Updated: Aug 14
I was 8 years old when I died at Ebbets Field stadium in Flatbush, Brooklyn while watching the Brooklyn Dodgers play, or so I thought.
My Uncle Ben was involved with the Brooklyn Dodger Farm Team. There was a player from the farm team making his debut, or chance, to join the team. He took me, my cousin Melvin and other kids to the game. Around the 2nd or 3rd inning he told us all that he was buying lunch for us. The sandwich was a ham sandwich and also a carton of milk. When I heard the menu, I paused in remembering that you do not have pork and milk, because, you would die.
That was the religious belief that I was taught and it caused me anxiety at that very moment. The food was given to each of the kids and as a good Italian, it was Mangia, Mangia to all of the us. I was hesitant do do so and delayed eating. He came over to me to say, please eat the food which he bought because he didn't want it wasted.
Staring at the sandwich and carton of milk I trembled internally. In order to be the good boy and obey the adult I started to eat, albeit it slowly. I finished the sandwich and with stares from my Uncle Ben finished the milk.
At that point the game stopped for me. While the crowds were engaged because I could hear the cheering and boos, I awaited for the moment when my life would be over. I wondered what it would feel like to die, what would the signs be.
An inning past, and then another and another. Finally I concluded that I would not die from eating a ham sandwich and drinking a carton of milk. I rejoined watching the game in the closing innings and began to ponder why I was told I would die.
Now the thought process was why I was told this by my family. It started a long process of hearing the teachings from my parents and relatives and consider how true it was.