Monday, July 30, 2012

A Fishy Treat

So because my life is a super boring blob filled with work, I have decided to make this week flashback week. This week I will be recounting things that happened to me in the past and hoping that you will think they're as funny as they were. Even if I didn't think they were funny at the time.

(Note: Maybe tomorrow I'll have something awesomely exciting to report, because I get to see two of my favorite people--Jo and Destiny!)

So, if you know me, you may know that I pretty much worshipped my big brother, Chris, when I was little. I can't explain it, but I thought he was the best thing ever. He was 7 years older than me and treated me like I was the best sister God could ever conjure up for him. We also ganged up against Kevin together, which seemed to somehow strengthen our bond.

He looks innocent enough
My love for him was a little ridiculous. Like if he did something that warranted a spanking, I would fess up and say that I did it and please spank me instead of him. Even things that my parents knew for certain could not have been committed by me. My parents would plead with me to please stop taking up for him. (Incidentally, I'm guessing Chris thought it was pretty alright.) And because he was a teenager when I was a small child, I would wait up for him at night to get home from hanging out with his friends so we could chat or he could play guitar for me or really just so I could say goodnight as he passed through my room. Chris was my hero.

He doesn't always wear women's tank tops
but when he does, he makes them Flat Stanley tank tops
Now, for some reason, when we were younger, we were always taking family vacations without Chris. I'm not sure if it's because he has worked every day of his life since the ripe ole age of 11 and couldn't take off work for family vacations or if he stayed back because partying was way more fun without the threat of Mom and Dad catching him or if his chronic foot odor was so bad that we couldn't bear to be in the same hotel room with him. But I distinctly remember many, many years and many, many vacations without Chris.

There was one in particular where my family and my mom's best friend, Pam's family took a joint vacation. Naturally, Chris wasn't invited. For that vacay, we drove to Ohio--I think, I was very young--to go to Sea World and King's Island and the zoo and general other family vacation stuff. It was a blast, but I couldn't help but think of poor Chris back home all alone and yearn to get back to him.

The night we got back home, Mom was doing her usual home-from-vacation routine where she dumped out suitcases and washed every piece of laundry we took. Dad was probably "resting his eyes" in his recliner, and Kevin and I were glued to the TV watching some stupid sitcom, I'm sure. Chris had been out with friends or working or whatever teenagers did in the '90s and returned home to greet us. I was ecstatic to see him. He announced that he had gotten me and Kevin some candy while we were away. Presumingly because he missed me us so much. Kevin took the candy and dismissed it immediately. (It was very unexciting candy. Some lemon-dropish type hard candy wrapped in red cellophane.) But, I, thinking that it was the best possible thing that could have happened that Chris greeted us with candy, popped it into my mouth without a second thought, showering him with thanks and love.

The GOOD kind of fish candy
Fast forward about thirty-two seconds when I bit into the lemon candy. Suddenly, a repulsive thick black fluid began to seep from the candy and into every single pocket of my mouth. A horrid, strong fish taste leaked into my mouth quicker than I could get it out, which I was trying to do into my hand, into the sink, onto the floor, wherever I could put it that didn't involve being in my mouth. As this putrid candy came hurling out of my mouth, my family began to question--loudly and in a frenzy--what could possibly be wrong with the candy, as a single solitary snicker bellowed from Chris's half-smile, half-smirk.

Without even considering it, tears began streaming down my face, and I began to wail, my fish breath covering everything in sight. Mom instructed me to rush to the bathroom and brush my teeth as she began yelling at Chris to find out what he'd done. As it turns out, Chris had discovered trick candy in our familial absence and thought it would be hilarious to trick Kevin and I into eating. His lone excuse was, "I didn't think she'd eat it, I thought Kevin would!" (As if that might make my parents go, "Ooooooh, okay. No biggie.")

Ew. Just the thought of it turns my stomach.

Clearly, he still feels guilty
Despite every attempt at brushing the taste out of my mouth, I continued to cry and breathe and taste fish with every swallow and breath. Chris always had Cinnaburst (do they even make that anymore?) gum with him, and we always begged for a piece and never got one. As a peace offering, Chris rushed to his room to grab some Cinnaburst to help banish the taste. Tearfully, I accepted the offering, but even that wasn't enough to rid my mouth of the horror. I can't remember exactly, but I'm pretty sure I cried myself to sleep that night. Not only out of fear that I might forever smell like and taste fish in my mouth, but also because my sweet, sweet, big brother had sabotaged me.

To this day, I still cannot use blue Crest toothpaste or chew Cinnaburst gum (in fact, that may be why they took it off the market--too fishy).

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