If there’s going to be conflict it’s nice when it’s edible.

Grandma (Busha) Drabik’s chicken soup was a liquid miracle. It didn’t look like much in the bowl, but in the mouth it was a fluid version of heaven. If I called it a broth you’d likely think of those canned sorrows sold as chicken broth. That would be same as mistaking a gutless light beer for an inch of Potocki vodka.

Think of Busha’s broth as a bowl of early morning sunshine, golden and warming to the core. Think of a full feast of chicken held liquid on a spoon to flow a dinner of tender warm chicken. It didn’t look like much, but it would fool you. Grandma’s gentle gold broth was straight flavor needing no more to satisfy a stunned appetite than a few fine noodles and flakes of dark green parsley.

How did she catch a chicken feast on the wing and turn it into soup?

Mother’s chicken soup tradition, learned from her mother, was chicken soup as a banquet of finely cut vegetables (onion, carrot and garlic, plus parsley in flake and root), thick homemade noodles (kluski) with bite-size and smaller pieces of tender-sweet chicken meat.

In substance mother’s chicken soup was the clear winner. But it was no match to Busha’s version How can you compare a banquet of hearty chicken soup with a broth so flavorful it convinces the mouth it is God’s impression of what chicken should taste like?

The soup war between mother and grandma Drabik was frontline combat battled out on special occasions where the warring soup parties served their volleys to long tables of savvy eaters. My mother would slyly make mention of Busha’s nothing-in-it bowls of golden joy. Whereas Busha got her digs suggesting mother had never learned the true secret of soup and threw in many ingredients to cover the failing.

On each side, fighting words. Spoon-in-hand at either table, I knew silence was golden as I’d tuck into whichever soup was frontline. If conflict can be found in something innocent as soup, the source of discontent is not in fowl and vegetables.

We hu-persons (thank you Justin) readily provide the ingredients for discord. Battling, so t’ speak, is so baked into us and is so all-over the place we sometimes fail (a planned failure I’d suggest) to know it’s there.

This time of year consider these two small areas of warfare. Holydays became holidays. Christmas became Xmas or holiday season. Hmm, what sort of war is that? Dilution has to favor something. What, I wonder?

Simple, I hate to suggest, as advertisers and sellers of stuff wanting the holy season to be turned their way so a time for thoughts about what is sacred to become desire to buy. Christmas is the season glorifying a global band of makers and retailers, friendly folk who see the birth of a babe as potential gain for them?

For one, I doubt I’ll find end-of-life comfort clenching a dollar bill in a gnarled, liver-spotted hand.

A war more subtle than tales of soup turned a momentous account into a greedy battle for the buck. Am I singing songs for religious revival? Nope. Just reminding of the way things are and ever have been (secula seculorem) for consideration. What moves you and what you believe is your business entire. But unless you live in an orbit of Mars the elements and gravity of Earthly life weigh upon you.

Simple stuff, really, the swaying of humanity to whatever wind carries hints of greater gold. What were once called Four Seasons (highly variable as I recall) have become dark omened Climate Events. On your knees, believer, to pray be spared the dark eventful clouds of present day fears.

For me, frankly, I feel better off looking at a miraculous birth than a grim prediction. But, as you wish. We Haigh one way or the other, no mistake. You and I are sides in a war we barely see because it’s in every fabric. Fabric. Yes, there as well. But (and here the argument gets another hu-persons twist) while our species is able to find contention any old where we’re also good at getting along, or at least measuring our battles.

Back to soup basics, imagine you are son and husband to the two soup breeds. My dad’s dilemma. What to do? Mother or wife, wife’s soup or mother’s, where’s Swiss neutrality? Dad faced the entrenched camps with a determined bottle of ketchup. ‘Nother words, he turned (to the horror and disgust of mother and wife) his chicken soup pink. Who’d think that a path to peace (of sorts), but it worked. The war parties kept their respected and respectful places. Not quite Pax Romana, truce human.

Now for fun imagine long-long-long and far-far-far away a seer saw of One Recipe All Soup, other soups cursed by the All Soup itself and those who’d make or countenance any other soup were enemies of the All and should be treated as such. Either abandon other recipes for the All or, well, that’s it. There shall be but one soup, the All Soup. Take it or. Fanciful, yes, but not entirely so.

Consider All Soup not suiting all tastes. Doesn’t matter. The soup is thy soup, no democratic choice. All or nothing means no choice, which by-the-way is governmentally enforced in four dozen plus present day nations. One Soup to rule the All. Present day cloaks this as reclaiming lost Canaanite lands where the All Soup was unknown, but no matter. If you didn’t count a just cause rejecting all other soup recipes you might. Or might not, depending on the richness of fullness your diet.

My dad’s pink soup solution wouldn’t work. The menu offers one. Eat the All Soup or have nothing. The menu can be enforced and mandated, multiple nations do just that. But seems t’ me One Recipe All Soup is an unhealthy diet. Hailing the All carries consequence.