1. They aren’t real nuts, they are liars.
2. They are also called Goobers, and that reminds me of Boogers and Gubernatorial Snot.
3. Jimmy Carter was a peanut farmer, and he was a politician.
4. All politicians are liars.
5. Peanuts are a legume and not a nut. I know these things, because I eat brain foods like walnuts, cashews, and REAL nuts such as almonds while sitting under oak groves reading poetry to my almond-eyed lover as I play with his nut sack.
Monday: When It Isn’t About Peanuts
“What are you doing?” I could hear noise rattling in the background as I spoke to my husband, Charlie, on the phone.
“I’m in a store, buying some peanuts.” He was doing it again. We’d been over this whole peanut habit he had several times and he just wouldn’t listen to reason and wisdom. He kept going for the peanuts. For him, it was all peanuts, peanuts, peanuts. I kept telling him that almonds and walnuts were better choices, but he had a peanut obsession. Every day he had to have peanuts. He was also about thirty pounds overweight and getting older.
“Peanuts aren’t healthy for you, sweetie. They’re high in calories, they make you get fat, and they aren’t even the best source of protein. Peanuts aren’t even really a true nut! Peanuts are a legume!” I was so frustrated with my husband’s stubborn refusal to apply what he knew to be true, that I was about ready to go nuts. Most days, I don’t know why I even bothered. Some people just have peanut brains, which would make sense if they eat a ton of peanuts.
“I like them on my oatmeal, so quit beating me up about it. You’re a husband beater for beating me up about my peanut habit!” He often did this to me. If I tried to say anything about his poor eating habits and food choices, I was the “bad guy” for trying to educate him about the healthiest nuts out there.
“I’m not beating you up about peanuts!” I felt like beaming him over the head with a huge foam peanut, throwing Nutter-Butter Cookies at him, and stealing all of the peanuts out of Cracker Jacks boxes to save the whole world from going nuts. “Charlie, I think you’re nuts for EVER voting the Republican ticket!” I yelled into the phone.
I thought about Republican Elephants and Hannibal going to war by taking elephants over the Alps. That was nuts. I hate war. I hate killing beautiful animals just to harvest their body parts for piano keys and jewelry. I hate what Hitler did to humanity. I hate what lawyers can do to single mothers as they help eliminate them from their children’s lives while they get into recovery from abuse. I was obviously in a bad mood. I also had issues with Democrats. I hated abortion and not giving humans the chance to live and enjoy life to begin with. I hated politics, religion, and sex. I hated writers who wrote about politics, religion, and sex. I even hated Charles Schultz on this day of hating anything to do with peanuts. I decided I still liked Lucy. But, I was mad at Charlie for biting my finger, so I hated anyone named Charles, especially King Charles II, and my husband, Charlie.
“Maybe you should get into a recovery group for anger management,” he suggested, “or, for people filled with rage over peanuts.”
I was so angry at his flippant disregard for my wealth of knowledge concerning healthy food choices that I was about ready to explode. I’m sure he noticed that I had invested in an expensive jar of almond butter and passed on the cheaper peanut butter the last time I went grocery shopping. I’m sure he remembered that we were going to have a food budget and make some changes concerning our finances and shopping habits, but here he was, on the phone to me, while in a store buying a bag of peanuts, while I was waking up after a nightmare where I was being yelled at by a peanut farmer in a wife-beater shirt.
“Maybe you’re right. Maybe, I should surround myself with people who are more into almonds and walnuts, or hazelnuts and acorns. Maybe I should consider a support group for people with nut issues, and the lies we tell ourselves about legume eaters with peanut habits.”
Friday Night: Fake It Til You Make It
“What’s her name?” The little black dachshund with long hair reminded me of my childhood dog, Peanuts.
