It wasn’t until my children were  old enough not to choke on peanut butter that I realized that marshmallow Fluff is not a universal food. There was a golden Cape Cod summer when I discovered that Fluffernutter sandwiches — that’s peanut butter and Fluff, which my children preferred to jelly — were the perfect beach food (quick to prepare; no need for refrigeration), followed by a not-so-golden return to California. Our local grocery store, I soon discovered, did not carry Fluff! There was some marshmallow creme stuff (ripoff), but it was in the baking aisle, not next to the peanut butter, where all self-respecting egg-white/sucrose spreads hang out.

I didn’t buy it.

Since then, I have occasionally come across an occasional, puny jar of Fluff at some California grocery store or other, stuck among the corn syrups in the baking aisle or posing as a sundae topping near the freezer section — never next to the peanut butter, where it belongs. I don’t buy it, waiting instead till I get back to Cape Cod, where I can buy a big jar of Fluff to go with my favorite Pepperidge Farm Soft Oatmeal bread, which is even harder to find on the west coast.

Yes, I know that marshmallow is not an ideal lunch food. And is maybe not a food at all.

Yes, I know that sticky stuff draws sand.

For a few weeks every August, I don’t care. To me, Fluffernutter sandwiches taste like summer.