Closet Crack

21 Jun

I have a confession. I am a junkie. But it’s under control. Seriously, I don’t have a problem. I can stop anytime I want. And anyway, I don’t do it all the time. Even though I wish I could. Ahh…to forget everything and indulge my most base desire, to lose myself in the pure sinful joy…of chips.

Go ahead, laugh. But I’m not the only one. You know who you are. Whether it’s barbecue, sour cream and onion or ruffled, we’re all the same.

I’ve always been a chip lover, ever since I was little. When other kids cried for ice cream, I cried for chips. In college I blacked out for three days; when my roommate finally found me, I was face down on the cold floor of my bedroom, surrounded by dozens of empty chip bags. The only thing I remember is how sore the roof of my mouth was. Scratched to bloody ribbons.

As an adult I’ve fought to get it under control. For God’s sake, I have a child. But just the other day, somewhere between having a “handful” of chips with my lunch (as if) and putting them away, I found myself standing in my darkened pantry, slowly, comfortingly swaying back and forth as my hand went from the bag to my mouth and back again. I was in a glossy-eyed haze, promising myself that each salted, wrinkly slice of kettle cooked perfection would be the last. Over and over.

How are these bags of crispy crack legal?

When I woke from my woozy trance I was a complete mess, my grease-covered, salty fingers holding that annoyingly smug, empty bag and all those damn cuts on the roof of my mouth. I had fallen off the wagon. Hard.

“Mom!” my daughter called, “are you coming or what?”

I was supposed to be in the car, driving her somewhere. How long had she been waiting? How long had I been standing here? And then the real question floated to the surface, just like a perfectly cooked, thinly sliced potato. How long until she gets her license? How long until she can drive herself and I can be alone? Free to stand in the pantry all day long…

You might think it’s just the salt. Salt is essential (the thought of an unsalted chip makes me so sad), but the glorious potato, that King of Carbs, could never be replaced. Think about it. Who inhales a bag of pretzels? No one. They’re like that guy your mom kept inviting over for dinner in high school. You know, the one who played accordion at all the home games and never bothered getting his license because he was too busy as a level 5 dungeon master. Safe.

Chips, on the other hand, are like that hot guy who was always in detention. He rolled in everyday (when he bothered to come to school at all) on that badass motorcycle he had restored over the summer (everyone was talking about it) and walked to class with a smile that could melt the panties off the most bitter, hardened heart. A whole football field of them. (Hearts, not panties).

My husband likes Fritos. Not me. They have too much of a stinky foot funk for me. They remind me of the kid who only washed on holidays. (New Years to Valentine’s was rough).  No, for me it will always be the purity of plain, kettle cooked chips.

And just when I thought my shameful relapse had plunged me all the way to rock bottom, that my sad little addiction had reared it’s ugly head once again, just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse, I found this lady in England. Snacks yer lot, Gina | The Sun |News. At 22, Nurse Gina Gough was rushed to the hospital and underwent surgery after eating nothing but chips for years. NICE.

So thanks Gina. Thanks for being a kindred spirit who kept it most real and took it all the way downtown. And above all, thanks for making me feel like my occasional moments of shame in my shadowy pantry aren’t so bad after all. This one’s for you.


4 Responses to “Closet Crack”

  1. Andrew June 21, 2010 at 3:52 pm #

    Chips are good, but Fritos still rule!

  2. Ryan Damaska June 22, 2010 at 1:29 am #

    Have no fear my dear there will plenty of kettle cooked at the farm in three weeks…oh yeah gramma utz done right. Cooked in lard.

  3. Mom June 22, 2010 at 11:59 am #

    It has to be Weis – very greasy and salty. Dark and glorious..

  4. Micah Saccomanno August 5, 2010 at 8:19 am #

    I’ve always had problems dealing with the Pringles Tube. There’s something about staring into that little tunnel that sucks you in to a drive for the bottom. It’s probably the challenge of trying to get your fingers into the tight space because you don’t want to be seen carnally tipping back the canister into your mouth while you’re driving. Yet the driving force is the compulsion to follow the instinct that a can of Pringles must eaten to completion once the seal is broken.

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