Nothing takes the fun out of something more than finding out it is actually good for you.
I never liked vegetables. But I love pizza. I had my first slice when I was living in the bachelor’s officers quarters at the Naval Amphibious Base located in Coronado in 1963.
So imagine my joy in hearing the news last week that pizza is considered a vegetable by the Congress of the United States.
I wish my mother were alive to hear my defense of pushing green peas or lima beans around on the plate trying to hide them. Because we had to eat everything on the plate, we couldn’t hide them in the mashed potatoes. Mom could have just smeared tomato paste around on a thin piece of dough and plopped it on my plate. I’m still hopeful that I’ll find a lawyer willing to help me get some kind of monetary settlement for being abused as a child in having to eat spinach and squash.
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Now I joyfully learn I have been eating my veggies because, if my slice of pizza contains at least two tablespoons of tomato paste, it is indeed a vegetable. I just loved my pizza because it was grease and salt (which I applied even atop pepperoni pizzas). I never dreamed it had nutritional value. But the same government that lets breakfast cereals be advertised as healthy for kids even though the first three ingredients listed on the box are some form of sugar, has made this old man a very happy camper (even though I never really liked camping).
In an effort to please big business that produces pizza for consumption by schoolchildren in lunch programs across America, the food item qualifies.
I was really feeling good about all this until I was reminded that the tomato isn’t actually a vegetable. It is a fruit. I’ve never had an antagonistic relationship with fruit. I love most all fruit and include it on my bran cereal every morning.
I love peaches and plums and apricots and grapes and raisins and more.
I’m old enough to know that at this age I don’t really have to beat up on myself because I don’t like vegetables. I’m also old enough to have been raised in an era when you were supposed to do what you were told, and eating your vegetables and cleaning your plate were essential to getting dessert.While the U.S. Congress is in its weakened state, I’m going to lead a campaign that makes ice cream and frozen yogurt essential to the daily diet.