Mr. Ujest and I cannot have a civil discussion about two subjects.
Not abortion & gun control.
Not about politics or the war.
Not Money or Britney Spears.
But Bacon & Bratwurst.
Both of these food items brings on the Conversational A-Bomb for us.
Being that I am the Gatherer, I every slab of bacon I’ve brought home from the store did not meet his stringent culinary expectations. I’m not rightly sure what these expectations are other than the bacon isn’t clogging up his arteries fast enough or making his blood pressure rise satisfactorily with the sodium content, but I did not buy bacon for years because I tired of his Quest for Perfect Bacon, which isn’t nearly as bad as it sounds, but it starts with, “Why did you buy this bacon?”
Trying hard not to sigh.“It was on sale.”
“It’s not good. Don’t buy the bacon on sale anymore.” Oh, yes, we just have money to toss away on the better fed piggies out there.
“I’m not buying the $7.95 a slab stuff as you consume an entire side of pig at one sitting.”
" You eat it too." He counters reasonably, " But it tastes better." As if that settles the whole problem. If he likes it, then so it must be.
" If I go with the more expensive stuff, then I have to cut back somewhere else, like toilet paper, peanut butter…" This is just how my brain works, no deviations allowed.
“Don’t get the cheap peanut butter, it’s gross.”
" Then eat cheaper bacon."
“Why would you buy it if I don’t like it.”
Pointing the bacon flipper pincher thingies at him, " You just ate 3/4 of the package! It must have been hell to choke down something you don’t like."
Realizing he is boxed in he tries a diversionary tactic, “You’re being sarcastic.”
" I am? Oh, Pardon me, your Highness."
And the subject drops until the next time we eat bacon. Which is about once a year because of these moments and I refuse to buy the higher priced bacon for this experience just out of spite. Dammit.
Bratwurst is a whole other Bomb Waiting To Asplode for us.
Being that he is of the Superior German Race ( hazel eyes, bald, 40# over weight, non-engineer)he knows Bratwurst. I defer to his bratwurst knowledge. Being that I am not of the superior race in any way shape or form ( except in sarcasm, which he says is a sign of a deficiency.), my tastes towards bratwurst are more utalitarian: quick and easy to cook.
According to my husband, whom I refer to in moments like this as Colonel Von Trapp, it must be Johnsonville Stadium Brats. Not cheesy brats. Not Regular Brats. Definately not Italian brats. But, Stadium brats.
We eat brats about two nights a week, so I do try to stock up. Kids can’t get enough of them, thankfully. Once in awhile, the old gal gets hankering for a different brat and I have blashphemed against all humanity by bringing home a wide variety of Hillshire Farms, Ekridge Farms, and some unholy Organic kind of brats, according to the Colonel. Which were pretty good, but stuffed with chicken and some kind of fruit, which was bad, bad, bad and wrong,wrong, wrong if I listened to my petulant husband. Apparently, eating a chicken/fruit brat would be healthy. Eating it when everything is organic will somehow affect the petro-chemical industries and allow free range chickens to run willy nilly. Then there would be chicken poop and unemployed petro-chemical employees and old fashioned farmers everywhere. That’s bad.
The same kind of tense discussion we have over bacon ensues if the wrong brats make it in our doorway.
We recently had a birthday party for family and friends in celebration of our son’s sixth birthday. For the kids they got hot dogs. Not Ballpark franks. Not Hebrew National Hot Dogs. Not Oscar Meyer Weiners. But buy in the bulk hot dogs. That was ok. Giving our children and their friends three kinds of mixed animal parts with loads of sodium is acceptable.
I went to get the Johnsonville Stadium Brats and just blow the wad of party money on them and buns, but the meat case was empty of them. In a near panic I found the butcher and told him I had a food crisis. He apologized and said there would be more in later in the week. Fat lottagood that did me when the party was the next day. I bit the bullet and picked regular Johnsonville Brats and prayed my husband would not notice at all.
I was unloading the car and bringing the groceries in when I was met on that fateful Saturday morning by Colonel Von Trapp. He had had a vasectomy the morning before and was, shall we say, a little crabby as can be expected of a man when his scrotum has been attacked by sharp implements while under painkillers.
There I was, standing with four packages of non-stadium brats in my hand and Mr. My-Testicles-Hurt snipped at me.
( You have to know that was the first time he’s ever done that. 15 years. What’s next a wife beater? That’s the last time I get him fix, I tell you. ) " Why didn’t you get Stadium brats?"
I wasn’t even in the house yet. I was standing in the garage, " They were all out at Costco. I swear to God." What does he have, Xray vision to see through my hands?
" You don’t believe in God." He countered crabbily.
“No. I don’t believe in the Bible. Look, I got eight packages of the regular bra…”
" I like stadium brats." If he were three years old, he would have been directed towards his bedroom with a blanket for some quiet time. One cannot do that with a 38 year old man who outweighs you by 100 pounds.
" They didn’t have any. No one will know."
“My family will know.”
" Yeah, they probably will pipe up and say, “Geez, vhat did you do, buy zee on-sale brats for zis party? " and then the other would say, " Vell, it’s not like zhey buying the cheep bacon to eat, ja?”
His eyes narrow. " You are making fun of my family."
“Errrrrrr! No, I am making fun of you. They won’t say a thing. No one criticizes free food. And most certainly won’t criticize it when it is from the house of everyone’s Handy Dandy Repair Man. They aren’t that dense.”
“Go to another store and buy Stadium brats.Please.”
I heave a sigh that borders on near tears, " I just blew $200 in groceries already. My feet are killing me and it’s only 11am. If I go somewhere else, I won’t walk out of the that store with anything else but your precious stadium brats. Besides, you gotta eat the regular brats anyway, can’t let them go to waste." HA! I boxed him nicely.
" You and the kids can eat the crappy brats. I want Johnsonville Brats." Shit, out manuevered.
You want Johnsonville Stadium Brats, Colonel Von Trapp, you can have them. " Fine, unload the groceries for me, continue watching the kids and I will rush out right now to get the brats for you." Mr. My Scrotum hurts and needs a nap. I’ll teach you.
By the time I got back home with the aboveforementioned brats, he was about to pass out from exhaustion. So I sent him to bed for a nap, where he hid for the rest of the afternoon.
I guess 38 year old husbands are directable.