Friday, July 23, 2010

My life as a river rat

For reasons unknown to me (but I presume it was an overriding sense of thriftiness), my dad hoards take-out packages of ketchup, soy sauce, pre-packaged plastic forks, and other random condiments. Without fail, every time we'd enjoy some White Castle and there remained a few extra salt or relish packs, he'd scoop them up, drop them in a bowl in our kitchen cabinets and proclaim, "Savin' it for float trip." It was a mantra around our house.
The items piled up and I could have traced the evolving McDonald's brand from our epic single-use packet supply. You see, as far as I can tell, my dad never went on a float trip (at least not in my memory. I'm pretty sure you can't get a Missouri driver's licence without having tubed down the Meramac, so he must have gone sometime.). I remember one time I used a packet of Arby sauce on a turkey sandwich on one of those good Hawaiian rolls at the lake. That's it, the only time I ever used the float trip supplies.

Now, in my own house, I've caught myself secreting away tiny honey packets from Popeye's and I may have once used Jimmy John's napkins when we had guests. But, I'm determined to keep my collection in check.

Each year, Hubs' fellow scientists plan a float trip down the Raccoon River. Like any good float trip, there's lots of food, lots of booze (Blue Moon comes in float trip friendly cans now!) and more rowdiness than you'd expect from donners of lab coats.

We float this weekend, so I've already got my condiments and sporks ready to go in a baggie in a baggie in a baggie and I'm ready to share the wealth. Want some BBQ sauce for your sandwich? Ranch for your carrot sticks? Napkin for the beer you spilled? Wet nap to wash your hands? Salt for your tequila shot? I've got it!

Who else has big weekend plans that include pawning off left-overs on friends? Or just big plans?


  1. Ahahaha!! We do this too, to the tune of two coffee cans full; one of ketchup/mustard/mayo/S&P, one with everything else. Things are so mashed in there that once in a while something bursts and we throw the can away and start over. Want duck sauce on your corndog while camping? Done! Glad we're not the only family :)

    ~Kelli @ Smidgens

  2. That's great! We keep a lot of ours, too. And it has come in handy when we've run out of condiments at various times. No ketchup? Honey, just dig in the basket inside the pantry and see what you find. And we were JUST on the Meramac over 4th of July weekend! It was lovely.

  3. Argh Matie! I sailed with your Dad on many a float trip, the Current, Huzah, Little Piney to name a all old salts know....ya can never have enough stuff for float it is always good to "save it for float trip"

    Capt'n Ralph


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