Monday, January 28, 2008

The Popcorn Pot

My mom was at the store the other day and she bought a jar of popcorn kernels and the zygote bagging the groceries asked, "What do you do with these? Put them in a bowl and microwave it?"

Did you know my family has been having popcorn every Sunday night for the last bazillion years? True story. See that pot right there? That's magic, my friend. Legend has it that fairies casted it out of iron and unicorn hair and used it to make popcorn for their queen but lost it in a heated game of Monopoly to a sly elf in a tam o'shanter. That elf loaned it to his cousin Fred and, well, you get the picture. Fast forward a few centuries to 1972 and a cupboard in an apartment in Downey, CA, where my newly married and very lucky parents found the pot. We have had magical popcorn ever since. My mom, right this minute, is probably a little mortified that I would put a picture up on the blog of the pot because, well, it's not in the best of shape. But who cares. Why? Because you haven't had popcorn until you have popcorn from this pot. Testify!

I always use to roll my eyes a little when people got nostalgic for days of yore. I remember being at a family party once and my aunts were going over a list of things that were better when they were kids. Things like donuts, roses, neighbors, milk, and the Hollywood Christmas Parade, to name a few. I thought it was kind of silly because, you know, donuts are donuts. But let's be honest. Popcorn actually popped in oil in a crudy old cast iron pot will always taste better than popcorn popped in the microwave. And one day, years from now, when they no longer sell popcorn kernels because we will all be able to materialize it through a chip implanted in our brains, you will find me saying, "Sigh. Popcorn use to taste so much better." And then I'll put on my muumuu and take my teeth out.

9 comments:

Amanda said...

I am going to testify to the tastiness of the Knecht pot popcorn. It is true that nothing has ever tasted so beautiful.
Did you know we have a Tam O'Shanter Street out here in Wisconsin? Isn't that fun?

dad said...

The sight of that pot inspired me to comment. We did find it in our first apartment, in a bottom cupboard. Since we were poor and lacking things, we thought it was a good sign, and kept it. The handles have long since fallen off and for a while I thought I would have the outside sand-blasted, just to get the ugly off, but remembered reading somewhere that Barbra Streisand never had her nose fixed because she was afraid it would alter the sound of her singing. I think that in the same way that noses are external but affect the internal, so the external appearance of the popcorn pot,if changed, would affect the inner workings and somehow mess up the flow of the system. Even though the inside is always washed and clean, I know there are multiple microscopic layers of popcorn residue, oil, salt, Molly, and love that may mutate, if the overall appearance changes. It is as though the pot is now organic. We never use it for anything else - it has a dedicated purpose. I wonder how many bowls-full we have run through it? Thousands and thousands, at least. The heir to the family silver is known, but who will inherit the popcorn bowl?

Rachel said...

Rachel-tap-tap-no-erasies-2008!

Empress of Venus said...

Amanda I have driven on Tam O'Shanter street! Ugh, sudden rush of fondness for Wisconsin...

I've had Knecht bowl popcorn with about 3 cups of butter dust on it, and it was awesome. I'd like some more.

Liz said...

I'm witnessing right now, with my hand in the air, that Knecht popcorn is the BEST EVER!!!

Katie said...

Rachel, Sadly I think that Camille tap-tapped-no-erasies-2005 that bowl. Mom and I were there as a witness. Better luck next time.

Dad -- way to comment, I'm impressed, and it was even a bit funny, so unlike you! :)

Hannah said...

Um...I would like to testify to the Knecht family popcorn, really I would. But I believe I will have to have some first. I will also mention that one time when I was six and my parents were apartment managers my sister and I were going through the cupboards in an empty apartment and found four rose print tea cups, and that was like the coolest thing that had happened to me up to that point. Except for maybe the time I thought Mickey Mouse had sent me a t-shirt. I had kind of a glamorous childhood.

Laura said...

Why can I not testify to Knecht family popcorn? I've certainly been around enough! I CAN testify to Knecht Family ice cream and Fourth of July shenanigans, but not to the popcorn. Maybe Ben, as The Golden Child, should get the pot. Too badd he's too young to actually utter the words "tap-tap-no-erasies".

Mom said...

You are all welcome to come by the house any Sunday evening for popcorn. You don't even have to call...just drop in. There is alway enough. Plus, I would love to see you. MOM