Saturday, August 15, 2009

Corn and the Mysteries of the World

WARNING! This post might be a bit on the crude side, but it is an honest, random thought that has drifted through my mind a time or two.

*AND I am trying to weed out my sissy-ass, prude and generally boring readers. (PLEASE leave an honest comment...It will help me in the weeding department.)

What is the nutritional value of corn? How much of it is taken in by the body?

I ask because I know that when I have a healthy serving of corn with a meal…pretty much the same amount comes out in my …movements.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not bashing corn…I love corn and will eat it as long as I have teeth.

I am just curious as to its nutritional value and how much of the corn the body ingests.

I know that with one kernel of corn, inside the ‘skin’ is a mushy center…is that all that is consumed by the body? I also know that the outer skin is what is…’left behind.’ What the hell kind of alien food is eaten but the body refuses to or cannot break it down?

Feel free to check out the evidence here if you dare.

If you have crazy Yoda-like corn knowledge and can enlighten the rest of the world…Please do. I’d put this mystery up there with Bigfoot, Amelia Earhart and the Loch Ness Sea Monster.

Normal Childhood - Military Training (part 2)

By the time morning hit, we could hardly wait to see if we’d caught anything (or anyone) in our traps. We ignored the stealth policy as we bolted through the woods to the location of our creations. One by one, we closely inspected them, noticing nothing but a few random piles of animal scat and a small handful of porcupine quills.

Disappointed with having caught nothing we regrouped for a new strategy. After thoroughly discussing the mater in detail, we thought that the best plan was to lure someone into one of the traps. Yes…I was the one with 3 sisters and it was decided that little sisters make great prey.

Upon returning from my neighbor’s house we approached my middle sister, taunting her with a large bag of Twizlers and candy corn, we told her to count to 100 and then if she could find us at our fort that she could have our bag of sweetness. She began counting and we bolted into the forest snickering at our own genius.

A few minutes later, as we had taken up position in eyesight of each of our traps, we began to hear the crunching and twig snapping of a non-trained civilian tromping through the woods. Excited beyond belief, we all sat completely still, awaiting our catch.

A few seconds later, she appeared on the path…only 20 feet or so from our spring snare. Prancing up the path with thoughts of mouthfuls of candy, she neared the hidden danger. All of the sudden, we heard it. She had kicked the trip wire and *swoosh* the slip knot had tightened around her feet and she was hoisted into the air. Screaming and struggling, head bobbing a few feet off the ground we all emerged from the bushes, laughing and impressed with ourselves.

We stood in a circle around he, patting each other on the back, completely ignoring her cries for help. After a few brief comments and a bit more laughing, we decided that it would be best to leave her there for a while. Backing away and heading out on the path towards our house, we peaked over our shoulders just to see her squirming, and tears streaming from her eyes and landing in the cushion of pine needles that lined the forest floor.

We got back to my house and in an attempt not to tip off my mother, we busied ourselves with our bikes and the construction of a jump at the end of the driveway. About an hour later, after one of my friends launched off the jump and crashed into a tree at the edge of the woods, we all looked at one another with a touch of fear in our eyes and we took off into the woods. We had forgotten about my sister who had been hanging upside down in the middle of the porcupine and fox infested woods for close to an hour.

When we arrived, we saw my sister, still crying, but too tired to struggle. It seemed that she had just enough energy to tilt her head enough to see us approaching. Her sobs were faint, but at least she was still alive. We quickly released the knot at the base of a nearby tree and my sister fell with a thud to the ground. As she got up and began to stumble down the path she yelled to us that MOM was going to kill us and that we were going to be in big trouble. Chasing after her, with the bag of candy held out in front of us, we bribed her with the contents of the bag along with mild threats of further violence if she did tell.

As far as I know, our secret lived on and from that point on we re-adjusted out traps to only catch animals…which we did.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Normal Chilhood - Military Training

We gathered at the edge of the woods as the sounds of clanking dishes filled the air. Full from the dinners we had all just finished, we sat and waited for the last two members of our squad.

All dressed in our fatigues (or as close as we could get) we had our briefing. The seven of us agreed that minimal talking/noise …and of course only using our code names would be the only way to keep our top secret mission intact.

We spread out slightly as we entered the woods. For the next ten minutes all we could hear was the faint crackling of pine needles beneath out boots and a random twig snapping as we pushed our way through the trees to our hide-out.

The air was still, breezes blocked by the acres of pine trees on all sides. We entered our 2 story fort one at a time, without making a sound. Once we were all inside, we began planning our day’s activities. In low, but commanding, whispers we discussed the three traps we were going to set along the paths to our hideaway.

*We’d seen enough Vietnam and random other war movies to know the best ones to ensnare the mistaken or intentional intruders.

Over the next 5 hours all seven of us worked diligently to perfect our military works of art. We split up into 3 groups; Pain, Sniper and Grunt worked on the bungee pit, Hammer, Red and Cap worked on the spring snare while Gunny, Top, Nuke and Camo perfected the suspended log (or mace trap).

**I will not tell you which of the above my code name was.

We regrouped as it began to get late in the day and began rounds to check out all of the work that had been done. All of the traps were set…satisfied with our ingenious success, we all headed home for dinner.

Around 8PM, we got back together, armed with flashlights to inspect our newly crafted traps…and to make sure that they were still in place.

The bungee pit was the first that we got to. It was just fine…a 4 foot deep ditch, which spanned the width of the path, covered with branches, twigs and leaves – hiding the bounty of sharpened wooden spikes that were positioned at the bottom, awaiting their first prey.

The spring snare was next. It was set with a young white birch tree, pulled back with a very sensitive network of ropes, a large slip knot and trip wire. We had high hopes for this one. We tripped it a few times and were thoroughly impressed.

Lastly we came to the mace trap. This was the hardest to set as the log, suspended 20 feet in the air, had to have weighed at least 100 pounds. Held in place only by a small stick attached to the rope acting as the trip wire…this was a sensitive one and we were all very careful not to trip it by accident.

Stay tuned to the ending of this story…in my next post.

(until then...go read the first, second and third installments about my childhood)


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