Wednesday, 7 December 2005

You are what you eat

On TV: NHK's Project X, on the rebirth of the Takarazuka (宝塚) theater

On a rare occasion, I ate at home today. I forgot to set the alarm last night and woke up at 10h50, leaving the only time to have any kind of decent meal either right away or after 21h30. There just happened to be lots of vegetable leftovers, so I chose to have a quick brunch at home. After quickly digging up a tiny bit of everything I've wanted to eat for a long time, I ended up with this:
- stir-fried bean sprouts with bok choy (青梗菜) (there was very little bok choy left) with soy sauce
- stir-fried vegetarian chicken (素雞) with tiny shreds of chicken and pork (my mother's idea of "vegetarian" food) and shiitake mushroom
- stir-fried silver fish (しらす) with minced garlic
- steamed broccoli with sliced garlic
- soup from last night's hot pot (火鍋) with cabbage and tomato
- natto (納豆)
- cottage cheese
- plain yoghurt
- toast

I was in a big hurry, so all I was concerned with was making sure it would be enough to keep me going but not too much to give me a stomach ache. I put it all in a tray and took it to my room--I was running late and really had to be putting on make-up and eating at the same time. As I carried the tray back to my room, I realized how strange all of it looked together. They were all foods I love and nicely placed in pretty plates and bowls. I had pair of delicate-looking lacquer chopsticks and a shiny silver spoon to eat the food with, but the combination was so strange that I wasn't quite sure whether to think "yummy!" or "hmmm..." Thirteen hours later, I still don't know. I've always had problems with eating spaghetti with chopsticks, or eating rice with a fork but this was a completely new type of confusion.

There was Chinese, Western and Japanese food all in the same meal. It's not the fashionable fusion food that I usually love to try at restaurants and write about, it's homemade CONfusion!

Given that I chose all of these things without thinking, it says something about me--one foncused, cultural mess. Sometimes you truly are what you eat.

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