“The ramblings and grumblings of author Ad Hudler”

Time for another episode of ... AMAZING FOOD MYSTERIES!
Friday, August 22, 2008

We were visiting friends at their mountain vacation home in Kalispel, Montana this summer when we awoke one morning to this surprise in the oven:

"Romeethia?" (protecting identity), I yelled to my friend, goosebumps rising on my arms and the back of my neck because the scene looked so ... violent. "Were we supposed to have potatoes last night with the steak?"

She walked over for a look and gave a good, hard belly-laugh. "Whoops," she said. "Looks like we started cocktails too early."

"You need to call the exterminator," I said. "I mean, LOOK at that. You've got rats or something." Indeed, it appeared that some creature had completely skinned the potato just as you'd skin an animal, then left the hide to rot on the oven floor.

Not sure what to think, Romeethia summoned her husband into the kitchen. "It exploded, obviously," he said.

"But that's not a microwave oven," I said. "Things don't explode in a regular oven, do they?"

"And we must have poked holes in it, anyway," Romeethia said, noting the tine marks in the other potato.

The three of us stood there, crouched at the oven, shaking our heads. Being Floridians, we wondered if this was an altitude issue. Did food explode like this at points higher than 5,000 feet? "Oh, Honey, Damn! The pot roast exploded again. Guess we'll have beef stew instead."

And why just one potato? Why not both?

There was another possibility. When I was growing up in Colorado there was an epidemic one time of inexplicable cattle mutilations. People swore it was the work of aliens ... not hopping-across-the-Rio aliens, but the green variety. I wondered: Should one of us call Homeland Security?

No ... I'm still thinking I smell a rat. Romeethia, because it was in her vacation home, refuses to admit this. But could a rat squeeze its way into an oven? I've heard amazing rodent stories; I guess anything's possible.

Ideas, anyone?


Blogger geeky Heather said...

When did the cocktails start again? Just because you poked the one on the left with a fork, doesn't mean you poked the one on the right. It exploded.

August 22, 2008 at 3:35 PM  
Blogger Libby McMillan said...

LOL. Strange things happen at altitude. You hit a tennis ball you brought from Florida, it goes up in the sky, and it never comes down again.

Actually, I'm a bit of an explosion expert myself, having personally exploded two Pyrex dishes and one pot roast (so no, those scars on my wrist are not from a blue period). Your potato exploded.

August 23, 2008 at 8:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Occam's Razor suggests that this was the result of an explosion. As correctly noted, cocktails were involved, so I'd bet the other taters were poked.

Of course, throwing Occam's Razor out the window, I'm going for the alien theory.

August 25, 2008 at 4:36 PM  
Blogger Ad Hudler said...

Okay, well, that is the LAST time I admit to having cocktails. (But I think you guys are right.)

August 26, 2008 at 7:41 AM  

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