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The Contaminated Canned Cranberry Caper

by Eva Pasco, author of "Underlying Notes" 

Eva Pasco - The Contaminated Canned Cranberry CaperJohnny Carson and Jack Webb's word twisted "The Copped Clean Copper Clapper Caper," taped on February 19,1968, culminated cleverly:   

Johnny Carson: One more thing. If I ever catch kleptomaniac Claude Cooper from Cleveland who copped my clean copper clappers from the closet...

Jack Webb: Yes?
Johnny Carson: I'll clobber him! 
Chortles and chuckles 

Just a year shy of the Sixties, on November 9, 1959 when I was an impressionable eight year old--The Contaminated Canned Cranberry Caper cowered me.  You see, the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare announced that some cranberries grown in Oregon and Washington State had been found contaminated with aminotriazole, a weed killer found to cause cancer in rats.  Since the origin of fresh or canned cranberries would be next to impossible to determine, he urged consumers to refrain from buying. As a result, cranberries were pulled from grocery shelves and sales dropped precipitously with Thanksgiving around the corner.  By Christmas, large quantities of cranberries were available bearing labels stating they had either been tested by the Food and Drug Administration or otherwise certified safe.  However, the "cranberry scare of 1959" caused such collateral damage, it took the cranberry industry many years to recover from the "crash."
Curses!  Too late for me, as I'd already eaten a sumptuous turkey dinner served with a helping of cranberry sauce for lunch at the Lincoln Community School cafeteria.  Paranoia rivaled the brouhaha stirred by the H1N1 pandemic!   

Crushed by the cresting catastrophic contaminated canned cranberry cancer caper, I crumpled and cried even though Cape Cod was the likely origin of cranberries in New England. The years crawled by. Still bogged by the contaminated canned cranberry caper--there's no cajoling or catering to me.  ...And if someone dares to spoon cranberry sauce anywhere near my sliced turkey on Thanksgiving--I'll conveniently clobber the culprit.

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Underlying Notes by Eva Pasco  An E. Quiche by Eva Pasco



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