In Defense of Spaghetti Tacos



Really, there's no defense for spaghetti tacos, a creation that outraged the food blogosphere recently with rants from the New York Times, New York Magazine, the Atlantic and yes, even Gut Check.

Spaghetti tacos were introduced on the Nickelodeon show iCarly, where they even got the Food TV treatment in one episode.

Thing is, the danger of a few too many carbs is overshadowed by so many more-horrifying issues. Like an electrified locker, the necessity of informing a character that it's not nice to electrocute friends, hitchhiking with a guy who sell pens and a disheveled quasi-adult bursting into a school clad in sleepwear without a stoke-inducing number of alarms being sounded.

Never mind the food-safety concerns associated with eating a knockwurst on a stick that's been cooked on a filthy, electrified high school locker.

Those empty carbs don't seem so bad now, do they? Sometimes parents need to say, "It's just food," and deal with the occasional unhealthy, weird meal. And what parent hasn't eaten some gag-worthy food spawned by the pop culture of her time?

For instance...

The Suicide A staple from the days when self-serve soda fountains were new, and some smart kid thought it would be cool to combine every available soda in one cup. Which, of course, leads to drinking four Big Gulps in the course of an afternoon to see how many different concoctions can be made.

It won't kill you, but perhaps "Pancreatitis" would have been a better name.

Pop Rocks & Coke This just might be lethal, according to the rumors regarding the death of Mikey from the Life Cereal commercials. No, he didn't die from combining the soda and candy. Eat enough of it, though, and you'll pray for a grim death.

Ally Sheedy's Breakfast Club Sandwich If you had any food curiosity as a kid, admit that you made this sandwich -- one slice of white bread, one slice of wheat bread, butter, Pixy Stix, and a handful of Cap'n Crunch -- after seeing the John Hughes classic.

Milk & Pepsi What little girl growing up in the 1970s didn't adore, idolize and worship Laverne and Shirley? Maybe the ones being raised in communal hippie yurts with no access to ABC's Tuesday-night back-to-the-1950s double whammy of Happy Days and those two sassy single girls from Milwaukee.

Laverne's beverage of choice (besides Schotz Beer), was a combo of milk and Pepsi. It was so inherent in the show's DNA that there are no big milk-&-Pepsi scenes to be found.

Instead you get to enjoy the slapstick as the girls try to work in a diner.

Peanut Butter and Chili It's the great mystery of Midwestern school cuisine: What lunch lady decided to serve peanut butter sandwiches along with bowls of chili? When did she make this pivotal decision?

What we do know is when the first kid said, "Hey! Watch me eat this!" before dunking a peanut butter sandwich into his chili. That occured six seconds after he was served the first chili-peanut butter combo. And thus was born a generation of kids who suddenly crave low-grade smooth-ish peanut butter whenever they get a whiff of institutional canned chili.

And sometimes those people are driven to destruction.


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