Shouldn’t But Do: Act II Popcorn

The title of this post is a shout out to a blog that I loved – Shouldn’t But Do (and its companion, Should But Don’t).  Sadly, both blogs appear to have been abandoned by their creators.  If you’re out there, Andrea and Jeff, come back.  We miss you and all the things you shouldn’t but do.

I’m trying to be better about my eating.  Unlike many people’s January eating goals, it’s not a weight-conscious thing – I am one of those irritating people who can eat pretty much anything and not gain weight.  But this year I’m striving to eat real food more sustainably.

That means that Act II Butter Lovers popcorn is a big “shouldn’t but do.”

But you know what?  I’m not giving it up.  I don’t care that inhaling popcorn fumes gives you lung cancer. And I don’t care that the “butter” in the name bears no resemblance to actual butter.  I don’t care that I have to drive out of my way because they only carry it at a certain grocery store, that the ingredient list could be the first chapter of a novel, or that one bag contains more calories (and calories from fat – wow!) than my entire dinner.  Don’t bother suggesting an air popped, yeasted, buttered, salted alternative.  I’ve tried them and I’m not interested.

So why am I saying this?

Because I think we need to remember how attached we are to some things.  Yes, it would probably be better all around if I were to eat a different kind of popcorn.  But sometimes things end up meaning more to us than they actually are.

When I was little, my mom and I used to watch movies, drink lemonade and eat popcorn together.  This popcorn.  Never any other popcorn.  I remember riding in the cart at Price Club (now Costco) and watching her put the case Act II in the cart, always making sure it was the Butter Lovers kind.

And now, when I pop a bag of popcorn, I end up with this face staring up at me.  My cat loves popcorn, and she always comes to share it with me (read: steal it out of my hands).  College, cross-country road trips, first apartments, new cities, new jobs – my cat + popcorn = home.

popcorn cat

Making changes in your life can be hard, be it a thousand little changes or a couple of really big ones.  I don’t think there’s anything wrong with getting caught up in the momentum of change.  In fact, it’s awesome when you do!  But if you feel yourself dragging your heels or digging in on something, I think it’s alright to take a step back and reevaluate.  Sometimes it’s okay to pick something easier to change.  Someday I’ll probably give up my popcorn for a better alternative.  But today – and every day – I’m just doing my best.  And then I’m going to have a bag of popcorn.  And I’ll be okay with that.

I wrote this just as the news about Monsanto’s GMO corn causing organ failure in rats hit the internet.  I haven’t been able to figure out if my popcorn is Monsanto corn, but I’ve decided it doesn’t really matter.  I’m going to hold off on buying any more Act II until they figure the Monsanto thing out, which may mean that I’ll never buy it again.  (I’ll eat what I have, because I abhor wasting food more than I fear possible popcorn-induced organ failure.)

I decided to post this in spite of my change in opinion.  I think it’s a good example of how a little new information can change your perspective on something you were pretty darn sure about just minutes before.  Go figure.

16 Responses to Shouldn’t But Do: Act II Popcorn
  1. Sustainable Eats
    January 18, 2010 | 10:45 pm

    I loved this post and the editor’s commentary at the end. Nice job!

    Now, have you tried popping your non-gm corn in a ton of coconut oil and pouring on a ton of melted butter and sea salt? I know it’s emotionally not the same thing but maybe you could learn to love the one your with?

    • Jess
      January 19, 2010 | 11:49 am

      Thank you! :)

      I have not tried that. Actually, I’ve never done any cooking with coconut oil at all, but I’ve had several people recommend it recently. I bet that makes for a really different flavor! I will put it on my list of things to try after my last bag is gone. *sniff sniff*

  2. Shaunta Alburger
    January 19, 2010 | 4:47 pm

    My mom, my sister, my brother, and I used to ALWAYS have popcorn and lemonade when certain movies came on. Pipi Longstocking, anything with Shirley Temple, The Incredible Mr. Limpit, The Apple Dumpling Gang…it was the only time we could eat anywhere but the kitchen. My mom would put a big sheet on the floor for us and we’d have a movie picnic. For me it isn’t the kind of popcorn, but Kool-aid pink lemonade that stuck. I have one of those popcorn makers where you put in the oil and corn and set it on the stove, then turn the handle when it starts to pop. It’s at least as fast as microwave popcorn, and yummy.

    • Jess
      January 19, 2010 | 10:03 pm

      Ooh yes! I know Kool-aid pink lemonade. We were more a yellow lemonade family, but I went through a strawberry soda phase for a while. That stuff was so vibrantly pink! I still can’t believe I actually drank that in mass quantities. Do you know if your oil popper would work with coconut oil?

  3. Andrea
    January 23, 2010 | 2:15 pm

    Aw! We will. We were just talking about how we should restart this shit. (We are in a Project EVIE meeting right now and got sidetracked by this discussion.)

  4. Jeff
    January 23, 2010 | 2:16 pm

    Thanks for the shout out. Sitting around right now with Andrea talking about a possible Should But Don’t revival. I’m glad to see the meme live on.

