I've decided to be awesome and do a ton of updates this winter break. Also, I don't believe I fully explained my photo. My badassery within the photo speaks for itself, but its other content perhaps leaves a little to be explained:
I love chocolate milk.
This is a fact with a long history and many little chocolate-colored plotlines flowing out of it. This is a fact that has driven many of the most harrowing experiences of my life. This is a fact that has made my life mine.
Let me begin by informing my audience that chocolate milk was, for a long time, a rather forbidden food in my home. In my mom's world, chocolate milk is classified as a soda. I know. I don't understand either. I've asked, but she always begins by talking about sugar and then I get all distracted and start having daydreams about cakes and marzipan.
No, I'm not fat.
Okay, what were we talking about?
Right, Chocolate milk. So, as a soda, chocolate milk had certain restrictions placed upon it. I was allowed precisely one soda a day on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. The other 4/7 of my life was horribly, tragically, unbearably free of delicious chocolate dairy drinks.
This absence broke something in me. What was once a beautiful love affair became a bitter resentment toward everything that kept me from my one love. And there were reminders everywhere.
Take, for example, television. Since I am a child, I watch only kids' channels, which are saturated with commercials for saturated foods, like the 'cheesiest' mac and cheese and the 'chocolatiest' cereal. These make my face water--my mouth, my eyes, the whole works. My brain stops thinking and two words start throbbing across it:
(Side note: I only watch TV right before dinner, to distract myself from the fact that I'm hungry. It works really well, actually. Nothing calms hunger like watching a dinosaur made of cheese dive into a bowl of cheesy noodles. I highly recommend it.)
Worst, though, was Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends. One episode involved a character named Cheese, who said "I like chocolate milk" over and over again until I couldn't even think straight. Never had I felt so much empathy for a cartoon character. As his mouth moved, apparently made of two bowls that clacked together, I could just feel his anguish, his utter despair over the lack of dairy beverages in his life. His stupidity, even his obnoxiousness, was irrelevant. Cheese and I shared a common goal.
The torment didn't end with television. My boyfriend, who we will just call Boy, soon discovered my predicament when he began drinking chocolate milk in front of me on Skype. Delighted with his new ability to make me wriggle with hatred, and having the protection of being halfway across the country, Boy began to dig up any excuse to drink chocolate milk in front of me. He would pretend he was going to divulge a very important secret, building up over hours at a time. Then, when the big moment came, he would simply look me in the eye, and take a huge swig of chocolate milk right there in front of me.
Boy has since suffered my wrath.
Later, when I was in Alaska (yes, Alex wasn't lying--which is frankly rather shocking) I went without any dairy at all (excluding milk powder and questionably sweaty cheese) for forty days straight. Around day 16, a bush plane came in with a new supply of food for my fellow campers and I. Among the goods were two packs of milk from my good friend's parents, one plain and one---swoon---chocolate.
We did not talk about the chocolate milk for the first day. It sat in our bright blue tarp among chicken-flavored texturized vegetable protein and bags of wheat flour, a diamond in the rough. I flirted with it throughout the day, trying to keep from staring. I batted my lashes at it. Whenever I accidentally let my guard down and did look at it, I looked away as quickly as possible so as not to frighten it.
In other words, that chocolate milk and I had a very respectful courtship.
But alas, once again chocolate milk rejected my advances. My good friend was homesick, and since the chocolate milk was from her parents, she wanted to drink it herself to feel a connection to them (we'd been in the wilderness for weeks at this point, so if any judgment is to be passed over my friend I suggest the judger not talk to any of his or her family or friends for forty days and report back to me later).
It was beginning to seem that chocolate milk and I would never make it.
But do not fear, dear readers, for this is a story of triumph, not defeat.
I beseech you, take another look at that picture from yesterday.
Notice the victory in my eyes.
Yes, my friends.
I have finally won the affection
of the one