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Thursday, November 15, 2012
THE THROW-UP BOWL
THE THROW-UP BOWL
I’m pretty sure my parents did not get it as a wedding present.
“What is this? Oh wait, I know, it’s a throw-up bowl.”
No, no one registers for a throw-up bowl at Fortunoffs. Bowls are not marketed and sold as “throw-up bowls.”
The throw-up bowl could have been used as a mixing bowl, but no, it had one use and one use only. It was located in the front of a cabinet where the shortest family member could reach it when needed. With three growing boys it was used in my family a lot.
“Mom, I don’t feel so good.”
“Does your tummy hurt?”
“JIM, CHRIS, get the throw-up bowl…QUICK!”
No one ever asked, “Which bowl mom?” or “Where is it?” Everyone knew what it was and where to find the throw-up bowl. Twice a year we had throw-up bowl drills.
Years later, married and with my first child I realized how the throw-up bowl was chosen. My daughter was two and feeling sick.
“Is it your tummy honey?”
“Hold on, I’ll be right back.” I raced downstairs to the kitchen, grabbed the first bowl I could find, a big yellow mixing bowl, and raced upstairs.
The wife wanted to know, “Where are you going with that bowl.”
“Just a minute, Mary Beth is sick.”
“Wait, that’s my best mixing bowl!”
“ARRRGAH, ARRgah, Arg.”
“Not my mixing bowl, that’s my best bowl!”
“AARRGAH, AARRG, Arg, arg, ar.”
“Well...it’s the throw-up bowl now.”
We bought a new mixing bowl, but it never got as much use as that big yellow throw-up bowl.
After my first divorce I somehow got custody of the big yellow bowl. My children were basically grown and out of the throw-up stage, but I still kept that bowl where it was easily reached.
Mrs. Wife #2 made terrific Irish soda bread. On our first St. Paddy’s Day she made a batch. I cut a slice, slathered it with butter, and was about to take a bite when I noticed the yellow bowl in the sink.
“I can’t eat this.”
“Why not, it’s good.”
“You made it in the throw-up bowl!”
We discarded that batch of soda bread.
We put the yellow bowl away, never to be used again…until we had Spencer.
Does every family with children have a throw-up bowl? Are they always yellow?