Atlantic Canada — In a rare show of solidarity, baby boomers everywhere have officially stated for the record that all food is too spicy.
“Well, not all food, per se,” said boomer representative Darrell Olsen of Saint John, N.B. “I don’t mind a nice skinless baked chicken breast, with just a pinch of salt — that’s what I call a good home-cooked meal. But then again, that’s bad for my blood pressure, so maybe it’s better if we hold the salt and call it a day.”
Olsen and his wife Myrna say that one of the worst offenders is black pepper, which causes them both to burst out in violent sneezing attacks.
“My son cooks for us sometimes, and he adds a little black pepper,” said Myrna. “He says he doesn’t put any in, but I can tell he’s lying because my eyes start watering right away, and I have to drink five glasses of water to settle down and quit coughing. It’s inconsiderate of him, if you ask me. Why not make something everyone likes?”
Myrna recalled that, when she was grocery shopping at Costco last month, an employee at a sample station served her a cracker smothered in a teaspoon of garlic hummus.
“I took one bite and it was so spicy that I had to run back to the van to get my water, and I drank the whole bottle in one gulp! Well, I don’t know what hummus is but I know that garlic is a big no-no! Why ruin a perfectly good plain cracker? They should have rules against that — I had no idea what I was getting into!”
Sharon Lisbon, 61, says that she’s as adventurous with food as it gets for her generation — meaning once a year she goes to Swiss Chalet for a quarter-chicken dinner, with dipping sauce on the side.
“And I don’t skimp on the sauce — I even drizzle some on the mashed potatoes! I really go wild with it,” she said. “It’s too spicy, yes, but at least no one can accuse me of not living on the edge now and then!”
Lisbon’s husband Frank is less open to culinary experimentation, and once even threatened legal action against a relative for adding spice where no spice was needed.
“We were at a family reunion potluck and I specifically asked that no one use spice in their dishes — it irritates my bowels too much,” he raved. “Well, my niece brings devilled eggs, of all things, with cayenne pepper sprinkled on them! How rude is that! I was up all night in the bathroom.
“I threatened to sue her for assault causing bodily harm and attempted manslaughter. She claims that the cayenne was five years old and couldn’t possibly have any potency left to it, but explain that to my intestines, missy!”
Frank said that his generation simply understands what good food is — and that’s food with no condiments, seasoning or spices, that’s not exotic or “foreign” and that is generally beige or white in colour. Boomers have decided to be helpful and release a list of the foods that don’t bother them too much, in case anyone was wondering:
-a single handful of plain low-salt chips
-chamomile tea without honey
-apple sauce, no cinnamon or nutmeg
-plain whole-wheat toast
-unseasoned broiled chicken
-pork chops, well done, no salt/pepper
-white rice, no soy sauce
-mashed potatoes, no salt/pepper