Sugar Sandwiches and Other Lies

Sugar Sandwiches 

my mother said

sugar sandwiches 

would give us worms

but it was hard

to resist 

the sweet of sugar

the saltiness of butter

on the cloud of bread


brown sugar



didn’t have the right

taste bud delight

all were too healthy

it had to be

white granulated sugar


now I avoid sugar

don’t use it in my tea or coffee

don’t add it to the milk in my cereal

I take my tea black

cream in coffee

with sugar twin

because real sugar isn’t sweet enough

artificial yet satisfying


I’ve never checked 

my mother’s science

sugar sandwichs = worms

but I did learn an important lesson

not to make sugar sandwiches

when she was around

Scare tactics of mothers – ‘Don’t make faces or your face will stay like that forever’ ‘what will the neighbours think.’ All such scare or guilty tactics ever did was make me more secretive not more ethical or aware of healthier choices. I can recall being admonished for not letting my younger brother & sisters win at boardgames or cards. I never understood how undermining my abilities would improve theirs or even improve my image in their eyes.

Childhood is full of conflicting messages – being told by a cigarette smoking parent that smoking isn’t good for you, that telling lies is bad while putting gifts from Santa under the tree, bullying is bad while encouraging you bully back – the list is endless. When you question being told to be obedient, not to talk back. Surviving childhood is a bit of a miracle. Surviving teenage hood is even a bigger accomplishment.

I was, as I recall, a fairly obedient kid more out of ‘fear’ than anything else. I didn’t question the ‘lies’ my parents told me, many of which reflected the lies our culture told them about masculinity, about personal growth, about financial success being the only measure of one’s worth, about well .. that list goes on & on. 

Today I know the science behind sugar & the harms it does to the liver but a quick look on google & there endless recipes for bread, butter & sugar sandwiches. A dash of cinnamon! I didn’t find one that connects sugar with intestinal worms. I’m not going to try one now though to refresh that childhood memory. I’ll stick to creme boule for a sugar rush. Hmm – creme boule sandwich, anyone?

What ‘lies’ did you grow up with?

Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee – sweet,eh? 

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