when i was a kid, i chewed and swallowed a whole pack of that zebra fruit stripe gum. the big pack.
we were on vacation, i was maybe 6 years old. we visited my great aunt and uncle and they had apple trees. i ate one of those too. i did not know they had recently been sprayed with chemicals.
when we had been home for a day or two my stomach started hurting and by the third day i couldn't even be touched and my abdomen was seriously distended. i finally told my mom about the gum because i believed that a gum tree was going to grow inside of me and i was more scared of that than the trouble i imagined i might be in from swallowing the gum in the first place. i think somewhere inside my brain i was thinking about watermelon seeds growing watermelons inside of you if you swallowed them. so, a gum tree...naturally!
we went to the emergency room.
they pumped my stomach. they found these items: one large ball of gum and several moldy french fries.
the story goes that the chemicals from the apples stripped the lining of my stomach, food was not being digested properly and the gum wad was blocking food from exiting my stomach. it all sounds so far fetched now but that's the story i remember being told.
to this day i still have trouble eating apples and rarely chew gum. but i know for sure now that no gum tree would have grown in there. or would it?