(Reprinted from The Times and The News-Star, Nov. 28)
These are the times that try men’s … colons?
Even the most casual eater, wandering aimlessly thought The Land of the Leftover, has got to be heads up in these post-Thanksgiving days. Cheese dip here. Sausage ball there. Week-old giblets, ripe for the taking.
For some reason, we are robotically drawn to seasonal foods, even though there are plenty of holiday experiences available that should cause us to lose our appetites. If you can’t relate, then you’ve never been hugged right before a holiday meal by a great aunt. With a goatee. Who’s dipping snuff.
Welcome to my world.
(A have a friend who once lost 15 pounds during December. She didn’t mean to. But right before one Thanksgiving dinner, her uncle said to her, table-side, “Honey, I wonder why God took all the hair off my head and put it on my back?” She was able to eat solid food again, but not until somewhere around Valentine’s Day.)
Another dietary issue this time of year: stadium food. Close to Football Bowl season. Pressure’s on. So we eat either to relieve the stress of a stretch run or because we’re bored stiff because our team IS a stiff. I have yet another friend who shared with me his digestive system misgivings after Saturday’s joyous time in a football stadium occupied by a team that’s more up and down than a prairie dog. “My most painful lesson from the weekend,” he said, “was that pre-prandial and post-prandial reflections on a stadium corn dog are two very different realities.”
Prandial means “of or relating to a meal.” It’s from the Latin “prandium,” meaning, “I should not have ate that.” As you have surmised, to use those kinds of high-dollar words, my friend is pretty smart – but not smart enough to call time out in the corn dog line. You do not toy with a mass-produced corn dog in a competitive atmosphere far, far from your home locker room. You don’t do it.
Let this be a lesson to us all: your digestive system doesn’t know you have a high IQ. Faulty plumbing due to pilot error puts us all – the prince and the pauper, the duke (excuse my French) and the serf -- right there on the same page.
FOURTH AND LONG
The corn dog on a stick I ate was more than just inviting.
Too bad I didn’t think that later it would do the biting.
If our own lack of self control and the overpowering temptations of the season weren’t enough, the food world and Mother Nature herself might be conspiring against us. My own personal mother, of all people, alerted me to this tragedy.
The Nature Conservation Research Council, which sounds like an important thing, forecasts a chocolate shortage. Because African farmers are ditching their cocoa farms for other easier-to-grow crops, chocolate might either disappear or increase drastically in price. This means that in 20 years, a Baby Ruth could well be out of my price range. My mother’s grandchildren call her “Sweeter,” so you can imagine how this is affecting my family. Let’s hold hands and …
No Twix? No Bliss? No Hershey’s Kiss,
No chocolate dip fondue?
The question we must pray is
“What would Willie Wonka do?”