Wow! So many positive responses to my blog! I’m kind of knocked over by them! Thank you, guyz and grrrlz! I am very grateful.
Well, anyway. On being Pennsylvania Dutch: I’m glad for the show “Breaking Amish,” because it casts light on my kinfolk, sort of the last unrecognized ethnic group in the country. Now we are known. I am not Amish, I’m Lutheran by birth, but some of my older kin speak Pennsylvania Dutch, which you hear in the show, as a first language. It’s a German dialect very similar to Yiddish.
We eat the same traditional foods that the Amish eat, including “sloppy Joes” made with a special from scratch barbecue sauce; scrapple; cole slaw, fermented cabbage can’t remember what it is called (having a senior moment); apple butter, doughball soup (like matzohball soup), all kinds of roast meats, potatoes done anyway, and so on.
We live normal lives with education, jobs, ordinary houses, street clothes.
But — we are very, very clannish. The results of a study showing people moving out of their birth state showed that Pennsylvanians are the least likely to move from theirs. Penn Dutch people often kind of isolate from people not of their ethnicity.
So you can see, we are just like the Amish, our kinfolk, in some ways and very different in others.
I am grateful that “breaking Amish” aired. Finally, someone’s paying attention to the “lost ethnic group.”