Mint Chocolate Chip on a Cake Cone From Baskin Robbins


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If you were an ice cream flavor, you would be Mint Chocolate Chip on a cake cone from Baskin Robbins.

Why Baskin Robbins? Because I believe in real ice cream. Do not give me the “healthy” kind. Do not show off with liquid nitrogen. I want the brightly colored, artificially flavored ice cream that does not take itself too seriously. The kind that sophisticated fro-yo lovers look down upon and complicated Cold Stone lovers find unappealing.

The kind of ice cream you are.

And there you sit, some Mint Chocolate Chip ice cream in Baskin Robbins, surrounded by all the other artificially flavored options.

There are the bland flavors. Hidden among the others, they look nice, but their actual flavor offers nothing of substance. I mean, who really enjoys a scoop of Daiquiri Ice? It is nice to look at but lacks personality.

Then there is the opposite side of the spectrum, or the freezer if you will. Flavors like Cotton Candy or Wild 'N Reckless Sherbet. Oh how exciting they are to look at. While bright and colorful, nobody actually wants to eat them. They are just for admiring. Why? Because they scream a little too loudly and they try a little too hard. Because they are 90% food coloring and very-little-percent substance. Even I, with my love of the artificial, stay away from those flavors.

You are a perfect medium. You are a bright green, which is cool. Some people do not trust green. It makes them uneasy. Those people would suggest staying away from green ice cream.

Some people suggested I stay away from you.

Those people were probably thinking along the lines of Pistachio; they must not have known about Mint Chocolate Chip.

You see, everyone loves Mint Chocolate Chip, once they get to know it. It is the kind of ice cream you bring to a party. It is the kind of ice cream people like to have around. Those who have yet to try it, are pleasantly surprised once they do. It looks eccentric, but it is totally lovable. Moms go crazy for Mint Chocolate Chip, even if skeptical at first. Everybody loves it.

Everybody loves you.

I saw the Mint Chocolate Chip in the freezer one day at Baskin Robbins, and I needed to try it. I heard people talk about it.

I heard people talk about you.

I wanted it.

I wanted you.

I loved it the second it was handed to me. I felt lucky to hold it in my hand. I loved the way it looked on the cone; I loved the color of it. It had a flavor I had never tasted before.

I thought I would never need another scoop of ice cream as long as I lived. Mint Chocolate Chip was the one for me and it was perfect. The scoop was big. It lasted for a long time and despite the brain freeze, I did not slow down, even when I should have. I enjoyed every second of it.

I enjoyed every second of you.

But it did not last forever. I thought it might and I wanted it to, but it ran out. At some point, the empty cone in my hand had nothing left for me. It felt soggy and used. It begged me to throw it away and leave the store.

You begged me to throw what was left of you away and leave.

The cake cone was not for me. I think a part of me knew that the whole time. Afterall, I had asked the scooper guy for a sugar cone. He had given me a cake cone by mistake. And yet, I was so entranced by the Mint Chocolate Chip that I did not correct him. I ignored the fact that it was not what I wanted. While the ice cream had been more than enough, finishing it forced me to grapple with the remembrance that I did not really like cake cones. I prefered sugar.

Yet, I wanted the cake cone to work for me. I did not want to waste it. I had already paid for it, and it looked so good with the ice cream. It was the foundation of the scoop I enjoyed so much. If I loved the rest of the scoop, why could I not just make the cone work?

But it felt soggy. It wanted to be thrown away. Now that the ice cream was finished, the cone could not give me what I needed.

You told me that you could not give me what I needed.

With the ice cream gone and the cone thrown away, I left Baskin Robbins. The only thing left of my Mint Chocolate Chip ice cream was a bad aftertaste. I can still taste it now, 10 months later.

Sometimes I forget it is there; I put in a piece of gum and it disappears.

Sometimes the thought of you disappears.

But the gum always loses its flavor, then the aftertaste comes back again.

The thought of you always comes back again.

Occasionally I am reminded of you by a girl I know. Just when I think I am done with Mint Chocolate Chip ice cream, I see her, holding a scoop of it. She looks just as happy with it as I used to. I hate her for that. I wonder if one day she too will be left with an aftertaste similar to mine, or if she will enjoy her ice cream forever, in the ways I could not.

I wonder if she will enjoy you forever, in ways I could not.

The aftertaste is sour, but reminds me of something that was sweet. It reminds me of something green, eccentric, the life of every party. It reminds me of something I loved, something I was sure I would love forever. One day it will fade and for that I cannot wait... but also I can.

I still go to Baskin Robbins, but they are out of Mint Chocolate Chip. There will not be any for a while they say. Maybe they will be out forever. Sometimes I wonder if it will come back one day only for my craving to be gone. But I also cannot imagine turning it away.

But I do try. I try lots of different flavors. They are all fine, but they are not the same as Mint Chocolate Chip.

They are not the same as you.

Maybe one day, if it is an option, I will hold my Mint Chocolate Chip again. Maybe it will come on a sugar cone. Maybe then it will not ask to be thrown away.

Or perhaps by then I will be the one who is different. Perhaps at that point, a cake cone will fit perfectly within my idea of what I need.

That is what I hope for.

But, it is more likely that I will find another. In the 31 remaining flavors at Baskin Robbins I will find one I love just as much, maybe even more. And I will order it on a sugar cone, because a sugar cone makes more sense to me, and I will forget all about the Mint Chocolate Chip on the cake cone.

And I will forget all about you.
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