When I was a child, my sisters and I shared a love for black olives.  Salty, somehow smooth as if imbued with the fat of the oil that could have been pressed out of them in another life, they delighted us.  We would afix them to each finger, pretending they were our new, fashionable manicures.  Then we would delicately snarf our “manicures”, loving every second of that marvelous flavor.

As we grew up, my older and younger sisters developed a taste for pimiento-stuffed green olives.  I couldn’t understand it.  To my sugar-saturated palate, green olives were wayyyy too salty or tangy or bitter . . . or something I couldn’t name.  They were just too much.  So I ignored them.  At family gatherings, I would take my share of the black olives and snub those other things that lay nearby, sullying my dark darlings by association.  I shivered dramatically whenever I was offered such a creation.  NO, THANK YOU.  Obviously, as I grew up, dirty martinis would never be a thing I could enjoy.  Just. . ew.

I don’t remember when things changed, when the too-intense taste of pimiento-stuffed green olives became delicious.  It must have been recent, in my early 20’s.  Let’s face it – early are the only 20’s I have right now.  My point is, I tried them.  Secretly, in cover of shadows and darkness, I tried them.  And lo, they were good.  At first I could only handle one.  Then a break, perhaps some bread, and another.  The time came that I would eat two successively, then three.

I realized I had a problem this week.  We went shopping and I wanted some green olives.  That, in itself, was not evidence of a problem.  A girl likes a dirty martini once a month (they’re strong enough to last about 30 days), and I like to be a prepared potential hostess.  Olives, just in case.  And then we got home.  I wrestled with the lid and lost, to the detriment of all my feminist predecessors.  I scowled at the jar.  I spurned the jar.  I pointed at the jar with one hand, the other balled into a fist as I made childish noises of displeasure, ‘mnnnnnhh!  emmnnnnhhhh!  NNNNHNNNNHHHHNNNNN! ”  My husband, he of the stereotypically strong hands (and I’m a massage therapist, people) came dashing into the kitchen.  His dashing was hampered by his giggles at my vehemently cranky posture and noises.  At any rate, he opened the jar.  I squealed, clapped, hugged and thanked him, and then shoved olives into my cheek like a chipmunk.

It’s been about a week now, and every time I open the fridge there those olives are.  They just focus their red eyes on me, knowing that I’ll cave soon.  But not at 6 am, even though it seemed delicious at the time.  Tonight I wanted some olives.  I pulled out the jar and once I had removed the lid myself I hovered above it shoving olives into my cheeks.  I think I tempered myself at 8.  It was marvelous.

Advertisements