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When I was a little girl, my Nana and Grandpa would take me camping in Eastern Oregon. This isn’t really about the camping, set up in an RV, making mud soup during the day and listening to Grandpa’s enormous snores fill the small space at night. This isn’t really about the time I had to crawl through a tiny RV kitchen window, to unlock the door so Dave (who called me Mayyyyy-REE! in a loud, enthusiastic voice) and his wife could get inside. Or when I chronicled, on a small cassette recorder, my first time pooping in the mountains (much to my Nana’s chagrin). This is about cold Spaghettios.

I’m not sure why I enjoyed Spaghettios in the first place and I really question Nana’s appreciation for them because they’re not what you’d consider adult food. Really, when you think about it, they are small, round pastas in condensed tomato soup. But they were our food and we ate them every time we went to Catherine Creek. And we ate them cold. I know what you’re thinking right now — ‘I shouldn’t listen to a single word this crazy Asian woman is spouting out about food because she clearly doesn’t know anything about it.’ I get it, I really do. If someone told me she used to eat cold Spaghettios straight out of the can, I’d question more than her palate — I’d wonder if she were actually a good human being and whether she made equally stupid decisions in other aspects of her life.

But for whatever reason, this was a camping meal and it was magnificent.

There are other foods I used to eat that I thought were really wonderful and, I’m sorry to say, were not.

Baby food meat sticks

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Yeah. I used to eat these when I was not infantile. I don’t know why and it’s kind of embarrassing.

Maruchan Ramen for breakfast

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 Every morning during my sixth grade year I’d go to school with ramen breath.

Bananas dipped in sugar

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This was actually a perfectly normal snack in my family, but the first time I did it in front of a friend, she was shocked that I was dipping an already sweet piece of fruit into granulated sugar. I realized maybe it was only normal for us.

Much like the heart, the stomach wants what the stomach wants. Amidst all the wonderful foods I was discovering, these somehow slipped through the cracks. Clearly the baby food meat sticks are the most appalling and I think I can kind of explain my way out of the ramen for breakfast/bananas in sugar situations. I’m sure there will be other equally bizarre concoctions that will make their way past my teeth and into my stomach and I’ll eat them and love them and not care what other people think.  I believe we all have within ourselves the ability to have really horrible tastes and that’s an okay thing.

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