I’ve always wondered why men kick the bucket before women. While searching through the refrigerator for a snack, the answer became as obvious and stomach-churning as the green fuzzy stuff atop a jar of six-week-old salsa.
I had found a leftover. More specifically, an undated leftover. I picked it up, and opened the tupperware lid. Inside was a greyish, meat-like substance. It was either last week’s taco dinner, or we were chilling cat upchuck.
Surprisingly, it smelled fine, but I really had no idea when it had been made. I poked it with a fork, didn’t find any green fuzzies, so I proclaimed it “lunch”.
As my wife was passing by, the gunk caught her eye. “Ewww!”
“It smells ok,” I said, holding it out for her to take a whiff.
She recoiled, and strapped on the gas mask she keeps under under the sink for occasions like these. “Not in a million years would I let that enter my digestive tract,” she replied with gas-mask muddled voice.
“Big surprise,” I grumbled. My family never eats leftovers. It’s a pet peeve of mine, probably because I’m both an arch-enemy of waste and I hate to see grocery dollars ground up in the trash compactor. As I result, I’m the only one who will choke down the Tupperware-Stuff-That-Cannot-Be-Named.
And there you have the reason why men die first: We’re poisoning ourselves.
Death by Leftover
Whether we’re cost-conscious or just plain pigs, some manly instinct prevents us from chucking food.
It’s been this way since the dawn of time. Whereas early man used to finish up the meat scraps still clinging to the wooly mammoth bones, modern man hunts in the far regions of the refrigerator. Like our table manners, this instinct will never change.When we those abandoned leftovers, our hearts and stomachs go out to them. We mourn the loss of precious grocery dollars, and so we grin and chew it.
In the process, we’re killing ourselves. Not right away. But science tells us that if you eat substances that both smell bad and can be used to remove varnish, you’ll probably die.
Who are the masterminds behind this? Women, of course. This worldwide conspiracy to play upon our weakness for chow, spoiled or unspoiled, allows them easy access to our retirement savings and shopping sprees galore.
Men, my epiphany is simple: Don’t eat it. No matter how good it looks or how hurting you are for a snack at halftime, avoid it. Save yourself. Leave the leftovers alone.
I know I will. Right after lunch.
Photo by Liz West