Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Canned Goo, or why I should wake up earlier and pack a real damn lunch.

A few days ago I referred to my parents' innate cheapness...er, thriftiness.  I shouldn't complain about their tightwaddy nature because the apple didn't fall far from the tree and I am also cheap.  The problem is that while the apple didn't fall far it managed to roll in a weird direction after it fell.

Somehow my belief in saving money is that it's perfectly okay to rack up a bar tab that rivals the Portuguese gross national product, because I got three bars of soap for a dollar earlier in the day.  Good job there, Gibbs.  You saved $2.19, so now you can spend $21.90?  Apparently that's just the way my logic works.  Pity that my logic, like the rest of me, is really really bad at math.  Even so I go about buying things I do not actually need and, of course, running up bar tabs, and then patting myself on the back for saving money on other random things.

Unfortunately one of my areas of economic fervor happens to be food.  If I were as profligate with food as I am with booze I would eat like a king.  I would probably also look like the Sta-Puf Marshmallow Man.  This is not the case and I insistently buy cheap cuts of meat and day-old bread.  People shy away from that stuff but seriously, the store is not going to sell you ptomaine-in-a-box, are they?

I was getting really sick of buying school lunches.  Those things are three bucks a pop for teachers and, let me tell you, they haven't gotten any better since we were all in high school. The barbecue sandwich isn't bad but the chicken and hamburger both taste like cardboard and even Duke's mayonnaise doesn't save them. I don't know how anybody can ruin applesauce but somehow the school cafeteria does. I decided it was high time that I started bringing lunch to school.

The inherent problem here is that I am a completely nocturnal person.  Therefore in the morning I have precisely enough time wake up, feed the cats and look angrily at the alarm clock before sliming my way out of bed and hopefully into the shower before I head for school. This does not allow time to actually prepare anything edible.

Apparently I had already given my body the idea that it wasn't getting anything actually edible for lunch, because in a burst of cheapness I bought a whole bunch of canned crap at Kroger.  I have always relied heavily on canned goods because...well, they're cheap.  Also I can stockpile them so I always have canned crap in case I haven't gotten real live vegetables and stuff.

Canned green beans are one thing but I have just learned that canned pasta is something else again, and I don't know what that something is but it is certainly not food.  Remember Spaghetti-O's? Dear God, that stuff is horrendous.  There's no meat involved and the sauce is about ten percent tomato and ninety percent sugar. The noodles are limp and nasty because the stuff was cooked and canned about forty years ago.Also the sauce is an unpleasant orangey color that, given the texture of the stuff, bears a distinct resemblance to cat barf.  If you think Spaghetti-Os are vile, try the generic store brand.  Store brands at least don't try to charm you with cutesy names; the ones I got just refer to themselves as "Pasta in Sauce."  (I like to think of them as Bob's Good Tyme Pasta Noms.)

The beauty, of course, is that I got them for a quarter apiece. They are foul and probably giving me some kind of weird disease, but they were really cheap and I don't have to eat school lunch. (No, I'm making myself eat something even more disgusting.)

I don't know how to break my cycle of nasty lunches. Maybe in my next life, I'll have a job that pays enough to have lunch sent in from a nice restaurant.  Or maybe I could just be organized enough to pack a damn sandwich.

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Thanks! Now, go get a drink, sit down and enjoy the show.