Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Life is like a box of powdered bean paste

In the staff kitchen this morning . . .

Japanese teacher: “Sarah-sensei, would you like some chocolate?”

(Would I like some chocolate? Is the earth round? Is the sky blue? Of course I want chocolate! I want chocolate the way a seagull wants french fries.)

Me: “I’d love some chocolate!”

The Japanese teacher hands me a bag filled with small squares of chocolate wrapped in gold foil. I dip my hand into the bag and take one. I unwrap it and pop it in my mouth. My taste buds recoil in horror, “WTF? This isn’t chocolate!”

Japanese teacher: “Do you like it? It’s made from the powder of bean paste.”

Me: “Mmmm . . . [trying to think of a diplomatic way to describe this vile block of bean paste masquerading as chocolate] . . . it’s . . . sweet.”

It wasn’t a lie. It really was sweet. (It was also disgusting and tasted nothing like chocolate but I kept that to myself.) I just want to know why. Why ruin a perfectly good thing like chocolate by making it out of powdered bean paste?

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