Monday, April 23, 2007

Unfortunate consumption

On the way home from work on Friday, I swallowed a bug. It was fluttering near my head, and its erratic flight pattern landed it directly in front of my mouth at precisely the same time I initiated a heavy sigh. Instead of the pleasant stress release that often accompanies a good heavy breath at week's end, I felt a sudden THWACK! on the back of my throat. Instantly knowing what'd happened, I simultaneously coughed, laughed, and wretched, all while expertly keeping my car in my own lane during busy rush-hour traffic. I continued driving, mouth agape, while running a quick inventory of my options: swallow... or swallow... or swallow. And then I voluntarily swallowed a bug, which went down about as well as a sticky gel cap without water, and I swear I continued to feel its presence as it laboriously made its way down my esophagus. Much apple juice was consumed upon reaching my house. Because that's what goes best with bug.

As unfortunate as the insect incident was, I would happily swallow 10 of those bugs before going through this experience again: vomit in gelatin form. We visited the JellyBelly factory on our trip to Disneyland, and walked out with bags and bags of jellybeans in every imaginable flavor of happiness. We also walked out with two bags of questionable taste: jalapeno (The Kid's souvenir gift for his father) and the Harry Potter mix, which includes flavors like grass, bacon, soap, booger, rotten egg, and vomit. My mother doubted that anyone would purposely create a jellybean tasting of vomit, but I wasn't so sure. They did that atrocious buttered popcorn thing, after all. The Kid just thought the whole idea was hilarious, but despite my many offers to open the package for him, he clearly had no intention of actually consuming booger flavored jellybeans anytime soon. And now I know why: he's a sneaky little bastard. He knows my love of all things JellyBelly; he knows that I rarely, if ever, actually look at the bean before popping it into my mouth, so anxious am I for its beguiling goodness; he knows the very limited likelihood of me remembering, two weeks after the fact, that we purchased such an abysmal box of candy. It is this combination of facts that led me to greedily gobble the bean The Kid so innocently offered me, and suddenly I found myself chewing on gelatinous puke. I've gotta hand it to JellyBelly: they really know how to nail flavors. I've never tasted anything so disgusting, so disturbingly wrong, so ingeniously cruel in all my life (well played, Kid). I was not physically well for the remainder of the evening, the taste of bile lingering about my palette.

A culinary delight of a weekend it was not. Thankfully I can turn my luck around through the use of Weight Watchers recipe cards from 1974. Holy mackerel. Use the little arrows at the bottom to take the full tour. You'll be glad you did.

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