Wednesday, August 1, 2007

The Worst Thing I've Ever Tasted

Yesterday I wrote about being in the "Gifted" Program in school. Let me tell you what that was like and how it led to my most bizarre flavour experience.

In grade seven, Mr. Allen was the head of the program. He was good, but even the best teacher can only focus his attention on so many things at once. Especially when those things are a bunch of hyperactive nerds with wicked imaginations and no sense of propriety. Yeah, we were monsters.

So one time we had to do a really interesting science experiment. The experiment involved sense and observation. Ironically I ended up learning more about human nature and survival than I did about my senses. The way it worked was, one group would eliminate one of their senses. For example the subject would be blindfolded and then given beakers of liquid to smell and identify. Or the subject would be blindfolded and would wear noise cancelling headphones and then have to feel an object to identify it. Very cool.

So in my role as resident victim, I was the first to run The Gauntlet(tm). I was blindfolded and led into the utility closet by my fellow future Dr Mengele's. The first part of the test was the taste test. I was blindfolded and handed beakers of fluid to 'observe'. It was pretty easy. One was orange juice. Another was root beer. Fun stuff. So I got to the end of the taste test and all my compatriots knew it was the end of the taste test because they could read the instruction sheets. I was still BLINDFOLDED and could not read the instructions.

So they hand me a new beaker. It was supposed to be part of the smell test. Nobody bothered to tell me it was the beginning of the smell test. I thought it was still the taste test.


So I put the beaker to my lips and took a large slurp.

I recognized immediately that it was something very, very bad. It burned and froze and stung and hurt and tasted like fiery death. Somehow my instinct prevented me from swallowing. Good thing too. It was a beaker of Turpentine

Quote from Wikipedia - "Drinking turpentine is extremely dangerous and can be life threatening... Its vapor can burn the skin and eyes, damage the lungs and respiratory system, as well as the central nervous system when inhaled, and cause renal failure when ingested, among other things."


Everyone started screaming and I yanked off my blindfold and headed for the fountain to rinse out my mouth. One guy, I'm pretty sure it was Dave Morris said, "You idiot! You were supposed to smell it not taste it." To which I replied, "How was I supposed to know that?"

"It's on the sheet!" he screamed.

"Yoo-hoo!" I waved. "Blindfold!"

Gifted, my arse.

Next Story: Ice Cream, We're Gonna Get Ice Cream!

Previous Story: Running With Geniuses.

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