In Search of the Great Chicken Fried Steak.
Seeking common ground.
The words cascade down like a cacophony of bricks shattering a piece of treasured glass ~ fear, black, white, love, God, doubt, morals, learn, equality, trust, wisdom, prejudice, teach, future, children… are we listening, America?
In college, my roommate John Pike, introduced me to the tasty Chicken Fried Steak and cream gravy. Given our impoverished student status, eating a Chicken Fry in the morning provided all the fuel one needed to be left satisfied for a day. I learned to love that meal. Ever since, I’ve been in search of a great Chicken Fried Steak. It has become an obsession of sorts.
The Chicken Fried Steak hails from a rather humble origin. A tough cut of meat is made edible by repeatedly pounding it into tender submission, followed by a ritualistic dousing in milk. The softened meat is then blanketed with an impenetrable coat of flour and the concoction is finished off by a quick, deep fry in a vat of fiery oil. A true American classic, it’s the working man’s entree.
Through the years photography is always leading me down obscure county roads and an endless maze of metropolitan thoroughfares, revealing America’s unique cultural patchwork.
We, of differing races and creed, are woven together through a simple series of intersecting geographic lines and yet, we still strive to build a perfected union. But, the complexity of issues which lay ahead makes it difficult to remain firmly rooted upon that path. It is this indelicate composition of our national quilt that threatens to splinter us into even greater contentious and dispirited factions.
Do we share a universal thread strong enough to overcome this dissidence or are we destined to move in a new, uncharted direction? No doubt, these are challenging times.