Food Mountain

I guess I am not going to get back to talking about my trip to Tucson. Maybe because some dark and terrible thing happened there that I cannot speak of. Or more likely because I just don’t feel like it for some reason. Feel free to make up whatever stories about my trip that you want. And if you wanted to send those stories to me, that would be pretty cool too.

 

I decided that I wanted to tell you about the first time I drank in public. It was at a work function, which is always the best time to test your alcohol tolerance. And I had not really done too much drinking before then.

 

We were staying overnight at a hotel and the teambuilding of the night before was like 40 fucking rounds of putt putt golf. I am not even exaggerating on that one. Plus it was hot as balls outside so I was already miserable. And I hate golf.

 

One of my co-workers, R, is a bit of a party guy and he disappeared before the event even started and came back with a hurricane. When he left and came back with his second one I decided that I wanted to taste it. To my surprise it did not taste like hairspray (margaritas), paint thinner (any hard liquor), or bitter wheat vomit (beer) like all the other alcohol I had tried.

I even got a fancy glass to take home that I still drink out of

 

So I ordered a hurricane for myself. I drank about half of it before I felt much of anything. By then I was two holes in the putt putt game and was teamed with 3 people I did not know at all. They were boring the hell out of me and talking about work bull shit.

 

When that hurricane hit me, I realized I was fucking starving. I hadn’t eaten anything in 7 hours, and then it had only been a salad. I stopped one of the people that worked there and asked “Isn’t there food somewhere around here?”

 

She pointed vaguely to the other side of the mini golf course. “You have to play through to get to the food.”

 

I set down my putter and golf ball and replied “No thanks, I’m hungry now. And as an adult, I’ll eat when I want to.” And I set off across the putting course. I have zero patience for being told what to do, and I was really very hungry.

 

I managed to walk through about 6 or 7 other groups that actually cared about finishing the game. But I didn’t care. All I wanted was food. I was on a quest. A quest to food mountain.

 

After about 10 minutes I found some weird fish taco station. And I was pissed! I hate fish. I wanted real food. I asked the woman  that was manning the station, “Is this the only food?”

 

She laughed and pointed again, even farther away from where we were. “I think there are burgers over there somewhere.”

 

By this point, the alcohol was hitting me HARD. I felt really silly and relaxed and warm. I ran into my boss. He tried to talk to me but I stopped him. “Sorry, I’m busy trying to find some mythical burgers.” I didn’t even wait for his response. I was on a mission.

 

But the burgers were nowhere to be found. None of the other teams had seen them. Nobody seemed to know anything about them. I was wandering around this huge putting course, lost and semi drunk asking people about hamburgers. Luckily, everyone knows I am weird as fuck and I don’t think anyone really thought much of my behavior.

 

And then, I saw them…. It was food mountain! The legends were true!

 

They were up on a platform under a heating lamp. The red light was like a beacon in the night, drawing me in like a moth. I raced up the steps with excitement. I could already taste that sweet burger meat.

 

I was alone. Alone with a mountain of mini burgers and a pan of french fries. This was my own little private heaven. I made two triple burgers and filled a tray with fries.

Basically

 

 

And then, for some reason, I decided I needed to find R. So I wandered back through everyone trying to play through the course and fended off their vulturous attempts to eat my food. I was doing fake karate chops and telling people how to get to food mountain themselves.

 

It didn’t take long to find R. I’m not sure how many drinks he’d had by that point, but he was very loud.  I finished my food and then had a brilliant idea.

 

The week before R and I had gotten into an argument about my flexibility. He didn’t believe I could touch my toes to my forehead and it was not something I was willing to do at work. But at a work function, after half a hurricane, I was more than willing.

 

So I sat down and said, “Give me a minute, I don’t normally do this with pants on.” And proceeded to show him that I could totally touch my toes to my forehead. (I do yoga and it really isn’t that hard). R laughed and took a pic and admitted that I was right and he was wrong.

This

 

And then I went to find my original group. But I was so turned around I decided to go back to the beginning and follow the course through till I found them.

