Monday, November 03, 2008

Scoville Units.

Part One:
Two little habanero plants have been growing in my garden all summer. As the garden gets little sun, they fruited late, and still even have blooms. I picked the biggest fruits still green, and dug up the biggest plant and potted it. I take it out in the sun on warm days, and bring it in at night. I’ve been joyfully watching one of the peppers slowly turn a beautiful yellow. When it was fully yellow, I was going to give it to my friend Alan.

Part Two:
I came in the office during Ryan’s lunch to catch up on email, per usual. As I was typing, I heard Ryan playing with a dinosaur, saying “Here’s your lunch now, eat your leaves!” (We’d been pantomiming feeding the dinosaur leaves.) Then I heard, “Mom, my lip hurts.” “Mom, my lip burns.””Mom, my lip REALLY burns!” One glance at my habanero plant showed that “Alan”, my prized pepper, was no longer on the plant. Wait a minute, NONE of the biggest fruits were on the plant! They were carefully lined up on the pot’s soil. And “Alan”, my prized pepper, was mushed up on the kitchen table. AGGGH! And PANIC!!!

Part Three:
1. Here’s the quote of the day: “Mom, why would God make such bad peppers?”, said amongst mucousy, Turbinado sugar-coated sniffles…

2. Factoid of the day:Yes, sugar does work best for quelling the heat, after we compared it to milk and water. (My experience has been that water can make it worse, actually.) It took about 20 minutes for his pain to entirely disspiate.

3. Lessons of the day:-Obviously, Ryan learned a BIG lesson today about not touching plants that he doesn’t know. -God convicted Mommy that she shouldn’t have put off the poison control classroom unit, as there is more to it than “Don’t touch bad chemicals”. Thank God, he didn’t get any of the oil in his eyes, and he remained as calm as possible. As Ryan put it without prodding, “I’ve learned a big, painful lesson.”

FYI: If this happens to you, or loved ones, grab the sugar and make a paste of it with a little water. Coat the affected areas with the sugar without agitating the area too much, which just moves the oil around. Be patient, and calm. I would assume you would need to call 911 if someone got this in their eyes, but flushing with water is definitely the initial approach.