Teen is a vacuum, devouring every food particle in sight

Allergy season – and tissue-eating dogs – in full swing

Now that Junior is a teenager I have discovered that teen boys
do one thing really, really well. They can make food disappear in
Now that Junior is a teenager I have discovered that teen boys do one thing really, really well.

They can make food disappear in seconds.

Oh, sure, Junior and his friends have always been healthy eaters. But now that Junior is in high school, the amount of food consumed in our home is staggering. Sadly, it’s not like I wasn’t warned about this happening. I was. My husband used to tell tales of drinking entire cartons of milk after swim practice. And eating whole boxes of instant oatmeal for breakfast. And a honeydew melon at snack time.

But I totally dismissed that as exaggeration. Why wouldn’t I? I grew up with all sisters. It’s not like we were dainty little princesses or anything, but we didn’t eat like that. For Pete’s sake, only horses eat like that.

I’m not kidding. I go to Costco. I buy milk. I put one gallon in the kitchen fridge and one gallon in the garage fridge (yes, I have two refrigerators, which is akin to having a neon sign that flashes “teenage boy lives here”). Anyway, four days later, I go out to get the other gallon and it’s gone. Gone. It’s like a milk-napping has taken place.

But, no. My son drank it. All of it. Every single ounce. Oh sure, I had a couple drops in my coffee every morning. But Junior drank two gallons of milk in four days. How the heck does that happen? I don’t even know if it’s good for him. It’s gotten so bad, that when I buy milk, I don’t check the expiration date. Why bother? It’s gone long before it goes sour.

And before you ask, yes, I have told him to drink water. And he does. Tons of it. He carries a big thermos of ice and water to school every day so he can stay hydrated at school and practice. I’m telling you, the way this kid drinks, he should slosh when he walks.

Speaking of Costco, I can go to Costco, come back, unload the car and within 15 seconds every boy in the neighborhood is in my pantry, inhaling every granola bar, every cookie, every can of nuts and bag of chips I have purchased.

Seriously. How do these kids know when I go to Costco? Do they roam the neighborhood, looking for moms unloading minivans full of Costco-sized vats of chips and cookies? How do they know that a parent has just spent the equivalent of their college tuition and that they should now go to that house and devour all the goodies? Is there a secret boy network? A Facebook fan page? A Twitter alert?

And it’s not like it only happens at my house. They eat at every single home. Over summer, a gaggle of them would come to our place and Junior would say, “We had the best soup at so-and-so’s house.” And then all of them would make a sandwich and eat it. It was disgusting. If I ate that way, I’d look like the Titanic. But growing boys? They don’t gain an ounce.

Of course, it’s not just sandwiches or Costco goodies, either. I can go to LJB or the farmer’s market, purchase a bunch of fruit and it’s gone in minutes. Seriously. I barely have time to wash it, put it in the fruit bowl and it’s gone. If it weren’t for the fact that he still won’t eat squash, I would swear to you that an alien food inhaler had replaced my son with a nefarious plan to force us into food debt.

As for the fresh fruit from our yard, well, I think we had peaches this year. I saw them on the tree one day. The next day? The tree was empty.

There is an upside to all of this, though. I don’t have any more leftovers. Oh, there is the rare occasion when we have an odd leftover or two sitting in the fridge. But those are gone within hours of dinner. In fact, even right after a trip to the grocery store, my fridge is sparkling clean with nothing to eat but a few carrots and some salad dressing. And there is a boy with his head stuck inside it, saying, “Mom, why don’t we have anything to eat?”

Why indeed. And now if you will excuse me, I have to go to Costco. After all, I just bought milk three days ago.

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