Wednesday, July 18, 2012

I Scream, You Scream...It's All Your Fault, Ice Cream

There's nothing better than indulging in the bliss that is ice cream on a warm summer night. Well, it could be even more blissful if say, the house magically cleaned itself. Or if it rained $100 bills. Or if you ever finally got tickets to see Saturday Night Live, for which you've applied 10 summers in a row to no avail. Or better yet, getting to meet the cast of Saturday Night Live!  Can you imagine? Or...oh, sorry, back to the ice cream thing...

It's important to choose your ice cream place carefully. At minimum, the ice cream should be homemade on the premises (bonus if churned by Oompa Loompas) with many, many employees at the counter in anticipation of summer crowds. Extra points for an atmosphere befitting an old-fashioned ice cream parlor: Victorian gingerbread moldings, charming cafe tables, and pastel flavor/topping lists handwritten on chalkboards (Note to Self: Next time, order before obsessing over their chalkboards).

Given the rarity of such a place, there's a pretty good chance that everyone in your county and possibly your state has also discovered it.

Hello, long lines that stretch out the door and ziz-zag down the sidewalk.

Use this time to ask what everyone in your group wishes to order, although you know as soon as they peer into the tantalizing glass cases inside, they'll all change their minds. At least this is one locale where kids are pretty cooperative, so thrilled are they to procure a frozen treat. It's almost insane to now sugar them up with an icy cold concoction so close to bedtime. But hey, it's another chance to become their hero. You might even earn that Best Parent Ever trophy you missed out on last time.

There's just one obstacle in the way. Actually, several obstacles with legs, and they're all inevitably standing on line in front of you:

Perky Employee Girl (PEG):  Can I help you?

Just an Indecisive Moron (JIM):  Is the cherry vanilla made with real cherries?

PEG (still grinning cheerfully):  Yes, sir. We only use all natural ingredients in our homemade ice cream.

JIM:  Oh, I'm allergic to cherries. How about the vanilla? Is that real or imitation? 

PEG (smile fading slightly):  The real deal. We only use all natural ingredients in all of our ice cream. 

JIM:   I think I had vanilla last time though. How about the Reese's Dream? Does that have real peanut butter in it?

PEG (blood pressure rising):  Yes, we only use ALL NATURAL INGREDIENTS IN EVERY SINGLE THING WE MAKE.

JIM (patting his huge gut):  I bet that has a lot of extra fat and calories. I don't know, let's see. I do like root beer floats. Did you know that root beer actually comes from a root?

PEG:  Yeah, um, would you like---

JIM:  Bet you don't know which tree. Guess. C'mon. Okay, I'll give you a hint. It starts with "S."

PEG (staring incredulously):  I'm sorry, we have a LOT of people waiting. Can I get---

JIM:  The sassafras tree. Sassafras. Isn't that a funny word?

PEG (reaching for arsenic):  Mmmhmmm...

JIM:  How big is the Large? How about the XL? Ya know what? I don't feel like soda. Let me think....cone or bowl, cone or bowl...

Next up is the TMI Couple that shares a little too much during the ordering process.

Mr. TMI:  I'll have three scoops of the Rocky Road in a waffle cone.

Mrs. TMI (with a huff):  Really?

Mr. TMI:  What? It's my favorite.

Mrs. TMI (exasperated):  You're lactose intolerant. Don't you remember the two days of diarrhea you had last time?

Mr. TMI:  It was your idea to go for ice cream. It's freakin' Lactose Lollapalooza here...what am I supposed to get?

Mrs. TMI:  There's Italian ice or fruit bars or slushies...

Mr. TMI (shaking his head):  Yuck, I don't want any of that sissy stuff.

Mrs. TMI:  Oh, I'm sorry.....I guess Tammi with an 'i' only goes for manly men who eat real ice cream?

Mr. TMI (shouting):  Her name is Toni, and I told you, we're just friends! She only grabbed my thigh because she lost her balance...

And then there's this crazy person:

Hey, do you guys do all that chalkboard lettering yourselves? You have someone come in and do it, huh? Can I ask you what they charge? Okay, I'll come back when the manager's here. But do you know if it's real chalk or chalkboard acrylic paint? Let me take a closer look. I'll be able to tell...Oh, only employees allowed behind the counter? Could I just---? No, no need to call Security. See, I have a blog, and I illustrate it with chalkboards, so...Is there any way you could find out what font that is?

When it's finally your family's turn, whoever is either the sloppiest and/or wearing the lightest color shirt will invariably order the bright, florescent blue Smurf flavor. The clumsiest will tip the cone so the entire scoop plops onto the sidewalk moments after stepping outside. And the finicky one will bemoan the ice cream place is sold out of her one-and-only request. 

But the long wait and other aggravation won't matter for long. You'll forget it all after that first spoonful of creamy goodness. You are SO coming back here tomorrow night.

Well played ice cream, well played.