 

Unfortunately, there was an ice cream station at the beginning of the course. And there was no way I wasn’t stopping at that thing. I decided it was too hot for ice cream so instead I talked the guy manning the station into giving me a mouthful of hot fudge and then an ice cream bowl full of mini m&m’s and sprinkles. It was amazingly delicious.

Candy mountain!

 

 

I never found my group and so just waited there at the end of the course, eating candy and sprinkles until my co-workers made it through. By the time they arrived R had shown everyone the picture of my flexibility stunt.


But they were mostly too drunk to remember. A bunch of other fun things happened that night but I feel like this story is long enough.

The Honey Incident

Let me preface this story with a disclaimer: this incident was the opposite of sexy.

 

When I first moved into my basement apartment on the beach, my sister, J, came over to stay for a few days and help. My sister, J, is my favorite person in the entire world (no offense entire world).

 

The cable people were out to hook up my TV and internet and J and I were getting ready to go to a party. Not just any party. A full moon party at my dad’s ex, S’s, place.

Look, it’s a real thing in the world

Her full moon parties had gained an almost legendary status in our social circle. S had a gorgeous house on a lake with a pool surrounded by bamboo, a yoga studio, and bandshell, a greenhouse, and an enormous garden. It was basically the modern and wealthy version of a hippie commune. And I loved it there.

 

I had already been to a few full moon parties. There was drinking and food and a bonfire and midnight kayaks in the lake led by the best looking man I have ever met in real life. There was also pot smoking and meditating and skinny dipping. I don’t know what any of that had to do with a full moon, other than it being a full moon, but who am I to refuse a hippie moon party?

 

Is there anything more fun that night time kayaking? No, there isn’t.

So J and I are in the kitchen at my new place, remember? And we are unpacking boxes to find the supplies to make a snack for the party. I wanted something quick and easy and thought my peanut butter and honey rice krispy treats were just the thing.

They are delicious!

I buy my honey from local apiarists, as you may recall from this story.   I had this large mason jar with just enough honey for my recipe. My sister and  I are talking and having a good time, as we generally do.

 

And I am feeling so good. I just got my own place. I was recovering well from my heart surgery, I was hanging with my favorite person on the planet, and I was getting ready to go to a beautiful house to enjoy a fun party with people I liked.

 

I reach my arm down into this mason jar, trying to get that last few precious drops of honey. My entire arm was now covered in that liquid gold.

Honey is so good!

I am not one to waste food, so I start licking my fingers. And then I lick my hand. And then I lick my wrist, my arm, all the way down to my elbow. My back was to my sister and, to mess with her, I start making yummy moaning noises.

And I am really getting into it. I am licking up my arm with what is basically porno tongue.  I am licking like a cat cleaning itself with inappropriate enthusiasm.

 

 

Like this: all up and down my arm.

That’s when I hear a noise. I looked over and saw that the cable guy is standing there. Staring at me. With some inscrutable combination of horror, disgust, and confusion on his face.

 

Even with her back to me, I could tell that J was trying so hard to not crack up laughing.

 

I stopped licking, smiled sweetly, and say, “Can I help you?”

 

But the guy kind of backed away from us with his hands up as if I were holding a gun instead of an empty jar of honey. “No, no. I’m just going to go…uh…back outside.”

 

He literally backed away from me, out the door, and outside.

 

And that’s when my sister and I completely lost it.

 

Because I know someone is going to ask; here is the recipe for those peanut butter and honey rice krispy treats:

 

1/2 c honey

1/2 c peanut butter

6c rice krispies (I tend to go to the health food store and buy brown rice ones)

1 tsp vanilla

1/4 tsp cinnamon

chocolate chips (optional, but why wouldn’t you?)
Melt the peanut butter and honey on low heat, remove from heat when fully liquid and combined. Add the other ingredients. Pour into greased pan (I usually grease mine with coconut oil). Let cool and eat.

Allergic to EVERYTHING!

