix wants to go home: never heard that
11:11:22 AM shep: heard what?
11:11:27 AM shep: bbq hamburgers?
11:13:52 AM trix wants to go home: yeah
11:14:00 AM shep: really?
11:14:10 AM trix wants to go home: yes
11:14:15 AM shep: you’ve never heard of hamburgers with bbq sauce on them?
11:14:19 AM trix wants to go home: like a hamburger with bbq sauce on it?
11:14:21 AM trix wants to go home: no
11:14:22 AM shep: really?
11:14:23 AM shep: wow
11:14:25 AM shep: really?
11:14:42 AM trix wants to go home: maybe some weird specialty burger at a restaurant
11:14:45 AM trix wants to go home: but not at home
11:14:56 AM shep: they are grilled
11:14:58 AM shep: then sauced
11:15:06 AM shep: and cooked for a few minutes with sauce on them
11:15:11 AM trix wants to go home: weird
11:15:12 AM shep: just like any other bbq
11:15:13 AM shep: omg
11:15:15 AM shep: seriously?
11:15:16 AM trix wants to go home: lol
11:15:23 AM shep: how have you not heard of bbq hamburgers
11:15:25 AM trix wants to go home: must be a southern thing

I’m completely dumbfounded by this conversation. Really. I understand people not from St. Louis never hearing of BBQ pork steaks. Pork steaks are traditionally a St. Louis area thing. It really shocks me that something as simple as BBQ hamburgers could seem so foreign to someone who lives only 5 hours away, near Chicago. I mean, when I think of summertime, I think of BBQs with friends and family, BBQing burgers and dogs. Do these “cook-outs” (and not BBQs) have signs posted that say “No Sauce Allowed”? Something I thought was “as American as apple pie” I find out is something that others have never heard of. So Trix, do you know what apple pie is?

BTW, St. Louis is NOT Southern.