When the US Health Department recommended a daily allowance of 8 fruit and vegetables a day, do you think they were talking about coffee? Maybe in some veiled way? Because if so, I'm covered.
Today, I think I did a damn good job of staying as healthy as possible. A banana/peanut butter sandwich for breakfast and a tuna salad for lunch WITH low fat yogurt for dessert! I can say with all certainty that am the poster child for some kind of health network that uses posters! And that network would be called, "The Department of People Who Eat Well One Day and Use it as an Excuse to Eat Reese's Peanut Butter Cups For Breakfast The Next Morning." I would be all over that poster.
The kids have been asking for fruit gummies as snacks lately. I don't usually keep them in the house because it's one of those foods that if left around, the children will refuse to eat anything else. It reminds me of that experiment they did on an innocent, fluffy creature, it was either a mouse or a rat (the authoress hopes that no steady reading mice or rats are offended by me not knowing the difference between them and hopes not to receive angry letters) where scientists put food pellets in one dispenser and heroin in the other, and the rat/mouse would always go for the heroin, and the real food came second. Further into the experiment, the heroin was taken away and the rat/mouse refused to eat the food. It only wanted the heroin.
I know what you're thinking. Scientists serve heroin in a dispenser? In tiny nibblet forms? Am I sure this wasn't cocaine they were talking about or maybe crack? Well no, I'm not sure. It was some addictive drug served up to an experimental rodent. So does my comparison hold water? Yes, because the point still stands that if my children were in a scientist's lab and there were only three dispensers, the first one containing healthy food, the second one heroin and the third fruit gummies, they would hit the fruit gummy button until it broke. And once it was broken, they would not serve themselves fruits, vegetables, or heroin, they would just whine until the scientist finally broke down and drove to the store to get gummies shaped like Spongebob Squarepants.
So yesterday I thought I would fool my children. [a note to those here without children: this can not be done] Ha, ha! I bought "healthy" gummies. "Healthy" gummies aren't really healthy, they're just not as bad. These things are evil because they seduce parents with all sorts of empty promises. They whisper things like, "No gluten!" "No artificial flavors!" "No transfats which we all know will turn a child into a transvestite upon adulthood!" What this box really seemed to say to me when I read it was, "Buy me. I am not as bad a real gummies, your kids won't know the difference, and my dye contains 3% of the daily recommended amount of riboflavin." I bought it and felt pretty good about myself.
Until Claire bit into one. She made this face I can't exactly describe. It didn't seem to say, "This is gross," so much as, "What have you done to me?" Then followed this stupid conversation:
"These aren't gummies," she said, chasing the snack with a glass of water to drown out the unbearable taste. Perhaps it was the riboflavin.
"Yes they are," I told her. "It says so on the box."
"No. It's healthy food," she explained.
"No, it's not!" I argued.
"Yes it is, Mom. If these were real gummies they would be shaped like fruit. But they're just little squares."
"Hey, you know what else is shaped like fruit that you can have?" I asked her.
"MOOOOOOM!" she moaned, like a lab rat denied heroin.
"What? What's so wrong with real fruit? It's shaped like those gummies you like so much."
"Why can't we just have real gummies?"
"Because you are a hyper psychopath when you eat them."
I made up that last line. I didn't REALLY say that. But I REALLY wanted to.
Earlier today I brought the gummies to work with me. I figured that I might as well take a stab at them rather then let them go to waste. And yeah, they're horrible. they have the most bizarre aftertaste, and I can't compare it to anything else, but I can tell you that I think it's what phoniness tastes like.
Sigh. A snack ruined. That's ok. There are other fruit shaped objects around here, ones with stems and seeds and everything...I sound like I'm talking about marijuana. No, really, there are apples, oranges, and bananas in the cafeteria. Kiwi too! And when I've had my fill of those, there's always my own version of heroin. It's not a pellet, it's a hot liquid but it IS also served in a dispenser and when I am denied a regular dosage of it I squeak in pain.