I know I have not posted in a while I have been dealing with things way above my maturity level. It was like some “very powerful episode of Blossom” or some shit. As a result I wasn’t feeling very funny. But I am doing better now.

 

In my quest to visit every kind of specialist in existence, I went to see an allergist. My hives were worrying as was my constant stomach ache. I figured I could finally sort out what I was allergic to and never have to worry about my throat closing down with hives again.

 

I turns out my allergist’s husband worked with my cardiologist. My worlds were colliding! The allergist was the sweetest doctor I have ever met.

 

And I have had amazing luck with doctors ever since I told my OB/GYN she could shove it up her stupid ass when she told me I was too young to make a permanent birth control decision. Apparently, 27 is too young to NOT have kids but she had her first baby at 23. Go figure.

 

The way the chemical patch tests works is they draw all over your back with a Sharpie. It is almost unbearably ticklish. I’m not even ticklish and I was squirming and giggling. Then they put three long stickers on your back and tape you up like some modern day mummy.

20130417_155858-1

My brother, sister and I used to tickle each by making a claw with our hand on each other and saying “ticky, ticky, ticky.” It never tickled.

Once again, as with the holter monitor, you can’t bathe for 24-48 hours. It’s really not my fault I smell bad sometimes. I can’t bathe like half the time.

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Also, I had hair back then.

After 48 hours of marinating in my own funk, I went back to get things removed and resolved once and for all. I found out what I am allergic to, basically life.

 

And then the allergist decided to do a food allergy test. She thought it might help figure out why I have a stomach ache 85% of the time. Most of my family has lactose intolerance, gluten intolerance, and eat very little meat. I however, having decided I already have one foot in the grave, eat whatever the fuck I want to whenever I want to.

 

The way they do a food allergy test is to lightly scratch the inside of your forearm and then rub the scratch with various food extracts. If the scratch gets inflamed, you are allergic or sensitive to that food.

 

She scratched my arm five times. Legumes, soy, dairy, gluten and who knows what the fifth one was. I assumed corn since it is in everything in the world these days.

 

It looks like this.

She left the room for about 10 minutes and I looked at my arm, fascinated to see what was going to happen. First, the one for legumes began to get red. And inflamed. It got raised and angry looking. It was like I had a giant hive on my forearm.

 

I was really upset. I didn’t want to be allergic to legumes. Beans and peanuts are two of my favorite things. That meant no more peanut butter, or peanut butter cups, or boiled peanuts. No more black bean soup, or southwestern egg rolls, or refried bean burritos.

 

NO! I didn’t want to live in the tragic new world. I always said I was one of those people that wanted to know. I wanted the truth no matter how sad or painful it was. And now, I was regretting that decision.

 

As I sat there, settling down into a funk of delicious food deprived-ness, I saw the other scratches on my arms get inflamed. They all got swollen and red, it looked like I had gotten into some poison ivy (which I am, interestingly, not allergic to).

Now that poison ivy rash is like some kind of biological weapon nightmare. Ew.

I was stunned now. If this was true, I was allergic to everything she had tested me for. What did that mean for my life? No legumes, no dairy, no soy, no gluten, no whatever that fifth thing was. What the fuck was I going to eat? Fruit and vegetables? No way. I would rather feel shitty all the time. I would rather be dead.

 

The nurse came back in and I thrust my forearm into her kind face. I was like some deranged person on the street. Waving my arms in her unsuspecting face.

 

“Look at it! What does it mean?” It was more conspicuous than a Death Eater with the Dark Mark tattoo.

This is an admittedly cool tattoo, but I would rather align myself with Dumbledore’s Army or the Order of the Phoenix.

“Oh dear.” She responded. She sat me down.

 

“And what is this fifth thing? What else am I allergic to?!” I was getting worked up and upset. I couldn’t handle this many new health issues. I just couldn’t.

 

“It’s water.”

 

I was stunned. I was allergic to WATER?! That was the end of it. I wasn’t meant to live. Evolution had fucked up. How was I going to avoid water?

