Post #498 Sometimes I Forget

August 8, 2016 at 10:01 PM | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Post #498 Sometimes I Forget

When I was still married to my ex-wife, sometimes when we’d go grocery shopping, we’d buy a bunch of bananas.  She preferred them a little on the green side, and I preferred them ripe with bruises starting to grow.  It always worked out perfectly, because just as she lost interest in the bunch of bananas, I’d start eating them.  I love bananas.  I could eat a whole full bunch of them in one sitting until I’m comatose on the couch with my stomach distended and burping less than politely in mixed company.  The odd thing is that I seldom remember how much I like bananas until I’m actually eating them.  Then I don’t want to stop.

There are a few other foods that do this to me.  Grapes is one.  I love grapes.  I particularly like the giant ping pong ball sized grapes called Red Globes.  But grapes aren’t on my mind most of the time.  When I reach for a snack, I don’t often think about grapes.  Then I eat one, and the flavor and juiciness explode in my mouth and all I can think of is eating every grape in sight.  I call the left over vines the grape bones.

Any peanut butter/chocolate combination is the same.  I don’t like peanut butter that much.  I typically only eat it in a PBJ with grape jelly only.  Surround it with chocolate and I sing another tune.  The standard bearer is, of course, the peanut butter cup.  I can slam a whole one in my mouth and not come up for air until I’m done swallowing and looking for more to slam.  Butterfingers are another.  I start crunching and don’t stop until I’m licking the chocolate off my fingers.  I swallow only to get more room in my mouth for more candy bar.

I eat a lot of popcorn, but only in spurts.  I’ll go for weeks without thinking about popcorn once.  Then suddenly it’s like my brain says it needs a popcorn fix.  I try to eat it sedately, but generally end up like my brother, jamming an entire fistful into my mouth, risking choking and death to get another buttery, salty morsel of deliciousness.  I eat all kinds of popcorn, but never sweet.

Then there are days when no matter how hard I try, I just can’t find something interesting to eat.  I wander up and down the grocery aisles and nothing looks good.  I root through the pantry and can’t find a thing in the pounds of food on the shelves.  I move things around the freezer and it’s just frozen stuff.  I read through cookbooks for inspiration and it’s not there.  I tell myself (only half jokingly) “It’s a first world problem.”

Those are the days I end up eating toast, or crackers, or cookies, or potato chips.

Now to turn a little serious.  You didn’t think you’d get of easy, did you?

There are lots of kids in our country who are facing that question of what to eat every day.    They don’t have the luxury of eating bananas until they can’t eat anymore.  They don’t have the “problem” of can’t decide what to eat because when they open the fridge, or pantry, or freezer, there’s nothing there.  It’s summertime; there’s no school; there’s no meal.

The problem isn’t going away, but it is getting a little better.  More people are aware of the issue, and more influential people are helping out where they can.  The Food Network has leant its support to the cause for many years now.  More and more communities are reaching out.  Foods on the shelves are becoming healthier and less expensive.  So there’s positive movement.

The need doesn’t go away.

I was eating a Butterfinger the other day, and I noticed a number on the inside of the wrapper.  Turns out that like many other food products, if you register that number at the website provided, they will donate a meal to feed hungry kids.  Go figure.

At my store, there’s a young kid who comes in fairly regularly.  He seems about nine years old or so and he’s a smart kid.  He always has a handful of coins with him and he knows how to add and subtract and figure out what he can afford.  He brought up a bunch of bananas to me one day last week.  When I told him the price, he was very surprised.

“The sign said they were 54 cents,” he said.  I explained that was 54 cents a pound.  He was so disappointed and started to turn away to put them back when the older couple behind him said, “We’ll buy them for you.”

I very happily rang their order through as they bagged the bananas and gave them to the boy.  He seemed confused at first, but nearly ran from the store with the bag.  We all smiled watching him go.  I thanked them sincerely for what they’d done.

They both said the same thing in almost the same breath.  “How can anyone say no?  It was bananas.  If it had been a candy bar, we wouldn’t have done it.”  Things like that make my job worthwhile.  I didn’t tell them about how Butterfingers was donating food. 😉

Off my soap box for now.


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