“Gypsy. Her name is Gypsy.” My friend, named God, slammed back another shot of whiskey as he laughed and entertained his other guests in his home. The ten or so of us were gathered together to celebrate after our theatre performance. I sat on God’s red couch and visited for a while with the wife of one of the actors. As I talked, I watched the others. God looked good in the wife-beater shirt, with his suspenders and his dad’s old hat on his head. He liked to be the life of the party, and everyone knew how much fun he could be.
God was a theatrical goof-ball and could dance up a storm. He could also be a total asshole and rude as fuck whenever he wanted to be, and to whomever he decided to pick as his target. But, he was golden and everyone loved him, and knew he could get away with his behavior because we all tolerated it.
After a while, the group of us moved to a local bar to go dancing. Everyone piled into a party bus, but I drove alone in my own vehicle. By the time we arrived, we had missed the band, but found a juke box and cranked it as loud as it would go. The whole gang of half-drunken writers and theatre people began to put on another show, and boy, didn’t we!
We danced to Violent Femmes, and spun each other around in circles that should have caused someone to slip and hit their head on the floor. One actor was there with his wife, yet he quite romantically kissed God, another male actor, on the lips as his wife looked on. “We have an agreement,” she teased. The whole group cheered with joy. Everyone wanted to kiss God, or at least be in God’s good graces. A couple of outsiders stood there and watched our antics with smiles on their faces. Another looked shocked. One older man came over to the group. I grabbed his hand and began dancing with him, including him in the fray for a while.
The lead singer of the band that we missed earlier was still hanging around loading up equipment; she asked me what was going on, and if we were a troupe of “something”. I told her we just had a great performance at our theatre that evening and we were out celebrating. I pointed out all of the famous writers from our small town and told her a little about each one.
“See that one over there? His ten-minute plays are produced on a regular basis. And the other one in the wife-beater shirt just produced his first short horror flick with that shorter, older woman over there as one of the actors in it. The tall blonde near the pool table has some books published, and one is being made into a movie. These guys are all going to be famous someday!” She looked at all of my friends with awe. I laughed. “Now, don’t let that one there in the pink shirt with the cute dimple fool you, if he drinks enough, he makes a funny crab when he pulls his jacket over his head.” I laughed again and smiled at her. She smiled back.
“What about you? What do you do?” She asked me.
“Me?” The question caught me off guard. “I just love them. I love them all. I’m just a comedian in a Chicken Suit most of the time, spreading bad Chicken Theology. Some of them call me all sorts of names.” I looked her straight in the eyes and told her the truth, even if it sounded like a lie. “These guys are my replacement family. I lost the last of my eight children in an accident and emergency surgery that landed me in a hospital a couple of years ago. The whole thing was posted on Facebook. I almost died and came out of that experience without access to my children. My ex-husband’s lawyer began spreading rumors around town that I tried to commit suicide. I think my ex-husband has a suicide wish on me or something. He hasn’t let me talk to, or see, our children for about two years now.” The look of total shock on the woman’s face as I smiled serenely was beyond description. “It’s a miracle I’m alive and not drinking like these guys!”
I went back out on the floor and grabbed my friend’s hand. He had batted my hand away earlier as he became belligerent toward me as I attempted to push buttons on the juke box while I tried to visit with him. He had a few power issues. But, this time he took my hand and danced with me. I knew he had some aggression towards women to work out; his wife-beater shirt was a thin disguise. “I want you to spin me around like you mean it!” I often challenged him and could push his buttons, almost as well as he could push mine. He did his best to rip my arm off as he spun me first in one direction and then the next. His face looked surprised as I took what he had to give me. He spun me around harder. “Is that the best you can do? I used to get thrown around by men all the time back in the day.” I smiled at him and then pulled him closer. I might have stepped on his toes a little as we danced, but it was definitely accidental. I loved dancing with my friend, God, even if he couldn’t stand me most of the time.
