“Beans and Cornbread had a fight. Beans knocked Cornbread outta sight. Cornbread said, ‘Now that’s alright, meet me on the corner tomorrow night.’ I’ll be ready, I’ll be ready tomorrow night. That’s what Beans said to Cornbread. “I’ll be ready tomorrow night.” Beans told Cornbread you ain’t straight. You better wake up or I’ll gash your gate. Been in this pot since half past two, swelling and puffing and almost due. I’ll be ready tomorrow night, that’s what Beans said to Cornbread. You always getting mad at me, I ain’t mad at you, I’ll be ready tomorrow night, I’ll be ready, Beans grabbed cornbread by the toe. Beans said, ‘Cornbread let me go.’ Cornbread said ‘I’ll lay you low, I’m gonna fight you, you so and so.’ Meet me on the corner; meet me on the corner tomorrow night. That’s what Beans said to Cornbread, you so bad, you always wanna fight. Meet me on the corner tomorrow night and I’m gonna beat the hell out of ya. Beans hit Cornbread on the head; Cornbread said I’m almost dead. Beans told Cornbread get up man, you know that we go hand in hand” Louis Jordan

“Cooking is all about people. Food is maybe the only universal thing that really has the power to bring everyone together. No matter what culture, everywhere around the world, people get together to eat.” Guy Fieri

“You bring me joy” Anita Baker

One of my joys in life is checking out new and different restaurants and sharing them with friends. Josephine and Tommy Ridgeley joined me for Monday’s happy hour at Lee’s Pint and Shells on Hudson St., offering a pint of mussels for $5 and special prices on drinks. The festive atmosphere was attributed to the fact that I posted their Monday special on Facebook; the restaurant was overflowing with first time diners enjoying the food.

“I like to have a martini, two at the very most , after three I’m under the table, after four, I’m under my host.” Dorothy Parker

On Thursdays Johnny’s in Roland Park serves $3 Tito martinis, fried rockfish bites, fried oysters, omelets, burgers and more. Lora Mayo and I enjoyed a comfortable evening dining at Johnny’s where we saw Dr. Nina Rawlings dining with her family. On a warm Friday night, Dr. Marie Washington and I decided to dine at Cinghiale’s in Harbor East for mouthwatering northern Italian cuisine. Marie ordered the pan roasted prime New York strip, and I had the grilled Hudson Valley Magret of Duck. Cinghiale serves fresh food from local farms using the farm to table concept. The chef will pair your meal with his wine choices if you prefer. My girlfriend Ora Reed was here from Mississippi so we dined for lunch at the never disappointing Peppermill Grill and then stopped at Bonefish in Towson where they specializes in summer drinks served with watermelon or other seasonal fruits; the bang bang shrimp is still a favorite among diners. Tark’s Grill in Greenspring Station has outdoor seating inside the courtyard or plenty of seating inside the restaurant. New owners Gino and Bruce, and the manager James, have brought life back to this old Greenspring Valley eatery. George Ray and I enjoyed a beautiful evening dining on crab cakes, fried oysters and lobster bites with a delicious golden beet salad with goat cheese, a favorite with the diners. Keenan Geter hosted his birthday party at Get It Inn Bar & Restaurant in Locust Point serving delicious Caribbean food. I especially enjoyed the oxtails. Among the partygoers was Cori Ramos, who assisted me in my Caribbean dining experience.

“Part of the secret of success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside.” Mark Twain

The summer is the perfect opportunity to visit many of the fine restaurants in the area while most people are away at the beach enjoying the sun. You can have the perfect dining experience without the crowds.

The way you make me feel. You really turn me on. You knock me off my feet. My lonely days are gone… I like the feelin’ you’re givin’ me just hold me baby and I’m in ecstasy. Oh, I’ll be workin’ from nine to five to buy you things to keep you by my side. I never felt so in love before. Just promise baby, you’ll love me forevermore… The way you make me feel. You really turn me on you knock me off of my feet.” Michael Jackson

Happy 41st anniversary Linda and Ken “Stromie” James; happy anniversary Anthony and Marie Geddie; happy sixth anniversary Chris and Renee Calvi and happy second anniversary Ryan and Lisa McNeil.

“I think there’s no higher calling in terms of a career than public service, which is a chance to make a difference in people’s lives and improve the world.” Jack Lew

Congratulations Vonzella Perry on your appointment as president of the Baltimore County Commission for Women.

“Anyone who stops learning is old, whether 20 or 80. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing you can do is keep your mind young.” Mark Twain

Sending happy birthday wishes to my young friends. Happy 91st birthday Delores Brock; Frank Hocker, Pat Jessamy Judge Robert Bell, Alice Pinderhughes, Thurman Pinder, Frank Hocker, Dr. Marcia Henson, William “Shorty” Trusty, Kelly Harvey, Ty Taylor, Dwayne Wickham and happy 75th birthday Osborne Dixon.

Sending get well wishes to Dr. Anne Emery, Maxine Gaskins and Curtis Ringgold as they continue to recuperate.

What’s happening!

August 5, the Community Concert Choir of Baltimore is hosting an “oldies but goodies” crab feast at the Forum Caterers on Primrose Ave. in Northwest Baltimore. Contact Marco Merrick, 410-294-2991 for tickets or www.cccbmore. org

August 11, “The Avenue” a musical bringing back the sounds of the1940s and 1950s from the Royal Theater in its heyday, is hosted by Kuumba Ensemble Heritage House Community Theater. Contact Ronnie at 443-562-7245 for details.

I’ll be seeing you! Valerie and the Friday Night Bunch