Of course, sugar ‘floats’ to the bottom

— I love blueberries. This time of year, when they’re in season locally, I eat a pint a day. I pile them up in a cereal bowl, splash on some milk, and add a quick whoosh of sugar from the sugar bowl.

My children couldn’t understand why I liked them this way until I finally compelled them to try it. They liked it as well as I did. However, my youngest complained that she needed more sugar.

“You’ve got to be kidding,” I replied. “There’s plenty of sugar in there.”

“It’s all gone. Blueberries are sour,” she countered.

“No, no, they’re wonderful. Sometimes the sugar floats to the bottom. Use your spoon, it’s there.”

All three girls looked up at me, spoons suspended in mid-air.

“What, you don’t believe me? Try it. You’re not getting any more sugar. There’s enough on them already.”

They started to giggle, nudging each other.

“What’s so funny?” I asked, a bit hurt that they didn’t like my favorite summer treat.

“’Floats to the bottom,’ Mom? Floats? Get it?” I didn’t. They had to line it out for me.

Sugar, being denser than milk, of course sinks to the bottom. Ahhh. It was one of those humbling mom-moments that should make me take myself less seriously.

And yet, I don’t think I misrepresented my thought. True, the sugar doesn’t immediately go to the bottom or sink like a treasure chest slid off a sculled ship. And yet it gets there leisurely, lightly, bouncing off and around blueberries on the way. It drifts like a butterfly in a meadow of wildflowers. It floats.

This explanation made no headway with my children.

Nevertheless, I am firm in my conviction that many paths in life can be described opposite to the culturally normative way. It’s all in how you look at it. We “wrestle” with a thought. We “run” out of ideas. We “tackle” a project.

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