Someone had picked out a slew of country-western songs and soon we all gathered in a group hug and wailed and moaned about our heartaches and lost loves. We smiled and acted as if the world was coming to an end. “Who picked out this crap?” My friend asked. I could tell that he had so much love and loneliness bottled up inside of him to share that he scared me at times. He was raw energy, like a horse that needed to be broken. He said he thought I was a handful. Me? He was pure self-will run riot. I admired his free-spirit and his drive to succeed. He inspired me to do better. He also didn’t know how to help me anymore than I knew how to help him.
Maybe that’s why we loved each other. Maybe that’s why we hated each other. Maybe that’s why he avoided me like the plague the next day. God does things like that.
I could at least say I was a friend of God’s, and any friend of God’s was a friend of mine. I could say that God shows up and works in mysterious ways. I could say I was a friend to a friend in need, even if the friend seemed closer to that of an enemy at times. I could say I was a friend to the broken-hearted, because God broke my heart, and now I was the only best friend I knew how to find, I had to know that I could still love the brokenhearted.
The rest was all smoke and mirror neurons.
I could say that God is a liar. I could say that one could move a mountain with a smaller amount of faith than a mustard seed, if one had the faith of an orchid flower and the mountain was only imagined. I could say that the mustard seed is not the smallest seed a gardener can plant in the garden. I could say there is no such thing as a mustard tree. I could say that broccoli plants are miniature trees and beans belong to the nut family.
Nobody I know likes peanut butter, pickle, and mustard sandwiches.
That is why I hate peanuts.
Saturday: Putting Fantasy Into Perspective
Comedy made sense. Irony made sense. Chicken suits and zombies made sense. Shakespeare made sense. Greek Mythology made sense. Chicken Little and Derrida made sense. Politics, religion, and relationships made no sense whatsoever. Drinking made sense, but not for me. Drugs made sense, but not for me. Relationships made sense, but were the most difficult endeavors in the world, next to figuring out a career as a writer and performer while in recovery, next to repairing past traumas and hurts without creating more.
Maybe there was a shift taking place inside of me that was hard to put my finger on. Maybe I just needed a cup of chamomile tea and some sleep. Maybe, tonight I wouldn’t dream of nuts and insanity or have any PTSD flashbacks. My life flashed before my eyes on a daily basis these days. I was still in total shell-shock and people may not always recognize the symptoms.
Sunday: Researching Facts
Almonds: 1/4 c. contains 132 calories and is a very good source of Biotin, Vitamin E, Manganese, and Copper. It also provides 2.81 grams of dietary fiber. One should keep their almond intake to around 1/4 c. per day max, otherwise, the healthy fat/calorie ratio can get out of balance and cause a sedentary person who watches a lot of t.v. to store extra fat. Obesity is never healthy, but may be a better way to die than, say, drinking oneself to death, smoking like a chimney stack at Auschwitz, overdosing on pharmaceuticals, or taking street drugs. At least obesity is legalized suicide and doesn’t really harm anyone unless you fall over on them from having a heart attack.
Cashews: 1/4 c. contains 221 calories and is an excellent source of Copper. 1/4 c. provides 97.8 % of the daily need for copper in one’s diet. That is the strongest argument for cashews, plus they provide a bit more protein than almonds. They also make a great cashew gravy alternative for traditional animal fat gravy, which is not healthy for the potatoes, the gravy eater, or the animal who enjoyed being fat until it was slaughtered.
Walnuts: 1/4 c. contains 196 calories and is an excellent source of Omega-3 Fatty Acids, topping the charts at 113.3 % of one’s daily needs. Walnuts are also a very good source of Copper, Manganese, and Vitamin E. Plus, walnuts have secret agents hidden in their nutshells known as Carotenoids and can reduce inflammation and prevent obesity, which can be caused by abdominal adiposity and chronic inflammation. As few as four walnuts a day can improve one’s health significantly.
Peanuts: 1/4 c. contains 207 calories and is an excellent source of biotin, providing 87.6 % of one’s daily need for biotin. They are also a very good source of copper and protein, even better than almonds. They are still not technically a nut, and all peanut farmers in wife-beater shirts and politicians are peanut-brained liars.