Penicillin For the Soul

The proof of my changed life is in the salad dressing. It's the same Thousand Island Lite I've been dropping in a single, neat tablespoonful onto a bed of romaine for over a year now. It's the bottled mayonnaise product that my husband wouldn't dream of eating, not after growing up on oil and vinegar that falls fresh from separate glass containers into the same salad bowl, repellant for the first time.

It's the dressing that I glanced at last night, only to realize it had expired in September 2005.

Before Tolby, a year was a very long time. Food that was old, seemed old. The digital reading on the bottom right hand corner of my office computer went so slowly from 9:06 to 9:07 that it seemed not to change at all. One season of the Sopranos was separated from the next by eternity. The idea of shopping July sales for gifts to give at Christmas was absurd.

At least I knew I wouldn't live forever, even then. But I didn't care. The fifty years that separated me from my average-life-expectancy were a comfortable buffer. I was safe.

As I sat with a spoonful of invisible mold sitting surprisingly tasty on my tongue, I realized that this never would've happened in my old life. The bottle would've been tossed, 2/3 full, into the garbage can the day August flapped open to September. There was organization, inasmuch as I could ever be considered organized. There was waste, for sure. And there was boredom, as I stared into the cold cubicle, tossed out a few old yogurts and rummaged behind the pickles, looking for something fun to eat.

They say--I say--it goes by so fast. We ask: Is it that time already? Yes. And yes. And if you eat some mold because you were too busy enjoying your dinner company to stop and check the expiration date, so be it. It's penicillin for the soul.


Blogger J said...

I totally love that. Love it. Penicillin for the soul. How many things go undone now, because I have a child. Or how many things go undone because of friends and family. Hell, leave them undone. That's a balm for what ails you, right? Nice post. Thanks.

9:20 PM  
Anonymous motherhooduncensored said...

Awesome woman. I have to say - that I was always bad with that stuff - however now - it's amazing how much goes by the wayside. Who knows how much mold I've eaten...

8:18 AM  
Blogger Andrea said...

Well said. Philisophical salad dressing. I don't know how you come up with this stuff, but I like it.

10:22 AM  
Blogger J's Mommy said...

Part of me wants time back but the other part is wishing it away so that I can get to a place where I feel comfortable again.

5:17 PM  
Blogger Mom101 said...

What a great line of thinking.

It just brought back this really clear memory of looking at the yogurt in my fridge a year ago, seeing the July whatever expiration date, and saying, "by the time this expires I'll be a mom."

7:53 PM  
Blogger Ruth Dynamite said...

I used to heed expiration dates with the same vigilance I used to fill my gas tank when the needle lowered and the car cautioned me with a beeping sound. Life's too short for these false alarms, so eat the expired salad dressing (smell it first, mind you), live, and enjoy.

9:59 PM  
Blogger Petite Mom Blogger said...

Found you via mom101. Nice Post. Time changes so much after you have children and for me as I approach 30.

Ack! I'm allergic to penicillin.

12:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


9:54 AM  
Blogger lildb said...

thought about this post earlier today, whilest pouring out a bottle of something I'd assumed to be jam -- yes. halt at the word "pour." because one should not be able to "pour" jam out of a jar. one should be forced to scoop jam out of a jar with an appropriate utensil.

I rest my case.

1:47 PM  
Anonymous Jill Urbane, The Mentor Mom said...

Your post totally sums up being a parent! Anybody else out there have holes in their socks and underwear because they have to buy new shoes for their kids? Maybe that's just a Michigan mom thing...

7:44 PM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

Rmind me ot check the dates on the salad dressing when we come over ;) Luckily with 5 of us in the house, things don't tend to have a chance to go bad.

7:49 PM  
Anonymous CreditChecker said...

I always check the dates. But I liked your thoughts on it and salad dressing.

4:40 AM  

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