How many times have you (or someone you loved) made a healthy snack of fresh fruit and then proceeded to dip each and every piece in a high calorie, sugary sauce before eating them? The dip keeps us from being skinny – so skinny dipping would truly follow the no dipping rule. Have you ever skinny dipped? Brooke has but she says I’m not allowed to tell you about it.
Why do people even need to dip in the first place?
We were discussing this last night as we cleaned out our fridge. You see, our city just changed garbage collection night from Tuesday night to Wednesday night. But they sent out myriad notifications a month before making the change. Glancing at the notices cluttering our doorstep and mailbox, we saw “Change in Your Garbage Collection Day” and assumed it was a timely notice. So we didn’t take the garbage out on Tuesday and kind of laughed at the people who persisted in hauling the trash to the curb on Tuesday night: only to be awakened to the sound of the garbage truck early the next morning. What?!? They sent the notices out early so – not reading the notice in full – we missed garbage day anyway. We keep perishable food in the fridge or freezer until garbage night to cut down on the nasty smells and then haul it all out to thaw and be carried away to the landfill. Anyway – that’s what we were doing; removing 2 weeks of old perishable food from our fridge.
Sherry was never a big dipper and she never really provided opportunities for her children to dip. Steak sauces? Nope. Ketchup with fries? Only if it’s that strange concoction of mayonnaise, ketchup, and other secret ingredients that is rumored to have originated in Utah (so many of you might have never heard of it). Barbeque sauce? Never. We did not participate in dipping activities. Indeed, we would glance at public dippers with a look of confusion and wonder what compelled them to dip.
Dipping makes you fat. Dips are loaded with sugar (or salt and MSG) that your heart just doesn’t need. Dipping increases your food costs because you have to buy all that dip. And yet people continue to dip. Are these just frustrated smokers trying to find something to keep their hands busy during dinnertime? Or is there something else going on?
A friend explained his dipping by saying he dips to add variety to his diet. We think him wrong. We suspect he is confused and he is actually trying to produce the exact opposite. But that takes us back to our fridge cleaning activity.
As we cleaned, we developed a theory. We were focusing on the foods we were tossing out – they weren’t really old but grapes, blackberries, apples, and grapefruit went into the trash nonetheless. We bought the grapes because they looked good and, once we got them home, found them to be sour – unlike the last bunch of fabulously sweet grapes we’d purchased the week before. The blackberries were so bitter they left a nasty taste in our mouths. We used to gather blackberries in the Oregon wilds and they were so delicious they’d be gone before we could get home. But these berries were nasty. The apples tasted like storage apples – no crispness; just soggy and mushy- like. Although we’d had fabulous luck with grapefruits most of this winter, these grapefruits were from a batch that were old and stringy.
That’s when it dawned on us: people dip to provide a consistent taste in food! A bitter berry drenched in sauce is just as edible as a naked sweet berry. If you don’t like the taste of an apple, dip it caramel and you can silence the nasty. See what we mean? Fruits and vegetables can be delicious or terrible – they are available year round but their quality, sweetness, and freshness varies. Many of you would have eaten the fruit we discarded (using your ninja dipping tactics) and, because we aren’t dippers, we rejected it.
Should we become dippers? We actually considered this but we are hoping to lose weight; not gain it. So no. But here’s the thing. When you have a bad day and you pick up something to eat you can’t afford to have it taste bad. Fresh food is so inconsistent that just doesn’t work so everyone turns to ice cream or cookies because they provide a level of consistency that comforts us. And we think (hence our theory) that the inconsistency of fresh produce is what has kept us far away from fruits and vegetables for years.
The solution? Hey, we have no idea! We just figured out the problem. And since we’re busy trying to fit cupcakes into your diet maybe you can work on this one for us.