Since 1983 or 1984, my Two Guys Iodized Salt container has followed me wherever I have lived. I did not buy it at Urban Outfitters, although I have no doubt that, if they discovered such a marvel, they would promptly appropriate and reproduce it until even Andy Warhol would cry “Uncle!” In 1983, however, lacking access to marketing geniuses, we had to discover such things for ourselves.
Two Guys Salt was supplied in a regular order to the greasy spoon where my roommate was a short order cook. When I saw the container sitting next to the grill, as I sat waiting for my order of ridiculously cheap, fresh biscuits and gravy with potatoes (remember carbs?), I could hardly contain my delight. No one rolled their eyes (where I could see them, anyway) when I asked for a box, and my silly wish was granted. I don’t remember if we used up the salt before I cut off the top, put my colored pencils and exacto knife in it, and called it “cool.”
Whatever the qualities I first saw reflected in the humorous name and vintage label graphics, my feelings for this souvenir have matured to true love. Every time I have glanced at the red oval, imagining the wisenheimer who left their mark as “Two Guys,” I have inevitably imagined the girl who took home a box of salt, in her big winter coat, like a pearl beyond price. She had a good eye.