Actual Time Spent Waiting on Line for Ice Cream:  25 minutes
Time Indecisive Moron Took to Order:  7 full minutes
Amount of Ice Cream Enjoyed:  Every last little drop
Fat and Caloric Intake:  Let's not even go there.
Number of Times You'd Be Willing to Do This Again:  How many summer nights are left? 47? Okay, 47 then.

TALK TO ME: What's your favorite ice cream? There are so many cool concoctions out there, but I can never go wrong with tried & true French Vanilla. I'm bland like that. Plus, it doesn't stain...because I'm clumsy like that, too.


  1. Tickets to Satruday Night Live! That would be amazing, I must say!

    1. Ed Grimley, please play your triangle for us, I must say...

  2. This was hysterical! I feel like I should have run into you in our ice cream place because I know I overheard those conversations, too.

    My favorite? Marsh Mud at the Island Creamery in Chincoteague, VA. Ellen

    1. Oh, so the craziness isn't just in my state but extends all the way to Virginia? I feel a lot better now, Ellen!

      Never heard of Marsh Mud, but I can tell just by the name I'd probably love it. I'm hearing "chocolate" and "marshmallow" and hopefully some fudge goo is in there someplace, too...

  3. Oh lines of ice cream parlors I hate you so much, but I cannot resist the delicious reward I receive at the end. I was in Florida last week for a family vacation and ended up in one of these lovely lines while at the Magic Kingdom. The place literally had three Sundays and the minimum flavors, which you would think would make the line go faster. But no, that wasn't the case. I ran into most of the people you described in your post. It wad worth the wait though and I'd do it again if given the change I'm sure.

    1. Darn, I'm disappointed to learn that even with less choices to overwhelm them, people STILL take forever to decide. I guess there's no such thing as a fast ice cream line...

      That's cool you were in the Magic Kingdom though! I haven't been there in years, but I hear there are lines at Disney for everything nowadays...not just for ice cream.

    2. I had thought the same thing. Less choices = less line. So very wrong. I will continue my search for a fast ice cream line though, there has to be one out there somewhere!

      Disney is just one line after another. I mean, there's a line to get in, a line for the rides, a line for the food, a line for bathrooms, and even a line to exit the park. I have to admit though that I think their lines moved a bit faster than the lines at Universal Studios' for the most part, which was quite a surprise.

    3. Oh, so Universal is just as bad as Disney? This does not bode well for the future trip we're hoping to plan (I have a Harry Potter-obsessed kid). And a line just to exit the park, seriously? Ugh. Ugh. Ugh. Think there's any chance I'll become a more patient person between now & then? ;)

    4. Oh yeah, Universal has some bad lines. I waited 60 mins in line for one of the Harry Potter rides and getting into the stores in that times. One thing you could do to (potentially) help with the lines is go during the off seasons if at all possible and all the parks seem to have these programs called Fast Pass (or something to that extent). Basically with Fast Pass you can skip the line, which is nice--especially when you have kids with you. No matter how patient you may become between then and now, it cannot prepare you for the lines you'll have to wait in at these parks, haha.

    5. Thanks for the helpful info, Felicia. Yes, I've heard about Fast Pass at Disney...glad to hear Universal has it, too. It must still be stressful though because then you have the pressure of being back at the Fast Pass designated time and all. Definitely not going to be what you'd call a "relaxing" vacation, that's for sure.

  4. What a hilarious blog, Christie! Now following via Yahoo, Facebook, Twitter - that's how much I like you - must be the drawings. :) So glad you stopped by my blog! I'll be starting a FB page soon - maybe you can follow me too. Best, Kim at

    I love the social media at the restaurant.

    1. How nice, Kim...thanks & welcome! I'm glad you're enjoying my blog AND that you linked yours to Finding the Funny b/c I'm a sucker for a good pie chart (and pretty much any kind of baked pie, too...not to mention ice cream with said pie, but that's a whole other post).

  5. Yes, well played indeed, ice cream ;) Your graphics are awesome--thanks for being so original!

    1. That's so nice of you to say, Meredith...thank you. And if by "original" you also mean "slightly crazy," that's okay, too ;)

  6. My Mom ate ice cream every day she was pregnant with me, so I was born addicted to it, like a crack baby.

    I love homemade ice cream places like the one you described, but there really aren't any of those here. Everyone's all into gelato because it's more expensive and exotic sounding and frozen yogurt, I can't explain the frozen yogurt.

    I took an ice cream making class in January and am toying with making it a second career. Long lines sound good to me! Mo' money!

    1. Hey Tracy...excuse the tardiness of this reply. I was on vacation with the family, and you'll be happy to know ate PLENTY of ice cream, pretty much daily (she says, shamefully inspecting waistline).

      I tried gelato once...did not care for it. You should totally open an ice cream place. And I'll totally try not to get too excited if you have chalkboards in the decor (the key word there being TRY).


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