Saturday, August 13, 2011

Spam, Wonderful Spam!

This week the Tumbleweeds visited the Spam museum in Austin Minnesota. We played Spam games, watched a Spam movie, ate some Spam samples, bought some Spam postcards and peed in a Spam bathroom.

As soon as we walked in the door we were greeted by a nice Minnesotan (love those big round vowels) who offered up samples of the gelatinous pink meat. Ever notice that food that has been cut into tiny little pieces and stabbed with toothpick always tastes good no matter what it is? Small foods must kick in our caveman brain neurons that light up and say "Not enough food. Need more. Give me now."

We learned all about how Spam single-handedly saved the Allies in World War II by providing the Vikings with much needed protein for their long journey across the ocean in their cool dragon headed boats. I may have some of my facts mixed up, all those nitrites turning my brain to jelly. Regardless, Spam will keep for years unrefrigerated and that is very handy during wartime. 

Did you know there was a Leif Erickson Day?
Those crazy birthers have been
looking in the wrong
direction; Obama is a Norwegian.

Anyway, Spam is great and everyone likes it, just ask them. They sell 13 flavors of Spam in America, but there are two flavors you can only buy at the museum and the country to which it is exported; garlic, which goes to Guam and Black Pepper which goes to Australia. I’m guessing they only say this so you’ll buy at least those flavors in the gift shop, but we didn’t fall for that trick. Yes we did.
Spam Facts:
There are two Spam factories in America and between them 44,000 cans of Spam are produced every hour.
The museum has a picture of Brett Favre wearing a Spam jersey and a milk mustache. There is no mention of milk in this picture, so I am just assuming it's milk mustache.

The Spam factory is not far from the museum, just around the corner, but it's a stark contrast to the shiny, happy, kitschy museum. The factory is a series of huge sprawling buildings that do not smell nice. No wonder, the slaughterhouse butchers 19,000 hogs a day

We saw several hog hauling trucks around Austin, but I'm sure those hogs were just being taken on a field trip to the museum. Right?

Pulling up 50lb crate of Spam to simulate loading
  a Viking ship. I pulled it a LOT higher
than the kid I pushed out of my way to get to it.

Hawaiians are so crazy for Spam that the Hamakua Nut Company makes Spam flavored macadamia nuts. The flavor is vegetable based so it's safe for vegetarians. All that Spam flavor without all the guilt!

Those crazy Britons are big fans of Spam too. Not only do they have Monty Python's Spamalot, they have a Spam Box, a recipe finalist in the 2010 Cook of the Year Contest. The directions for this concoction include the phrase "break the egg and drop it into your preferred cavity." Weird? Yes, but I don't think it warrants all that rioting.


  1. uh...i can't believe they sell that many cans of the stuff AN HOUR! and it even comes in FLAVORS!
    never have tried the stuff...just can't get past the look of it...
    mashed a can.

    BUT...thanks for tumbling into that museum and passing along ALL that spam info!! i doubt i'd have ever learned so much about that gelatinous...meat???....from anywhere else... :)
    OH! the postcards would be cool...

    keep on tumblin!

  2. Well, in my not-so-humble opinion SPAM needs to stay back in the WWII era where it belongs... I've never been able to stomach any canned meat ever since my parents & I drove/camped to Alaska & back in 1959, eating canned meat in the majority of our sandwiches. YUCK! They can keep the stuff!! The museum sounds like a lot of fun, however, and I can think of a ton of things to do with the postcards. By the way, how did the garlic & pepper SPAM taste - or where you merely doing some early Christmas shopping for some lucky friend or relative???

  3. That's weird. I thought I single-handedly saved the Allies in World War II.

  4. Laura, you probably never WANTED to learn so much about Spam! If you thinks the looks are bad, you ought to smell the factory, it practically turned me into a vegetarian!

    Ladybug, We haven't tried the Spam yet. We're saving up all the weird food we've collected and we'll have friends over and make them eat it. So far on the menu besides the Spam is, pickled quail eggs, pickled cactus and boiled peanuts (which I love, but our Wyoming friends think weird).

    Christian, Just remember the Viking motto; it's not delusional if you believe it.

  5. Even with your cheerful investigating, that is a tuff sell. I did see the caveman inuendoes though!

  6. Glen, I wonder how cavemen got their samples, I doubt they had toothpicks, maybe thye used porcupine quills! I'll bring you some Spam and you can try it for yourself. (I'll even furnish the toothpicks)!!

  7. Bigfoot is made entirely of spam! You know what I mean!

  8. Why, whatever do you mean? Although that does sound tasty.....


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