Pour about an eighth of an inch of oil, corn or vegetable, in the bottom of an eight inch skillet; doesn’t have to be cast iron, but it helps. Stick it in the oven on a high rack at about 425.
Then take three cups of white self-rising corn meal and about half a cup self-rising flour, mix in a bowl with a scant teaspoon baking soda and a dash or so of salt. Add about 1/3 cup of corn or vegetable oil and mix until about the consistency of rice. Add one large beaten egg, mix well, then add enough buttermilk to make a thick batter. Spoon in a splash of water.
Take your skillet out of the oven, tilt to coat the sides with oil, and test the heat with a drop of batter. It should sizzle; if not, heat some more. When oil is sufficiently hot, pour in the batter, shake the skillet to level it out, and bake until golden brown and a little crusty. Remove by inverting skillet.
Eat with butter immediately, and rejoice in being alive.