Every day in February I'm going to add to this story in Honor of Black History Month. Please enjoy this zany homage to some of the most interesting black people to ever live.
It was right around 9 o’clock on a chilly February day in Newark, New Jersey, just the right time to start the day’s drinking. This was common for an ethnic city like Newark, as nearly 50% of its population was Irish. As such it had a wonderful menagerie of pubs for the choosing, not the least of which was a small neighborhood corner establishment called Tipsy McStagger’s. And sitting on a barstool of this establishment was none other than your average New Jerseyian, Blackie McFadden. He was an Irish-African-American, with great red cornrows and skin the color of a fine glass of ale. And he was very proud of his ancestry.
“I’ll tell ye, O’Mally, there be nothin’ finer than a sip o’ the ol’ Irish whiskey before breakfast,” he said to the bartender.
“Aye, McFadden, save perhaps if that breakfast was a foin pint o’ Irish stout!” the bartender replied. He clicked on the TV at the bar.
The TV popped on and a news segway appeared on the screen, “Today we celebrate Black History Month by honoring George Washington Carver and his fundamental research with the peanut.”
“Ye know, O’Mally, I been mighty proud o’ me Irish heritage, but never once did I look at me black heritage…” Blackie McFadden pondered aloud.
“Perhaps ye ought to! I’m sure it’s a fahshinating history!”
“You know wot… I think I will. I’ll see you for lunch, I’ve got some research to do!” With this Blackie stood up and walked out of the bar (his drinks were on his tab of course). Not quite drunk and not quite sure where to turn, Blackie looked out in to the street, seeing a whole sea of people milling about. Some were Hispanic, some were white, but most were black skinned Irishmen like himself. He couldn’t help but ponder what lied on the other side of his cultural heritage.
Suddenly, in front of him, a great blinding light erupted in the middle of the street! Blackie had to turn to shield his eyes, but when he could finally gaze upon the spectacle he was shocked to see none other but the man from the television standing next to a 1988 Buick LeSabre on 22” rims. George Washington Carver himself, dressed in period clothing, ran up to the dazed Blackie McFadden and shook his hand.
“Mr. McFadden,” George boomed, “it would be my privilege to take you to see all the influential Irish-African-Americans that helped make this land great.”
“Really? That’s fantastic! But how’re we gonna be gettin’ ta all o’ dem?” Blackie wondered.
“Simple, Blackie, the same way I got here.” George Carver gestured towards his Buick as he walked Blackie over. “With my time machine!”
“You’re pullin’ my leg! You mean to tell me that this roigh’ ‘ere is a time machine!?”
“As sure as the Irish blood that flows through our veins! I made it by mastering the elemental power of the peanut. Did you know the peanut is naturally attuned to the flow of time and space?”
“I just assumed it was good for sandwiches, and a damn good additive for seasonal beers.”
Mr. Carver shook his head, “It’s good for those, yes, but you haven’t seen the full power of the peanut until you’ve used it to travel through time!”
“Well, what are we waitin’ for, Mr. Carver? Foire up yer time machine and let’s be on our way!” Blackie McFadden said with great enthusiasm.
George Washington Carver grinned and opened the car, revealing all kinds of interesting gadgetry, “You’re gonna want to be careful, and strap yourself in tight. The flux capacitor can be a bit rough when you run it on chunky.” He motioned to the jar of chunky Skippy peanut butter, screwed in upside-down to what looked like a miniature nuclear reactor. George punched the throttle and the car took off down the carriageway. Space and time began to ripple around the car until they finally achieved 88mph, which for a Buick that old took like a minute. At that point they were flung into the glorious bright light of adventure.