“That’s what we are now—just ants. Only——” “Yes,” I said. “We’re eatable ants.”

My tree is mostly off the deck. It is not yet totally upright, but it’s getting there. Clumps are still falling off the branches. The sun is bright in a cloudless sky. It will be in the 40’s all day then it will get colder, and the snow will make a return visit. 6-10 inches are supposed to fall before the morning. Every kid will be hoping for a snow day, the first of the winter.

Tonight we’re celebrating Chinese New Year, the year of the monkey. In case you were wondering the lucky numbers are four and nine.

My parents told lies. I’m not talking tooth fairy, Santa or the Easter Bunny, but real untruths. I figured they were protecting us. The one I still remember is they told us Chinese food was just for adults. We begged to taste it but that didn’t happen. They said it wasn’t good for kids. I believed them for the longest time.

My father used to put so much hot mustard on his Chinese food that his nose ran from the heat. He’d pull out his white handkerchief, blow his nose and then go back to eating. I also use the hot mustard, and once in a while when I overdo, my nose runs, and I think of my father. It’s a bit weird I suppose that a Chinese food runny nose brings such a strong memory.

I’m watching the original 1953 War of the Worlds, and I want to slap the lead female. She’s a crier and a screamer. She covers her ears as if to blot out the sounds of the saucers and her eyes so as not to see them; however, she is not without some redeeming qualities much appreciated in the 50’s. She can make perfect fried eggs and toast.

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14 Comments on ““That’s what we are now—just ants. Only——” “Yes,” I said. “We’re eatable ants.””

  1. flyboybob Says:

    Lying to your children is a time honored parental right. Between the Easter bunny, the tooth fairy and Santa it’s a slippery slope to the lie about Chinese food being for adults only. What did you think kids in China ate, Mac and cheese? I don’t think the Chinese eat any dairy. Someone suggested that they are lactose intolerant. When I was in China my American colleague took me to an American deli/grocery store which was stocked with items like cheese, ketchup, mayo and lots of American canned goods. He told me that you can’t buy cheese in a Chinese grocery. While in China and Hong Kong I never saw hot mustard served with anything. If you buy the dry ground hot mustard it’s called ‘English Mustard’. I was taken to lunch in Hong Kong by my friend’s jeweler and we had spring rolls as an appetizer. They served it with the red chile sauce instead of the hot mustard. I think the hot mustard is an American substitution for the red chile sauce that has only been widely available in this country for the last several years.

    A sunny warm day again with highs around 60.

    • katry Says:

      I was young so what Chinese kids ate never occurred to me. If it had, I might have supposed Western food wasn’t good for them.

      I didn’t know about the Chinese being lactose intolerant so I did some hunting as to why.

      They now sell hot Chinese mustard in the grocery stores. I always have some on hand.

      40’s here which to us is warm!

      • Bob Says:

        Thanks for the link. A very interesting article about Asian people’s lactose intolerance and the changing diet in China. If their problems with dairy are inherited, how would eating a more western style diet would change their genetic makeup.

        I saw KFC and MacDonalds resturaunts in China but not Baskin Robins or Pizza Hut. I spent two days in Hong Kong and bought my second day’s morning cup of coffee in MacDonalds rather than in my hotel where I was charged over five U.S. dollars for a cup of coffee. I did see locals drinking their latte drinks and eating cheese burgers.

      • katry Says:

        You’re welcome, Bob. I had no idea until you mentioned it. I don’t know how their diets are changing from eating Western food, but it is also the government trying to get kids the health benefits of milk.

  2. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    That was a cruel lie. You missed out on all the cool food from the China Moon. 🙂
    I put the hot mustard into the duck sauce and dip the butterfly shrimp and crab rangoons into it. Yum. Now I want Chinese food but I’ve already eaten lunch. Darn.

    I think the snow starts with you first and then creeps up here to me. I moved some snow off the sidewalks so I’ll have room for more. This is starting to look a lot like last February. Here’s your storm of the week. :/ Peapod’s due on Wednesday. I hope they can get through the drifts.

    Enjoy the day. And Happy New Year.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      I can’t remember how old I was when they ‘fessed up, but they did. Like you, I mix the two together, but sometimes it isn’t mixed well so I get all the heat.

