I hate food shopping. I think I choose boyfriends based on their ability to food shop, and so far I've been lucky. They've all loved to do it except for The Doctor Howard, who had housekeepers do it. When you're born you should automatically be assigned a housekeeper who food shops. I seriously think this was an oversight on God's part and I don't understand why I'm not in charge of things like this. Believe me, no one would take my name in vain.
I should have taken a camera with me this morning so someone could have snapped a photo of me lying in the aisle crying.
The problem is that I get bored eating the same foods over and over. One week I'll want German food and will eat sauerkraut, potatoes and black forest ham. Then I'm on to spicy shrimp sushi without so much as a backwards glance at German Week. I've been around the food track a zillion times and I keep landing back on START, because maybe you didn't know this but they do not invent new food. Ever.
THIS WOULD NOT HAVE HAPPENED IF I WAS IN CHARGE.
I can lay part of the problem squarely on the shoulders of my mother. (Who else?) Going to Europe every summer since I was 5, my sister and I were dropped into a lot of homes where people cooked food we'd never eaten before. Our mother explained that it's considered the height of rudeness to turn down food, especially since in many countries, they may not have a lot of money or resources and if we were in a village in Africa we were going to eat that gazelle OR ELSE. And when your mother says OR ELSE, well, you know what that means. Although based on our obesity rate, I don't think Americans turn down a lot of food. Anywhere.
As I got older I traveled more and ate fabulous exotic foods and was glad that my mother had opened me up to a level of sophistication I wouldn't have found just swapping Twinkies with classmates in Junior High.
Once my sister and I were in Marrakesh and were guests of a Moroccan emir. We were told in advance to honor the eating customs of the country because the host was part of the King's entourage. As brave as I am, I didn't know if I was up to eating something I didn't recognize that might still be alive and crunchy. We sat on the floor with the others and an enormous couscous in a huge wooden bowl was brought out. My sister and I looked for our silverware while everyone else used their right-hand fingers to eat, as is the custom in many cultures. We did the same.
My sister deviated from this plan one year because she had given up meat. So she brought a huge Chilean sea bass to her then boyfriend's house for dinner. On Thanksgiving. His parents had cooked a huge turkey and were insulted by my sister's gesture and the guy broke up with her two days later. One year I gave up dairy food (not realizing cheese and ice cream were in this category) and some old friends I hadn't seen in a while threw me a cocktail party and served French cheeses in honor of my background. I ate the cheese. They didn't break up with me. I went back to eating dairy food.
So this morning I was standing in aisle One million D wondering what I hadn't eaten in a long time and waiting for my eyebrows to fall off my face. One hair at a time.
And then it came to me. Scungilli.
End of chat.