Sunday, July 12, 2009

...We Should Appreciate the Simple Things...

~An Ode to Doritos~

In keeping with the grand tradition of blaming the mother for all of life’s woes, failures, and misfortunes, I would now like to fault my mother for my Doritos addiction.

It wasn’t all her fault. The taste of powdery cheese, the crunch, the cool shape. There was never a better chip invented, corn or potato. Still we can’t ignore her role in what would ultimately become a struggle in snack food sobriety.

Exhibit A: When I was about 6 or so, my cousin "Keri" attempted a pretty sophisticated bike stunt that involved “popping a wheelie” while on a fairly steep dirt hill. Something called “cell memory” makes my arm sting just thinking about it but I only vaguely recall the specific details of everything that went wrong.

What I do remember is that after my arm was sufficiently cleared of blood, disinfected and wrapped up, and my tears wiped away with a warm washcloth, my mom left me happy on the front porch with a big pink bowl of Doritos. No injury is ever a match for the calming and joy inducing effect of Doritos.

Exhibit B: My best friend "Jarlo" met a similar fate a couple years later. Her brother was the culprit and her arm ended up being in a cast. We all signed her cast and my mother brought out an extra bowl of Doritos just for her. The pink bowl was mine alone. And nothing could be heard for miles (well maybe a few feet) but the crunching of Doritos.

Exhibit C: My schedule in high school left me home alone for almost two hours every day after school. My instructions were simple: Come in, wash your hands and get on the homework. I was allowed one small flexibility with the instructions. You guessed it Doritos- in the pink bowl. I believe they were critical in helping me maintain my good grades and high scores on standardized tests. After graduation, I had four full ride scholarship offers. So you see, Doritos is brain food.

Sure I realize how silly all of this is- who the heck thinks about stuff like this? But over the years as I get older and try to be healthier I’ve had to make a lot of changes related to food and exercise. I do enjoy the benefits of being in pretty good shape and I’m having a good time experimenting with healthy cooking and trying exotic fruits and vegetables (tonight I shall try a tamarillo) but some things are harder than others to let go of completely. I do still occasionally enjoy a slice of cheesecake or a chocolate chip cookie but for the most part most of my “happy” comfort foods are a thing of the past.

Until this weekend. Until a spontaneous decision to buy a small bag of Doritos. Until memories of how a powdery cheesy, crunchy, cool-shaped snack could remind me to appreciate the simple things.

Songs stuck in my head now: Devo "Whip It" and-
This could quite possibly be one of the greatest songs ever made:
N*E*R*D Stay Together

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