Issue 28

Posts From Michael Campbell

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Michael Campbell

Michael Campbell

Michael Campbell is a songwriter and humor essayist. His “Dumpster” column closes every issue of Food & Spirits magazine. He has authored two books, including Are You Going To Eat That? (2009), and Of Mice and Me (2017). He also has four albums of original songs. The latest, My Turn Now, was released in 2015. Learn more at michaelcampbellsongwriter.com.

The Dumpster: Party Time

“OOOOH, mints mints mints-mints-mints!” squealed the 40-ish lady in the frilly lavender dress. “I just love these wedding mints! I can’t stop eating them!” That was the truth. She devoured all the sugary green mints which had been carefully placed

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The Dumpster: You Are What You Eat

Some say you are what you eat. That’s fine, I get it: if you eat carrots, you feel good. If you eat a cheeseburger and waffle fries, you feel better. If you eat gluten-free paleo tofu, you feel like a

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The Dumpster: Into Thin Air

Me at the Buffalo County Fair, 1972: “Please can I have some cotton candy?” “No.” “Pleeeeeze? Pleeeaaaauuuuzzzhhh?” As if adding syllables would help. “No.” “I’ll never ask for any…” “Fine—just to shut you up. Here’s fifty cents. Get outta here.”

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The Dumpster: Coming Uncorked

Wine experts admit that screw-top bottles are easier and faster to open. They lament that the low-rent caps protect wine better than cork does. They don’t mind that the cheapest wines use screw caps, but they hate it when the

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The Dumpster: We’re Doomed, What’s for Dinner

Global Warming. Underwear Bombers. Gluten. Life feels precarious. I’ve gone beyond worrying about where my next meal is coming from to worrying whether I’ll make it to happy hour. To console myself, I make every meal a Last Supper. Not

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The Dumpster: Something Fishy Going On

My favorite place to go for seafood was a box of Mrs. Paul’s. Fish sticks were my favorite. Throughout my life I thought I loved seafood. It turns out what I love is tartar sauce and wine vinegar. Tartar sauce

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The Dumpster: Blow Me Away

The first time I witnessed a real breakthrough in the culinary arts was when a fistful of Pop Rocks exploded in my mouth. Not as in, “exploding with flavor!”; as in, blew up. Taste the Explosion!” the packaging exclaimed. I

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The Dumpster: Condimentary

I was 27 years old when I learned that ketchup doesn’t come with a refrigerator. Every fridge I had ever met had ketchup, mustard and pickles. I never met anyone who bought ketchup. My formative years had been spent living

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The Dumpster: It’s a Wrap

I bought a 16MB Flash card for my camera. The card itself is about the size of a Cheez-It. It was packaged in a little plastic box, which was wrapped in a four-inch plastic bubble, sealed in a plastic hanger

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The Dumpster: Un-American Food

We have been invaded. The Europeans snuck in and now all our signature foods are named after their home towns. Hamburger. Frankfurter. We call the latter a hot dog, but in our hearts we know the truth. A hot dog

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