Jason Offutt

December 8, 2017 – Everyone is wrong. Not about everything, of course. No one can be wrong about everything except Cleveland Browns fans and people who spell theater with an “re.”

I came to this conclusion because of a hot dog.

The hot dog was invented in Frankfurt, Germany, in 1484. However, the city of Vienna, Austria, claims those jerks in Frankfurt stole their idea and Vienna is the actual birthplace of what they call the “wienerwurst.”

I’d feel silly ordering a wienerwurst, so I’m siding with the Frankfurter.

This means the people of Vienna, a city of 1.767 million, are wrong. I’m OK with that. However, the origin of the hot dog isn’t what bothers me, it’s what people choose to top it with that does.

Mustard is the most popular hot dog topping in the United States, as it should be. Ketchup is a close second and I don’t understand why.

Ketchup began as the Chinese sauce kê-tsiap made from fermented fish. It wasn’t until Philadelphia horticulturalist James Mease added tomatoes and brandy to the mess in 1812 that we had something close to today’s ketchup.

And it’s ketchup, not catsup. The spelling catsup is not only wrong, it violates my right not to be annoyed by people who can’t put letters together correctly.

In a social media debate I initiated about which condiment is preferable, one person posted “only communists don’t put ketchup on their hotdogs.” This is wrong in three ways. Communism as a socioeconomic structure is against the natural order of things, hot dog is two words and modern ketchup is a vile concoction of tomato paste, high fructose corn syrup, vinegar, salt and sadness.

I don’t eat ketchup because I’m a grown man.

Other things that are wrong:

• People who can’t operate a four-way stop. Those who can’t handle the pressure of taking turns shouldn’t be allowed to drive or operate a piece of equipment larger than a waffle iron. If this also includes people who can’t park a car between two simple lines, the waffle iron is probably still too much.

• People who are convinced pineapple shouldn’t go on pizza. This is not only wrong, it is an insult to people with taste buds more developed than a 12-year-old’s.

• Which brings me to foods adults should never eat. Boxed macaroni and cheese, which is as close to macaroni and cheese as Totino’s products are to pizza. Don’t eat those either. Also, fast food should be avoided because it is neither fast, nor food.

• People who pronounce “aunt” “AH-NT.” You’re not the Queen of England and your aunt farts.

• People who eat steak well done and people who use steak sauce. Both are wrong and disrespectful to the bovine that gave its life for your nourishment.

• People who text while driving. This is not only wrong, it is stupid.

• Peeps. Wrong on all levels.

For anyone who thinks I may be wrong in my pronouncements, just because you believe something doesn’t mean you’re right – and you probably put ketchup on hot dogs.

Jason’s newest novel, “Bad Day for the Apocalypse,” is available at jasonoffutt.com.

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