Foods of my past


We all have relationships with food. All you have to do is look at my waistline to realize this is true with me. That includes children, but many of them don’t realize, as I have, that 30 years from now some images of things they ate as a kid will be stuck in their brain.

I didn’t realize this so much until a discussion with office mates about something called liver mush. I realize some like this product but for me the mere mention of it sparks a gag response.

A Google search of liver mush defines it as a pork product consisting of pig’s liver and head parts mixed with cornmeal. If you are a liver mush fan, then I apologize, but one has to ask who even thought of even eating such a thing?

All I know is I was forced to eat it at a daycare center my brothers and I attended when we lived in Charlotte. I would have been approximately 5 or 6 years old at the time when we were enrolled in the Kandy Kane Day Care Center.

Teachers there put liver mush on our plate and gave us two choices eat it or go hungry.

The product was put before us jammed between soggy, bargain brand bread on paper plates.

Being the respectful child my parents raised, I choked the awful stuff down, and drowned the taste with lukewarm chocolate milk from a carton.

It was also a Kandy Kane staffer who forced lemon Jello down my throat. I warned her what would happen so I don’t feel sorry for her having to clean up the mess. To my knowledge, I never ate lemon flavored Jello again.

I had other childhood food experiences that have stuck with me for 50 years. I once put ketchup in my milk on a dare from my little brother. As my northern father-in-law likes to say, I didn’t do that again.

My dad didn’t think my newly-created cocktail was funny and restricted me to the table until I drank the awful concoction. As usual, my brother was in a corner snickering some about getting me in trouble once again.

I think of my culinary experiences when I see my granddaughter or nephew and their relationships with food. This year my nephew was passing me food under the table at Christmas dinner and then swearing to his parents he had eaten it. That stuffed potato is probably still on the floor.

Every time my granddaughter has come over in her lifetime I’ve ended up at the grocery store buying yogurt. That is just who she is.

As for me, I will simply try to reduce my relationship with food. My waistline demands it.

Tom Woerner is a reporter with The Daily Record. Reach him at 910-230-2038 or


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