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World Association of International Studies

Post Peanut Butter
Created by John Eipper on 03/06/13 9:38 AM

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Peanut Butter (Eugenio Battaglia, Italy, 03/06/13 9:38 am)

I eat peanut butter from time to time, but it reminds me of the period immediately after WWII, when the UNRA in North Italy started to circulate peanut butter, egg powder, soup powder, etc.

Such items were also sent to families from their Italian-American relatives. There is a joke (it may have been in an Italian movie or it may have been the truth): a family receives a package from Brooklyn with various things including peanut butter, egg powder and some gray powder with no message.

The family very happily ate all it, including the gray powder which made a dull soup.  This was justified as a strange American taste. But a couple of days later, a letter arrived which explains that together with the food from Brooklyn, the ashes of a deceased uncle have been sent, as he wanted to be buried in his old hometown.

My daughter, who considers herself American, of course eats peanut butter, chocolate chip cookies and all other possible American stuff.

JE comments: A classic.  Poor Uncle Luigi may have tasted no worse than the peanut butter...

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  • A Food Joke from the Philippines (Bienvenido Macario, USA 03/07/13 3:56 AM)

    Eugenio Battaglia's anecdote (6 March) about the Italians who unknowingly eat their uncle's ashes reminds me of a Filipino joke about two showbiz personalities-turned-senators famous for murdering the English language.

    The two senators are in a contest:

    Question: "What do you call someone who eats nothing but vegetables?"

    Answer: "Vegetarian."

    Question: "What do you call those who eat only fruits?"

    Answer: "Fruitarian."

    Question: "What do you call those who also eat people?"

    Answer: "Humanitarian."

    Where I grew up in the Philippines, peanut butter was popular. I don't know if this is still the case, though.

    JE comments:  This gives the Humanities a whole new meaning!
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