Popcorn. Don’t ya just love it? It’s great with the grandkids, not too messy. It’s great at the movies in spite of the over-the-moon price. Leftover popcorn goes out in the yard for the crows and squirrels, who peck and claw at each other over it. Great stuff.
Unless . . .
It’s the source of your extreme mortification.
It was mid-summer and hotter than blazes. It was also Saturday and in the evening we almost always play pinochle with two other couples. I rarely cook supper on those nights because we’re pretty snack heavy while we bid, trump and gather tricks. We have yummy things like dill dip and chips, carrot and celery sticks (yes, yummy – with lots of dill dip), cheese, crackers and pepperoni. Stuff like that. No need for supper – nosiree.
So this night I decided to treat everybody and take along a big batch of my famous caramel corn. We played and munched and laughed and drank iced beverages on into the night. At the end of which there was some caramel corn left in one of Marie’s oblong plastic bowls.
Did I say it was hot out? Clothes sticking to your back hot. Skin from your thighs making a ssstttt sound when you go to stand up. Yeah, that hot. No air conditioning at our friends home, either.
About ten thirty we decided to call it a night and everyone got up (sssstt) to help clear the table except me and Ed, our host. In front of me on the table was the bowl of caramel corn. I chatted with Ed and reached for the bowl. As I pulled it towards me I noticed none of the corn in the bowl moved. I jiggled it a little – still not moving. It had become very attached to that bowl – in love with it, in fact. Caramel is like that.
“Wow, look at this,” I said to Ed. “It’s – like – stuck.”
Please Do Not Ask Me Why I Did This Next Thing.
I lifted the bowl and turned it upside down, leaning in and peering curiously at the contents. For about a nano second time stopped and that corn hung on desperately. I could almost imagine a sort of Les Miserable’s song going on in the bowl . . .do you hear the caramel cling . . .
And then . . .
Crash! That stuff hit the table like marbles on the sidewalk and skittered everywhere! Everywhere, I tell you. Ed and I jumped back like startled lab rats and beheld the carnage.
I gulped. “Who would have thought it would do that?” I asked, kind of hunched over, stricken in my mortification. I’d messed up our friends table, floor, chairs, the cat food dish, under cabinets – you name it.
I looked at Ed with saucer eyes and he burst out laughing. Holding his sides in hilarious mirth. Much to my relief the others looked on and laughed, too. Thank God for small, sticky favors!
After my profuse apologies, we cleaned up the table and swept up the corn (dang!) and called it a memorable night. We have spoken of it since when conversation lags or if there’s a new friend or two to entertain. And if Ed, himself, seems kind of down, all I have to say is, “Remember that time with the popcorn?”
And he’s cheered right up. Wouldn’t you be?
Image: Free Digital Photos