Monday, July 13, 2009

Burnt Heads on Matches and Varnish on Porches...

Obviously sung to the tune of "My Favourite Things".

Easter campfire talk was as varied as it was... varied - and the topic came around to things we've shoved in our mouths.

I don't know quite how this conversation got started, but it's not important.

What is important is that nobody else seemed to share my childhood habit of eating the burnt heads off matches. Yeah. You heard right. I used to eat the burnt heads off matches. Delicious! True story. A salty, crunchy sulfuric delight.

I cannot fathom how I was allowed to indulge this exotic pastime. Sure, both Mum and Dad smoked when we were kids - and it never did us any harm, either. But who knows what years of ingesting that carbon sooted compound has done to my insides? It sure has given me something of an iron constitution, and may go part way to explain my ability to set fire to... no - I don't have any supernatural powers as a result.

Of course the challenge was set. If I did it then, I sure as hell had to show 'em all how it's done. So, down the hatch with the first lit match available. Now I'm not going to pretend that it was some magical culinary experience. It wasn't. In fact, it is a dirty, gross, horrible experience. But, at that moment that I chewed that match, I was transported. Transported to a time and a place when the worries of the world were simpler. When knowing whether to cheer for Ford or Holden (who knew I got THAT wrong first time around?) determined who your friends were; when action heroes were COMIC BOOK HEROES and not MOVIE HEROES; when you could get a FREE in every second Sunny Boy or Razz; and when twenty cents worth of mixed lollies was enough to make you sick.

So go ahead people. Just once - take that freshly burnt matchstick and take a bite. Savour the flavour of better times gone by. And if you can't bring yourself to eat that match - my Grandparents porch had this delicious varnish you could just peel off and eat...

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