One of the more popular modes of social eating is known as the pot luck. I am not certain where the term was derived, but I would guess that it has something to do with the fact that what you finally end up eating is a matter of fortune, good or otherwise - That is the luck part. As for the pot, you never know what kind of food will be in the pots presented.
In case you are a social outcast or, conversely, too high-brow to ever have participated in such a venture, I shall describe a pot luck for you. A pot luck is a gathering where every family or person brings a different dish. The type of dish a person contributes is usually designated based on the first initial of a last name. For some reason, I always seem to get saddled with dessert. Truth is, I am not a dessert man. The last pot-luck social I attended had a Mexican theme and I had no idea what dessert to bring. I ended up calling my sister who is usually resourceful in such cases. She advised me that sopapilla would be appropriate. I told her that I did not relish the idea of eating sofa-pillows. I decided to bring ice-cream instead. I should have taken her advice. At least sofa-pillows don't melt before you have a chance to get to them.
In any case, no matter how small or how large a gathering of pot-luckers, there will always be at least one pot loaded with green bean casserole. Now, some people may scoff or even turn up their noses at green bean casserole, but it happens to be one of my favorite vegetables and not just because one of the ingredients is mushroom soup. I actually look forward to pot-lucks, anticipating flopping a big pile of green beans on my plate next to the equally obligatory sliced ham and Jello salad. For some reason, no one ever makes these peculiar dishes for themselves; they wait for an opportune moment to spring them on someone else. Not that these foods are unappetizing, they simply need to be made in bulk and the ingredients are relatively inexpensive.
Pot-luck food is not half bad, as long as most of the participants are not devotees of the art of nouvelle cuisine. The atmosphere is generally laid-back, and as long as someone brings a deck of cards, a good time is had by all.
You don't have to wait for a pot luck to enjoy its benefits. You can bake your own ham put together a jello salad and whip up your own green bean casserole. When you get your dishes prepared, grab a paper plate, plastic utensils and pile on as much as you can fit without the plate bending in half. Then grab a deck of cards out of the junk drawer. Even without company, you can always play solitaire. Yum, pot-luck for one.