One of the quiet but long-held traditions in family homes is the communal spew bucket. You know the one – that single bucket or large bowl that was handed around the family for whenever someone was having a bit of a rough go and needed something to blow chunks in if they couldn’t make it from bed to the dunny. But can we please finally recognise that said barf-catcher was often a big plastic bowl that was also used for food preparation? Because that shit is nasty.
My family had a repurposed nappy washing bucket – complete with Humpty Dumpty on the front – for any at-home chunders, but it turns out that wasn’t the case for all families. Today I’ve found out that a heap of people used an oversized bowl that was traditionally also used for food. Popcorn, salads, cake batter, and regurgitating last night’s spaghetti dinner.
After finding out that multiple people at PEDESTRIAN.TV would blow chunks into a plastic bowl also used for food purposes (specifically a mint-green Tupperware bowl with a lip, for at least three people), I asked Twitter and it looks like we all have repressed memories of the communal Spew Bucket from our childhoods.
Several people vommed into bowls used for popcorn, which is just alarming and is now going to make me reconsider having popcorn at anyone’s house that isn’t straight from the bag.
its pure chaos but we used the popcorn bowl
— liam™ (@muchliam_) January 18, 2021
Popcorn bowl that has a pink marshmallow print
— Sophie Leahy ???? (@soph_leahy) January 19, 2021
had the big blue bowl that was also used for popcorn
— wheels (@wheelswordsmith) January 18, 2021
Some also used a bowl, but specifically a mixing bowl. Meaning that vomit was not the only wet substance to go in there, and yes my stomach is turning at the thought.
Mint green mixing bowl
— its me aisling (@aislina) January 18, 2021
Others used stainless steel bowls because – and I quote – the spew slid right out, making for easy cleanup.
One specific stainless steel bowl ???? bc the vomm just slid out easy
— Aimee Caitlin (@aimeecaitlin) January 19, 2021
Big metal salad bowl
— Kelsie (@Kelsie) January 18, 2021
My mum had a spare silver dog bowl looking back I think she hated me.
— Eittol Rose (@Eittolrose) January 18, 2021
And plenty of people had the shared experience of chucking up into an old ice cream container. Honestly, that feels like the least-terrible option here because it’s not like you’re gonna put ice cream back into the container, you know? The only other place that tub is going is the recycling bin or maybe as a scrap bin for the chooks.
2L home brand neapolitan ice cream tubs, like the law says
— Kirra O’Malley (@ohkirra) January 19, 2021
another vote for the ol’ 4L ice cream tub, but none of the fancy 1L tubs you get today
— Elliot Giakalis (@ElliotG78) January 19, 2021
Black and Gold vanilla ice cream tub, like normal.
— Peter Taggart (@petertaggart) January 19, 2021
I feel like it’s almost an Aussie rite of passage to have a puke in an old plastic ice cream container.
Alarmingly, there were at least TWO people who said that they were given a towel to vomit into as a kid, and they never realised it was not the kosher thing until they were living out of home.
We were only allowed to throw up on a towel.
— ????????Kat Ketchum???????? (@katketchumm) January 18, 2021
We were towel on the floor thrower upperers too. Only found out that was weird in my first share house.
— Cold in canberra (@trevrules) January 18, 2021
A towel. A TOWEL.
Finally, the wildcard – people who were just free-range chuckers. Just hurled wherever they pleased, and let everyone else deal with the fall out (and the stench).
Just put my arms out like an aeroplane and span around in the kitchen whilst letting the vomit fly. To be fair, I only managed to do this once…
— Troy Chandler (@leaveforthecup) January 19, 2021
At least we’re not all like this agent of chaos, though there was that one time I repainted the hallway.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned today, it’s that spending a couple of hours talking about repressed vomit memories and the family spew bucket does very little but make me feel deeply unwell.