Well, it’s December, the greatest month of the year because this is the month that houses my birthday. On the 12th of this month I’ll grow another year older and wiser (allegedly) so to give you something to read while you wrap my birthday gifts I decided to write a little something about me for every day leading up to my birthday on December 12. Some will make you chuckle, others may make you go “Awwwww”, others you may regret having wasted the time to read all together but I’ll put them all here anyway. So here goes with Volume 1: Skrap, the Ketchup Snob. Enjoy.
A few days ago I made mention of the fact that I was a “ketchup snob” which got a chuckle from a few of my friends and a quizzical look from most others that didn’t know what in the world I was talking about. What better place to explain myself than in the blog that I have so deftly not posted in for a while.
When I was a kid there was nothing better than “yay-yay”. For those of you that don’t speak Skrap that is what I called ketchup when I was a kid (somewhere around age 6 or 7 I actually started calling it ketchup, probably after having been threatened by one of my older sisters). Anyway, “yay-yay” went on everything, breakfast, lunch, and dinner, a facet about me that decades later still holds true, nothing is safe from a few ounces of liquid tomato, except pancakes…even I can’t imagine how heinous that would be…anyway. More so than my love for ketchup is my love for a particular brand of ketchup and that brand is Heinz. When the good people at Heinz started making Heinz ketchup I believe that was the one day that Unicorns roamed freely about the earth ridden side-saddle by beautiful Mermaids (they had to ride side-saddle, you can’t very well straddle a unicorn with a tail); the Mermaids were followed by a parade of Leprechauns floating about on slices of rainbows and little Cupids set aside their bows and arrows and traded them in for miniature bottles of Heinz ketchup that they poured merrily on the meadows of grass causing four leaf clovers to sprout all over. Yes folks, Heinz is magic and I knew this as a child. I have a cousin who lived in a Hunt’s Ketchup household; I spent the night there once and only once. I have more than once asked restaurant workers that offer other brands of ketchup if they actually think their offered brand is better or if they are just looking to openly say to their customers, “we’re cheap as hell.” I take my ketchup loyalties very seriously. Which brings me to a few weeks ago.
Mercifully I managed to get off America’s Unemployment Line about a month ago (praise God) but of course that whole week in the hole thing stinks when you’re looking to collect your first check so I was still pinching pennies very tightly. I went to the store with the express purpose of picking up a few things, some spaghetti, some ground beef, and some “yay-yay”, I mean, ketchup. Everything was fine until I got to the ketchup aisle. There was ketchup everywhere, it was like looking into the Romper Room magic mirror of ketchup. There was Hunt’s, and the knock off store brand, Del Monte, Red Gold, and some organic thing pretending to be ketchup, there was ketchup everywhere. But, to my horror, there was no Heinz ketchup anywhere; and just when I was about to shed a single solitary tear like the Native American man from the old pollution commercial back in the day what do I see? Heinz ketchup! But, alas, a problem, the only size they have is the largest size; I’m apparently not the only person in the neighborhood that likes Heinz because all the smaller and less expensive sizes were wiped out. The size bottle they had that was remaining was right at $6.00 and, remember, I’m pinching pennies. I can’t put the chicken back because I needed something to stretch through the week until the first check, spaghetti has to stay because it’s quick to make and, well, cheap. I could have bought the ketchup but that would have run into the last bit of money I had and I couldn’t delve there because the “low fuel” light on my car had already been illuminated for two days. So there I am, alone with my thoughts with “Night Shift” by the Commodores playing in the background over the store speakers staring at the three $6 bottles of Heinz ketchup wondering how badly I really needed ketchup.
My common sense kicked in and said, “Hey man! What are you, kidding me? You got three shelves of ketchup staring you in the face. That one right there, RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOU is $1.99, and the one on the shelf below it is $1.49. Just get that ketchup and let’s go, it’s cold in here and I’m tired of listening to The Commodores.” Looking to be fiscally responsible, if a man with $17 dollars in the bank CAN be fiscally responsible, I put aside my Heinz dreams and actually reached for the devil that is Hunt’s Ketchup and then:
“Man, **** that.” I actually said that aloud while carrying a grocery basket listening to the Commodores sing the chorus just one more time. Who does that? Who is brought to expletives by a decision on ketchup? Well, apparently me! (That makes three things that make me curse, the other two are the Falcons, and traffic). I decided that I would not betray my beloved Heinz for if I could not afford her, then I would have no ketchup at all. I turned my nose up at the cheap trollop named Hunt’s and headed to the checkout aisle with the chicken and the spaghetti.
So yeah, I’m a ketchup snob; I’ve been brainwashed by the machine out of Pittsburgh, PA and I wouldn’t have it any other way and as I found out I’d rather have butt naked hot dogs and fries than to soil either with a less than worthy product. Take that Hunts, Del Monte, Red Gold, and organic knock off pretending to be ketchup.
~thanks for reading 🙂