When I go to the market on Saturdays, I generally confine myself to the sheds and the Gratiot Central Market, aka the Meat Mall, across the freeway. But recently someone said I had to check out Saad’s, a halal meat place a block or two away, and so this week I did.
My befuddlement must have been evident when I walked in and looked around a blank anteroom, because a kindly girl directed me: Take a number, and step through the plastic flap door to do my shopping. It was a little like Dorothy leaving the house after it’s landed in Oz. I don’t think I’ve seen a retail arrangement quite like it. You shop amid a row of hanging carcasses — lamb, they looked like — with open cases offering meat in every imaginable cut and preparation, from frozen pre-marinated shwarma to beef skin and goat heads, complete with eyeballs, not to mention bins of tripe, frozen and carved into blocks. Women in headscarves and men in skullcaps gathered great shopping bags full of product; I have to assume they were restaurateurs, stocking for the week ahead. But I didn’t laugh out loud until I saw this:
Sharifables. Halal Lunchables. I’m always cheered by stuff like this. It suggests we have more in common than not. Even Mecca-Cola, born out of an explicit desire to buy non-American, pro-Palestinian products, doesn’t seem all bad. We have different faiths, but we all enjoy a refreshing cola beverage from time to time.
I’d wandered in thinking I might get the ingredients for a nice lamb stew, but left without buying anything. I think I need a more sedate experience. Still glad I went, though. I hope Stephen Colbert learns about Sharifables soon:
Meanwhile, a sad story unfolded elsewhere in Detroit. I’m sure any of you who have dealt with mental illness can understand how this happened:
Kelly Pingilley was trying to make sense of the voices in her head when she went looking for answers on the Internet.
She stumbled upon a website promoting a religion that believes in UFOs, vampires, conspiracy theories and doomsday prophecies.
Pingilley was drawn to the writings of time travel and people’s thoughts being controlled by cell phone towers, friends said. With the teachings feeding into her delusions, Pingilley’s behavior grew increasingly erratic.
The woman killed herself late last year. Lots of good detail. This one jumped out at me:
Kellie Pingilley declined to say why the family failed to get help for her granddaughter’s apparent affliction.
I really hope they did what they could. It’s a terrible situation to have to deal with. I hope they did something. But what makes this story interesting is the fact the reporter reached the crazy person who clicked with this other crazy person, and then said, when all this was explained to her, “Some stuff was pretty out there. It was just crazy.”
Good to know.
And now another week lies ahead. Let’s hope for a good one.