Slim Jim

Slim JimSome foods I love but cannot have.

These I avoid.

Like pepperoni. It gives me reflux and terrible dreams. One night after eating a pepperoni pizza, I dreamed I blew up, only to discover it was not a dream.

Some foods I love but am not allowed to have.

These foods I eat as often as I can get away with.

Like Slim Jims, those thin tangy sausages that gas stations position near the cash register.

Considering all the trouble they cause, you wonder why they put them there. I doubt there is a woman in the world who eats them and I doubt there is a wife in the world who doesn’t get mad when her husband eats them.

This is because the spice from a Slim Jim gives you breath you can see – long after you exhale.

They have to be that spicy, otherwise you might taste what is in them – and you really don’t want to know what is in them.

The label says they contain chicken but that is not the whole story. What they contain (or what they admit they contain) is mechanically separated chicken.

Perhaps they use the word mechanical to draw your eye away from the word separated which is another way of saying they separate out the good chicken parts before making sausage out of what remains.

Either way, they are my guilty pleasure.

Whenever I hope to get away with it, I buy a couple then wash them down with a Coca-cola, gargling the last swallow. It never fools my wife.

“What have you been eating?” she yells.

She has to yell because she smells Slim Jim on my breath from the end of the driveway and we have a very long driveway.

“Why do you ask?” I yell back.

“Because your breath stinks.”

“How can you tell? You are upwind.”

“I can smell upwind,” she yells -and she can.

When I get into the house, she corners me. “So what did you eat?”

“Nothing,” I say.

“Liar.”

She knows I’d rather lie than admit to anything she does not allow. It buys me time and provides the illusion that what I say matters.

“You ate a Slim Jim,” she accuses.

I feel like a little boy who just snatched a cookie.

“So what?”

“It’s bad enough that it makes your breath smell but then you have to lie about it.”

Now she is mad. Mad at me for eating stinky food and mad at me for lying about it.

“I don’t know why the Kwiki-Mart sells those things,” she grouses.

But I know why – though I don’t say a word.

They sell them so guys can prove that their wife don’t control every aspect of their lives – even if they have to lie about it.