      Right now I’m watching puppy bowl on one channel and kitten bowl on another. Now I want another dog and cat.

      I got a robot call from the police warning us about the snow and that we could get 10-12 inches.

      Peapod came on Friday!

      Have a great evening!

  3. olof1 Says:

    I’ve never really liked mustard so for me mustard and chinese food is a strange combination butbthen again any food with mustard is 🙂
    Last time I was in Falköping the town square smelled with Chinese food and I really wanted to buy some but I had just eaten lunch so I had to skip it. Must remember not to eat before going to town next time.

    So it was poor Dakota Fanninbg who had to take the former heroine’s part as the one screaming all the time 🙂 I always hope the film has changed and that the aliens kill the poor child once and for all, she’s really annoying 🙂

    Have a great day!


    • katry Says:

      It is a special mustard you eat only with Chinese food. I have a lot of different mustards for using on meats and stuff but most of it isn’t hot.

      It is true. Dakota did a great job of screaming. I wanted to whack her so many different times. It was her fault they caught her sneaking out as she did. I’d have left her.

      Have a great evening!

  4. Richard Says:

    Just a little more time and Mr Tree will be back to his seatback upright and locked position … if clumps are still falling, he’s still under load. I’ll swap you some weather if you’ll send your snow this way … we’re in the 50s here, but it’ll get to the 30s tonite.
    We could adopt the Chinese practice of naming years after animals, but it would never work here. The Sacramento Kings’ reaction is one example of why it wouldn’t: The Sacramento Kings basketball team had to cancel giving away Lunar New Year shirts celebrating the Year of the Monkey on Monday after a player noted the shirts could be deemed offensive during Black History month. … Right. Make us proud, Sacramento.
    Whoa! Chinese food only for adults? Who’da thunk? If my parents had done something like that, they would have said roast beef was only for adults – or crawfish – or shrimp.

    Having had a bit of Chinese mustard in my lifetime, I can understand the runny nose part of your Dad’s reaction. I still use it, tho’ – it’s really not all that hot, and it definitely pumps up the flavor if it’s not overdone. If I run out of Chinese mustard (I think it’s probably a wasabi derivative), I use the VietNamese chili garlic sauce. I like seasoned food, not painful food. Speaking of which: Never eat at the El Chico in Jackson, TN. It’s the only Mexican restaurant where every item on the plate was so hot it was painful to eat. The (ahem) ‘chef’ was informed before I left … and there was no tip, either. Shoulda sued, but Johnny Jackson’s dead now.

    Dang! You have the original ’53 version of ‘WOTW’ on? I agree with you about the female lead. She’s a wuss – or am I being redundant? She really is a most irritating type, and (speaking for myself) I’d have left her to the thing with the built-in pincers that wore its brain on the outside. That external brain was a cool design touch …

    When did she ever make any food in that movie? I don’t remember that – or maybe I was just too irritated to notice. If she didn’t serve bacon with that meal, she gets an ‘F.’

    • kat Says:

      Richard ,
      I apologize for th brevity as my laptop won’t receive mail, and I am all thumps on my iPad.

      I was so surprised at how much higher the tree got. I hope tomorrow’ snow will be light snow, easy to shovel and plow. The streets and stairs are clean as it is still in the low 40′.

      Schools have already been cancelled as the snow will start early. I’ll just sit home cozy and warm and watch the snow.

      In Ghana the food as so hot you couldn’t taste the food and you riske a burned mouth. Once the cut on my hand even burned.

      In the WOTW, the women are apron wearing, stay in the kitchen type, even he one with a masters.

      In the farmhouse she make coffee, eggs, bacon an juice then avsaucer crashes into the and destroys the house. Our heroes are saved but don’t ge to eat.

      Dakota Fannng is th screamer n the risk.

      • Richard Says:

        Y’know, I just realised I had a ‘Señor Moment’ there – I confused ‘WOTW’ with ‘This Island Earth’ … that’s why I had trouble reconciling Dakota Fanning with Fay Wray … A mind is a terrible thing …

      • kat Says:

        I hate word retrival and I gets worse.

  5. Richard Says:

    See? ‘Señor Moment’ just paid another visit … Faith Domergue … I need sleep.

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