The other day I was eating a peanut butter sandwich. I don’t eat peanut butter sandwiches much anymore, but I use to eat them all the time as a kid. I even experimented with different ways to make them. Grilled, toasted, microwaved, roasted, I even tried leaving one outside on our backyard deck to see how it would taste after sitting in the sun.
The one I was eating recently was a normal variety wheat bread with some extra chunky peanut butter, nothing special. It was pretty good, and it got me thinking.
I watched this documentary once on how they made peanut butter. (It must have been a night when there was nothing else on TV.) I had always thought that there was some peanut butter continuum between raw peanuts, super chunk, chunky, and creamy peanut butter. I assumed they started with peanuts, and then ground them until they were at whatever level of chunkiness that were required.
But according to the documentary, all peanut butter is first made into creamy peanut butter. Then they add chunks later to make it chunky or super chunky. This completely turned my assumptions about the peanut butter industry upside down. It’s interesting when something that you are completely sure of being true is completely flipped around from the way things really are.
There was once an episode of I Love Lucy where the focus, or the crux of the episode was on a creamy peanut butter sandwich. Ricky had hired a maid to help Lucy out while he was off at work singing Babaloo. He thought he was doing her a great favor, when in reality he was creating an extremely uncomfortable situation.
The metaphorical focal point came of course when the maid made Lucy a peanut butter sandwich. She kept offering it to Lucy; sure that she would enjoy it. Lucy, was of course, too shy to turn her down, and dutifully did her best to eat the sandwich. The sandwich had way too much peanut butter on it, and caused quite a funny scene.
I don’t know if you’ve done a favor for somebody, and you thought you were really helping them when in actuality you were causing them all kinds of grief and frustration. Sometimes it helps to take people at their word they give us a simple “No Thanks.” If Ricky had simply asked Lucy if she wanted a maid, then the whole disaster would have been averted.
I’m sure you know how imposing somebody can be when you are forced to do something, under the guise of somebody else doing you a favor. Not only do you have to go along with what the other person wants you to do, but you have to pretend that you grateful for them. Doing this to others is a sure way to make yourself less popular. Be careful.
Of course, now that I know the secrets of peanut butter, I can fully enjoy my sandwiches. It has given me a whole new paradigm of peanut butter. I can even add my own peanuts to make my own super super super chunk.
The best peanut butter sandwich I ever came up with is peanut butter on toasted sourdough bread, with the outside of the bread buttered with regular butter. It makes for a messy sandwich, but boy is it tasty, especially if you eat it while the bread is still hot, and the peanut butter is slightly melted from the heat.