Denial is the Best Medicine

When we went grocery shopping last week, we spent $12 on mushrooms.

These weren’t even the fancy enoki or morel mushrooms. There were a handful of shiitakes, but other than that, they were plain, white button mushrooms. Do you have any idea how many mushrooms it takes to add up to $12? A lot. 3.5 lbs., to be precise. I couldn’t quite wrap my head around the fact that we had three and a half pounds of fungus in our cart! It totaled 13% of our bill. Does anybody else find this excessive? We may be in need of a mushroom intervention.

Then again, maybe it’s simply proof that I’m a fun guy.

When it comes to mushrooms, my motto is, you can never have too many. And this week’s dinner menu bears testament to that. We’re having beef stroganoff (with mushrooms). Chicken cacciatore (with mushrooms). Cream of mushroom soup (with mushr…well, duh). This isn’t all that unusual, either. Most weeks when we’re writing out our shopping list, we’ll put mushrooms (lots) because it always seems that we’re needing lots of mushrooms.

Today, we’re eating bugs.

Mmm. Dessert! (Courtesy of manataka.org).
Mmm. Dessert! (Courtesy of manataka.org).

As many of you know, we’ve been participating in a yearlong food challenge in which our goal is to celebrate daily food holidays for one year (there is at least one every single day). We’re something like 286 days in now and rolling right along. Well, October 14 just so happens to be National Chocolate Covered Insect Day, so we ordered chocolate covered crickets online a while back, and are eagerly awaiting dessert this evening. My parents were so intrigued by this particular holiday they asked if they could take part too, and when it comes to biting into a tasty, crunchy morsel of insect, my attitude is, the more, the merrier. I hope I get a big, fat, juicy leg in mine. And if I do, I promise not to let out a chirp.

The fact that we’re almost ten months through this twelve-month challenge just goes to demonstrate how fast this year is flying by. Next week, we’ll be in Denver!! Not so long ago, I had trepidations when it came to airline travel (which is really a carefully-worded way of saying I was afraid to fly). But a couple of trips to see Tara and visit Vegas (not to mention Bloody Marys at 30,000′) cured me of that. Now, I’m looking forward to a long weekend in the Rocky Mountain State and my first-ever NFL game. The timing, by the way, couldn’t be better. It’s great to be a Broncos fan these days!

What’s not so great is the fact that I’m sucking on throat lozenges today and insisting that I’m not sick despite plenty of evidence to the contrary. Tara developed a cold last week that put her out of commission for a couple of days. I remained my cocky, germ-free self, insisting on kissing her as usual because I never get sick. So when my throat felt like somebody was shoving a white-hot poker down it every time I swallowed Saturday night, I attributed that to “a little tickle.” Sunday, when I felt congested? That was simply the changing seasons wreaking havoc with my sinuses. And the cough that sprang forth soon after? Merely an annoyance brought on by turning on the heat. The furnace hadn’t been run in months, after all. Sure, I took some Nyquil before bed last night, but we were upstairs and the liquor cabinet was downstairs and my sudden craving for a shot of alcohol at 10 PM could only be satisfied in this manner. Did it taste good? Well, no…but neither does whiskey straight up. This was a hell of a lot more convenient. And if you’re wondering about the constant nose blowing this morning, well, let’s just say I’m testing the claims made by Kirkland™ Signature tissues, because I’ve got a scientific mind and want to ascertain if these really are “Premium Quality” and “Extra Soft and Absorbent” and “Convenient Dispensing” as the box claims. Think of it as research for the greater good.

Denial, baby. It’s the best medicine of all.

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11 thoughts on “Denial is the Best Medicine

  1. Mark, is it so ironic you posted about mushrooms because one of my blogging friends posted something about this last week. She took a mushroom class; learning out to pick and choose the right ones out in the wilderness. It was a fascinating post. And she also mentioned how much mushrooms cost, which is why she took this course so that she can pick her own.

    “I hope I get a big, fat, juicy leg in mine. And if I do, I promise not to let out a chirp.”

    OMG…how FUNNY! And you gotta let us know how they taste because you’re much more adventurous with food than I am.

    And I hope you feel better soon. I know several people right now who have colds.

    I’m like you….denial baby!

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    1. Funny, I have a friend who forages for wild mushrooms, and I’ve always wanted to try that myself. We were just talking about that over dinner the other day, too!

      The chocolate covered crickets tasted like…chocolate. Slightly crunchy chocolate. They weren’t bad at all!

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  2. Yeah, that’s a LOT of fungus, my friend. However, I didn’t know about your food holiday challenge. How did I miss that? Still, I can’t imagine eating insects, chocolate covered or otherwise. Yikes.

    Get well, my friend. I hear crickets have medicinal benefits. NO, I didn’t hear that. Wonder if they do.

    Hugs from Ecuador,
    Kathy

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  3. Mark. I’m truly sorry you are sick. This cold that is going around is pretty bad this year and some people are getting pneumonia. Please be adamant about taking care of yourself.

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    1. Oh, don’t worry, I am. For me to actually call in sick is a big deal, and I spent the day resting and medicating myself. I do feel a little better today, but it’s going to be a long day at the office, I can tell.

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  4. At least you don’t get all moany like Kelvin – my goodness I have never met anyone who can moan more every time he gets a sliver or a cold! I just want to scream at him – have you no stoicism whatsoever? I’ll walk around with a migraine & when asked why I’m a little down, say I have a headache, but I don’t moan about it. Keep your cold to yourself. It was Kelvin bringing home a cold that caused me to quit smoking.

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    1. Ha! I know men have a reputation for being babies when they’re sick. Hopefully I didn’t complain too loudly about my symptoms (which, by the way, are taking forever to go away…ugh. This one cold is making up for all the others I missed out on over the years).

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      1. That’ll teach you to keep kissing Tara when she’s sick! I will barely allow Kelvin to touch my hand when he’s sick & if he does I disinfect. Mind you, I have lung problems & don’t want to end up in the hospital again.

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