Eat, spit, be happy!


“Hello (spit), my name it Jennett …”

“Hello, Jennett (spit, spit).”

“… I am a sunflower seed addict (spit).”

“We’re here for you, Jennett (spit, spit, spit, spit, spit).”

My addiction began, excuse me (spit), about a month ago, when my boyfriend was told that he needed to start eating healthier by his meddling weasel of a doctor. So, as a result, I’m trying to eat healthier too (spit).

Previously, the b-friend and I gleefully ate large quantities of junk food in blissful, artery-hardening denial. Our junk food addiction was so bad, the wait staff at Denny’s kept cots for us in the back. We visited the China Buffet so often, we are now both fluent in Cantonese. We ate so many potato chips, we claimed Idaho as a dependent.

And for some reason, all that wonderful fried, greasy, fatty, gloriously disgusting food was making the boyfriend unhealthy—well, at least according to that lying, mud-sucking pig of a doctor of his (spit). I mean, who knew chicken fried fudge topped with a hefty dollop of Cheez Whiz and chocolate syrup could be bad for you?

So, being the supportive, understanding, loving, and modest girlfriend that I am, I decided to help the boyfriend find healthy things to eat that, at the same time, didn’t make it appear as if we had to mug a rabbit for it. Learning to eat healthier hasn’t been easy, and finding healthy snacks has been the hardest part. Apparently, neither one of us is capable of either driving or watching television without something crunchy gnashing away in our jaws (spit).

Favorites were potato chips, Doritos, Cheetos, chicken bones, furniture legs—we didn’t care as long as it crunched. But, that all had to stop or my boyfriend was going to die, which would be bad. I don’t even have insurance on him yet.

Clearly, things like raw celery and carrots would be the natural—healthy—crunchy alternative. We tried that stuff, but the boyfriend couldn’t seem to digest them properly without first slathering them up with several gallons of ranch dip (spit).

So, one day while we were in the local 7-Eleven checking the carbohydrate levels on every nutrition label in the store, I noticed that cashews were fairly low in the carb department. Never mind that they had more fat than a sumo wrestler—it was the carbs, and the carbs were low, darn it!

So, we snatched up 15 or 16 packages and headed off for the car thinking we had just found crunchy snack nirvana. But what we soon realized—about 30 minutes later—was that we could devour the salty, saturated fat-filled, calories-ridden crescents faster than a school of piranha downing a squirrel (spit).

Now, when it comes to snacking, I personally only have one prerequisite—it has to be salty. There was an old 1960s “Star Trek” episode where a woman was actually a hideous monster with suction cup fingertips who needed salt to survive. So, apparently unable to go to the store and buy a can of Mortons, she instead opted to slurp the salt out of the bodies of hapless stand-in actors. Well, sans the 1960s beehive hairdo and the suction cups, that pretty much sums me up (spit).

So, my suggestion was to get salty sunflower seeds. You don’t eat as many because you have to first break them open with your teeth, hunt out the kernel with your tongue, nibble what little meat is actually there, and then spit the shattered, and salty, shells into a receptacle, which I learned the hard way has to be fairly wide (spit). Don’t ask.

Another trip to the 7-Eleven—or Snack Heaven, as the boyfriend calls it—to fill up the trunk of his car with little bags of nuts, and we were all set.

The boyfriend, however, has since learned from his doctor, who I’m pretty sure is a terrorist-loving commie set out to destroy all that is decent and holy about America, that he should no longer eat sunflower seeds in large quantities (spit).

The boyfriend can, apparently, now only eat trees and twigs, and I’m left with this stupid (spit) sunflower seed addiction (spit, spit). My wastepaper basket looks like a flock of blue jays threw up in it.

“Eat, spit, be happy” mockingly reads the front of my sunflower seed package. They can go spit, all right.

Jennett Meriden Russell is a photographer, writer and cartoonist for the Press Newspaper Group.

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