February 2013

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laugh ��� ��� ��� looking around our natural world with the insects and the dirt and the random liquids, I���m floored by the fact that at some point in history, some poor slobs tasted Every. One. Of. These. Things. ���I Don���t get it, who Decides?��� By Laura J. Gallagher If you���re anything like me you spend a lot of time pondering the big questions, like: ���Why are we here?��� ���Is there life on other planets?��� and ���When will we stop giving obvious sociopaths their own television shows and calling them ���reality stars?������ I value my staring-into-space-and-thinking time probably more than most people, mainly because I prefer my own company to that of 99.99999999 percent of the planet so I���m alone a lot. And if I didn���t stare into space on a regular basis���well, the back page of BRAVA isn���t going to write itself, is it? Some of the wondering I���ve been doing lately relates to how we, as a species (homo sapiens), or least as a culture managed to collectively decide some of the things we now take for granted. For starters: Milk. At what point did someone look at that mess between a cow���s legs and think, ���I���m gonna pull one of those���? And even more baffling, at what point did he or she decide to drink what came out of the thing he or she pulled on? Did they (I���m tired of typing ���he or she.��� Deal with it, English language!) initially shriek and run away? Laugh? Do that ���oh yuck, icky-icky��� dance people do when they have to scoop up the spider they just killed or when they hear someone talk about eyeball surgery? How did humanity go from pull it to taste it, drink it, make other foods out of it, and nickname a state after it? Had we invented crack yet, because that���s the only reason I can think of. And what about fruits and vegetables? The theory is that in colonial America the tomato was considered poisonous. Why? Did someone eat one and die? People died from ingrown toenails and earwax back then, why blame the tomato? And how fast could news of that little misfortune possibly spread? Did the story of Goodwyfe Fairchilde verily succumbing after she did feast upon a tomato 80 BRAVA Magazine February 2013 become an urban legend like how Mikey from the Life Cereal commercials died after ingesting Pop Rocks and Coke? And how was it determined that tomatoes weren���t poisonous? Did some guy named Cotton or Jeshua say ���Screw it, I���m eating one anyway���? Could it have been a failed suicide attempt? Did someone pull a big Brussels sprout stalk out of the ground and say, ���These are hilarious looking, let���s eat ���em!���? Did the first person to eat mushrooms do so on a dare? Did he win? ���Eww, this milk [see above] has lumps in it, it���s gone bad!��� ���No! Let���s call it cottage cheese! Dieting women everywhere will thank us!��� Here���s the thing���I like all afore mentioned foods. In the case of ���shrooms and tomatoes, I LOVE them. But, looking around our natural world with the insects and the dirt and the random liquids, I���m floored by the fact that at some point in history, some poor slobs tasted Every. One. Of. These. Things. Bless their hearts. In a slightly different vein, what���s up with the middle finger? Why that one? I know it���s an American thing, because in the United Kingdom the hand gesture for the same ��� sentiment, if you will, is to make a V with two fingers and, with your palm facing you, flick your wrist. Why did we eschew that facet of our British background, much like we did with small cars, good chocolate, and paying wait staff a decent living? I like to flip my ring finger at people, just for fun. They don���t know how to take it. By now, you might be thinking ���The history of milk and the background of the middle finger are all on Wikipedia, so why is this woman wondering about it and why am I reading this nonsense?��� Because A) it���s way more fun to speculate and B) Wikipedia once claimed that Plato was an ancient Hawaiian weatherman and surfer, so there���s that. I���d urge everyone to try a new food this month, but with it being so early in 2013 I know everyone is still in ���I���m Only Going to Eat Healthy Foods This Year��� mode, so I���ll urge you instead to flip people off in varied and unique ways. It���s fat-free and fun! ��������� Laura J. Gallagher is a long-time communications professional. When not teasing her husband, Triple M���s Pat Gallagher, she is on Facebook at the Laura J. Gallagher page!

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