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The no good, very bad day


May 9, 2012
Carrie Olson , The Daily Freeman Journal

Cookie dough and cream cheese. Chocolate pudding cups. And coffee. Lots of dark coffee. When in need of comfort food, what does not need to be chewed is what my appetite cries out for.

It's that stressful day at work. Where everyone (including you) is in a bad mood. Perhaps it's much worse. The covers of your bed call for your return. You want to crawl away from the pile of papers on the desk, the dirty laundry, the many unpaid bills that continue to sit waiting. Lo and behold, none of that can happen. You must deal with whatever the day has handed you.

Let the potatoes and gravy train come.

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It's not that I want to promote overeating, but some comfort food every once in awhile, I find greatly therapeutic. Sometimes a good book will relax the mind or light yoga stretches. But cashew chicken covered in Sriracha sauce can help to. And it's delightful.

For me, sometimes it is the caloric intake of something warm and wonderful that sends my mind into a shallow state of euphoria. It's a cookie, a latte or four helpings of a cheesy potato casserole.

I used to load up on those little Betty Crocker cakes that you pop in the microwave. The commercials for the product always showed a girl curled up with her cat and feeling quite relaxed. She is seen closing her eyes to take in the gentle fragrance of this peace of milk chocolate heaven (that takes only a minute and a half to nuke!) Her worries and cares have slowly faded. Wonderful.

After a depressing day at my old workplace, close to tears, I tried to replicate the commercial. I turned on the microwave. Put a movie on and surrounded myself in blankets. I wasn't allowed to have a cat in my apartment so I cuddled with a pillow instead. Sad. And while I devoured bowl after bowl of the mixed batter, I felt a bit better. Then depressed. And then a bit better. After a while, I just felt bloated.

Not exactly what the commercial seemed to promise but, kind of/sort of?

Some days I will dream of escaping to a convenience store mecca, to escape the woes of the day.

Almost is if in some sort of soap opera drama, the king of junk food arrives to save the day:

Me: Oh dear me, how I hurt! Save me from my troubles!

King of Junk Food: Oh maiden! I have arrived on Havarti clouds, walking down a path of Milk Duds. I wish to fill your nights with cake batter and your mornings full of taco pizza.

The two of us then gallivant off into the sunset. And happily ever after we will be for the next couple of hours - before the indigestion hits.

Rather than deal with pain or stress, I'd rather mask it all underneath a Band-Aid of something delicious - something tasty. Call it a defense mechanism, not dealing with my problems, or whatever you will. I call it genius.

Perhaps this is the only small positive window about funerals. No matter how hard the process is, the grieving always starts with a homemade chocolate cake - or pans and pans of lasagna. A numbing necessity.

So while I ask for nil in the stress and drama department in my life, I will ask the brave to bring out their Merlot, the modest to show their shortbread and the meek to drown me in dark chocolate.



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