I watch him mix his coffee with packets of raw sugar. One, two, three … five.
“Do your parents use that much sugar?” I ask. I’m sitting across from him on the booth side of the table at a Federal Hill café.
It’s our only day off together. We just moved to Baltimore City’s “Duschville,” as Briston so often refers to this part of Fed Hill.
“Actually, my parents wouldn’t let me have hardly any sugar growing up,” he says, mixing his sweet addition with a spoon. “So now, I let myself have as much sugar as I want.”
This is true. I often catch him at his desk, playing online video games and eating from a bag of Sour Patch Kids or Whoppers or Twizzlers.
“I hated sugar as a kid,” I admit. He stops stirring.
“How do you hate sugar?”
“I don’t know. It just never appealed to me. Like Sweet Tarts and those awful pixie sticks everyone liked so much? It was just too much. I usually gave any candy I received in school to my brothers.”
“So what happened?” he asks with a smirk. I look down at my insulin pump, whom I refer to as Gizmo. Yeah, what happened?
Briston smiles because as much as I detested sugar as a kid, I cannot have it in the house now. I will consume an entire bag of Reese’s Pieces in two days.
Luckily, for Briston’s sake, I don’t like many of the candies he buys. But just a few weeks ago, M&M’s® came out with a Halloween edition: candy corn white chocolate candies.
Yuck, I thought, candy corn was terrible in its own right – who would want to emanate the flavor with chocolate?
But low and behold, the makers behind the new flavor astounded me. I couldn’t get enough of these so-called “candy corn M&M’s.” No, I don’t think they tasted anything like candy corn, just a savory combination of white chocolate and sugar.
I suggested Briston hide the bag from me – out of sight, out of mind. But on “tough” days when Briston wasn’t around, I found the bag and helped myself. I was able to stretch the M&M’s out to a week, justifying to myself that this would allow Briston enough time to his share of the bag.
Needless to say, I haven’t bought candy corn M&M’s since. What I can’t control, I avoid. If only I could say the same for my blood sugars.
“So what do you want to do for Halloween this year?” I ask Briston.
Empty bags of pumpkin spice-flavored Hershey’s Kisses pop into my head. I feel my insulin pump vibrating in my pocket.
Shush Gizmo, you have to do what I say now. Muah ha ha.