Since uprooting back to my hometown, and being back in the home I grew up in on a daily basis, I've been examining a lot of household items the way an Anthropologist might. Things that were once so common that I wouldn't have even noticed them, now yell out to me. Even common habits and methods of living seem worthy of my investigation. I now peer around my parent's house with my grown-up goggles on. I guess since I lived so far away for so long it really helps me to see my parent's house, and the items in it, objectively. Seeing things objectively has left me scratching my head at strange practices that I took as being "normal" when I lived here.
Something that caught my eye today was this bowl. Our popcorn bowl:
Now that I'm an adult who has ventured off to far away lands and learned many things - I now understand that my family's popcorn bowl is better known as a colander! That dirty little trickster.
There is nothing dumber then eating popcorn out of a colander . . . for 18 years. I have very vivid memories of this bowl. My mom loves her some nightly popcorn. I guess it was a cheap snack that fed a lot of people. She would pop the bag in our hideous brown microwave with the grease layer on the buttons an inch thick. Then, she would spread open a cheap paper napkin and lay it inside this bowl. The last step would be to pour the hot buttery deliciousness over the napkin and into the bowl. I'm not sure if she was being a radical health nut and hoping that somehow the 99 cent paper napkin would work like a ShamWow and soak up all the grease, or if she was simply trying to COVER THE HOLES in the bowl. Either way, after 6 people grabbed and groped for the popcorn the napkin would inevitably shift from it's mighty position at the bottom of the bowl and end up somewhere over on the edge. After this shift the popcorn would do it's popcornly thing and crumble and break and fall out of all the holes. And get everywhere. And make my Dad annoyed.
So I guess my point is that I know we were poor. But could we really not afford a new bowl, even from the local Itza Deal dollar store? Why did we eat popcorn out of this bowl on a nightly basis? And make a mess on a nightly basis? Did no one ever think, "there has to be an easier way?" And finally, why did it take me 25 years to realize this?