Biddleville had its third annual block party tonight. We get a permit and block off the 2200 block of Roslyn Ave, and everyone comes. This year we had a chili cook-off and a bake-off. There must have been between 15 and 20 different kinds of chili including white bean chicken chili, something called Swamp Sauce, a Chocolate Chili (actual chili with chocolate. Not like a ‘dessert pizza.’), american chili, and salsa chili. The bake off included espresso cookies, cakes, jam cookies, pumpkin chocolate bread pudding (ours) and chocolate kalhua cake (shannon’s, our arch-rival). Shannon won, and while her cake was very good, I think there were some shady back room deals and promises being made by the venerable children’s director. I’ll get you next year, Arendt!
What a fantastic community to live in. There must have been around 50 or so people there, and such a diverse group. There was a large group of white folks from Uptown Church, but there were many folks from other churches, a bunch of folks from no churches, a bunch of black folks, a bunch of homosexuals, a ton of kids, marrieds, singles, elders, youngins, poor, well off, bankers and gang bangers. It’s so incredible to see how people with so little on common can come together over a meal. It makes me appreciate so much the subversive nature of the Eucharistic feast. This is a table at which all are sons (in the inheritistic, not gender sense), and all eat as one body the body of the Lord, and drink as one body his blood. There is no male or female, Jew or Greek, slave or free. There is counter-cultural relativizing that happens at baptism, and which is lived out in our meal sharing. Jamey Smith has been talking about that in his book “Desiring the Kingdom” which I’ve been reading.
I get a little bound up when someone says there will be “refreshments” at a church function. It feels so sterile. Like just pop in a pill or something discreet to “freshen up” and get back to the real business at hand, something spiritual or cognitive. Let’s sit down together and sup. I want to see and hear you chewing. I want to break a chunk of bread from the same loaf as you. I want drink wine from the same chalice as you. I want the smells of good food to become a part of what we consider fellowship. I want to take creation into my body turning it into myself with my true family, the Church of God, the bride of Christ. It’s messy and earthy and it sometimes smells. It’s a hood party. And I love it.