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The Five Second Rule Doesnt Always Apply

The Five Second Rule Doesnt Always Apply

A Story by T. L. O'Neal

Just because something is on the floor doesn't mean you should eat it. True story.



The Five Second Rule Doesn’t Always Apply

Written by: T. L. O’Neal


   The relationship between a father and daughter is always a special one, especially if she’s a daddy’s girl. Both of mine were and I hope they still are, but the youngest one always tried to please me from an early age. I’ve always liked southern food, so she always ate it too. It didn’t matter if it was smoked hog jowls, fatback, okra or grits, she would hold her own with me when it came to chowing down on it.


   I remember when she was a little thing, maybe three years old and we were at the grocery store. She was riding in the cart down the canned meat aisle and I said to her,


“Wow, look there, it’s canned pig brains, yummy. Wouldn’t you like some of those for supper?”


Well, I was just kidding of course, the thought of eating them was a bit much even for me. I did try them years ago growing up but that was the first and last time that I ever put them in my mouth. Anyways, when she heard that about the pig brains in a can, she just had to have them. I told her I was just kidding but she was throwing a royal fit about it.


“I want those pig brains Daddy.”


And then I said in a joking way. “You don’t really want those do you?”


“Yes I do, I really do.” She replied.


So I said, “Are you going to eat them? If you are, then I’ll cook them for you.”


   Which she said that she would and held on to that can like it was something special. She looked at that can with a sense of pride and just couldn’t wait to try it for supper. So as soon as we got home, I cooked them up just as I promised her for supper. I scrambled them with some eggs in the traditional Southern fashion while trying not to get sick on my stomach in the process. And I want you to know that she ate it every bit. This surprised me because they don’t look that appetizing; it looks like scrambled eggs all right but instead of the regular bright yellow color, it’s more the color of human flesh. But the color of it didn’t seem to bother her a bit in the least.


     So after that we would try different types of food just for the hell of it. My wife was daring too when it came to different cuisines. I’m not even going to go into the instant jellyfish that we tried but we did go to the Asian market quite a bit. Then there was this other time we got a roasted duck at the Chinese market; it was one of those with the head still on it. Everyone thought that it looked kind of neat with the head still on it and all, so we had them chop it up for us since we weren’t sure how to do it. We never had duck before so the guy took this big old cleaver and chopped it bone and all. Hell I could of done that; it wasn’t nothing like cutting up a chicken, it was more like chopped Barbeque, without all the bones of course. Anyway, they put the head in the box with it too; I guess that’s what they do with it over there… maybe, I’m not quite sure to tell you the truth. So when we got home to eat, I put the head in her plate because she wanted it. It sure was funny watching her try it eat it but she didn’t have much luck with it, especially with the bill. She did finally give up on it and just ate the meat but she thought the head was pretty cool looking just the same.


    Then there was this time I cooked a pizza when she was little and put anchovies on it. Now I liked them every now and then, so she wanted to try them too. She ate them like it was better than candy, so I started to have them every week since she liked them so much. This went on and on for a good six months or so and it turned out that she really hated them all that time, but had been eating them that whole six months because I liked them and she wanted to please me. It was sweet but kind of funny too when you think about it. I was buying them all that time because I thought that she really liked them and I was trying to please her. It was a like a culinary “Gift of the Magi” of sorts. Poor little thing ate those anchovies for all that time and hated every mouthful just to please me. It was a mighty sweet gesture on her part and a hard thing to do too I bet. Anchovies are one of those foods that you either hate or love; there’s no in-between when it comes to them.   


   One thing that I was sure of was that she loved eggnog, and I loved it too. No one else in the house really cared for it except us two. We just couldn’t wait for thanksgiving to get here, because that was when the grocery store always put out the eggnog the day after for sale. We would go through three gallons of the stuff by the time that New Year’s came around. She always liked cinnamon sprinkled on the top of hers, but I was a little more traditional and always went with the nutmeg. We sure did miss it the rest of the year.


