The Flavor of Love


Happy Mother's Day Mama Mustard

My mother’s love tastes like mustard.

This might seem like a strange flavor to ascribe to Motherly Love. It’s not a sweet or popular flavor. It’s not particularly poetic. You might think that by choosing mustard that I don’t love my Mom at all or perhaps that she doesn’t much care for me but you would be misled.

When we were kids we used to take long family road trips in the summer. We traveled East to visit family or West to visit Yellowstone or South to visit New Mexico where I was born. Before setting out on the road Mom would pack a cooler full of a picnic lunch for us to eat on the road. She would make each of us a sandwich, often with cold cuts and most often with ham. From a young age I have held a strong aversion to mayonnaise without which cold cut sandwiches are especially tricky to stick together. Mustard was the preferred alternative. In each packed lunch one would be made with just mustard and it would have my name on it. Literally.

When I grew up and went away to college I chose a school about a two and a half hour drive from home: just close enough to visit, just far enough to be on my own. When I came home for a weekend visit Mom would always pack me a lunch for the bus ride back to school. If there was a sandwich it would be redolent with mustard.

Even now that I am grown up and married and living across the country I will occasionally come home for a film shoot or a premiere and will be worrying myself gray headed over the thousands of last minute details. I will be half way out the door without having had a bite to eat and Mom, being much wiser than myself will make me a ham sandwich with mustard.

Whenever we are going somewhere or leaving home or running around in pursuit of our dreams at the expense of our stomachs, Mom is there with a sandwich with mustard.

So my mother’s love tastes like mustard. And I could not be happier with that.

~ by Gwydhar Gebien on May 12, 2013.

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