Affronts to Old People #12 – Food that’s “Fun to Eat”
Few things chap my ass more than this asinine practice of manufacturing food that’s “fun to eat” and which is designed with the sole intent of helping ineffectual parents coerce their damned offspring into consuming a meal.
In my day we ate because we were hungry – not because our spaghetti bore a passing resemblance to Scooby Doo or as an excuse to sculpt a cheese string into a mozzarella Rastafarian.
If I had ever demanded that my old mom fashion my porridge to look like Beans the Cat she would have beaten me bloody with a jello mold and been right to do so. Food wasn’t meant to be some damned form of interactive play – it was meant to provide sustenance and we considered ourselves lucky if a few scraps found their way onto our plate.
Nowadays, though, a damned young person won’t even look at a bowl of gruel unless it’s been littered with marshmallow unicorns or formed into a rough bust of Dora the Explorer. They turn their nose up at any food that doesn’t have a narrative, a downloadable theme song and come in a minimum of 14 distinctive fun-filled shapes.
Why the hell do we need to bribe damned young people into do something that keeps them alive? I’m pretty sure that after 72 hours locked in a darkened tool shed without Zoodles and Bear Paws even the most pugnacious of the little miscreants would see the light and happily gnaw on my god damned house slippers.
Honest to God what’s next? Colorizing their oxygen as an incentive for them to breathe?
And it’s not just the pandering I object to. I’m no Benny Spock but if you ask me making food “fun” is the primary reason behind every damned young person on the planet being the size of an African bush elephant. They’ve been raised to believe that eating is part game, part entertainment and all around cure for boredom.
In my view, parents would be wise to put away the dip-able, strip-able, french toast sticks, get themselves some backbone and adopt the mantra used by my old mom:
“You’ll eat what I put in front of you and you’ll damned well like it.”
As a nation, we’d be healthier, happier and better off for it.