Hi, it’s Jieyang.
I was a kid once. But then I grew out of it. Don’t groan at that pun. Certain people find such puns hilarious. And by ‘hilarious’, I mean they roll their eyes and groan.
Anyway, as a kid I was a really picky eater. Like a REALLY picky eater. It wasn’t to the extent of not eating vegetables (I still hardly do)- my meals were just plain weird. I can vaguely remember that I had a phase where my favourite meal was rice (because I am Asian) with tomato ketchup (because I like tomato ketchup) and meat floss (because I am Chinese). All mixed and mashed together. Into an awesome paste of bloody meat rice. I have to argue in the defense of me as a kid that it tasted awesome. Take your fancy restaurant dishes out of my sight and hand me the paste.
Another favourite of mine as a kid was rice in soup. I’m not sure what kind of soup I ate the most as a kid, but it was almost always nice because my grandma is a great chef. I say ‘almost always’ because she sometimes cooked pumpkin soup and until today I hate that stuff. It’s also vital that the rice is put into the soup and not the soup into the rice. Because I was a kid. And anything that deviated from my natural habits was blasphemy.
On the rare occasions that I actually ate my vegetables, my parents would high five me and buy me Lego I remember once my parents made me sit at the dining table and finish my vegetables. I would stare at the vegetables, wishing they would disappear. This once went on for more than an hour. Eventually, I would hold my breath, stuff all the vegetables in my mouth, chew on them and down them all down with a cup of water (people always say ‘a glass of water’ and they are wrong. I use cups for my water).
I think I remember that I would sometimes stuff the vegetables in my mouth, wait for my parents to go to their room, run to the toilet and spit the vegetables out. Yes, mom and dad. That is a confession. It was ten years ago though. Don’t cut my allowance, please. I need the money to buy vegetables. That is the truth. Or is it? Wait another ten years to find out!
Anyway, my parents are pretty smart. I mean, they raised me, a mad genius. My dad is an engineer and my mom squeezed me out of her vagina. My mom is obviously smarter because, seriously, I came out of her vagina. She could’ve chosen to keep me in there, right? Right? But instead she squeezed me out. Excuse me for a minute while I try to get the image out of my mind.
Okay, the image is gone. I convinced myself that she pressed her belly button down and I popped out magically, like a genie from a lamp. And that was how I was born.
So, like I said, my parents are pretty smart. But were they smart enough to find a way to get a kid to eat his food? Yes! Well, maybe not vegetables, because trying to get a stubborn kid to eat vegetables is harder than molesting a lion. They did however manage to get me to eat meat. Not things like chicken nuggets (mmm, processed meat paste) or burgers (mmm, more processed meat paste in between pieces of bread and a layer of cheese with ketchup and no vegetables). Specifically, a pork chop, cooked by my grandma. Here’s where the story gets a little more interesting (if that is even possible- this is the plateau of plateaus of interesting stories).
See, I loved dinosaurs as a kid. As most little kids do. I was going to say ‘As most little boys do’ but I am not sure what will set off feminists and what will not. Let it be noted though that I am one myself. Anyway, I really loved dinosaurs. And I knew quite a bit about them. I remember watching the show ‘Who wants to be a millionaire” on telly and one of the questions described the velociraptors characteristics and the answers were different dinosaur names, as well as the velociraptor. The contestant got the answer wrong, but boy oh boy did I get it right. I think I won around a thousand dollars or something. Plenty of Legos.
So, back to the pork chop. Being the picky eater I was, and being the unprocessed, un-chicken nugget, un-burger-like pork chop it was, why the hell would I eat it, right? Right. I did not want to at first. I don’t remember this story very well, but what happened next was my mom told me that it was dinosaur meat. So apparently my love for dinosaurs was in the way that told me I should eat them. So I did just that. I ate the unprocessed, un-chicken nugget, un-burger-like pork chop because I was gullible enough to believe that it was dinosaur meat. I told you my mom was smart. I mean, she pressed a button and I magically popped outta her!
To this day, I still eat dinosaur meat when my grandma cooks it. And it’s one of my favourite dishes from her. Occasionally, she calls it ‘pork meat’.
Silly grandma. It’s dinosaur meat!