My mind was recently stimulated by the Facebook phenomenon “25 Random Notes About Me”. Since delving in the sometimes warped deep recesses of my mind for that self-imposed project I have been stewing about the oddities of my personality and life experiences.
This morning I was having ruminations about the extent of irony in my life, and if my mother had known how much irony there was going to be in my life she would’ve given me the middle name of “Irony” or “Ironnessa” or “Ironnette”. Vicki Ironnette Long. Kinda has a nice ring to it doesn’t it?
Uh…on second thought I’m thankful that my mother didn’t have the ability to tell the future and went with the middle name of “Lynn.”
First of all, I was one of those little girls who had lots of baby dolls. My favorite was Baby Alive whom you fed baby food and formula to and in about 30 seconds it came out the other end. As 40 year old that sounds like no fun at all, but as a five year old it was thrilling I tell you! I could not wait to have my own baby! Well, you know how that turned out.
Secondly, I hate raw tomatoes. It’s about the texture rather than the taste. I love tomato products, and as an adult I can eat raw tomatoes if they are chopped really, really fine, but as a kid if you tried to make me a eat raw tomato I would start dry heaving in your general direction.
Needless to say…nobody tried to make me eat raw tomatoes very often.
The irony in this particular rumination was that my grandfather was a pastor/tomato farmer, and a week or two of my several childhood summers were spent picking tomatoes in his fields. I was actually fine with that because there was no force-feeding of tomatoes involved, but the whole situation smacks of irony.
Probably the main reason I don’t eat raw tomatoes today resolves around a tomato-related trauma I had that involved my first love…or I should say first puppy love. You see, at around age 12 I had a ginormous crush on my youth director from church. His name was Brad, and he was nice and funny and oh so cute. Never mind that he had a wife, a child, and a second one on the way. Those inconvenient facts never deter a young girl’s infatuation.
Well, one glorious Sunday we were having a youth event on Sunday afternoon, and my mom and dad had another commitment. So, they asked Brad if I could just spend early afternoon with him and his family and then go to the event with them.
At the time my mom and dad never had had a more glorious idea. Brad’s wife had driven separately that morning. So, I got the ultimate privilege of riding to lunch with Brad in his bright yellow Volkswagen Rabbit. Be still my beating heart! Well, we went to his in-laws house for lunch, and I was so over-the-moon. So much so when Brad would ask me a question I would croak out something profound like “uh-huh.” Things were going well until we got to his in-laws’ house and the lunch menu was unveiled:
That’s where the afternoon took a tragic turn for me.
Normally, if presented with this situation I would’ve fasted for lunch, but the love of an infatuated pubescent female knows no bounds. So with much trepidation I started trying to eat that sandwich that contained two very thick slices of slimy Beefsteak tomato and a generous spreading of mayonnaise (did I forget to mention I wasn’t a mayonnaise fan at the age of 12 either?).
I think I got through half of the sandwich before the heaving began. Everyone at the table, including my beloved Brad, began looking at me like I was some sort of alien. I quickly excused myself from the table and ran to the bathroom which was conveniently located right next to the dining room to quickly empty the contents of my stomach. After that there was much concern over my condition which led Brad to make the decision to drive me home.
Irony and tomatoes officially became my mortal enemies that day, because they effectively killed my first love.