Ketchup – A to Z Blog Challenge

I was the fourth of four boys, and I showed up late. I mentioned somewhere before in my ramblings that my brothers were 13, 14, and 15 when I was born, so in essence, I had a whole lot of authority figures, rather than partners in crime.
Fortunately, my cousin Eric visited on most weekends, and even came to live with us for a while. He and I were (and still are) only three months apart. We were more like brothers than anything else.
One lazy afternoon we were having fish sticks and french fries, and I was wrestling with the ketchup. You know, I still don’t understand why they put ketchup in those glass jars, by the way. I realize glass is so plentiful and all that, and even posted about it a few days ago. I also definitely agree with the benefits of using it like they do for pickles, and mayonnaise and severed heads and jelly. I would even submit it would be a good idea for ketchup, but WHY that shape? What a pain in the ass! You want some mayo or mustard, you can scoop it out with a spoon, or even just dunk whatever you’re eating into it. Not ketchup, no sir. Only thing you can get in there is a butter knife, which you have to do a dozen times to cover your bread or amass an adequate puddle to dip fries or what have you… Just doesn’t make any damn sense, says I. 
So anyway, I was shaking that thing like a mad man, when my cousin hatched a plan. He’d seen on TV (which at our age meant: fact) that if you held the bottle by the neck in a tight fist, with your thumb over the cap (for obvious reasons) and swung it around like Pete Townshend doing  a windmill the ketchup would loosen up, and flow freely. Centrifugal motion and what not, right? (Which I just learned isn’t Centrifical… Live and learn, eh?)
Well you know what? It worked. He handed me back the bottle and “blurp” I got my ketchup puddle. No mess, like you might have been expecting. 
Feeling cheated? 
Something anyone who knows anything about young males age 10 to dead would know, when you do something stupid, and it works without adverse consequence, you do it again until it does. And we did. 
Once again, he took the bottle, and once again, it went ’round and ’round. “Whoa!” I shouted, “Dude!” We cleaned the red stripe that marked the walls and floor with a sense of such urgency that you might have thought we were moving a body. We got it done quickly and perfectly. Walls and floor were clean again, and we wouldn’t get caught. Now we could commence the hysterics that follow such a thing. 
Our kitchen was in a section of the house that was an addition. There was no basement below, and no second floor or attic above, so to run the electric for the lights, the landlord put in a dropped ceiling. It’s the kind of dropped ceiling you’d see in a college cafeteria, 2’x4′ rectangular foam pieces. Very light, very cheap… Very absorbent. We scrubbed the ketchup stripe out of that thing, or perhaps I should say, INTO that thing as best we could, and put it back up. It was like a bad comb over… We totally knew it was what it was, but just pretended not to. 
Somehow, no one in any position of authority in my house ever saw it, and we lived there another three or four years. Just like CSI Grissom always says: “Nobody ever looks up”. …thank god.

20 thoughts on “Ketchup – A to Z Blog Challenge

  1. My son is 9, and I frequently have more than one or two or even three young males in the house around meal times. I must make more effort to look “up”!Thanks for sharing

  2. glad you reminded us to come on over from the beery blog. Good post, can totally see that happening. I’ll just go and check the ceilings now.

  3. I’m an only child and if it hadn’t been for times I spent with my 4 cousins, I’d have missed out on many of life’s best things. Thanks for sharing your memories – I think I’ve just landed on a topic for a post.

  4. Splat! :)My girls are too young to start that kind of trouble yet.. but apparently the almost three year old WAS digging in the cat litter before I heard she was up this AM ..yuk.

  5. LOL, too funny! I actually had never tried that technique, but it seems like it’d work. I better not try it though, since the wife would probably tan my hide. Oh, and I don’t have glass bottles for Ketchup either 🙂

  6. I was the fourth of four boys, and I showed up late.Heh. My grandson’s Uncle Bobby is four months younger than him… but it gets worse: my two oldest granddaughters have eight and ten years on Uncle Bobby. That’s late. 😉

  7. I love the way you told this and enjoyed it so much. Great story. It reminds me of the time my friend’s brother go A-1 sauce all over him. His case involved less science. He went to shake the bottle but whoever used it last didn’t screw the lid on, it was just sitting loosely on top. Boy, was he angry.

  8. @Kim – I can’t speak for your kids, but if they were anything like we were, you probably have another couple years before video games get boring. :)@Sue – Definitely check the ceiling. Check in the couch cushions too. Regular inspections of the peanut butter wouldn’t hurt either. @Wendy – You could see us?? You wont rat us out will you!?@Unc – I can’t wait! I’ll be watcing your blogs for it! @Leslie – I’ll be watching for yours too! @Cindy – I dunno how things work with girls at that age, but I’ve got 2… ages 5 and 20 months, so I’m sure to find out. The 5 year old is smarter than I was, so I’m sure she’ll provide for years of amusing (to you, not me) blog posts.@Karen – Do I hear a post for R??@Jane – The trick was not to clean it TOO well… Random clean spots look suspicious. I will watch for said stories!@Eric – Just get a plastic bottle. More convenient, and less chance for getting grounded. @Dawn – I wish I could lay claim to those words, but I can’t… They belong to someone else. If I find out who, I’ll let you know. I hope it’s ok that I was using them. I never asked permission…

  9. @Linda – You snuck that comment in while I was responding… Sorry! I was never a fan of A1 sauce, but you bring up a good point. Steak sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and soy sauce are also in pain-in-the-ass bottles too!

  10. Hah, no Paul. Nobody told me that. I DO know that these days, but I thought I’d leave it out cause it sorta defeats my point about how the bottles are stupid. …thanks for bringin that to all our attentions. 😀 …kidding. 🙂

  11. Cute story, my friend…Kids can always leave a “mark” of something or another~!! Who knew that blending chocolate icing with the hand mixer could stripe up the kitchen walls, cabinet, table, floor, ceiling light, and still have enough to cover all the chairs at the table???..Thanks for the story~!

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