A good friend, who knows about my passion for homegrown tomatoes, mentioned that their minister preached a sermon each July entitled “How to Eat a Tomato Sandwich”. Rev. Mel Williams’ Tomato Sandwich sermon became a tradition of his church family. Though I was never fortunate enough to hear Mel preach this sermon, I felt inspired to write my own version; and here it is.
First Things First
First, in order to appreciate the experience of eating a tomato sandwich we need to be clear about what a real tomato is. Real tomatoes, pronounced “Tomaders”, are not found in grocery stores; they are picked from your (or somebody’s) garden. And, they are only available in this part of the world during the months of July, August and September; known as the Holy Months for Tomader lovers.
Second, the ritual of eating the first tomato sandwich of the season begins with constructing the proper tomader sandwich. The authentic “tomader sandwich” has four ingredients; a big, juicy, ripe garden tomato, white loaf bread, Dukes mayonnaise, and salt and pepper. That’s it, nothing else. A tomato lover may garnish their tomato sandwich with other things, like bacon, lettuce, basil, or cheese later in the season, but the first few sandwiches in July must be just tomato, loaf bread, mayo, and salt.
The process begins by laying out two slices of white loaf bread (store brand or Wonder Bread) on a plate and slathering each piece with Duke’s (or store brand) Mayo. This step is followed by slicing a whole ripe, juicy tomato over the prepared bread slices. Add lots of salt and pepper and smash the two pieces of bread together to trap the juicy tomato slices inside.
You and your sandwich then move to the kitchen sink. Holding the now dripping sandwich with both hands while leaning over the sink, you take your first big bite. Be prepared…as your mouth explodes with the sweet tart flavors of the tomato, and the juices spurt out from all directions, you may feel panic and want return your dripping sandwich back to its plate. Don’t do it. Avoid the urge to use that knife and fork. Stay with the experience. As juices run down your chin, hands and arms and drip from your elbows in the sink, stay focused on the aromas and tastes of the red succulent fruit that’s flooding your senses. Be aware of all of the sensations in your mouth…the tastes, textures and aroma of the tomato, mayo and squishy bread mixture that’s breaking apart in your hands. Be present with that sandwich. Let time stand still. For this moment, you and your “tomader” sandwich are all there is in the entire universe. Avoid talking or even calling out to express your joy; just be present in the moment.
I’m not sure about the theological tenets of Mel’s sermon, but I’m guessing that he would want to convey the truth that our life and our passions are gifts from God. We are given countless opportunities every day for sensual-emotional passionate experiences. As we open our eyes to the colors, smell the aromas, taste the flavors, and feel the textures of our world we evoke emotions of joy, vibrancy, gratitude and connection; the stuff of Resonance. These life passions, in turn, define who we are and provide guidance for our life choices. When we pay attention and make authentic life choices we receive the gift of Resonance, and that’s what we are all about.
When you are ready to step up your life experience, give us a call. We will enjoy being a part of your journey to Resonance, even if you don’t care for tomatoes. You can find us at www.ResonanceNC.com