Writing is like being able to put life into a snow globe. It takes the things that are too big and scary and reduces them into a form that I can put away when I want and look at from a distance. It also takes all that’s good in life and captures it into something I can take out when I want and look at close up and keep forever. It makes the bad things into something I can hold…and the good things into something I can hold onto. Both help so much that I need that little souvenir of life.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Improper Poll: Petrifaction

Many thanks to Val Thevictorian of Unbagging the Cats for inspiring this week’s Improper Poll question with her entertaining tale of a mummified MacDonald’s cheeseburger (see “Gone Furniture Fishin’"). That incident reminded me of the year my college roommate unearthed a petrified pizza slice from beneath her bed while moving out for summer vacation. Just as Val stated, it was perfectly preserved but shrunken, like a voodoo shrunken head of the food world.

Years later, when my daughter reached the age where they get those little kitchen sets with the rubber food, she would own a rubber pizza slice that reminded me a whole lot of that petrified pizza. Have you ever found mummified food?


  1. I once found a mummified orange under my car seat. It was shriveled-up and wrinkled and hard.

    Tammy---When I see you next, I will give you a jar of Nutella. Until then, get your daugher a jar, along with a decent croissant. She'll feel like she's in France---at least for breakfast...

  2. Well. Now I am left without a contribution. But don't think that is going to render me speechless. I will refrain from discussing a mummified cat, because here in Missouri, we don't consider that food. And anyway, my husband found it in my grandma's attic, not me. Not that grandma was a hoarder or anything. She didn't even have a cat. That she knew of.

    As I perused the little compartments of personal history in my brain, though not in a creepy Hannibal Lecter memory palace kind of way, I discovered that I DO have a food tale.

    I found a petrified grilled cheese sandwich on my lunch tray at school. But that's not so remarkable, because I find that every time they serve grilled cheese. And I like it that way. The harder it is, and the drier, the more it appeals to me. You can knock one of those things on the side of your tray and silence the whole cafeteria, much the way tapping a wine glass with a spoon will garner attention at a wedding reception.

  3. I'm embarrassed to admit I'm more likely to find science experiments growing in my fridge because I'm loathe to put anything down the garbage disposal (a holdover from childhood and concerns about all the starving kids in China). No mummified food, but lots of hairy leftovers.

  4. McDonald's french fries petrify. I found those rock hard sticks under the back seat when the kids were all too big for the car seat.

  5. Sioux, you and Lisa reminded me that my daughter once put a lemon in her backpack for some school thing. And forgot about it. I still remember the shriek from the backseat of my car when she happened to find it months and months later. And thanks, Sioux, for the Nutella suggestion!

    Val, once again you've pre-answered next week's question, which was going to be about mummified critters. But a cat? Really? Ewww! And why is it that schools do petrify cheese sandwiches rather than grill them?

    Linda, I have heard that about McDonald's french fries! Yummy!

  6. Tammy,
    Well, I call myself psychic, but I mean it as a joke. My son says it's more like psycho.

    Schools are supposed to BAKE items, not fry them or grill them in butter. I don't know what they put on the bread to make it so crispy. I don't know who's fooling who with all those "healthy" food guidelines for school lunches. We have a lot of chicken nuggets, fries, corn dogs, chili dogs, crispitos (look like a cross between burritos and taquitos), and nachos. Every now and then, the kids get a little tray compartment of shredded lettuce, shredded cheese, and ranch dressing.

    Never go on the School Lunch Diet.

  7. I put frozen blueberries in my yogurt every day. Sometimes a few of those slippery little devils leap for the floor. Weeks later, I'll find a shrunken, mummified berry hiding under the stove.


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  9. There is only so much lemon juice that one can freeze from fresh lemons and save for pies for the winter. Still, my friends give me bags of lemons that they just cannot bear to throw away. I put them in the fridge, where eventually they become as hard as hockey pucks. If I were a mean-spirited person, I could fling them at my ill-tempered neighbor who just married her first cousin. Instead, I carry them out into the desert and leave them there.
    I did find a dead rat under my son's bed once. The cat brought it in as a gift.

  10. While traveling through Italy a couple of summers ago, I found a mummified lemon (at least that's what I think it was) between the mattress and the bunk. Ewww! The fresh lemons were divine, though!

    This reminds me of the time that I moved into my inlaws old (and I mean O.L.D.) house with my new husband. We decided to replace an ancient headboard with our newer one. When we moved it, we discovered a petrified mouse in "flight mode" stuck to the wall! We are happily divorced for many years now, but we share lots of belly laughs with our families over this story.

  11. I never know what I'm going to find when I clean under my grandson's bed.

  12. Hey, thanks for your comment on my post today. I am literally tearing my hair out this afternoon. If I were a drinking person, I would be so blasted tonight that no one could save me!!!!


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