 

She laughed at the look on my face. “We use it as a control. Let me see your other arm.”

 

She took a pen lid and scratched my arm. Within five minutes it became red and inflamed, like the other side was.

 

“You have dermatographia.”

Man, I really ran with the whole Harry Potter theme here.

 

“I do?” It may not surprise some of you that I already knew what that was. “How? Why?”

 

“This proves it.” She showed me the non-test arm.

 

“Is it dangerous?”

 

“No, it just means I can’t test you for food allergies. You should keep a food journal and try the elimination diet to see what upsets your stomach.”

 

I said I would. But of course, I didn’t. I already knew what upset my stomach. Eating. Especially if I ate more than a serving or two of dairy or gluten in one day.


And instead of finding out all the foods I should avoid, I found out that I have a skin condition that I never realized I had.

Accented

Back when I lived in Miami, I ate a lot of food. It was my first time away from my parents. It was the first time I could buy exactly what I wanted. And I ate what I wanted, whatever that meant.

 

Usually, it meant a lot of chocolate and fried foods. That was something we almost never had growing up. We rarely ate out. We rarely even ate pre-packaged foods.

 

For example, things like McDonald’s, and Taco Bell, and Chef Boyardee, and Fruit Loops; I didn’t have until I was an adult. So you can imagine, I went a little overboard when I moved out. I actually gained about 20 (much needed) pounds in just a few months.

I’ve still never eaten most of these things.

Every Friday I would cash my paycheck and go to this seafood restaurant. The only seafood I like is fried clams. And I fucking love fried clams. So, I’d eat my big plate of fried (as I always call it). Fried clams and french fries with ketchup, which is almost a food group for me.

 

I really shouldn’t have Googled this at this time of night. It has awoken a hunger in me that can only be slain by fried clams.

After a few weeks, I was more or less a regular to the restaurant. I kept getting the same, VERY unfriendly waitress. She was much older and was very rude to me. She would talk to me as though I were stupid and sometimes I would see her eyeing me suspiciously from across the restaurant.

 

I generally ignored this. I mean, it was probably my imagination. I had done nothing to her. I was an excellent tipper. And I tried to not be too demanding. But her dislike for me was unmistakable.

 

One day, after going there maybe six or seven times, the waitress came up to me. With a forced casualness she asked, “So, where are you from?”

 

“Here?” I answered slowly. I thought maybe she thought I was a tourist.

 

“No, I mean, where did you grow up?” She was looking at me with open suspicion.

 

“Florida.” I was really confused now.

 

“Where are you originally from? Where were you born?” She was getting impatient with me now. Like I was hiding something from her.

 

“I was born in Florida.” I can be very thick and I was still not getting it.

 

“Where are your parents from?” She was up in my personal space now. Grilling me.

Now I’m hungry and just posting random pictures of fried food.

That’s when I finally got where she was going with this. “Well, my mother was born in Florida. My father is from Ohio. Why?”

 

“I don’t like you coming in here. I can hardly understand you when you order. You have a very thick accent. I know you aren’t American.”

 

Readers, some of you know me in real life. I don’t even have a Florida accent, let alone a foreign accent. But I am very used to this type of reaction.

 

However, this woman was the worst. She refused to believe I was from this country. And she made several comments to me about how “dark” I am. (I hear I look like various non-white groups all the time, usually Hispanic).

 

Finally, I “confessed” that I was from Czechoslovakia (it just popped in my head). She triumphantly exclaimed that she knew I had been lying and went back to being rude and giving me the evil eye.

Did you guys know that I eat fried foods when I am stressed? It helps.

But she had made me so uncomfortable and unwelcome that I never went back to that restaurant again. I am older now and would probably report someone that treated me that way, but I was 17 and so unsure of myself.

 

I have been told for my entire life that I have an accent. As you all may recall, I had to learn to speak English as a child due to an accident.

 

In high school I was at a my boyfriend’s guardian’s party. Someone sat down and chatted with me for 10 minutes before interrupting our conversation to tell me “You speak very good English.”

