Saturday, April 24, 2010


What is it about Kettle Korn cooked so tenderly and cheerfully in a gigantic witches' cauldron over an open flame by an inevitably sweaty man donning a welder's mask that just makes it so yummily perfect?

They're just always the right size, so light and oh-so-puffy. There's never too much sugar, so the slightly tan carmelized coating is really more of a teaser than a full-fledged sweet tooth satisfier. But that makes it feel less indulgent, which, therefore, means I can eat the whole bag. The length of my child bag. The $8 bag.

And I've tried to buy the microwaveable kind, I have -- not really for me -- more for the know, since the popcorn incident.

But, God love him, he knows it's not the same. He can't resist the real kettle korn pull either.

Even though he knows what's coming. Even though he is defeated every single time by the crispy little kernel shells who love him so dearly that they embed themselves in the lining of his throat until he hacks and gurgles like a 95-year-old man.

He stands in line, waiting, patiently, even allowing his sister to hold the money, to stand in front of him, to even taste the first kernel, just so long as he gets his own bowl later.

And I know this place from which his desire is borne. I live there every Saturday morning as we make our way to the market. I can smell it when we're 3 blocks away. And I purposely walk our family counter-clockwise through the streets, so that the Kettle Korn kiosk is the very last one we hit before we leave -- prolonging the anticipation -- wrapped in the warmth and the sweetness of the freshly cooked popcorn smell wafting across the fresh veggies and folk singers.'s suddenly occurring to me that, as yet, the only sure-fire cure for his self-induced hack-attack thusfar has been a couple of slices of french toast bread slathered with agave nectar and a side of ice cold milk.

Hmm...that little monster's been using my vice to get to his, hasn't he?!?! Damn boy!!!

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