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my proustian moment (sort of).

20 Jan 2011

My boss very sweetly brought in these macarons from Eli’s last week for my birthday.   Though they were all very tasty, I have to admit: after biting into the neon pink one in the front right-ish corner, I was transported back to my childhood, though not to a memory of Maman’s madeleines macarons, but rather, to my mornings with Smurfberry Crunch.  Yes.  Smurfberry Crunch.   No joke.  Even my co-worker had a bite and agreed.  (And raise your hand if the theme song just came into you head, as it did ours when we realized that we were having the same involuntary taste memory.)  It was as hilariously poignant a Proustian moment as you can possibly imagine — crunchy sweet neon red and blue puffed cereal devoured inside the drab, never-fully-sunlit dining room of the condo where I spent my elementary school years.   And almost always on a leisurely weekend morning — on weekdays we were too harried to have proper sit-down breakfasts — with mine and my brother’s chairs positioned so that we could see the morning cartoons on the living room TV.  Sometimes my parents would come downstairs and insist that we eat eggs, or at least some toast, something with colors actually seen in nature.  Occasionally they’d try to get us to eat the puffed rice cereal they had purchased from some vaguely healthier place than the local supermarket, maybe just mix some of it in with that crunchy blue stuff, please?, but we’d resist through and through.

But Maman Mom, ever the Francophile, insisted on referring to the Smurfs as Les Schtroumpfs, which, when you’re eight or ten years old, sounds just as bizarre and goofy as Smurfs does to me now.  I’m thinking that that bit of nostalgia would make Proust proud.  Until he actually saw the packaging of the cereal in question.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Martin Pearson permalink
    19 Jul 2011 12:08 pm

    Carry on like that and you will finish up writing like Proust but you have still got an awful long way to go (about 1500 pages or more at a guess). Good start though! Isn’t Proust wonderful? and exhausting too! 1500 pages plus of beautiful self-serving eloquence. How can anyone write like that and sustain it for so long? I’ve never managed to read more than a few pages at a sitting.

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