Tuesday, February 23

Words to Eat By

As I drove past the Third Pounder billboard featuring McDonald’s newest sandwich offering I thought to myself, “I will never eat anything with the word pounder in it.”

Then I began to think of all the words that I will not eat.* Here’s a list with their translations.
Crunchy = Fried
Crispy = Fried (unless it refers to lettuce)
Creamy = Fat
Cheesy = Fat
Melt = Fat
Big = Lots of what you don’t need
Double = Twice what you don’t need
Triple = Three times what you don’t need
Pounder = Seriously?
Liver = It’s an organ - the organ that is a filter. Ick - and I can say that because I have tried it. I like to say, “Ick!” with authority.

*Disclaimer: I love ice cream, and I will have it when I want it. Also, while I have never eaten an order of fast food fries, I love fresh cut curly fries floating (I do not exaggerate) in vinegar from vendors at summer fairs. I’m salivating at the thought.

Saturday, February 13

Remembering Chevettes and Fig Newtons

I have procrastinated all morning to not clean my house, but finally I’m sweeping my bathroom floor and listening to Debbie Millman’s Design Matters podcast. She remarks that her favorite question to ask her guests is, “What is your first creative memory?” One time after the show a guest asked her, “What is your first memory?” She thought about it for days.

As I fluffed my couch pillows (I go all over the house when I clean) and straightened the slipcover on the first piece of furniture we ever owned with cushions, I started thinking about what my first memory could be. Debbie talked about wonderful times spent with her grandparents. Some of my earliest memories are ones with my Gram as well. She lived in an apartment in a small city, and it had a porch off the back that pigeons would come to. I’m sure they were viewed as pests, but I remember loving seeing them and listening to their cooing. There are morning doves in the countryside where I grew up, but you rarely see a pigeon. City birds, I guess. I remember riding to town with my dad on a sun-drenched summer day in one of our long line of Chevettes - one of which would become my first car. I can remember looking out the window as we rode past the farm where we would get our milk in a glass jug we’d bring to the milk house, everything was green in the fields, and I love the memory for the stillness of myself in the passenger seat utterly content as the world whirrs past the window. Riding in the front seat with my dad was a great treat. I’m pretty sure seat belts didn’t exist yet, and I hadn’t a care in the world.

Those memories are before I was eight, and I’m trying to travel back farther. My mom took tons of photos of my childhood - well, my whole life up to present - and one of my favorite things to do as a kid was pull out all her wonderful photo albums, flipping pages and asking questions. It is hard to differentiate memories from memories of photos. Oh, here’s one though: My other grandmother used to give me Fig Newtons. There is no picture of that. I don’t even like Fig Newtons, but I would always take one and eat it. What a strange, rectangular, gelatinous-filled cookie. Maybe because it was peculiar I found some enjoyment in it. Maybe it was just following her down the hallway to the closet where they were kept.

I’m procrastinating again, and it’s time to go clean some more. I’ll keep thinking.