An Award-Winning Disclaimer

A charming little Magpie whispered this disclaimer into my ear, and I'm happy to regurgitate it into your sweet little mouth:

"Disclaimer: This blog is not responsible for those of you who start to laugh and piss your pants a little. Although this blogger understands the role he has played (in that, if you had not been laughing you may not have pissed yourself), he assumes no liability for damages caused and will not pay your dry cleaning bill.

These views represent the thoughts and opinions of a blogger clearly superior to yourself in every way. If you're in any way offended by any of the content on this blog, it is clearly not the blog for you. Kindly exit the page by clicking on the small 'x' you see at the top right of the screen, and go fuck yourself."

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Sticky Ham & Other Profundities

They tell you not to judge a book by its cover, but isn't that what everybody does in Borders?

You also probably shouldn't judge pre-packaged ham by its expiration date, but that's what I did yesterday in my kitchen.

Shame on me.

I purchased a vacuum-sealed package of Primo Taglio hammy slices at the market yesterday morning and, as I was preparing my lunch like a good little poor boy, I opened the package. When I stuck my hand in to extract a slice or two of ham, I felt as if I had just lost my wristwatch up Slimer's asshole. My face contorted in displeasure as I said aloud, "What the fuck is that?" to no one in particular-- maybe the dog who was salivating below, hoping I would drop a bit of porcine pleasure onto the floor. I turned my gaze reluctantly towards the packaging and observed a very thick, mucousy film covering the ham and the inner packaging. It looked like Gollum had vomited all over my ham.

I immediately pulled out my hand, which now looked like I had been fistfucking sewer pipe, and washed it under scalding water with copious amounts of Dawn. I then thoroughly inspected the package for some kind of clue as to what this mystery goop could be. I carefully scanned the back of the packaging for words like "saliva" and "rubber cement" but I found no such ingredients. Turning it over to the front, I read the words, "Primo Taglio Sweet Maple Ham -- In Natural Juices." Hmpf, I thought. Whose natural juices? They looked, and felt a lot like my "natural juices." My horny juices. What was my ham doing covered in horny juice? And then I read the expiration date: August, 2009.

Oh, I thought. Phew. It's fine. And I finished making my sandwich.

After I came home from work, I told Mrs. Apron about my unsettling culinary experience.

"So, what did you end up taking for lunch?"

"Oh, the ham. I made myself a ham sandwich."

"You ate that? You ate ham that was covered in semen?"


"That's disgusting." Sometimes she's such a vegetarian.

"What? The expiration date says August, 2009."

Listen to me. "But the expiration date says!" What if the ham had been black? What if it had glow worms going to the bathroom on it? Would I still have eaten it if the expiration date said it was okay? What if the expiration date was a misprint? What if the meat was infected and infested with piggy-sicky and hoof and mouth and mad hammy disease? What would I have done if it smelled like dead chick pussy? Would I still have eaten it?

And, the sad, cold, hard truth of the matter is: I just don't know.

See-- I trust safety inspectors. When I see and expiration date, it's like a speed limit sign or a contract-- it is meant to be obeyed. Expiration dates don't lie. We once had milk in our refrigerator that had gone past its expiration date a couple days prior, and Mrs. Apron was still expecting me to use it in my coffee. Now, granted, I only put in about the equivalent of one tablespoon of milk in coffee, but I sniffed that shit like it was coke. I poured it gingerly, slowly, methodically into my cup, as if it were liquid nitrogen or holy water. And, all that day, I waited for the inevitable signs of food poisoning. But, see, the milk smelled absolutely fine. It didn't have semen in it. But, because the date was a couple days past, I was immediately suspicious.

The ham, though, was fine, because the numbers on the package said so.

This reminded me of my EMT training course. Our instructor was desperately trying to instill in his students a sense of moral responsibility, a feeling of duty, he was trying his best to create empathic, observant, intelligent, compassionate, competent emergency medical technicians. Of course, for all his efforts, I was the only one in the class who graduated, but that's beside the point. I remember one class he was teaching us about the pulse oximeter, which is a small, handy device that measures the oxygen saturation of a patient's blood, as well as their heart rate and respiratory rate. Ed was trying very hard to tell us not to be lazy EMTs, EMTs who just watched the numbers on the pulse-ox and never actually checked on the patient, as long as the numbers were good.

"Look," he said to us, "granmaw Edith can have great numbers on the pulse ox-- she can be satting at 99% on room air and have a pulse of 92 and respirations of 16, and that's all great, but look at her fucking face-- what if it's blue? Ask her how she's feeling every now and then, for Christ's sake. Don't just look at the numbers. A patient can have numbers that read fine and they can be dying right in front of you. So don't be an asshole, right? The numbers don't tell the whole story."

And ham can be very much expired, just like granmaw Edith, no matter what the numbers on the package say.

"Well," Mrs. Apron asked finally, "how did it taste?"

"Oh, it was great."


  1. ham is tangible evidence of evil

  2. That's kind of what you get for eating pre-packaged lunch meat. It's all gross.

  3. So what WERE the natural juices? Just the run-off from the ... process?

    Prepared meat is the spawn of Satan I tells ye; it's so easy to eat. Slice after slice. Wafer after wafer. I have a penchant for the fine Italian salamis though, not ham -- Napoli, Milano... it's all good, mmm.

    (Shit, we're both awful Jews)

  4. Mad hammy disease - good one :)

    I always use the sniff test on any food item and if it smells okay, then it's okay. Numbers don't mean a thing to me. Milk can be beyond it's date and as long as it smells okay, then I pour it over my cereal without a second thought.

    My husband, on the other hand, lives by the numbers. If the milk is a day over, he would rather not touch it. I tell him to smell and it and he comes back with "What is it supposed to smell like?!"

  5. Ahh, milk. I'm not any good at smelling milk, because, to me, it always smells rank. And sometimes, that rankness is the carton itself, so you have to pour it out just to smell it. Often, that magic date on the carton is a "sell by" date, meaning you can drink it later. The milk people say so!

  6. Slimer! I haven't thought about that little guy in years!

    I didn't know Jews ate ham....

  7. Packaged meat like that is supposed to be discarded about seven days after the package is opened... or maybe someone just felt passionate about your ham? ;)

  8. What was my ham doing covered in horny juice? And then I read the expiration date: August, 2009.

    Oh, I thought. Phew. It's fine. And I finished making my sandwich.
    Oh my god that made me laugh in front of the comp! Thanks AGAIN..You always cheer me up!


Got something to say? Rock on with your badass apron!