Q: Do you ever eat (or feel compelled to eat) something that "isn't food"?

responses to Fujichia Questionnaire #1


Shigeru Mizuki

My only clear memory of my grandfather was him telling me the story of being at a restaurant and at the next table over was a man sitting alone who ordered so much food that it filled the table. When more food showed up the waiter didn't know what to do. The man said "put it there" and pointed to the floor. There's no real punchline but the story ended with my grandfather telling me "that was the age of the great eaters". My grandfather was a big guy and he said this last point with a sort of pride, in the same way you'd say "that's when they really knew how to build them [cathedrals]". He never elaborated on The Age Of The Great Eaters but it really fired my imagination as a kid, and now I love stories about prodigeous or unusual eaters-- the joyous, the ghoulish, and the gastronauts.

Personally I have an urge to chew on weird stuff (sticks) and taste weird stuff (rocks) but no pressing desire to eat weird stuff. That said I licked a little bit of battery acid once because I thought it was Sprite (that somehow got spilled inside a Casio keyboard).

- Jacob

Yes, absolutely. I want to eat foam, leaves (esp when they have that juicy Land Before Time look about them), books, and candles. Besides leaves I have not indulged this fancy.

- Caity

I regularly eat the cupcake/muffin paper post-cupcake/muffin.

- Chris Brown

most recently a strong, strong desire to drink ink water after using opaque white ink. the center of the brain that fires "eat it" messages when prompted by things that look good is wrestled by the equally strong center of the brain that says "it's gonna be terrible". in the meantime, i enjoy the back and forth.


texted a friend the other day if they knew anyone who had eaten a battery, to which they replied in the negative. i was hoping for an anecdote of someone feeling a strange new kind of energy before ejecting it back up or something. not much of a desire to try it myself.

- Chris

Gum sometimes. Package said it is not a low calorie food. :)

- Cobra Stepdad

The only thing i can think of right now is the stem of an apple, i like to chew on it until it’s gone. Some people say it’s not edible (yes it is?)

- Comet

Nick Curtin and I tasted antifreeze one time. Ive eaten too many weird non food things to really list. Lots of dog food when I worked at the dog food factory.

- Dan Wars

Constant desire to bite down on/lick red bricks. Intrigued by the earthy taste and the possibility of absorbing trace minerals and feeling the fragility of my teeth, otherwise one of my sturdiest external parts.

- Dean

Ate some dirt from Sun Ra's grave once. that was memorable. With my long time pal Brian Blomerth. His grave is just a little plaque that's hard to miss. Sonny something was his earth name. Now I live in the place he came to save the world "death's headquarters." Human life seems to have some resonance now and again.

- Dork Morph

the only thing i can think of is that wood shavings always smell really delicious to me but then i remembered that i like drinking pine tea so i guess it is kind of food? although not as a wood shaving! although i have read that people in various points of desperation have added wood shavings to bread dough to make up the difference if they didn’t access to a satisfactory amount of flour.

- Danni

Cotton plants look pretty good

- Dylan Going

years ago had a job working at a company that manufactured haunted house props. the owner was showing me around on my first day and when we got to the shipping & packing area he showed me these 6 ft high bags of packing peanuts. He picked one and quite gleefully said "check it out", then he ate one. he then said "it's cellulose! can you believe it? ha!" I didn't know why this was supposed to be funny or impressive but I politely laughed. now and again if I get a package in the mail and it's packed in those types of peanuts I have been known to try one and think to myself.. "it's cellulose, ha!"

- Fiendish Clutches

Sure yeah, the first flowers of springs, little grasses, pieces of crud mistaken for food.

- Flannery

I've had serious issues in my life of picking things up off of the ground or off of a floor and just eating it without thinking about it. Only seconds later, I think "Why did I do that?" and either continue to eat it or spit it out. I think the pandemic cured me of this. I've often wanted to bite into records but never have.

- G Harvester

i had a haribo thing, full bag every day after lunch break at work, keep it in my jacket pocket and eat it while i worked. i think that's definitely not food. I made myself quit cold turkey, no candy allowed. I can't eat a little bit of candy like that, whatever comes in the bag that's what i'm having. But I went to the dentist last week for the first time in 7 years last week and they told me i had very healthy teeth and no cavities and I celebrated with sour straws. but mostly candy ban has been in effect for a year or 2

- Jack Reese

i feel like i've only done this w/ paper, on occasion

- Jeff

Erasers, Chalk, Rubber bike-handles, Wood

- Jesse McManus

Sometimes when I'm feeding my neighbors cat I am compelled to try the wet food because it honestly smells really tasty.

- Julia G

Yes. I went through a weird time when mushy rained on newspaper seemed like it would be good. I’m not sure why because generally speaking I don’t like mushy or slimy things. Also anything that smells like peaches.

- Lauren

Resounding no. I was cutting pencil cactus with Jung once and I decided to taste the milky sap running from the cuts. It made my throat swell shut and sent me into a considerable panic. So no more fucking around for me.

- Mike Taylor

i love to chew on the melted wax from beeswax candles. sometimes it gets swallowed, can't help it!

- Mindy

Chalk? but that's what candy cigarettes and those Fun Dip sticks are for.

- ML

I nibble on grass and pine needles pretty regularly; yew needles are the real forbidden treat that I have tried enough to know that they're delicious but know they are toxic in large quantities and have accordingly sworn off. I'm often pretty tempted to take bites out of cups, especially very dainty teacups, and I also am weirdly drawn to different kinds of mineral samples, especially those thin slices of geode that you often see at fancy rock shops.

- Motel Chronicler


Grass, although I guess it is food to some.


I mean do twizzlers count?

- Nina

NB: that's still food but "compelled to eat twizzlers" is nonetheless pretty perverse. -ed

I've been a paper eater all my life and got into lots of trouble for it. then i worked in a paper store for like 5years and became a printmaker and i believe my paper mouthfeel knowledge helped

- O

Big fan of densely-rolled paper or cardstock. If I get a tootsie pop, I'm for sure going to consume the stick too, probably even if someone else is watching. As a kid I'd pull the subscription cards out of magazines and chew on the corners while I read. I also like to eat the tender part of a stalk of grass, hosta flowers (the end with the nectar), fresh tendrils on a wild grape vine, and any four (or more) leaf clovers I find.

- Sadie

I guess I chew on my toothbrush sometimes

- Sandy

when outside in the summer if there're wild chives growing I'm guaranteed gonna start eating them

good for eating an orange peel once in a while too

- Tom

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