Monday, July 13, 2009

Tastes just like chicken!

When I was a kid, my mother would encourage us to try an unfamiliar food by saying, "It tastes just like chicken."

As an aside: getting ME to try new foods was easy. Before my fussy-eater brother was born, my parents and their friends would drink cocktails and play the "Let's see what we can get the baby to eat" game. When other babies my age were eating applesauce and unsalted pastina, I was eating blue cheese, sardines, and the maraschino cherries from my Uncle Andy's Manhattans (not necessarily at the same time).

Recently I was trying to prepare supper with the help of all 7 dogs. Having dogs that are big enough to put their paws on the kitchen counter is a new experience for me (and a trial). First I tell them, "No!" (which is like praying to St. Jude). Then I try to shove them off with a combination elbow-jerk and backward leg-kick maneuver so that I don't have to re-wash my hands, but naturally I feel compelled to EXPLAIN to them why they really don't want the food on the counter. So the other day, I heard myself tell Berry, "You would HATE steak. It tastes just like worm medicine. Uck! Ca-ca! Blech!"

As another aside: I'm not sure of the correct spelling of ca-ca. I never even heard the term until I was 21, living in western MA, and working with a woman whose favorite saying was, "Does a bear go ca-ca in the woods?"

Worm medicine, you ask? No, I don't know what it tastes like. I just assume it tastes terrible because when the puppies were tiny, they would shriek with dismay or distaste or something every time we gave them worm medicine. I'm not talking little cries of protest. I'm talking about screams 1000 times louder than you would expect a 2-pound puppy to be able to produce. You would've thought we were pulling their toenails out one by one.

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