When I lived in Alaska (kindergarten through 2nd grade) my best friend Chris and I hung out all the time. Little kid friendships are the best because it’s so easy to satisfy all your needs.
Chris liked toys. I liked toys. Chris liked video games. I liked video games! And, oh my GOD!!, Chris liked playing outside … you’ll never guess who else liked playing outside.
One day I was over at Chris’s when dinner time hit. His mom asked if I’d like to stay over. I’m sure I called my mom, and we had the brilliant/obvious/manipulative little kid talk – ‘which dinner is better.’
(My mom answers)
“Hey! How’s it going!?”
“Good … what’s for dinner?”
“Oh we’re going to have a casserole.”
“Oh … Is it all right if I stay over at Chris’s for dinner? His mom invited me.”
“Sure that’s fine. Come home after dinner. Be sure to say please and thank you.”
“Ok. Bye mom.”
Yes, my mom probably would’ve reminded me of the manners.
Finally, it was dinner time. The food was laid out on the table and we began to dish up. I’ll take a little of this, thank you, could you please pass that, thank you, what’s that in the middle? Don’t know. Don’t want it.
“Brad, do you want a green tree?”
A green tree? The dish in the middle contained the ‘green trees.’
I’d never had a green tree before.
I grab one, pop it in my mouth, and I try to pull on my best poker face as I go from excited anticipation about a new food to disgust.
Green tree! GREEN TREE! Those fiends fed me broccoli!
Which just goes to show that broccoli, by any other name, is still gross.
(Unlike another food which my mom called something else, had me try, found out I liked it, and then laughed as she told me it was something I hitherto ‘hated.’ Everyone’s a trickster.)
(Update: I’ve since come around some on broccoli … but I still favor doughnuts over broccoli any day of the week.)