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OC and I frequently recycle the same conversation. Each time it has a slight variation. It always starts with my apparent curiosity. Today we were discussing maple syrup. The real stuff. OC is a New Englander, you know.

Me: [while pouring syrup on my waffle] My uncle called this, “tree blood.”

OC: Really it’s closer to lymph.

Me: [curious look] Lymphs?

OC: [bunches of scientific techno babble].

Me: Thanks, Hon. Good English. I understood every word.

OC: [laughing] Really?

Me: Oh, yeah. [I roll my eyes.]

OC: Not so much, huh?

Me: [shaking my head] Not so much.

OC: What did you get?

Me: [smiling] You want another waffle?

Quilly is the pseudonym of Charlene L. Amsden, who lives on The Big Island in Hawaii. When she is not hanging out with Amoeba, she is likely teaching or sewing. Or she could be cooking, taking photographs, or even writing. But if she's not doing any of that, she's probably on Facebook or tinkering with her blog.


  1. “Tree lymph”, milady. Not “lymphs”. And really. What part of xylem vessel elements, ray cells, and phloem sieve tubes don’t you understand? I mean, if you’re going to be a tree hugger, you gotta know what you’re hugging.


  2. Love — You know, I was okay with the thought of eating tree blood, but xylem vessel elements, ray cells, and phloem sieve tubes don’t sound all that yummy.

  3. OC — since living with you, yes! You tell me cinnamon no longer comes from real cinnamon trees, and artificial vanilla is a by-product of pulp and paper mills!

    Melli — Curves should clone this man to describe all of our food to us.

  4. Quilly – you’ve heard the line “one who likes sausage and respects the law shouldn’t watch either being made”? Well, don’t look too closely at that stuff in the supermarket. You might give up eating.

  5. I don’t think either blood or lymph are going to make me want a waffle. May I just think of the maple syrup as being a bit like boiled tree sap from a maple tree?

  6. But in terms of literary comparison… did William write “If you stab me, do I not still ooze lymph”? To a tree, the sap is its “life blood”. Even without a heart.

  7. Never read or hear the labels. The ingredients list will put you off every time. I’ll take a waffle.

  8. OC — I know what’s in my sausage, thanks. Those pig snouts, ears and tails can be pretty yummy with the right spices added.

    Morgan — Trees don’t have hearts?

    Nessa — waffles were gone about 5.5 hours before you showed up. Sorry.

    Bill — it was. Real. Just like the story said. I don’t make this stuff up, despite how surreal it sometimes seems.

  9. Knowing all the technical stuff doesn’t add to the general yummyness..

    I have to admit that I am happy to be in ignorance if something tastes good, its only when it’s bad i say ‘what the hell is in this????’

  10. Alastair — you and everyone else. It’s the nature of the beast, I’m afraid. We need to ascertain that which we don’t like to be certain never to pop it in our mouths again.

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