  5. Jess
    January 26, 2010 | 5:12 pm

    Hi Jeff and Andrea – thanks for stopping by! I would love to see a revival of either/both, but from the looks of it, you have your hands full with Project EVIE. I can’t wait to follow the chronicle of your adventure!

  6. marcella
    February 13, 2010 | 11:40 am

    I am so with you on not wanting to give up everything. I’ve been telling myself that “balance” is important :-) How’s that for cheating? We got a very cool popcorn bowl at Target that goes in the microwave. Oil or not it works really great. Then we butter and salt or whatever to taste. At least you get microwave ease with the popcorn you want to eat.

    • Jess
      February 13, 2010 | 12:32 pm

      Amen to that! I know that if I try to give up everything at once, it won’t stick, so I still have my little shelf of holdout food! :) And if it makes you more likely to reach your final goal, it’s not cheating, right?

  7. [...] season food – none.  Bagged all my processed food, save for a small shelf of food refugees (my popcorn…).  Soaked [...]

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    May 9, 2013 | 7:55 pm

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  10. Nancy Lockhart Stone
    May 21, 2013 | 7:55 pm

    Hey popcorn lovers…hold on to your favorite popcorn Act II..don’t give up on your pleasures in life! My dad was at the roots of inventing microwave popcorn in the early 1970′s..he was the popcorn Golden Valley Foods specialist/chemist that assisted farmers in growing the proper popcorn seed. There was an Act I, but because Act insisted on the healthier oils they changed to healthier oils in Act II. Act II, now with Con Agra, will do everything possible to give you the safest product. I could eat an entire bag but I always share it with 2-3 people..our very large family has many fond memories of sharing all kinds of popcorn together and we will continue to do so!!

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    June 19, 2013 | 2:58 pm

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    February 22, 2014 | 12:02 pm

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    April 22, 2014 | 7:16 pm

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Shouldn’t But Do: Act II Popcorn

The title of this post is a shout out to a blog that I loved – Shouldn’t But Do (and its companion, Should But Don’t).  Sadly, both blogs appear to have been abandoned by their creators.  If you’re out there, Andrea and Jeff, come back.  We miss you and all the things you shouldn’t but do.

I’m trying to be better about my eating.  Unlike many people’s January eating goals, it’s not a weight-conscious thing – I am one of those irritating people who can eat pretty much anything and not gain weight.  But this year I’m striving to eat real food more sustainably.

That means that Act II Butter Lovers popcorn is a big “shouldn’t but do.”

But you know what?  I’m not giving it up.  I don’t care that inhaling popcorn fumes gives you lung cancer. And I don’t care that the “butter” in the name bears no resemblance to actual butter.  I don’t care that I have to drive out of my way because they only carry it at a certain grocery store, that the ingredient list could be the first chapter of a novel, or that one bag contains more calories (and calories from fat – wow!) than my entire dinner.  Don’t bother suggesting an air popped, yeasted, buttered, salted alternative.  I’ve tried them and I’m not interested.

So why am I saying this?

Because I think we need to remember how attached we are to some things.  Yes, it would probably be better all around if I were to eat a different kind of popcorn.  But sometimes things end up meaning more to us than they actually are.

When I was little, my mom and I used to watch movies, drink lemonade and eat popcorn together.  This popcorn.  Never any other popcorn.  I remember riding in the cart at Price Club (now Costco) and watching her put the case Act II in the cart, always making sure it was the Butter Lovers kind.

And now, when I pop a bag of popcorn, I end up with this face staring up at me.  My cat loves popcorn, and she always comes to share it with me (read: steal it out of my hands).  College, cross-country road trips, first apartments, new cities, new jobs – my cat + popcorn = home.

popcorn cat

Making changes in your life can be hard, be it a thousand little changes or a couple of really big ones.  I don’t think there’s anything wrong with getting caught up in the momentum of change.  In fact, it’s awesome when you do!  But if you feel yourself dragging your heels or digging in on something, I think it’s alright to take a step back and reevaluate.  Sometimes it’s okay to pick something easier to change.  Someday I’ll probably give up my popcorn for a better alternative.  But today – and every day – I’m just doing my best.  And then I’m going to have a bag of popcorn.  And I’ll be okay with that.

I wrote this just as the news about Monsanto’s GMO corn causing organ failure in rats hit the internet.  I haven’t been able to figure out if my popcorn is Monsanto corn, but I’ve decided it doesn’t really matter.  I’m going to hold off on buying any more Act II until they figure the Monsanto thing out, which may mean that I’ll never buy it again.  (I’ll eat what I have, because I abhor wasting food more than I fear possible popcorn-induced organ failure.)

I decided to post this in spite of my change in opinion.  I think it’s a good example of how a little new information can change your perspective on something you were pretty darn sure about just minutes before.  Go figure.

16 Responses to Shouldn’t But Do: Act II Popcorn
  1. Sustainable Eats
    January 18, 2010 | 10:45 pm

    I loved this post and the editor’s commentary at the end. Nice job!

