I have a reasonable fear of Pop Tarts. It is a fear born out of experience. One attacked me when I was in high school. No one threw it at me. It attacked on its own. I have not been able to enjoy them fully since that time.
One morning before school, I grabbed a Pop Tart from the cupboard. Actually, I grabbed a Meijer (off) brand toaster pastry, which is (to the best of my knowledge) actually made by Kellogg’s, so it was a Pop Tart in sheep’s clothing. I took said pastry and put it in the toaster, because it is called a toaster pastry, not a cold pastry. Toasting it magically takes it from bland and cardboardy into a delicious treat – a delicious treat I am afraid to enjoy.
The toaster popped the pastry up, and I grabbed one and put it on my plate. Then I grabbed the second one, but before it could be placed safely on my plate, it broke in half. Half went to the floor, which was okay, but the other half landed napalm side down right in the center of my hand right hand. I didn’t cry, but I did simultaneously get some dust in my eye, which caused it to well up with tears. Tears meant for cleansing dust from my eye, not meant for indicating sad emotions or pain. This half of the pasty hit the wall, as I flung it from my hand.
I immediately ran my hand under cold water, which was pointless. It only stung more. A blister appeared and grew to a quarter inch high off the palm of my hand, spanning over an inch in length. My mom, being the worrier, made me go to the doctor. The diagnosis was bad: I had a third degree burn. I went to school the next day, unable to do any upper body lifts in gym class. I showed my teacher the doctor’s note. He wanted to know what happened. I told him, and he laughed at me.
Between the emotional scarring of my gym teacher’s laughter and physical scarring of a fruit filling turned napalm applied to my hand, I have never been able to fully enjoy Pop Tarts since. I have tried, but my fear of burning is strong. I’ve tried eating them cold, but they taste awful that way. It is my burden to bare, and it is a difficult burden to carry. I see others enjoying their hot breakfast treats, and I smugly eat my granola bars, wondering what could have been.