[Ed. – YGBKM. (You gotta be kidding me.) A fun read; set aside a few extra minutes.]
[T]he problem, I would learn, was not limited to New York. In the fall, I was speaking with my mother, a longtime resident of suburban Chicago, and, as it often does, the conversation quickly turned to pasta. “Rachel,” my mother said gravely. “I haven’t been able to find bucatini anywhere at home. Do you have any in New York?”
My heart stopped.
“Mom, slow down. What are you telling me right now?” I asked, trying to keep my voice level. “I am telling you,” she said, “that I have not been able to find any bucatini in months.”
Rosario [Del Nero, of the National Pasta Association] said he’d get back to me when he’d done his own internal investigating — and he did, mere moments later.
“Rachel!” he roared. “I’ve touched closely to the reason. Because of the environment, people have been using bucatini as straws, instead of a plastic straw.”
“I’m sorry, what?” I asked.