A NOVEL IN FLASHES
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Mudbug Tales, wit' Recipes
The vignettes that follow tell, in Cajun dialect, the stories of the wonderful people who populate a piece of Acadiana, in South Louisiana. They are fictions set in the imaginary town of Pigeonaire on the real Bayou Teche. The book is in two parts, first the stories of the Acadiana folk, the Cajuns, told in flashes that combined transform the individual stories to a novel about life in the Bayou country. The rest of the book is the recipes, some of which are Cajun and some of which are not.
The Mudbug Tales pay homage to the Cajun people and their wonderful ways. If I fail to depict reality it's because that is not my aim. What I'm trying for is a series of flashes that are lighthearted and present a unique people in an enjoyable way that is worth the read. If I don't get it right it is entirely on me.
The second part of the book is an almost random presentation of recipes for stuff that I like to cook and eat. Some of the recipes are for Cajun style vittles and some are not. The recipes in the book haven't been tested in or by any fancy culinary organization; they are just from my own and my friends' kitchens. We like the dishes that are presented here and hope that you will adapt the recipes to your tastes and enjoy them.
Mudbug, if you don't already know, is a South Louisiana colloquialism for crawfish, or écrevisse. They are a true taste treat. Mudbug is also this book's narrator's nickname.
I've tried to do justice to the Cajun people but I know that it is actually impossible to do so. Cajuns are much too unique for anyone to capture their culture with mere words. So, as way of showing my admiration for the Cajun people I'll just insert my previously published flash piece LOUISIANA. With Louisiana I think you will see my love for that unique State its Parishes and
its folk and folkways. Here tis:
dis ol' boy he hearing wimmen talkin' 'bout sumtin' they callin' flashfiction, an' dat got him confuse. dey tourist wimmen, come out onna de porch of the general store carry'n' dey co'colas an' tawkin' high falutin'. Dey be sayin' stuff dis boy ain't never hear befo' doan unnerstan' stuff dey talkin', me. so, an' i ain' lisn' no mo' 'bout that flashfiction. i sip lil' bit o' whiskey, me. an' i turn to think about old times in la. what i maybee unnerstan, some, maybee.
salt smells. crawfish gumbo sno-cones. roe shrimp. file
powder. tur-duk-en. deep fryd. cotton bolls. sugar cane. cottonmouth swimmin'.
mississippi. paddle wheeler. atchafalya. spillway gate. pontchartrain. bayou.
cajun folk. dancin'.
cypress knees. antebellum. cherry lips an' a flutterin' eyes. creole lady.
cajun queen. flirty-girly. thibadioux. terrebonne. beaux bridge. mulate's.
zydaco. mama got a squeeze box. cajun fiddle. new roads. fause rivere.
fish pole. pirogue. parish. huey long. river road. feliciana. redbone.
armadillo. carville. leprosarium. angola. convicts. road gang. shadows on the
teche. evangeline. tabasco. salt domes. jambalaya. cookin' pot. squirrel stew.
roseate spoonbill inna salt flat. duck flight. fish warden. lafitte skiff. mud
flat fingers inna delta. gulf waters. oil rig. alligator. nutria. ducks in vee.
pump shotgun. cast net. fishpole. buck knife. cold beer. liv'n off de lan'.
n'orleans. spanish moss. catholics. st louis cathedral. artist stalls. mardigras. octoroon ball. tipitino's. coco & ialya. two sisters. k-paul. whitey's pool room. earl long. blaze in dishabille.
martini gazpacho. etouffee. cafe de monde. galatoire's. doctor john. tchoupitoulas. antoine's. bignet. hurricanes at pat's. sweet honey dripper. fiyo. big easy.
preservation hall. dixieland. barker at the door. marchin'
saints. marie le-veau. nevilles chants. voodoo. tombs on top. fevre dream.
louisiana. magic. Wonderland.
lassier les bon temps rouler.
flash fiction? doan know 'bout dat. i ain' hearin' no more
o' dat stuff, me.
(a version of LOUISIANA was previously
published in FF Magazine, Tonya Judy, Publisher)
I have to add a few words to thank the folks who helped with this book.
My wife, MiMi, read the draft ms and provided wise editorial advice. Thanks Darlin'.
Ramon Collins, my good friend, formerly of Bogalousa, LA, now in Boulder NV, published many of the Mudbug Tales in his E-zine, Quiction, Ray also helped with the manuscript.
Others who read the ms and advised me were Lesley Weston, Kat Grosjean, Lloyd Boyd and Wenonah Lyon. These people, friends, are readers extraordinaire who caught my stumbles. I'm eternally grateful for their help.
In the recipe section of the book Rick Stone and Kathy and Kevin Livingston were right there. I couldn't have done it without them.
Mudbug Tales is one hundred percent a work of fiction and any resemblance to anyone, living or dead, is pure coincidence. For any flaws or errors blame me, no one else.
So, here are the stories and the recipes. I hope both please you.
Get all of my books at: http://www.amazon.com/GC-Smith/e/B005HIPJSI/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0 Click on links at the contact us or web store pages of this site.