   Later on my wife and I remodeled an old farmhouse from top to bottom, even redid the hardwood floors. We sanded those all the way back to the wood and stained and varnished them too before we moved in. It all looked good when it was time to move in and I was picky about it too. I wanted to keep them looking good and tried to take care of it. I told the kids that there was no drinking or eating anywhere but at the kitchen table. I was kind of tough with the rules but you need to be if you want to keep things in order and not tore up, especially after all that work we just put into it. Well, we came home from somewhere one evening, where it was escapes me at the moment but it’s not really important anyway. Anyhow, we came in and I noticed something on the hardwood floor outside the kitchen door. On the dark stain it looked like grape jelly and I wasn’t too pleased about it none either. I was sure that one of the kids had been eating out of the kitchen.


   So I said to the kids, “Which one of you has been eating out of the kitchen?”


Of course they all replied, “ We didn’t do it Daddy.”


   I don’t care what any kid does or doesn’t do, that’s always the reply. That answer is probably hardwired in every child’s brain at the exact second of birth. I think it comes in with that first breath of air that they take and it stays there till the last when they’re about eighty years old or so. Just human nature I guess.


   Anyways, as I was saying… they all denied it and without really thinking about it,


I said to the little one in a kidding manner, “Pudge, go taste that and see if it’s grape jelly.”


We always called her Pudge for some reason or other, I’m not really sure. It was something that her mama always had called her; it didn’t really make much sense being that she was a little, skinny thing.


    Anyhow, before I knew it, she was there and had her finger in it. I started to yell out to her not to do it and it seemed like everything slowed down into slow motion as it always does on TV. I started to run to her as fast as I could with my legs as heavy as lead hollering, “NOOOOOOO!”


   And it was at that instant that I saw in horror that little finger go into her mouth and with a smiling grin on her face say,


“It’s not jelly Daddy, it’s cat poop.”


   Now I couldn’t tell you how she knew it was cat poop because I was pretty sure that she never had tasted it before, or for that matter had any desire to do so. I suspect that it tasted the same as it smelled as so many things do, so it would be a safe bet that was how her young mind had figured it out. Whatever the case, I was horrified and while still running, things sped up again and I swooped her up under my arm without missing a beat. I then ran down the hallway to the bathroom as hard as I could go with her still tucked under my arm like a football.


   By this time she didn’t understand what the hell was going on and the smile was leaving her face. It was replaced with a look of confusion and one of disgust with the taste of poop still freshly in her mouth.


   Once we were in the bathroom, I made her wash out her mouth out several times and then wash it out again with hydrogen peroxide about three more times. If this wasn’t enough, I made her then brush her teeth five times too. She didn’t know what all the hoopla was about but I was having a duck fit about the whole situation. I knew by this time not to joke around like that anymore with her, and I never thought for one minute that she would of took me seriously like that. But she is a Daddy’s girl, so I had to watch what I said from there on out with her. Especially when it came to eating off the floor.


   This all made me wonder where the cat poop came from in the first place; yes I know it was obvious that it came from the cat and the only cat we had at the time was Rusty. But we had Rusty for about six months and up to now he had never done anything like that before. Except if you wanted to count going in the potted plants but I always chocked that up to the call of the wild and his desire to get back to nature.


    So being the good detective sort, I went investigating around to see what was up with the poor cat. Then I noticed that there was a small trail down the hall leading to the bathroom and to the litter box. He had one of those spaceship looking ones with the dome on it and he thought it looked pretty cool too, well at least I did. Anyway, I took a look in it and it looked like Jackson Pollack had been in there decorating and slinging pooh all over the place. I couldn’t blame the cat, he did try to get to his box in time but the clock ran out on him and he didn’t quite make it there in time. He must of gotten hold of a bad mouse or something that didn’t agree with his belly. Whatever the case, I’m sure he felt better after all of that.


   My daughter thought it was a funny story and told it probably a hundred times or more, and with all the sticking of her finger in her mouth, facial expressions and mannerisms to boot. She always liked telling stories; I guess she gets that from me. But when she started to school I told her maybe she should just keep that story to herself. It’s not something you would want to tell at school I wouldn’t think. I can laugh about it now but at the time it just about gave me a heart attack and poor old Rusty, it embarrassed him so bad that to this day he hasn’t ever mentioned it once. It just goes to show you that the five-second rule doesn’t apply to everything; there are some things that you just don’t eat or taste and are just best left alone. 


© 2010 T. L. O'Neal

My Review

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Featured Review

lol, this is a truly entertaining story. I LOVED IT! "I want those pig brains daddy" hilarious. the cat poop, though i know u must have been horrified at the time as i would be, but this had me rolling. I have a bit of a darker sense of humor. Just another chronicle in the colorful life of T.L. elating piece. Your girl is precious..

