There really is a story behind that attention-grabbing intro, and I'm going to share it with you. You're giddy, right? I knew it.
I went to the deli counter at the grocery store the other day to buy some chicken salad. I go through periods of time where I crave specific foods and eat them repeatedly until the mere sight of them makes me want to puke. Right now that food is chicken salad. Scoop it up with pita chips, and it is DE-LISH. You should really try it.
Anyway. This particular deli makes two different kinds of chicken salad - one has nuts and one doesn't. I don't like nuts in my chicken salad. I have weird texture issues when it comes to food, and nuts is second only to mushrooms on the gag-o-meter (okay, maybe third because olives are just as bad as mushrooms) if I unexpectedly find a piece where it doesn't belong - like among chicken and celery and mayonnaise.
I told the lady at the deli counter that I'd like some of the chicken salad that didn't have nuts, to which she replied, "You mean ammuns?"
"Ammuns. You don't like ammuns?"
Cheese and rice. I don't know if I like "ammuns" or not. And I don't really know why we are discussing it. All I know is that I don't want nuts in my chicken salad.
"Ummm, pardon? Ammuns?"
And then a lightbulb went off as I remembered a conversation I had with a mom that I chatted with on the kids' first day of school after moving here. I knew we'd be good friends when she told me this story. And we are.
Friend: "Has anyone asked if you like ammuns yet?"
Me: "No. I don't think so. Huh? What are ammuns?"
Friend: "You do know they grow a lot of nuts around here, right?"
Me: "I hear that about California. Hahaha!"
It's a wonder she still talks to me since I was brave (read: stupid) enough to crack ridiculous and possibly offensive jokes right out of the gate.
Friend: [insert obligatory chuckle] "Well, there are a lot of nut groves around here. When it's harvest time, there is this machine that grabs the trunk of the tree and shakes it, making all the nuts fall to the ground. So, a lot of people around here refer to almonds as "ammuns". You know, because they shake the 'L' out of them."
Get it? They shake the 'L' (hell) out of the almonds during harvest, rendering them amonds (sounds like "ammuns").
And that, my friends, is California humor. As well as your useless vocabulary lesson for the day.
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