Friday, May 3, 2013


By Ed VanDeMark

Thirty three times I tried to get that piece of dental floss perpendicular to my teeth and thirty three times I managed to do parallel. 

I tried moving the floss. I tried adjusting my head, and cranking my neck six ways of sideways. I tried making faces. I tried looking in the mirror and I tried prayer, I even said a bad word.

Not even Mr. Wizard  of 1950's television fame was able to help me. I've tried salad twice since Richard Nixon was President and it’s no better now than it was during the Kennedy administration . Veggies aren’t much better. I can handle broccoli if you boil the flavor out of it, serve it hot and give me a full salt shaker. You must also decide in advance not be offended when I feed the stalks to the dog. 

It doesn't take me long to make decisions about what I'll be putting in my mouth. I'll tell you right now I reject wight out of every ten foods based on reputation, appearance, odor and superstition. 

 One of the remaining two will be ejected from the arena for foul flavor or for having the texture of a grub.

Linda and I went to Israel. I tried to be nice. I sampled two new foods in an attempt to foster good will between our nations. The best news is most places in Israel offer American foods as a failsafe for finicky eaters like me. 

They also offer several selections from St. Peter’s mother-in-law’s cook book. Cola is good in every language, so are sugar and salt and God made a covenant to supply Israel with an endless supply of chocolate. I survived, In fact I gained four pounds. Yet I must warn you, don’t eat the falafels.  Falafel is the Hebrew spelling of awful. 

Dear rebel friends wipe that grin off your face, I don’t like grits, sweet tea or collard greens they're the stuff race horse owners feed to the other guy’s contender. Liver in all its forms is still liver and I wouldn't serve it to a lizard. 

Edible is a survivalist word, it has nothing to do with real food like pizza, burgers and fries. Edible is rattle snake, burdock roots, mice, worms and insects.

I've mentioned numerous so called foods I don't want stuck between my teeth. Yet attempting to remove them with dental floss is a life time sentence to yuck in the mouth disease. Give me an old fashioned tooth pick, or a tooth brush and a half ton of peppermint. Shucks give me a cherry bomb, it would work better than dental floss.

Edward is a pompous name and Eddie is condescending, I therefore prefer to be called “Ed” which is, in my opinion, neither pompous nor condescending.
I was born in Endicott, New York on July 16, 1941 and have lived most of my life fifteen miles west of Endicott in or near the village of Owego. When I find something good I stick with it.
I’m married to Linda (Masters). We have three fine adult children (Tony, Lisa and Dan) and nine wonderful grandchildren ranging in age from 20 to 2.
I write about my observations of life and draw cartoons because there is a force embedded deep inside of me that will not release me to ignore these modes of expression. I’m not interested in a second career as a writer or as a cartoonist. I’ve served my time meeting other people’s deadlines and I’m not in love with the tension they cause yet I do send off finished works for publication. Chicken Soup for the Soul has published three of my stories as have other lesser known publications.
The two best pieces of advice I’ve received as a writer are 1. Just tell your story and 2. Make it sing.
God Bless you my friends.
Ed VanDeMark.

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