Posted 10 Years Ago

10 of 10 people found this review constructive.


Well, now. This is the first story I've read from you since you've been back and I must say, I've missed your humor and your way of telling a story, T.L. This was rich with cherished memories . When I saw you start out with pig brains, I knew it could only get worse! lol. Signature T.L. O'Neal story my friend. Classic!
good to see you back!

Posted 10 Years Ago

3 of 3 people found this review constructive.

many threads of narration here but all come together nicely, like how you tell about the chinese market first and then go onto the cat poop.

Posted 10 Years Ago

4 of 4 people found this review constructive.

Well welcome back.and I am glad to see your ablity to tell wonderfully entertaining stories is alive and well. I was that way with my Grandfather so I ate alot of stuff like cow brains and pigs feet that I would never have tried other wise. LOL Thank God Cat poop was not one of them. As always this was a touching and tender story as well as hilariouly funny. Great read.
hugs Debby

Posted 10 Years Ago

4 of 4 people found this review constructive.

Another classic T. O'Neal story! This was so cute. I love the "Gift of the Magi" line. Your stories are always so filled with things that are familiar to me as a Southerner that it makes me homesick. NOT that I've ever eaten pig brains, or feet, but I've seen them and I've surely known people who DO eat them! Children are so literal minded and fathers are just never wrong. Thanks for another LOL story. - Mimi.

Posted 10 Years Ago

4 of 4 people found this review constructive.

You have a loyal daughter.. eating pig brains!
I have seen people make them with eggs but NEVER tasted that and never will..
I enoyed this because to me it shows so much love between a father and his daughter..
Always your stories make me laugh.. so love and laughter ... minus the cat poop.. lol ...that's a good lot in life..loved it.


Posted 10 Years Ago

4 of 4 people found this review constructive.

I don't think I've laughed out loud at anything on here for a long time... ohh, since last time I read something of yours.

I laughed at the duck head and the picture of your girl gnawing on it, the pig brains (won't go into why... long story) and you running down the hall with your girl to scour her mouth out.

I had a bad day today... thank you for the laugh. I really needed it.


Posted 10 Years Ago

5 of 5 people found this review constructive.

Man, this was so funny! But at the same time I felt your horror as I read; about the poop tasting. I always love your wonderful tales of real life... T. L.

Posted 10 Years Ago

6 of 6 people found this review constructive.

Bro, this was your usual HILARIOUS true tall tale!!!! I have to say that your true stories are better than anyone else's tall tales! LOL This is so funny, I might have to print it out and mail it to my mom - she doesn't believe in computers, email, cell phones, credit cards, etc., so I'd honestly have to find a post office and stamp. I don't recall using the post office or a stamp in the past 10 years. hmmmm

Nope, can't recall gracing the post office. Actually, the UPS Store ships everything and handles mail, and they're so much nicer in there as opposed to the folks at the post office ever were.

This story is such a hoot. I can't imagine how your baby girl would ever know what that was, but I'm going to laugh my a*s off all night! As for the pig brains, I've had them. I'm one of those people who grew up eating scrapple, which is all the leftover parts of the pig made into a loaf that's sliced and browned in the skillet... I like it thin-sliced and done crisp. It's awesome and they even now have it in a "Spicy" version. Sadly, it's a Eastern Shore of Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, etc. sort of food.

Awesome story! Send read requests anytime, bro!

Posted 10 Years Ago

6 of 6 people found this review constructive.

What a great story T.L.! There is love, humor, adventure and even a little horror to boot. You've got everything in here like a wonderful stew. I love the way you tell a story so that it sounds like we're all sitting around just listening to you and being completely entertained.

Posted 10 Years Ago

5 of 6 people found this review constructive.

Lol I was laughing all the way through

Posted 10 Years Ago

5 of 6 people found this review constructive.

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40 Reviews
Shelved in 1 Library
Added on February 19, 2008
Last Updated on October 24, 2010


T. L. O'Neal
T. L. O'Neal

In the sticks, NC

I started writing as a way to work out my feelings and found that I enjoyed it very much. I enjoy humor and feel that you can find it in most things, even though it may be hard to find at the moment. .. more..


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