The Frog Cup

The Frog Cup is one of my most beloved childhood possessions, and I tell its origin story in Ep.39 of the podcast.

(p.s. I love you, Mom)

“When I was a little girl, I really hated cow’s milk. But my mom, she loved the stuff. The creamier the better. And she’d been brought up learning about the food pyramid, had been persuaded by the dairy industry’s clever Milk It Does A Body Good marketing schtick that drinking milk was absolutely essential to healthy development.

And so, she devised a clever strategy to get me to drink more of it.

Savvy at ceramics, she made me my own special cup. It was dark blue, and she’d painted my name in all caps along one side. Inside the cup at the very bottom sat a tiny green ceramic frog. She’d carefully colored in its features with painstaking detail before baking it right into the bottom and adding a glazed finish.

My Frog Cup, as we called it, was reserved primarily for my daily dose of milk. She’d fill it up and pass it to me, reminding me to hold on with both hands, she’d say, “Ok now drink until you see the froggy!”

And with eyes crossed, staring down into the cup, I’d chug-a-lug to the bottom just to get a peek at him. It worked like a charm.

Now I’m not really one for sentimentality or nostalgia, but after countless moves and a never-ending obsession with decluttering, I still have my very special Frog Cup. It’s never once crossed my mind to get rid of it.

There’s something about that particular time in life and my mother’s industrious and loving desire to nourish me, that makes the Frog Cup one of my most treasured possessions from childhood. I’m so touched by the care and thoughtfulness she put into making it for me, fueled by a genuine desire to positively influence my health, my habits, and my choices.

It’s a beautiful story. And the Frog Cup is also a pretty excellent *and rather benign* example of how undue influence functions.”

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