At my friend Erin's house, her dad would make us popcorn and pour real butter on it and we would carry a huge bowl down to her basement and watch Space Balls or The Princess Bride while devouring our vat of buttered kernels and trying to perfect our British accents (I'm pretty sure this is how all the cool kids spent their weekends in seventh grade, right?).
Popcorn is especially a family tradition in the Talcott side of my family--my mom's mom's family. My grandparents often made a Sunday night dinner out of popcorn, with chocolate waffles for dessert (a delicious family recipe, always served with vanilla ice cream), and my grandma's sisters shared that tradition, too. "Snack Suppers" are still one of my favorite treats--popcorn, apples, cheese and crackers for dinner. It occurs to me that we need to be making chocolate waffles more often...
When I was in my first year of grad school, living alone in an apartment, a bag of popcorn was dinner for me at least once a week. Even now if David's at a meeting or ball game in the evening, he'll say, "What are you going to do for dinner? Popcorn?" (David rarely finds it as compelling an idea as I do--he likes popcorn, but for him it's in the "snack" category). It's probably the one and only food that no matter how stuffed I am, I always have room for it. The smell is absolutely irresistible to me.
It was still something of a surprise, however, to discover that I share my love of popcorn with none other than Little Mac. I remember feeding her some popcorn shortly after David and I started dating, when I was over at his place watching a movie. I wanted to win her over and make her like me. Little did I know that I was creating a monster...
We make it on the stove top now (because my cousin Amanda freaked me out about the chemicals in microwave popcorn--she also put me off of pre-shredded cheese!) and Little Mac is always underfoot in the kitchen anyway. But she knows as soon as David puts that particular pan on the stove and pours in the oil that we're going to have popcorn.
She is so overcome with excitement and anticipation that she starts WAILING. Howling. And then Cooper joins her (we assume this is because her wailing hurts his ears, or maybe it's sympathy-wailing, either way, he sounds like a beagle and it's loud). Mac gets especially frantic if no one is in the kitchen while the oil is warming up. As though we might FORGET that there is popcorn on the stove unless she shrieks about it. It's such an ordeal and so LOUD that sometimes we debate whether it's worth it to make popcorn (but in the end, it always is).
So here you are--a taste of life with Little Mac. Turn UP the volume of your computer (unless you are at work). And please keep in mind, no dogs were hurt in this film. She is in no physical pain whatsoever. She just has trouble expressing her emotions appropriately:
And once the popcorn is popped, we eat in the living room and throw it out to the dogs one kernel at a time. Cooper can usually catch it in his mouth. Little Mac's eyesight is so bad that it has to land on the floor near her, otherwise it bounces off her head. She tries to catch it, bless her heart, but she always ends up chasing it. And she is absolutely beside herself with excitement the entire time. If we pause too long between tosses, she'll bound up to the sofa and put her front paws up on our laps to remind us that she's still there, while she pants and smiles at us.
|Action shot! You can see that Mac has made a flying leap for this piece of popcorn, but she is going to miss it. Cooper hangs back, because he wants the popcorn, but he respects his sister. Or he fears for his life if he crosses her. Either way.|
|Here's Coop, eyeing a kernel that's flying his way.|
|Another kernel--Cooper is poised to catch it!|
|Sister is hungry for more. Always.|