The Hiding Place


I’m a closet eater. Literally. Not much room in there, but I put that 20-year-old picnic basket to good use to keep my stash under cover. Go ahead, judge. I don’t care. Every hidden morsel is worth it.

I’m using my past as my excuse for my problem. Hey, everybody else does it. Mom used to bake wonderful things when Bruce and I were living at home. Lemon-glazed bundt cakes, peanut butter cookies with the little criss-crosses in the middle, blackberry cobbler, three-layer carrots cakes with cream cheese icing, and the best coffee cake on the planet, to name a few. Mmmm…they smelled great as their fresh aroma swirled around our heads. But that momentary dreamlike state was shattered when we realized the reason she cooked them was to take them to church. I think it was a ploy to keep us in church or get us to go back when we were not in the habit.

Oh sure, we had desserts for birthdays and holidays, and the occasional fluke when it was just because, but for the most part we saw the back end of many cakes go out that front door. And we’ve given her relentless grief for this travesty.

When she baked cookies, she concealed her treasures by shoving them to the back of the bottom kitchen cabinet where she kept the Tupperware or in the mysterious cabinet nearest the kitchen table, where nobody ever looked. She took extreme measures so Bruce could not indulge when he came in at the end of the day. I don't know where she hid the bigger baked goods, but she did have plenty of closet space. Thus, I learned from the best. And I’ve carried on the tradition.

“Why are there Ding Dongs in my sock drawer?” Flash was so naïve to the ways of wise parents.

“So the kids won’t eat them all.”

“But why are they in MY drawer?”

“Because they fit there.”

And so it went. Multiple hiding places over the years.

Now, it’s Flash I’m hiding them from.

“Got any chocolate?”

“Maybe,” I answer when I’m feeling like sharing.


“I’ll get it.”

Then I make my way to one of the four places where I keep my treats. One might argue this is why I’m in a weight-loss program. But whether they are concealed or not, I’m the one who chooses to partake. And, by the way, some of these are weight-friendly snacks. So there.

No, I’m not going to tell you the hiding places. Oh, wait, there are five hiding places.

What’s bad is when Flash finds my food and then puts the empty box back in there. Like I don’t know who plundered. Cowboy has no idea about my hobby, and the two older kids left the nest long ago.

“Flash, did you eat the last of the almond snack bars?”

“What snack bars?”

“The almond cranberry bars.”

“We have almond cranberry bars?”



“In the second drawer of my bedside table.”

Shoot, now I’ve got to change hiding places again. But he’s not being clever; he has no recollection of scrounging through that bedside table and eating the last almond cranberry bar.

When he takes his little sleeping pill at night, he gets hungry. You can clock it. About 20 minutes after popping his “stupid” pill, as I call it, you can hear loud rummaging in the kitchen as he prepares to graze.

He straps on that feed bag of chips and goes to town like Yankee Doodle’s pony. Sounds like a horse, too. “CRUNCH. CRUNCH. CRUNCH.” And so on, ad nauseum.

He often sleep-eats. I have more than one video capturing his chewing until he falls asleep with his hand in the veritable cookie jar. These home movies were requested by his loving mother-in-law when I told her how entertaining it is.

Oh, how many times did he ask the next day, “Where are the chips?”

“Are you serious?”

“Yeah, where did you put them?”

“Umm…nowhere. You put them in your stomach last night.”

“No I didn’t. I just had a few.”

“You finished five bags.”


“See film at 11 p. m.”

Why would I make it up? I’m not out to gaslight the guy; I’m just telling him like it is. Hence, he has no memory of his sleep-eating.

As his finding skills improve, I must move on to more sophisticated methods, such as the mini fridge I installed behind the fake medicine cabinet in the bathroom.

Hey, it’s a dog-eat-dog world out there (and in here), and this dog won’t go snackless. And if you’re kind to me, I’ll get some candy corn out of the clock on the mantle and share it with you.