Now before I go any further to state my view on this, let it be known that my kind of doctorate is, as one pastor once introduced me before a Sunday morning sermon, “not the kind that does anybody any good.” Indeed. So, I stand here with Anne Fadiman who, in At Large and At Small, says just what I think too:
“I take a dim view of healthful ice cream,” she declares with the kind of gusto that only an essayist can muster (p.46).
How about you … Do you like your ice cream frozen hard or softened? What is the best kind of ice cream for you? (And I surely think we ought to include frozen custard. No reason to include frozen yogurt, which is both too healthful and some kind of fu-fu departure from good commonsense.)
As a child my parents a few times a year yanked out our homemade ice cream machine, poured in gobs of salt and water, and then my mom — somehow — converted milk and stuff into the sweetest, finest ice cream I had ever tasted. Of course, the effort involved meant that far more often we wandered through Freeport, IL, to Dog ‘n Suds or to Union Dairy or A & W or Superior Dairy. Good stuff … nickel for one scoop and a dime for two scoops.
For all the good reasons Kris has found to eat bison she’s found no good reasons to go more than once a week to Culver’s for some custard. I’ve found all kinds of reasons to suggest a second every week, but she’s got the facts on her side.
Anne Fadiman knows the history of ice cream — how the ancient Greeks and 17th Century Florentines froze drinks to the delight of everyone. Italy remains at the forefront of ice cream today, and we’ve had a few gelatos ourselves. I cannot tell a lie: George Washington had two pewter ice cream pots, revealing that we got off to a good start in more ways than freedom for us and a headache for England.
Fadiman reveals that if she had not eaten ice cream her whole life she’d weigh 416 pounds less than she does now. She also reveals, with astounding memory, that she and her brother mapped a trip across the USA in accordance with fine ice cream shops, beginning in Santa Barbara at McConnell’s, where everything tastes better because the world looks so sweet.
It’s Thursday. Tonight, if we follow custom, will be our night to visit Culver’s for a two-scoop Turtle Sundae. Honk if you see us.