Clueless in the backwoods

I’m clueless. Spending most of my life in metro Detroit and Florida, I don’t get many aspects of life as a northern Michigander.  In other words, this city boy hasn’t been able to totally adjust to the backwoods life.

For instance, this activity they call “shrooming,” or if you’re a little more sophisticated, “mushroom hunting.” Just last week someone from downstate emailed me and asked if it was time up here to hunt mushrooms.

I replied, the only mushroom hunting I’ve ever done, was way back in the 70’s, when mushrooms were psychedelic drugs, much like LSD, that when ingested took you on magical trips. Please, Clare cops, I’m just kidding. Don’t pick me up. I’ve never done drugs.

And I’ve never hunted mushrooms. I don’t ever plan to, either. I can’t imagine trudging through the woods, down on my hands and knees, investigating every nook and cranny, for a fungus that tastes like cardboard. That’s right cardboard. People come up to me all the time, with big and little mushrooms, thinking they have found the Holy Grail, and my reaction- ick!!!!

Heck, when I was a kid, living in metro Detroit, we had a large yard. Each Spring, in that large yard, we had a variety of mushrooms. What was most intriguing  to me however, were these large, I mean six inches in diameter large, puffballs. I think one of them measured out at 10 inches in diameter.

My dad, being countrified, served a few of these puffballs for dinner one time. It was the last time. My two siblings and I, couldn’t get to the bathroom fast enough. They tasted worse than cardboard. Fried puffballs were like rotten cauliflower- and I hate cauliflower.

But that’s enough with the “shrooms.” Up here in northern Michigan, I here all kinds of unusual so-called tasty delights. Just the other day, I was being told how delicious squirrel soup is. Squirrel soup? Are you kidding me? Might as well trap another rodent, like a rat, and put it in soup pot. Mmmm, I suppose you think that’s tasty too?

Then there was the guy that was anxious to tell me about rabbit stew. Again, according to him, it was the best supper he could ever imagine. I almost choked, when he described it. I’m use to rabbits as beloved pets. Growing up we always  had a couple of wire cages out back with a couple of rabbits. Murdering the little guys, and then cooking them- that would break my heart.

Whatever happened to real meals? You know, I’m thinking Ramen noodles, or Hamburger Helper. Back in the city, that’s what was tasty. I remember now, those tasty noodles going down my throat, and feeling so good in my belly.

Yes, take those “shrooms” and throw ‘em down the garbage disposal. I will eat my Ramen noodles any day.