A Florida woman named Adyan Sanchez was recently arrested for allegedly throwing a plate of tamales at her boyfriend after he called her a bad word. I was happy to hear about her arrest because she committed a very serious crime. No one should be able to get away with wasting a plate of tamales.
A tamale, as you probably know, is a Latin American dish consisting mainly of masa (a dough usually made of corn) and other fillings such as meats, vegetables and chilies, which are boiled or steamed in a leaf wrapper. Tamales are delicious. If my wife ever threw a plate of them at me, I’d do exactly what Sanchez’s boyfriend did: call 911. I’d want the police to come over and charge her with tamale abuse. Then I’d pick the tamales off the floor and devour them, even if the police accuse me of eating the evidence.
Thankfully my wife, Malathi, has great respect for food. In 10 years of marriage, I don’t think she has ever thrown any food at me, unless you count the times when I did the cooking. Actually, even when my culinary skills are lacking, Malathi has somehow resisted the temptation to throw food at me. Instead, she has been very encouraging: “It’s quite tasty, honey. I’m sure the dog will really appreciate it.”
Sanchez was upset at her boyfriend, Roberto Olvero, because he allegedly called her a B-word — and it wasn’t “beautiful.” According to a report at SmokingGun.com, Sanchez was particularly miffed because Olvero called her the B-word in front of their one-year-old son. So instead she showed the boy how Mommy showers Daddy with love, affection and tamale sauce.
When the police arrived, they found the sauce on Olvero’s pants and arrested Sanchez for “domestic battery,” even after she insisted that she hadn’t thrown any Duracells at Olvero. She was taken to jail, but later released after posting a bond of 500 tamales. (Actually, it was $500. I’m not sure if there were any tamales involved.)
Throwing food at a person is a crime — that’s why the cops booked Sanchez, even if her boyfriend wasn’t hurt. It’s important to put a stop to this behavior before things get worse. Today, Sanchez might throw a tamale at Olvero; tomorrow, it might be a taco or burrito. And before you know it, their poor son might have no food to eat.
Domestic abuse of any sort is wrong, of course, and just because food is involved doesn’t mean we should take it lightly. In fact, we should take it very seriously, because not only is it wasteful, people can get injured. That’s why I was very pleased to hear that the U.S. Senate voted in favor of the Food Safety Act. It’s important for every country to have laws that protect us from food.
You may think this is an isolated crime, but just a few months earlier, police in West Virginia charged 40-year-old Larry Lacy with domestic battery for allegedly throwing a piece of bologna at his wife, Angela. According to an article in the Charleston Daily Mail, the couple were having an argument during a cookout about disciplining their children, and Larry, apparently, decided to demonstrate the proper way to do it.
Angela, who was unhurt, didn’t want her husband to go to jail, so the cops asked him to spend a night away from home instead. If I were a cop, I would have gone one step further: I would have taken away all their bologna.
If my boss caught me eating it, I would have told him the truth: “You know me, sir. I’ll do anything to protect the public.”
Photo by April J. Gazmen
Melvin Durai’s humourous novel “Bala Takes the Plunge” is available at major bookstores in India and Sri Lanka or online at FlipKart, IndiaPlaza, FriendsofBooks or other sites. Read the latest reviews here.