When I was little, I had what was known as a delicate stomach (that’s Southern for: It didn’t take much to make me throw up). You could count on it every year after (and sometimes during) the county fair, and any time I got overly excited about something. There were times when it was my own fault, but there were plenty of times when I just got sick for no apparent reason. The only known antidote in our house was warm ginger ale, spoon-fed by Mama (Canada Dry ONLY…and no diet!) There was the one time that my grandmother tried to make me eat some horrible concoction called milk toast (exactly like it sounds), but I may have actually required extra ginger ale after that experiment.
Once I started feeling a little better and was able to keep the ginger ale down, I got to have some sherbet (or sherBERT as I was raised calling it). It’s strange to me that more people don’t realize or acknowledge the medicinal (almost magical) properties of the stuff…especially the rainbow variety. Oh, and don’t worry about buying the expensive (no high fructose corn syrup, foo-foo) variety…for this purpose, the cheap 7-Eleven no-name brand is best. To this day, if I’m sick enough to stay home, I need sherbert. (Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to maintain that same relationship with ginger ale. Tasting it now has a rather Pavlovian effect on me, and I can’t drink it without being reminded of my childhood…um…issues.)
Other than the occasional tummy troubles, I guess I was a pretty healthy kid. I still have my tonsils, I managed to never break anything, and beyond measles and an occasional earache, I was usually okay. If I did have a random ache or pain, Mama told me to just get over it, because it was obviously gas. According to her, gas was the cause of pretty much everything that could afflict a child. If I had a regular old stomach ache…gas. Leg cramp…gas. A headache? Definitely gas.
I never could quite figure out where all that gas was coming from though. Hey…I wonder if there’s a correlation between sherbert and gas? That would explain SO MUCH!