Saturday, May 7, 2011

Canapé Concoctions

Do people who are lactose intolerant eat their corn flakes with water?  I had a friend who one time ate his corn flakes with beer.  But he was drunk at the time so that was understandable.  When inebriated, the wildest food combinations can taste great.  I once stacked on top of a trisket cracker, a chunk of salami and a dill pickle slice covered with chocolate sauce.  It tasted wonderful at that moment.

Linda and I were friends with another couple named Mike and Cathy, and the four of us belonged to a King-Queen Bowling League.  Bowling gives you a legitimate excuse for alcohol consumption.  (Try to find a bowling alley that doesn't serve booze.)  And any time I have an excuse, I take advantage of it.  Our team was at the bottom of the tournament standings, yet we didn't care.  We were there to drink, not to keep score.  That is, all of us except Linda.  Linda doesn't consume intoxicants, so it was up to me to dispose of her share.  I have an excellent story about Linda and her humiliating bowling experience.  If I ever want to live in fear for my life, I will tell it.  So for now, I will continue on with the first story I started.

After the completion of our games for the night, we would continue on with the party over at Mike and Cathy's house.  Their home was closer to the bowling establishment than ours, so for the sake of not letting too much time elapse between drinks, we would drive straight there.  Once there, potent potables were distributed (Lemonade for Linda) and Mike would take on the chore of trying to destroy our eardrums with the latest addition to his record collection.  Mike had a sound system that when operated at full volume, it could make Pete Townsend say "Turn it down."  And at full volume Mike would play his records.

While within several miles windows were being shattered, we four would try to converse at the top of our lungs. At one point Cathy yelled to ask if anyone was hungry.  At least, that's what I thought she was asking.  I was only so good at lip reading.  In between songs I quickly said I could eat a sandwich.  The others nodded in agreement.  So Cathy staggered off to the kitchen to prepare sandwiches.  The sandwiches she intended to make were: Peanut butter and jelly, corned beef with mustard, and tuna fish with mayonnaise.  She may have intended those combinations but she mixed up the bread slices.  The bread with tuna was folded onto a slice of bread with mustard.  The corned beef combined with the jelly.  And the peanut butter got the mayonnaise.  Cathy presented us these sandwiches and returned to the kitchen to make one for herself.  We noticed the error of her ways immediately.

Instead of hurting Cathy's feelings by refusing the snack, Mike and I grabbed a sandwich each and devoured them.  I got the corned beef and jelly.  Linda was still holding her peanut butter and mayo when Mike and I had finished ours.  This is the trouble with tea totalers, they are not good with social manners.  She should have just eaten the sandwich and not say a word.  I'm not certain what her words were, the music blasting us as it was, but I know her words were not of approval.  I took the sandwich from her, ripped it in two, and shared it with Mike.  We both were smiling drunkenly with satisfaction over the strange food mix.  We wanted more.

Mike and I went into the kitchen and found Cathy eating a bowl of cold sauerkraut she had found in the fridge.  On the table where she ate was all sorts of food items: Wheat crackers, bread, chocolate syrup, a jar of pickles, various lunch meats, cheeses, bananas, grapes, a bowl of Jello, lettuce and more.  Mike took the last slices of bread and made a ham and cheese sandwich.  He went back to the living room to eat it.  I took a couple of trisket crackers and wedged between them cheese and pickles.  Before I ate it, I decided to top it off with a squirt of chocolate syrup.  Cathy watched me with close interest as I chewed my creation.  She mouthed the words, "Is that good?"  I nodded affirmatively.

Thus began the contest of creating palatable crazy food mixtures.  As I made another pickle/cheese smoore for Cathy, she piled sauerkraut on a couple of crackers, added slices of banana, and topped it off with whipped cream.  While Cathy tried mine, I ate her creation.  These were exquisite.  I washed down the treat with a few shots of bourbon and started making new varieties of hors doeuvres.   A banana pepper encasing a cherry gum drop covered with turkey gravy was a favorite.  A ball of cream cheese rolled in cookie sprinkles and Worcestershire sauce was also in the top ten,  Heinz 57 covered grapes made the grade. So did leftover spaghetti and powdered sugar.  Please note that all these entries were on top wheat crackers.

We tried and rated each other's appetizers, washing down each bite with alcohol.  Our slurred revues were always positive.  Neither of us denied the other kudos for the strange snacks.  After about an hour, Linda came into the kitchen.  She looked on in horror as we consumed ice cream and horseradish on crackers.  Linda suddenly did not feel very good and insisted we go home.  A quick glance at the last of the depleted booze bottles, and I agreed to leave.  We bid Mike and Cathy good night and we were homeward bound.  Mike's music followed us many a block as we drove the wee hours of the morning.

A couple hours later, the phone woke me out of a dead sleep.  It was Cathy.  "You got to try mixing french fries and licorice in a bowl of cream of wheat with A-1 sauce!"   She hung up before I could reply.  My head was throbbing, my ears were ringing and it hurt to open my eyes.  I made my way to the bathroom and gave my reply there.  Linda looked on with smug satisfaction as I knelt before the porcelain throne.  Sometimes she can be a real party pooper.

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