Hunger Games and “Being the Change”: Part 2 of 3
Are we obsessed with rich food? With how everything tastes?
I promise you, we are.
The thing everyone wants to talk to me about, when I’m out running errands or at an event, is how green smoothies don’t taste that bad. (Well, sure, they taste GREAT if you put half a cup of agave in and just a handful of spinach into a mostly-fruit smoothie.) At my house, we push the limits, maximizing greens and superfoods. Minimizing fruits. I’m okay with any green smoothie that’s even a little better than Completely Revolting.
I am thrilled when someone wants to talk about anything ELSE but how green smoothies taste. A lady after my VIP class told me she just can’t gag them down, and asked my advice. “Stop eating sugar,” I said. “It has ruined the way you taste all food.”
Why is this my least-favorite topic, besides the fact that it’s just so constant? Because, truth be told….I COULDN’T CARE LESS how green smoothies taste. My kids probably think I’m callous, but I tell them,
“Everything we eat isn’t because it tastes good. Most of what we eat is because our body needs it. Once in a while we eat something primarily because of how it tastes. Not always!” Not that we have to eat terrible-tasting food. I like most of my food. But, everything doesn’t have to be rich, and everything doesn’t have to be sweet!
Outside my family, though? On the rare occasion I actually say that to someone—not everything we eat has to taste good—I mostly get a blank stare.
Today at the gym, the other mom running next week’s dinner for my son’s high school baseball team approached me about what we’re going to serve. Keep in mind that the dinner will be held at my house. She said, “You don’t eat meat, right? Because you’re supposed to provide the meat.” She offered to bring it over and grill it—till I told her the ex-husband took the grill 4 years ago and I haven’t replaced it. I told her, “I’ll pay for whatever you want to serve, but I can’t touch or cook it, okay? Can I bring a big green salad?”
Baseball Mom (B.M.) said, “Ummm, no, they won’t eat it.”
I said, “Really? Because last year I hosted one of the dinners and I made a salad and it was GONE.”
B.M. said, “Um, I’ll ask my son. But last time I made a salad they just LOVED. So I’ll just bring that.” I said, “Does it have bacon in it?”
(I know, I know. That was a little catty. My next comment was even worse. Wait for it.)
“No,” she said. “It’s canned fruit with Cool Whip.”
So I say……”Okay…..so it’s a dessert, then, not a salad.”
I know. Like I said, in hindsight, pretty catty. I wasn’t having the greatest day. Wow, that was a lame excuse. I can’t think of anything better though.
“No. It’s a SALAD,” she said, clearly annoyed.
During the course of the day, it is then explained to me, by several mothers, in so many words, that what we serve at the baseball dinners is meat, something really sugary or fatty, and a dessert. This is NOT the place for whole foods to rear their ugly little heads.
Now if you’ve been to a couple of my lectures lately, you’ll find this next bit kinda funny. Later in the day today, B.M. texted me, apparently really worried that if she didn’t manhandle the menu, some renegade vegetables might show up:
“Hey Robyn, will you make Cheesy Potatoes, also called Funeral Potatoes, to the baseball dinner next week?”
When I give away Readers’ Favorites books at my lectures, I’ve been telling about the favorite (and WORST) Mormon recipe of all time: the Funeral Potatoes. I tell how I didn’t know, until I was asked to make the dish for a funeral recently, what’s in it. Sour cream, cheddar cheese, butter, margarine, cream-of-poison soup, and potato chips! All in one dish! OMG! I thought they were called funeral potatoes because Mormons serve them at funerals! I didn’t realize the name is because they CAUSE funerals.
So yeah, it’s my new schtick to talk about that at classes. Because it gets a laugh, and I’m kinda cheap like that. Poke fun at my own people. You can get away with it as long as you’re one of ’em.
So, I’m really not kidding that today I got that text. Asking me to prepare funeral potatoes to feed my own offspring and boys trying to hit heavy little balls over a tall fence hundreds of feet away.
I don’t want to live in the dystopia. I don’t want to be controlled by the ridiculous excesses of the excessively affluent and spoiled, numbed-out world I was born into. I won’t be sucked into it. Kristin says I shouldn’t answer the text (I haven’t, yet) and just bring a salad anyway. It’s my dang house the dinner is being held at, after all.
Be the change with me.
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I’m glad to hear from you ladies in the Primary Presidency. I am the Primary President in my ward, and when I’ve suggested healthier snacks, I haven’t gotten any positive responses. AKA “My kids won’t eat that” or “we could just do cake balls instead.” Yuck! I think it’s time for me to put my foot down also. And I agree with others . . . .Really, why do we have to have snacks at every activity anyway? It should be about the activity and the friendship, not the food.
We actually have a ward activity scheduled tonight, and the Primary is in charge of it. I caved and the food fare there is going to be deli meat sandwiches on white rolls, chips, soda, maybe a few salads (who knows how many ‘green’ salads’ will show up) and cookies with nasty frosting. I was actually making the frosting today and thinking, “Why the heck am I doing this? I’m just poisoning everyone!” I think next year I’m going to be adamant that we do an activity that doesn’t include food, maybe just a service project, or something simple. Thanks for giving me the inspiration to do a little bit better for the kids in our ward!