This I Believe: Snow Cones

Feb 26, 2014

Alex Brosseau - Southeast High School
Credit courtesy of subject

I used to live right on the busiest street in the world. Maybe, I’m exaggerating a little bit, but it seemed pretty busy to me. Cars zoomed up and down the street, traveling around the world, and I wasn’t allowed to go past my block on my own, which now seems to be very logical, but at the time it seemed like the most ridiculous rule. On hot summer weeks when I was cooped up to my huge lawn and vast house, my sole escape was Snow Cone Tuesday.

Why do we have to slow down to enjoy life's spectacular things?

This little “snow shack” down the road from my house had a wonderful invention called Snow Cone Tuesday. Every Tuesday was buy one, get one free snow cones. Talk about an act of God! My brothers would recruit me as a little tike, and we’d all make a terrifyingly exhilarating expedition 6 blocks away. I’d jingle the quarters that had been bestowed upon me as we walked, and just consider the world of opportunities I had. Blue raspberry, cheesecake, or even the always-classic strawberry. I’d charge up to the coolest 16 year old I’d ever seen and demand the cone and impatiently dance as he slowly drizzled the syrup over the cup of ice.

I’d snatch the cone and shove it towards my face and in thirty seconds flat I’d be doubled in.  I’d fallen suspect to the terrible trap of the snow cone: brain freeze! Why do we have to slow down to enjoy life’s spectacular things? That’s the beauty of a snow cone, though. I refused to accept this concept, and still struggle with it on a daily basis, but spectacular things need to be enjoyed slowly. In a world where we can learn and forget something in the same five seconds, and jokes are only funny for a couple minutes, we forget to appreciate things Everyone wants it now. The snow cone doesn’t change like we do; it can’t be eaten any faster than it wants to be.

The snow cone has the beautiful side effect of brain freezes that make us stop and really enjoy it. That doesn’t feel like what it’s doing, but I believe that is the purpose of it. Brain freezes give us a moment to sit, with tears in your eyes, and just think for a moment on what you’re doing. The world would be a better place if things like intricate art, beautiful music, or a life changing essay all gave you a brain freeze: moment of pure admiration with a tinge of pain at what you’re experiencing. The power of a snow cone works past the whimsical childhood memories and continues to work it’s magic into your life.

I try to see the world more slowly, and learn to enjoy things in chapters. I don’t read a book in one night, or eat dinner in 3 minutes. Like the cliché that we all know too well, life isn’t a sprint but a marathon. There’s also something to do with roses. But today, I want to enjoy all the brain freezes I get.