Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Things You Should Know About Me: Spaghetti

I know this is hard to believe, but I never ate spaghetti until I was in college. 
 
When I was growing up my dad was strictly a meat and potatoes man. Every meal my mother ever cooked for our family was some variation of meat and potatoes. Spaghetti was neither of those, so serving it was out of the question. Italian food was also considered a little too "exotic" for our house.

I knew of spaghetti's existence of course. I'd hear my friends talking about having it for dinner, and I'd see people eating it on TV. I just never had the opportunity to try it for myself. My school served it occasionally for lunch, but I always brown-bagged it. I was always curious as to what it tasted like and I wanted to try it, but when you're a kid with no money of your own, you eat what you're served and like it.

Finally one day when I was in college I decided I'd waited long enough to try it, so I went to the grocery store and bought some spaghetti and a jar of sauce, brought it home and cooked it up. My parents, upon seeing me eating a heaping bowl of pasta, reacted as if their son had turned into one of those "long haired hippies" they'd heard about. There were many worried glances and whispered exchanges between my parents that night; they were sure that college was filling their little boy's head with all sorts of radical ideas. You'd have thought I'd brought home a bag of marijuana and fired it up in the kitchen. They just couldn't understand why their son was bringing this strange and foreign substance into their home.

In the years since my bold culinary experiment my parents have tried spaghetti. They eventually found themselves in a situation where it was being served and they had no choice but to eat it. They now tolerate it when they have to.

By the way, when I finally tried spaghetti, I thought it was just OK. Didn't hate it, but didn't love it either. It wasn't the spaghetti's fault, it's just that when something's built up in your mind for twenty years, there's no way the reality can live up to your expectations.

On a similar note, I was in college before I ever tasted rice as well.

2 comments:

  1. I have to laugh because my situation was the opposite; I grew up with pirogy, cabbage rolls, goulash etc and never had "Canadian food" for years and years. Peanut butter came into the house over the protest of my dad. Popcorn? Forget it. Hot dogs and the like were eaten at friend's houses. Rice was something my mother burned in the microwave. I have to say I never enjoyed rice until I got a rice maker and learned it was actually edible.

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  2. Glad to know our household wasn't the only one with weird food restrictions!

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