Sunday, May 20, 2012

Why do you do what you do?

The dinner guests just raved about how good that ham tasted. Finally, one of the guests asked her host what her secret was to preparing such a succulent tasting ham!

She replied that her special secret was that just before cooking, she trimmed off both ends of the ham. "And why do you do that," the inquisitive guest asked?

The proud host then explained, "Well, that's how my mother taught me to cook it. That's the way I have been doing it for years, and it always comes out delicious."

Not satisfied, the curious one pressed on. "But why did she trim off both ends of the ham? How in the world does that make it taste so good?"

"I really don't know," the host replied. "I've never thought about it. But I'll ask her, and I will get back with you."

The next day she called her mom and asked why she trimmed the ends off the ham before cooking, hoping to get some secret cooking answer. But her mom was no help at all. "Why, honey, that's just how your grandmother taught me. She always did it that way, and her ham was always delicious," she answered. "Why don't you ask her?"

Feeling like she was now on a quest for something very important, she indeed called her grandmother and asked the same question. Much to her dismay, she got the same answer. Grandma simply said, "Oh my dear, that's just way my mother taught me."

Now desperate for an answer, she called her great-grandmother and asked, "Why did you trim both ends off of a ham before cooking it? Does it cook better that way? Does it have something to do with the juices?"

The wise old lady replied, "Oh sweetie, cutting the ends off of a ham has absolutely nothing to do with any of those things."

"But then why did you cut the ends off?" the young lady asked, now very puzzled.

She answered, "I trimmed the ends off so it would fit into my pan!"

Why do you do what you do?  Have you ever thought about it?
When you prepare your holiday dinners, are you preparing the food the same way as your mother or grandmother prepared it?  For me, some dishes are the same as my mother's. Others I've tweaked or created my own version.

What about running your household, or raising the kids. Are you mimicking your mother's ways?
What about your attire? When you go shopping for clothes, have you ever put something back on the rack after thinking your mother would never approve of you wearing something like that? :)  I've not done that, but I was once friends with a woman who would.

I'd picked out a pretty red dress for her to try on, and she refused to do so, based on the color. She said she was taught proper ladies do not wear the color red. So, of course I asked why.   I later found out that meant, no red lipstick, nail polish, no red anything! She said her mother nor grandmother have never worn the color and it means you're a loose woman! LOL!  I was thinking, well maybe it just wasn't their color? Not everyone looks good in red.

I think you have the right to wear, eat, do whatever you want. But there are times when I hear about certain traditions or ways of life.  I just can't help but wonder.

Why do you do what you do?


  1. What a great post! I've often asked this question about things and people and have found the same answers as your answers in many cases! Isn't it hilarious! Hope you have a great Sunday eve!

  2. Heck, if I knew why I did things even half the time I'd be lucky!