The Brown Sugar Conundrum

Brown sugar. It sits on the counter top in the jar and never gets used. It just sits there, month after month doing nothing. Sure, one day the jar is full and the next week, poof, it’s missing a little of it. But that’s just like the dryer eating socks. 8 socks go in, but only 7 come out. We don’t actually know where the 8th sock went, we just accept it and move on. We don’t know where the brown sugar went, but we just accept it and go on with life, because we weren’t really using it in the first place.

…Or so I thought.

Let me back up a little first.

*dramatic rewind sequence like on the beginning of an episode of Flashpoint*

–3 hours earlier–

I’m at Zack’s house. We’re doing our usual mid-week 45 minutes of post-Wendy’s video game playing. It aids in the digestion process and stuff. But this isn’t your normal Wednesday afternoon. I have to go grocery shopping today.

Keep in mind that shopping with Adam is a little different than shopping with…well, pretty much anyone else. I’m weird with groceries. First off, I absolutely hate pushing that stupid cart around. I would rather (and I do) go to the store and make multiple trips to and back, carrying an arm load of food than push that cart. It’s horrible. I just don’t like it. I always run into things. I hit displays, old people, small children (ok, I might aim for some kids every now and then. But they shouldn’t be trying to take the last box of fruit snacks. Those are mine, I yelled “dibs” and everything!), teenagers, aid-dogs, etc. I hit stuff. Cart-pushing is just a skill I’m not blessed with. And I’m too manly to carry one of those goofy baskets around. Secondly, I buy the same stuff every time. It’s usually bland and boring.

Normally, when I go shopping, I drag Trainer Jarrod or Tiny Alec along with me and bribe them to push the cart. The bribing normally consists of me buying Trainer Jarrod a big box of creme-filled doughnuts or buying Tiny Alec a 2-liter bottle of generic Mountain Dew.

FYI: Trainer Jarrod and Tiny Alec weren’t able to go with me this last time, so I’m taking applications for a new backup cart-pusher. Qualifications include, but aren’t limited to: Must be able to push cart. Must have all extremities. Must know the rough layout of Kroger/Walmart.

Anyway, I tell Zack about my cart predicament, and he said he’d push the cart for me. He did pretty well, believe it or not. I gave him a B+ because he came close to running over my ankles a few times, but I suspect that’ll improve with time.

So we’re going through Kroger and I’m going grabbing my normal stuff.. Bag of apples, raw chicken, orange juice, bread, shredded cheese, giant box of fruit snacks, etc. But then I got adventurous. I bought a ham.  Oh yes, the kind you eat on Thanksgiving and Christmas. With pre-cooked freshness and everything! Of course, I’ve never bought a ham before, let alone prepared one. Zack and I continue our trip through the Kroger, he started buying stuff for himself… That was kind of weird. I was a little surprised at first and didn’t know how to respond to it… But somehow I managed to press on. Let me explain:

For those of you who don’t know, I’m a little strange with food. A little strange in the same way a tornado might be called an “air current”. I hate spicy and flavorful things, I like bitter, bland, etc. I’m not even gonna get started on the texture stuff. That would be multiple blogs all on it’s own. So for Zack to start buying food at the same time I was buying food, it was a little weird at first.

Long pointless story short, we bought food. I bought ham, which I’ve never bought before.

After dropping the food off and putting the ham in the fridge, I did what any 23 year old guy would do after buying ham for the first time: I called my mommy and asked what to do with the pre-cooked ham. Our conversation went something like this:

Mom: “Hi my most favorite son! I’m really proud of what you’ve accomplished with your wit and sarcasm that you’ve cleverly fused in your awesome blog.”

Adam: “Thanks mom. You don’t have to keep telling me that, once a week is enough. You’re kind of overdoing it with the 13 text messages per day that say “lol your blog is funny, I’m surprised you’re still single.” But um…I bought this ham thing…”

Mom: “Ham? You like ham? Since when!?”

Adam: “Since like…2ish years ago. Anyway, how do I like…cook it? It says it’s pre-cooked. But so did that chicken I ate straight from the bag once. That stuff definitely was not pre-cooked. My body can’t physically handle that again.”

Mom: “Well… You can put it in the skillet and warm it up. You might want to put some brown sugar on it to help make it more sweet.”

Adam: “That’s what brown sugar is used for? Holy cow, I have to tell Zack!”

Mom: “Adam, I’m really glad you’re best friends with Zack. You two set great examples for the very impressionable Trainer Jarrod and Tiny Alec. And your old podcast was amazing. But with the ham…blah blah blah blah.”

At that point, I had kina zoned out and I might have hung up on her. Oops. But she was getting all mushy again, and I just didn’t have time for that. I had pre-cooked ham to cook!

So while I’m cooking and brown-sugaring this ham, I post my joy of finding out what brown sugar is used for on Facebook. Then suddenly, people start commenting on my status with other foods it’s used in. Apparently, Metallica and the Rolling Stones have songs related to brown sugar also… But I don’t think it’s in the same context.

Now, after years and years and years of wondering, I finally know what the mysterious brown sugar is used for. I think this is what it feels like to hit a milestone, kind of like graduating high school or buying your first car. Actually, I think I can literally feel my maturity levels growing, I feel seriously Yoda-esk now. I imagine this is what I’ll feel like when my future kids are born. And when that happens, we’ll celebrate the birth of Baby Dave Frodo with pre-cooked ham and a Halo 4 party.

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