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Charlie Hatton
Brookline, MA

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Howdy, friendly reading person!
I'm on a bit of a hiatus right now, but only to work on other projects -- one incredibly exciting example being the newly-released kids' science book series Things That Make You Go Yuck!
If you're a science and/or silliness fan, give it a gander! See you soon!

Food Pas

Two Braves baseball bits of mine over at Bugs & Cranks to kick things off:

The Littlest Challenge — It could’ve been a big trade. But really? Not so much.

Big Fat Doughnuts — The Braves have thrown up more zeroes lately than a bulemic on a Cheerio diet.

And on that food-related note, on to more gastrinomical shenanigans.

Being a full-time smartass isn’t always quite as fulfilling and glamorous as I might make it seem here. This is never more evident than when I’m hanging around in the kitchen with the missus. I’m supposed to be ‘helping’, but it rarely ever works that way. Three recent examples:

#1. The Tuna Trip-Up

Last weekend, I decided to make a tuna sandwich for lunch. The usual procedure for eating tuna in our house includes giving the mostly-empty tuna can to the dog. It’s her little treat; she loves licking the last little flecks of fish out of the bottom of the tin.

(Also, we’ve heard that fish is ‘brain food’, so we’re hoping some of it finally takes hold in the mutt. If she ever stops walking in her own turds in the back yard, we’ll know our plan has worked.

Until then, maybe we should start force-feeding her cod liver oil. She’s got a long way to go.)

“A sane man would let it go at that. Even an insane man, if he’d taken a stupid minute to think about it, might wise up and say nothing.”

Anyway, on this particular day, we were out of tins of tuna. But we did, for some reason, have one of these fancy new pouches. It’s the same fish. Tastes the same on a sammich. But there’s nothing to give the dog. If I handed that bag to the dog, she’d go completely ape shit, rip it into shreds trying to find the tuna, and then where would I be?

Mopping fish flecks and bits of bag off the kitchen freaking ceiling, that’s where.

So I pulled the tuna out of the bag, with the dog all the while giving me the big pitiful sad-eye treatment. I negotiated her down to three Snausages not to talk, and was just about to discard the evidence when my wife walked into the kitchen.

She saw me, standing three steps from the garbage can, and said those eight little words every married man hopes he’ll never have to hear:

Awwww… she can’t lick tuna off your pouch!

A sane man would let it go at that. Even an insane man, if he’d taken a stupid minute to think about it, might wise up and say nothing. Me? Without missing a beat, I shrugged and said:

Hey, it works just fine with Jiffy. Why not Starkist?

My wife wouldn’t sleep in the bed with me for three nights. And I can’t be certain, but I’m pretty sure when she came back, she started keeping a taser on her bedside table. Also, I’m pretty sure she’s never buying — or eating — tuna or peanut butter again.

Sucks to be the dog, eh?

#2. The Fruit and the Loon

We recently signed up for a service with a local organic market. It’s often hard, with our whirlwind schedules, to find time to eat properly and get all of our minerals and vitamins and humours and stuff. So every two weeks, some guy from this market brings us a big box of fruit and veggies, so we’ll always have fresh produce in the house.

Not that we always eat the produce, mind you. We’re still just as busy, and I’m still not sure I want cauliflower anywhere inside me. But we make an effort now — and I’ve never eaten so many mangoes in my life. Baby steps, I suppose. Baby steps and bok choy, apparently.

We got our shipment this past Thursday, and — for whatever reason — it was heavily slanted toward the fruit side. There were a couple of potatoes, and a zucchini or two, but everything else was a fruit. We got apples. We got oranges. We got bananas, pears, and peaches. There’s an avacado, and grapes, and raspberries, and the list just goes on and on. I counted, and determined that we had no less than ten kinds of fruit in the house.

When my wife got home later that evening, I informed her of this fact, and escorted her to the kitchen to witness the cranium-curdling cornucopia for herself. When she saw the enormous pile of produce on the kitchen counter, she exclaimed:

Wow — I haven’t seen so many fruits in one place since our wedding!

She was referring, of course, to the spread at our reception. We were well-stocked on pineapples and strawberries and the like for the post-nuptial festivities, and that’s what she was thinking back to.

Obviously. I knew this. And yet, I couldn’t stop myself from blurting out:

Well, yeah. But to be fair, they were mostly on the bride’s side of the aisle.

This time, she wouldn’t let me sleep in the bed for three nights. I had to schlep through the weekend on the couch downstairs. And in case you’re unaware, a sackful of Granny Smith’s makes a lousy pillow. The more you know.

#3. Killer Cereal

Just a few minutes ago, the missus came home from work. It’s getting late, so she decided on a light dinner — a quick bowl of cereal.

Fine. I’ve been there myself. Sometimes, the easiest meal is the only one worth eating.

Only she’s not eating ‘normal’ cereal. Somewhere along the way, she decided she’s not getting enough fiber, or grains, or umlauts or something, so she switched brands. And when I walked into the kitchen to check on her tonight, she was pouring herself a bowl of Mueslix.


I must have made a disgusted face — maybe even a frightened litlte squeal — because she looked up at me with an expression that plainly said, ‘What? What is it now?

Then she said:

What? What is it now?

I couldn’t help myself. I’ve always had this thing about Mueslix.

Well… it’s just… you’re eating Mueslix.

Yeah? So?

Well, I know that ‘Crispix’ is ‘crispy times two’. So Mueslix is two times… what, exactly?

She blinked. Then she opened her mouth, as if to say something reasonable, thought better of it, and dumped the box and the contents of her bowl in the garbage. I think maybe I ‘won’ this round, but frankly, I can’t be sure.

All I know is, I’m probably sleeping on a bag of apples again tonight. It’s a good thing we’re not actually eating that fruit, or it’d be an awfully long night.

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