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Going the way of the peanut butter

By August 11, 2010Myth or Reality

I had an affair once. A deep intense affair. It would start with a craving. Though ‘craving’ is way too meek a word for how this felt. It was a deep, gut-gnawing need that had to be filled. I’d drive great distances for it—in rain or snow. I’d break other commitments for this rendezvous.

The consummate union was intense and soul-filling and always exactly what I needed. Bliss, satiation, heaven.

But after each ‘date’ was over. Things got bad. From gut-gnawing to gut-wrenching. There was pain, a hangover-like stupor, vomiting and spasms, the feeling that my insides were glued together…and shut.

And even though I knew that the aftereffects were going to be horrendous, I couldn’t stop myself from going in again. I was addicted.

To peanut butter.

I thought it would never end…until one day, the glob on the end of my spoon didn’t look as appetizing and the taste didn’t thrill me like it used to.

I didn’t believe it, of course. So I wolfed the peanut butter down anyway. On at least three more occasions. Until I finally realized that I was done. And when I was done, I was really done. I went from saying that it was the best food in the universe and daydreaming about it, to never eating it and saying mean, nasty things about it to other people.

And these people were shocked. One day, I loved peanut butter passionately, and the next not so much. Why?

Well, for starters, it was just so available. In my kitchen cabinets, on every grocery store shelf in the universe, even on restaurant menus, in ice cream, on waffles. It was just too easy.

I have to admit, other things have gone the way of the peanut butter. It’s also happened (though perhaps not quite as intensely) with my favorite salad dressing, onions, a few boyfriends and, today, my once beloved Whole Foods salmon, avocado, brown rice sushi. And for all the same reasons.

The relationship with all of those things is forever changed. I detested them, then I was able to appreciate them from afar, then I let them in every now and again, but the passion? Gone.

Is there a lesson? There must be, but I’m guessing it depends who you talk to.

Some might say that I didn’t exercise caution, that I lived recklessly without moderation, without balance. That I had too much of a good thing…and now it’s gone.

But, others might claim I took full advantage of the passion, the desire, the honeymoon period. And so, I played it out until the end. With gusto. Sucking it up like a vacuum. Until I was full.

Image credit: Diane Jacquay

Join the discussion 5 Comments

  • C. A. Kobu says:

    I definitely like the second explanation! There’s nothing inspiring about moderation :)

  • Alisa Bowman says:

    Gusto. THAT’S your word. Or one of them. Loved this post. You do suck the marrow out of life. It’s one of your most admirable traits.

  • Andi says:

    Okay, I’ve read this three times in the last several hours and I love it. I also think it is explanation number 2, or at least I hope because that’s the one that I want to use to explain why I do exactly the same thing!

  • Leon Noone says:

    G’Day Julie,
    Peanutbloodybutter! I have loved peanut butter for as long as i can remember.
    I feel genuine sympathy for anyone who says “I don’t like peanut butter.”

    I can sort of understand if some poor soul doesn’t shudder with delight at the sight of a plateful of smoked salmon and avocado topped with real capers–you know the sort that you buy in brine that you have to rinse the salt off before you eat them ; not the rock hard mini golf balls supermarkets sell in jars.

    I actually know people who don’t like anchovies at the saltiest succulence or caramelised onion cooked very slowly for three hours or so with a bay leaf and small bunch of rosemary.

    But peanut butter! Anyone who doesn’t like peanut butter deserves to go to heaven. They’re missing heaven on earth by denying themselves lusciuos spoonfuls
    of the stuff. My heart goes out to them.

    Reactivate your affair Julie before peanut butter loses its fascination with you. This joyous substance has feelings y’know. Anyway…..

    Just make sure you have fun.



  • I’ve thought about this so many times. And is there just a certain number of times we can enjoy something? Can we make it last longer if we just spread them out?

    Or is it a race against time in which we have to stuff as much in as we can before we lose the lust?

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