Friday, February 11, 2011

Piggy Puffs & Sardines

[Some days I have little to write, but still I write, because I feel I must.]

Hub and I are in the grocery store. And we are on the prowl for something fat-laden. Hub gives me points when I suggest Piggy-Puffs. Oh yes. That would be perfect.

Seems like a grand idea because with pork rinds being the fundamental ingredient, we are confident there is no way a cardboard-clone could be struck. But doesn’t it go without saying that the principal comptrollers of healthy diets seem to have obliterated them. None can be found.

Could it be that for the kindly care and protection of non-educated heathens like Hub and I that fail to understand the principles of healthy eating, someone, somewhere has completely annihilated piggy puffs? Appears so.

So now we continue our prowl hoping to unearth something exciting. And that’s when Hub spots a lovely display of canned sardines. Like an unexpected magical vision. Same can, same color, same look as canned sardines have had since the beginning of time. We haven’t eaten them for years but we both remember how we mushed them up on toast with thin crisp slices of raw onion, when we were young and so broke.

We take three cans home and later Hub makes sardines on toast and offers me some. I am not interested, but he goes ahead and begins eating with sentimental and joyous expectation his so-long-ago, but still cherished in mind and memory, sardines on toast.

Now Hub, even in a completely objective assessment is a handsome man. But suddenly, his countenance radically changes.

His eyebrows are furled, his forehead knotted, lips curled, eyes glazed and tearing, cheeks caved in, and his mouth is moving in a slow agonizing manner. And amidst all that, with the look of a Gargoyle, his adam’s apple is bobbing up and down in jerking spasms. And when I look at him, I am quite certain that even piggy puffs made out of briskly dipped and fried toilet paper could not have wrought such a change.

“My God,” I say, “What are you doing? Are you sick?”

“No,” he says, “but as much as I hate the cardboard fat-free snacks they make nowadays, this is so much worse.”

“Then why are you eating it?” I ask.

“Cause I don’t want to waste food,” is his simple, but direct answer.

I am amazed, as I so often am by that unique species they call ‘men’. Why in God’s name doesn’t he spit them out? Why doesn’t he trash them?

I feel an agony of my own stemming from empathy and the sight of his miserable condition. Makes me feel I should kiss it all better. But I cannot, amidst such ugliness, touch those Gargoyle lips, or risk inhalation of that Gargoyle breath. Yuk, oh Yuk!

Hub bravely fights on, and eventually manages to force down the contents of that can without a retching return. After which, he rushes to the bathroom where he vigorously rinses his mouth and brushes his teeth.

He hasn’t completely recovered his good looks, but he is looking better when he turns to me and says. “They used to pack those little fishies in olive oil and that was good. But they just can’t leave well enough alone. Now it’s soy oil. Not because it’s better, cause it bloody isn’t.

And you know what else, Roberta? There just has to be a better way to torment one’s self. But right now, I can’t think of what it might be.”


susan said...

Too funny! I love your writing style--it just adds to the story.

Pauline said...

sardines packed in ANYTHING are enough to turn me into a gargoyle! You have painted a perfect picture of a MAN here, and pardon me for laughing at poor Hub but your description is so spot on!

Joy Des Jardins said...

What a great description of Hub's agony....I love it. I love sardines too; but I too like them in Hub's beloved olive oil. Soy oil? Geesh! Why can't people just leave things be? Hub may have been trying to be practical...but he was very brave too. ~Joy

Roberta S said...

Susan, I certainly can't write with the wit and fervor you write with, but I do appreciate that you enjoyed this bit of 'filler'. It surprises me when some little mundane happening can give another a bit of fun...and I'm glad you let me know that.

Roberta S said...

Hi Pauline, sardines are certainly not everyone's 'cup of tea'. When I was a kid, the smaller ones used to be canned whole, guts, and all, and my brother and I would carefully eviserate them with a stickpin, a toothpick, and for judging, a magnifying glass. That was quite an operation, because you lost the game if the fish was ripped or torn in the process (or if any miniature entrails were left behind). Oh, yeh, you would have really looked like a Gargoyle eating one of them. (chuckle)

As for men, yeh, guess I have a standard model rather than a classic.

Roberta S said...

Hi Joy, you make me laugh, you make me smile. Too bad you're not next door. You and Hub could have sardines and toast with your afternoon tea and sympathetically comfort each other over that wretched soy oil -- (until you both look like Gargoyles). :)

Alan G said...

Well, I certainly cannot disavow to all the male traits of my kindred spirited brothers including Hub however…..when it comes to food and even the slightest hint of dislike whether in the smell or the taste – it is gone! Not something I am proud to own up to but I have probably trashed enough food in my lifetime to feed a small third-world country.

I have indeed recognized this particular “clean plate syndrome” in a very large number of my fellow males and it continues to amaze me also. Sometimes at a restaurant when they come to pick up the plates at the end of the meal there are times when there seems to be more food on “my” plate going back to the kitchen than was there when I was first served. And I probably get the same puzzled look from the waitress that you gave Hub – even though we (Hub and I) appear to be food opposites!

Perhaps finishing off food, do or die, for my male counterparts is more a reflection of courage or stamina? Of course then, that would make me a ‘woose’ I suppose. I refuse think it is some kind of genetic abnormality - although it does give one pause I suppose.

Roberta S said...

Hi Alan. You are a man that would waste food? Oh dear, oh dear. Yet I can relate as I do waste some myself, if it doesn't appeal to me. And yes, I fully understand how your final helpings can indeed seem bigger than your initial portions (chuckle).

But I'll not suggest you lack stamina or strength. Your admission, though somewhat disappointing, signals exceptional courage. Weak-kneed Hub had neither the courage to throw it out or the courage to confess that it was inedible.