Monday, September 1, 2008

Making Everything Better

On the way to work the other morning, I passed a semi-truck that was pulling out of the parking lot of the local Braums. For those that don't know, Braums is a chain of small ice cream and dairy stores that began in Oklahoma and now have locations in Missouri, Arkansas, Kansas, and Texas. According to my mom, it's one of the best ice creams ever. I tend to agree. Anyhow, as I passed this truck that had obviously been making a product delivery, I was caught by the slogan on the side panel.

"Braums Ice Cream Makes Everything Better"

Now, for those who aren't familiar with Braums, you aren't hearing the jingle in your head, but trust me ... it's one of those catchy, once it's there it's never leaving your head type of jingles. To simply read the slogan sets the jingle singing in my mind ... over and over and over and over.

So it was, after passing the truck and having the jingle solidly planted in my head, that I began to try and distract myself with other thoughts in order to push it out. No such luck ... not even the radio helped - it was time for the news. Unwillingly, at first, I gave into the thoughts and let my mind wander. Does Braums make everything better? Is it really Braums, or is it the ice cream that is creating the feelings of everything being better? Cause, over the years, I've eaten alot of different ice creams, in alot of different places.

There was the ice cream at our birthday parties growing up. Usually the Krogers store brand that was always kept handy in the gallon buckets in our deep freezer when we were young. Sweet and creamy, it would melt into the cake and make it soggy but it was always so good - especially with chocolate syrup and candy sprinkles and frosting from a birthday cake. The sugar high was a blast and probably the reason why cake and ice cream was the last thing on the agenda, so that friends were sent home with their parents before the frenzy truly began.

There was the ice cream at Swensons in Minnesota where my church youth group would congregate after church on Sunday nights. Amidst laughter and fun, shakes and mountains of flavored ice creams were shared as the weekend fun was rehashed and the coming week was anticpated. The garish red wall paper and the gleaming wood and brass of the tables and fixtures remain firmly in my mind, along with the gigantic bowl of flavors that was sat in front of me the last time I was there ... the night of my 17th birthday ... the night before I left Minnesota to move to Texas. Although the night of laughter and fun was bittersweet, the sharing of ice cream and memories was sweet and lasting.

When I was living in Austin, the nanny of a precocious infant/toddler/preschooler, of all the places one could go for ice cream, it was the Dairy Queen that was the best. During those years, nothing fancy was necessary. Simply a sunny afternoon, a child next to me in her car seat, (this was over twenty years ago folks), a trip to the park and a swirled cone of soft serve creamy goodness. Or a gloomy rainy day brightened by a child's laughter when the soft serve swirl was dipped in chocolate to give it a crunchy sweet crust. Who needed fancy dishes and gourmet toppings when they had moments like that to cherish?

Through the years ice cream seems to be a common thread for me, which is kinda funny considering when asked what I want especially for a dessert, it is usually the last thing I think of eating. Yet it fills those moments ... those memories ...

... the pink divinity ice cream that was from Byerlys in Minnesota only at Christmas time ...

... the mini ice cream sandwiches that are passed out at Broken Arrow's Rooster Days parade byt the employees of our local Blue Bell creamery ...

... the Ben & Jerry's that keeps me company during new episodes of Supernatural on Thursday nights (Season Four premieres September 18th on the CW - Woot!) ...

... the rich and creamy dish of Schwann's ice cream as I enjoy a quiet evening at my parents house, watching television and talkng ...

... and tells me that it doesn't really matter what brand of ice cream is being eaten. It's the company, the memory, the moment that is really the most important, the most wonderful part.

The ice cream just makes everything better.

4 comments:

raputathebuta said...

*sings* You scream, I scream, we all...CRAP! Now I want ice cream!

I haven't had ice cream in a long time, but it's DQ or Baskin Robbins if I'm getting it at the ice cream place. At the grocery store, I'll buy Haagen Daz Strawberry or Dulce de Leche. But my most favoritest flavor EVER is Ben & Jerry's Karamel Sutra. A little piece of Heaven right in my freezer! *swoons*

InkyOrchid said...

I'm craving ice-cream now.

Ace said...

Now I wish I could have some ice cream ... ;)

P.S. - I'm working on my half of the chat. I'm hoping to have it done by next week if my body's willing. Thank you for your prayers. :)

koosh said...

I've been thinking long and hard on this one, CR. I have only one clear and distinct memory of ice cream. It was at the Stinking Rose in Beverly Hills, served on fire, and filled with raw garlic. Hahaha. YUMMY! I don't really remember much about the decor though. Nor even who I was with. Not really. ;) I smelled like garlic for days...