Blue Potatoes For The Blue Blood

, , , , , | Related | April 27, 2021

I was a teenager and a pretty creative weirdo. My family was poor, yet we had enough food to feed us all — not always what we wanted but enough — and of course, any guests would be filled, too. 

One night, I decided the mashed potatoes were boring, so I grabbed the food coloring and managed to sneak over my father’s shoulder as he prepared it to let a couple of drops fall in. I thought he would be annoyed by me playing with food, but he found it hilarious and there we were, laughing like crazy, dyeing the mashed potatoes blue. 

Unbeknownst to us, my brother had invited a friend over for dinner. When the guy saw the blue mashed potatoes, he was so shocked it was as if we’d popped a dragon head on the table.

Despite thinking I was super funny with my dye, I took pity on him.

Me: “Don’t worry. Those are very ordinary mashed potatoes. It’s just cake dye.

But he never got over it. He ate his salad, barely touched the meatloaf, and kept making disdainful faces over the potatoes, which would trigger a round of “it’s just dye” again. After a painfully long dinner, the guy scurried away with my brother and didn’t show his face again until he left. 

My brother came back to us once his friend was gone and started to lecture us.

Brother: “How dare you serve this joke to my friend?! I’m always welcomed with filet mignon and lobsters when I have meals with his family!”

And on and on he went.

Father: “[Brother], we aren’t financially equal and there’s no way we could afford this cost of a meal like that.” 

Me: “I’m sorry. I didn’t know you were having a guest. It was bad timing to play around, but ultimately, the dye was tasteless and harmless. In fact, there’s even a type of potato that is blue purely from nature! I think your friend was being a little close-minded to stop at the color, despite the very normal taste.”

It turned out that the real offender was the meatloaf, and the dyed potatoes were just adding insult to injury. To my brother’s friend, to be given anything other than expensive steaks or other delicacies was unbelievable. 

My parents were furious and hurt, rightfully. They always pride themselves on being good hosts, not letting anyone be thirsty or hungry, and feeding them fairly good and nutritious food. Menus would be set with guests beforehand, normally, but what can you do on no notice?

Since what we provided was not good enough, that friend never stayed over again for meals.

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