    Now, have you tried popping your non-gm corn in a ton of coconut oil and pouring on a ton of melted butter and sea salt? I know it’s emotionally not the same thing but maybe you could learn to love the one your with?

    • Jess
      January 19, 2010 | 11:49 am

      Thank you! :)

      I have not tried that. Actually, I’ve never done any cooking with coconut oil at all, but I’ve had several people recommend it recently. I bet that makes for a really different flavor! I will put it on my list of things to try after my last bag is gone. *sniff sniff*

  2. Shaunta Alburger
    January 19, 2010 | 4:47 pm

    My mom, my sister, my brother, and I used to ALWAYS have popcorn and lemonade when certain movies came on. Pipi Longstocking, anything with Shirley Temple, The Incredible Mr. Limpit, The Apple Dumpling Gang…it was the only time we could eat anywhere but the kitchen. My mom would put a big sheet on the floor for us and we’d have a movie picnic. For me it isn’t the kind of popcorn, but Kool-aid pink lemonade that stuck. I have one of those popcorn makers where you put in the oil and corn and set it on the stove, then turn the handle when it starts to pop. It’s at least as fast as microwave popcorn, and yummy.

    • Jess
      January 19, 2010 | 10:03 pm

      Ooh yes! I know Kool-aid pink lemonade. We were more a yellow lemonade family, but I went through a strawberry soda phase for a while. That stuff was so vibrantly pink! I still can’t believe I actually drank that in mass quantities. Do you know if your oil popper would work with coconut oil?

  3. Andrea
    January 23, 2010 | 2:15 pm

    Aw! We will. We were just talking about how we should restart this shit. (We are in a Project EVIE meeting right now and got sidetracked by this discussion.)

  4. Jeff
    January 23, 2010 | 2:16 pm

    Thanks for the shout out. Sitting around right now with Andrea talking about a possible Should But Don’t revival. I’m glad to see the meme live on.

  5. Jess
    January 26, 2010 | 5:12 pm

    Hi Jeff and Andrea – thanks for stopping by! I would love to see a revival of either/both, but from the looks of it, you have your hands full with Project EVIE. I can’t wait to follow the chronicle of your adventure!

  6. marcella
    February 13, 2010 | 11:40 am

    I am so with you on not wanting to give up everything. I’ve been telling myself that “balance” is important :-) How’s that for cheating? We got a very cool popcorn bowl at Target that goes in the microwave. Oil or not it works really great. Then we butter and salt or whatever to taste. At least you get microwave ease with the popcorn you want to eat.

    • Jess
      February 13, 2010 | 12:32 pm

      Amen to that! I know that if I try to give up everything at once, it won’t stick, so I still have my little shelf of holdout food! :) And if it makes you more likely to reach your final goal, it’s not cheating, right?

  7. [...] season food – none.  Bagged all my processed food, save for a small shelf of food refugees (my popcorn…).  Soaked [...]

  8. post4063737
    May 9, 2013 | 7:55 pm

    Thanks for any other great article. The place else may anyone get that
    type of information in such a perfect manner of writing? I’ve a presentation next week, and I’m on the look for such information.
    post4063737 recently posted..post4063737
    post4063737 recently posted..post4063737

  9. Hi there just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The text in your content seem to be running off the screen in Safari.

    I’m not sure if this is a formatting issue or something to do with internet browser compatibility but I figured I’d post to let you know.
    The layout look great though! Hope you get the issue solved
    soon. Thanks
    Accelerate High Growth Business Training recently posted..Accelerate High Growth Business Training
    Accelerate High Growth Business Training recently posted..Accelerate High Growth Business Training

  10. Nancy Lockhart Stone
    May 21, 2013 | 7:55 pm

    Hey popcorn lovers…hold on to your favorite popcorn Act II..don’t give up on your pleasures in life! My dad was at the roots of inventing microwave popcorn in the early 1970′s..he was the popcorn Golden Valley Foods specialist/chemist that assisted farmers in growing the proper popcorn seed. There was an Act I, but because Act insisted on the healthier oils they changed to healthier oils in Act II. Act II, now with Con Agra, will do everything possible to give you the safest product. I could eat an entire bag but I always share it with 2-3 people..our very large family has many fond memories of sharing all kinds of popcorn together and we will continue to do so!!

  11. Deespuw.Tumblr.com
    June 19, 2013 | 2:58 pm

    Wow, that’s what I was seeking for, what a material! present here at this weblog, thanks admin of this website.
    Deespuw.Tumblr.com recently posted..Deespuw.Tumblr.com
    Deespuw.Tumblr.com recently posted..Deespuw.Tumblr.com

  12. College Apartments Boston
    February 22, 2014 | 12:02 pm

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    There’s a lot of people that I thinҡ would really appreciate youг content.
    Please let me know. Cheers
    College Apartments Boston recently posted..College Apartments Boston
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  13. oferta
    April 22, 2014 | 7:16 pm

    This is really interesting, You are a very skilled blogger.
    I’ve joined your feed and look forward to seeking more of
    your wonderful post. Also, I’ve shared your
    site in my social networks!
    oferta recently posted..oferta
    oferta recently posted..oferta

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