Believe the Label
I don't know what the deal is with me and food recently. OK. Alright, I do like it but a bit too much, according to my cardiologist. But it seems like food is the prevailing topic for blog-spiel. I sit down with a cup of The Elixir of Knowledge, stare at the wall, hands on the keys, and "whamo" - it's about something I ate.
As I sit hear this morning waiting for morning to arrive, I remember yesterday's events. I finally carved out a little writing cave and the excavation exhumed six boxes of long-ago-read books to take somewhere. Anywhere.
I suggested the local recycler - drive up, dump in dumpster, drive away, back home in 10 minutes - but The Wife is of Dutch heritage. Waste not, want not. Scrub the streets. Live below the waterline. Can't throw a good book away.
So yesterday morning finds me and Phlegm the Taurus working our way down out of the woods to the Sorta-Big City to cart boxes of books to the Goodwill Store...where they will still probably end up in the landfill. But, and this is key, not with our knowledge.
We can guiltlessly envision some child or adult getting one of those books, reading it, and become inspired to be a famous person or a prominent pillar of the American Society. The reality is that a landfill worm will eat these books and turn them into nitrogen-laced worm poop. But we're gonna run with the brilliant child/adult scenario.
Delusions are great, aren't they?
On the way back, we stop at the Qwik Mart. I leave Phlegm outside talking to the other cars and meander into the bustling convenience store. Every time I get to the Sorta-Big City I hafta stop here. 39 cent/lb bananas and $1.29/doz eggs. And a pretty good dark roast Elixir for a convenience store.
I got the eggs and a gorilla's fist of bananas. I filled and capped a small dark roast and headed for the counter. I rolled past a little red sign that caught my eye.
"Today -$1.00 each"
Underneath the sign is the hotbox that holds two different types of tornados. "A whirlwind of flavor" is emblazoned across the paper sleeve. Huh. MexTex food is like Italian pasta. Take a tortilla and leave it flat. Add the stuff. Bam - tostados. Fold the tortilla in half. Fill the inside. Bam - taco. Cap a tostado with another tortilla. Bimmity-bammity-boom...quesadilla.
And if you load the tortilla along one edge, roll it into a tube, then run it through a deep-fryer?
Hello, tornados..."A whirlwind of flavor".
I paused in front of the hotbox...just like I pause in front of the carnival games at the County Fair.
"3 tries for a Buck...e-ve-ry-bo-dy's-a-win-ner!"
I grabbed a tornado. One end of the wrapper had a small-print listing of 16 different types of tornados. 16. There was a small mark by "Cheesy Pepper Jack". I picked up a different one. Wha....
"Chicken and Waffles".
No lie. Smack a stack of Bibles. "Chicken and Waffles". My mind ran through the possibilities. Shredded chicken with waffle fries? Chicken with dented breading?
Curiosity running at a carny game level, I dropped the "Chicken and Waffles" into the cart. Followed by the "Cheesy Pepper Jack". Yeah. I do the same thing with the carny games. Play 'em twice before I figure out the game hawker is smarter, and now richer, than I am.
Phlegm and I start the trip home. At the first stoplight, I popped the "Chicken and Waffles" out of the wrapper and bit off a good chunk.
When they printed the label they actually meant "waffle"...and syrup...chopped up with dead bird...wrapped in a tortilla coffin.
I kept eating, figuring I should consume it while still in the Sorta-Big City with its excellent hospital facilities. I chewed on with the same dogged determination as my 2nd and 3rd shots at the carny game.
Finally finished, I slammed half of the dark roast Elixir to cleanse my palate for its next onslaught..."Cheesy Pepper Jack". I unwrap it while praying the "Valley of Death" part of the 23rd Psalm.
I should've prayed about the "Cool Waters".
Once again there was truth in labeling. It definitely had cheese. And the cheese definitely had pepper.
The wrapper said "Cheesy Pepper Jack". A more appropriate translation would be something like:
"YO! Cheesy, and PEPPER, Jack !!!"
The dark roast Elixir didn't make it to the Sorta-Big City limits. I made it home and went straight for the baking soda and water.
So here I sit at the keyboard waiting for the Elixir of Knowledge to brew and the baking soda to extinguish the heartburn within. And it hits me.
Why am I upset with Qwik Mart? Did they not tell me what was in the abominations? They were blatantly accurate in their information. I just couldn't believe it was true.
The wafting smell of the Elixir sets the grey cells aquiver.
What? Huh. Yeah, yeah. I s'pose it is just like that.
I read The Book and it says something that I find puzzling...even offensive.
"Oh, it can't mean that! He would never say that, demand that, or hold to...that!"
And yet, that is exactly what He means. The Book, if it is anything, is "truth in advertising". And I think we all, at one time or another, might think the same thing...
"Well, yeah, but the way the world is today, that just can't be true...can it?"
Hey, I didn't think anyone would ever put waffles in with chicken. Go figure, eh?