 

To which I idiotically replied, “Thanks.”

Now I am just torturing myself.

I found out later they thought I was also a German exchange student, like my boyfriend.

 

And at my current job, I have customer’s asking me all the time if I am Canadian or European. This happens on an almost weekly basis. But they usually believe me when I say I am not.

 

Taco Bell

I have had a migraine for the past 7 days. As such, I have been taking my migraine medicine in a very high quantity trying to knock it on it’s ass. It hasn’t worked yet. This migraine is like some kind of zombie motherfucker that won’t stay dead.

 

On Thursday, I left work at 9am. I was feeling very nauseous and could barely see straight. I went home and took a heady cocktail of all of my migraine prescriptions at once (which I am supposed to do when it gets that bad).

 

The pills hit me pretty hard as I had not eaten breakfast. Or dinner the night before (migraines are great for weight loss). About 30 minutes after I took my drug cocktail I started having the worst craving for Taco Bell ever!

 

I rarely eat at Taco Bell. Mostly because I don’t drink or do drugs. But there I was, dying for it at 10am. I didn’t know what to do. I couldn’t drive in my condition. I just sat there, impotently wishing for it.

My drug induced obsession.

My drug induced obsession.

I went online and looked up a food delivery service. But they didn’t deliver Taco Bell. I texted a friend at work, asking if he could bring me Taco Bell. But he couldn’t leave his job to satisfy my food cravings.

 

I tried to distract myself with movies and interneting. The hours ticked by. I expected my cravings to dissipate as I got more and more sober. But the craving wouldn’t die.

 

Six hours later, my migraine had returned and I figured I was safe to drive. I did an agility check by walking down my stairs. I felt fine.

 

I also felt incredibly lazy. So I left the house wearing pajama pants, flip flops, undershirt, and hideous cardigan that is two sizes too big that I only wear at home. (You guys already knew how sexy I am, right?).

 

The next issue was that I didn’t know where a Taco Bell was near my house. Like I said, I almost never eat there. So I pulled out my trusty cell phone and GPSed it.

 

My phone began directing me to the nearest Taco Bell. As I was driving, I felt a little light headed, but I figured that was from not eating for 24 hours.

 

I turned onto a major road near my place and said aloud “I don’t know why I should trust this GPS woman when she can’t even properly pronounce the name of the street I am on.”

 

Turns out I was wise to be suspicious. She directed me to a mall parking lot. I wanted to cry. I had been waiting hours for Taco Bell. And now, I was on an unsuccessful quest. I felt like I had been circumnavigating the globe, looking for a passage to India.

 

I decided to just drive until I found a Taco Bell. I was on a major road. There had to be one somewhere. I almost got into an accident merging back into traffic. And that’s when I realized that leaving my apartment had been a huge mistake.

 

But I had to press on. I’d already gone too far not to. I crossed over a bridge and saw it! My quest was over! I triumphantly turned and found myself in the parking lot of a 7-11 gas station.

What the hell? It doesn't even resemble a Taco Bell logo.

What the hell? It doesn’t even resemble a Taco Bell logo.

 

It took me a second to remember that I had been looking for Taco Bell. I pulled back out into traffic. And then, I saw it. For real this time. The most beautiful sight in the world at that moment.

My sweet lord, yes.

My sweet lord, yes.

I pulled into the drive thru. I wanted four, no, five crunchy tacos. I wanted to slake my Taco Bell thirst once and for all.

 

I also got a grilled stuffed nacho, because I was still drugged up and it sounded good. Plus the girl said it was good and tasted delicious. But sadly, I’m afraid Cindy lied to me on that one. Them things are nasty.

Ew.

Ew.

I drove home uneventfully, stuffed full of Taco Bell goodness. And for the first time in my life I realized; Taco Bell really needs to start a delivery service. Seriously, Taco Bell. You can help make the streets a safer place for the sober people and keep people like me off the roads. Think of the children.