Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

From the 50s and 60s to today . . .



Monday, August 12, 2013

Bridge. Mixed

Portion of a painting by George Hughes . . .
 My parents were having a Bridge party.
Something that was very popular in the Sixties.
The house had been cleaned, top to bottom until everything sparkled like a new penny.
I should mention here that I’ve always wondered why, when company was coming over, my Mom felt it necessary to clean absolutely every surface in our home.
Was she really expecting her guests to go wandering into the storage rooms or laundry room?
Were they actually going to notice the fingerprints on the downstairs bedroom wall?
But, already, I digress . . .
Several card tables had been set up in the front room.
Each with four chairs.
A deck of cards.
Pad of paper.
Pencil.
And the all-important, easily snitched from, dish of treats.
Usually mixed nuts.
Or (cue exciting music . . .) bridge mix.
Mmmmm.
Have you ever eaten bridge mix?
The chocolate-coated voyage to tasty yummy-ness?
It’s an adventure in itself.
There are mint, orange, and Irish crème flavored pieces coated in dark chocolate; peanuts, raisins, caramels, and Turkish delight in milk chocolate.
The adventure comes in finding one that you like.
Because some of them can fool you . . .
My favourites? The orange, Irish crème, peanuts and caramels.
The others? Ick.
At first, the only way to tell was by size and shape, but that can be deceiving. The raisins, for example, can fool you into thinking they’re peanuts.
Taste was the next option.
But Mom and Dad protested, sometimes violently, when they discovered treats with little nibbles taken out of the sides.
Then returned to the dish.
I know. Parents are weird.
But there was no way I was ever going to chance my taste buds coming into contact with something as icky as Turkish delight.
Or mint.
Raisins and I also have a history. (Seehere)
Finally, I came up with a solution.
If you squeezed the candies gently, they cracked just enough for you to get a glimpse of their soft centre.
If the colour denoted icky-ness, you could, by squeezing in the opposite direction, return them to their original shape.
Genius!
Caution: May contain icky pieces
We won’t go into the fact that we kids weren’t even supposed to be in the front room.
Let alone snitching from the candy dishes.
Moving on . . .
I don’t know if people still have bridge parties.
Judging by the cries of excitement or dismay that emanated from the room, they were an immense source of fun and dismay in equal parts.
Myself, I never learned to play the game.
But I do remember the treats.

20 comments:

  1. I was fascinated by bridge mix as a child. Good to see I was not the only one.

    (Your link re: the raisins is not working!)

    Pearl

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yep. We're obviously fascinated by small things . . . :)
      P.S. Fixed the link! Thanks!

      Delete
  2. I was raised on bridge mix, thanks to my mom. I love raisons, though, so I never had a problem with those. Come to think of it, I ate everything in bridge mix. Yum, lol.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Be less picky sure would have saved me time. And effort . . .

      Delete
  3. I used to buy bridge mix just for the three or four chocolate-coated rum-&-butter flavoured caramels in the bag. One year, as a teenager, I wandered into a candy store that had a bulk bin of ONLY rum-&-butter bridge mix nuggets -- I was in heaven! I'm still looking for that candy store again, I don't remember where it was. I must have forgotten after I regained consciousness from the sugar shock.

    Diane's Anonymous Closet-Rummy Husby-Figure

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Those perfect candy stores only appear once every hundred years. Like Brigadoon.

      Delete
  4. It was euchre parties for my folks and bridge mix and licorice allsorts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, I forgot the licorice allsorts!
      . . . and dishes of licorice allsorts.

      Delete
  5. Hopefully none of those cries of excitement or dismay arose from finding half-eaten bridge mix! hee hee ... A kid has to take her opportunities where she finds them :)

    Thinking back, the only chocolate I liked as a kid was the pure, unadulterated kind. Rosebuds. Jersey Milk chocolate bars. I haven't branched out much since then, either. The mold is set early, it seems!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hmm. A definite possibility. Who knew that nibbles would cause such consternation?! Adults definitely are weird.
      I love rosebuds! Now, I guess I could safely say that I love most anything chocolate. If you dipped a hubcap in chocolate, I'd eat it! :)

      Delete
  6. I can agree with you on the Turkish Delight part, but my wife loves them, so we share Bridge Mixture very well. When we were dating when I told her about raisins. She gave me a rather stern look.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hmm. I think there was a poem about that . . .
      And so betwixt the two of them they licked the platter clean!
      P.S. I've see that stern look. Brrrrr.

      Delete
  7. Genius route to scouting the enemy and retreating with hostages, undetected.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I know they still play canasat and majong. I don;t know about Bridge.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've never played Canasta, either. Always wanted to learn that. Do they serve treats then, too?

      Delete
  9. Oh! The treats for sure!

    Love you,
    Chris

    ReplyDelete
  10. I love mint and turkish delight! All the others too, but the caramel must be soft and the turkish delight of good quality. I've tasted the cheap stuff and it truly is ICK!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Consistency is everything. Definitely need soft and chewy.

      Delete

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