I don’t like sushi.
It’s not about fish. Back in the day, this would have been an obvious deal breaker. I went years without consuming anything from the sea. My biggest issue is, well, I’ve had several varieties of fish as pets over my life. (I use the term “pets” loosely here.) I know what their water looks like after a couple of days. All filled with fish feces and whatnot. And that’s with me cleaning it on a somewhat regular basis. No one ever changes the water in the ocean. Or replaces the filter. It’s just a giant crockpot of feces stew.
It’s not about sushi being raw, either. Though, I’m not a big fan of raw food. There’s the whole “food poisoning” thing. I’m not really into that. I’m also not really into the feel, and thought, of Nemo wriggling down my throat. Plus, there are plenty of cooked options. One of my favorite includes tempura shrimp. Because of its deep-fried goodness in the middle. You could put just about anything in there and I’d eat it. Just don’t tell me what exactly it is. Give it a fun name and I’m good to go. Like calamari. Or unagi. Or onomatopoeia.
Some of my favorite sushi isn’t even really what most would consider traditional sushi. Last night at a work event for the PDC, we went to a sushi joint. For dinner we had a sushi roll that was filled with filet mignon (cooked quite nicely) topped with lobster. A little bite of heaven wrapped in seaweed.
No, my problem is in how you eat sushi. Chopsticks. Chopsticks are the bane of my existence. Perhaps I’m being a little melodramatic here. But I do not enjoy them. It’s not an inability to use them. I’m quite adept, really. One might even say a master. I’m not sure who that one would be, or what they would be basing their statement on. But I can manipulate all sorts of food into my mouth using the glorified toothpicks.
It goes back to my childhood. Do you remember when you were young and you would hear the magical song of the ice cream man as he made his way around the streets, bringing indescribably glee to the neighborhood children? You would run to your mom, asking for some change to purchase a frozen delight. Do you remember the little plastic cups filled with sherbet (or ice cream)? They would come packaged with those little wooden paddles to serve as spoons. I hated those things. Just thinking about it, I’m getting shivers down my spine. (Not unlike sticking your tongue to the top of a 9 volt battery.)
Chopsticks are the far Eastern cousins of those (evil) little wooden paddles. The texture as the coarse, fibrous wood drags across your tongue. Your teeth. Your lips. Your mouth distracted from the explosion of flavor that should be occurring. You can think of nothing but each tiny splinter making its way across countless nerve endings. You dread each bite more than the last. You want nothing more than the experience to end. You eat quickly to feel full just so you can put an end to the torture.
It’s not unlike licking a wooden spoon after making Kool-Aid. Or using a pencil that’s not sharp enough, so the wood scrapes the paper. Or erasing with no eraser, the metal cap scraping the paper. It’s an involuntary thing. And one of the few things that really, really bothers me.
You have no idea the amount of real, physical torment I putting myself through describing this.Make it stop.