Peanut Butter & Jelly

There was a time when I loved a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. It was one of many fond memories of life with my grandparents in that little post WWII rambler in Bloomington, MN. For some reason, the ones my grandma made were the best ever. Almost as good was when I figured out how to make them myself.

The peanut butter was always Jiff, the jelly, often homemade. But, if not homemade, then it was quality stuff. Though a master in the treat department, my grandma did have her faux pas. Remember the Jell-O pops? Her peanut butter and jelly faux pas was the experiment with peanut butter and jelly in the same jar…CRIMINAL!

Smucker's GooberNot only did it look wrong, but also some things should not be mixed unless done so by the experienced hand of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich maker. There is a reason we call it peanut butter and jelly. If we wanted it mixed before we spread it on our Wonder bread, it would be called pelly, or jeanut butter. Smucker’s calls it Goober. Now there is an appetizing name!!

My love for peanut butter and jelly waned a long time ago though. It was about the only thing we had for a snack or quick lunch growing up. That or bologna. Because of my lack of dietary variety growing up, by the time I discovered the egg sandwich, I was done with PB & J as well as the old staple bologna.

Once I had children of my own, I gave the PB & J one more try, and the old revulsion came rushing back. I didn’t feed my kids too many PB & J’s, so they will still scarf one down even as adults.

Me, not so much.

You don’t have to date me long before you find out I am not a fan of peanut butter and jelly. However, after fifteen years, it should be hard coded in a mates psyche. How many times does a person have to say, “I don’t like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches!”, before the wife figures it out.

After my youngest son made the traveling football team, many of the games were at odd times. The school team took precedence over the traveling team when it came to field availability. The start times for the games was a bit unusual compared to the school teams as well. Usually just as us parents were getting off work. One particular afternoon, I believe it was a Thursday, the game started around 5:00 PM.

I left work a bit earlier than I normally did, with the assurance from my wife that she would pack some sandwiches. I like a good ham or turkey sandwich. I prefer the bread lightly toasted, but if its wheat, I can live without it. That is another side effect of my grandma’s pantry. Wonder bread stuck to the roof of your mouth if you took a big bite out of your sandwich. I discovered lightly toasted when my grandpa ordered a BLT at a restaurant and I followed suit. Toasted Wonder bread doesn’t stick to the roof of your mouth!

We were about ten minutes into my son’s game when my wife says there are sandwiches in the cooler. I reach in, pull out a Pepsi, and look at the offerings. There are three or four sandwiches in plastic sandwich bags. Not one of them is toasted, which is fine. However, as I pull them out, I notice there is no meat protruding out of the sides of the sandwiches. Closer investigation reveals that they are peanut butter and jelly!

What did I do to piss her off?

I hate peanut butter and jelly sandwiches!

I went hungry that night. There was no way I was eating a PB & J, especially on untoasted bread.

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