I have a confession to make: I love food.
Grocery shopping has always been the highlight of my week. Of course when I first moved out of Mom and Dad's house, my grocery shopping trips were a huge treat because that is literally all I would buy: treats. I went crazy buying every single thing my mom normally didn't have in stock: Cap 'N Crunch, chocolate milk, Asian noodle soups, potato chips, fancy cheeses, and frozen chicken nuggets. Then I would lug my goods home and promptly run out of food three days later because treats do not a meal make. This went on for about a month because I was stubbornly of the opinion that I AM AN ADULT AND ADULTS EAT WHATEVER WE WANT before realizing, I am an adult and I need to eat some mofo vegetables and fruit before I collapse from scurvy and/or mineral deficiencies.
I know how to cook and have known how to cook since I was a young teenager, so once my fridge was stocked with ingredients, I did get my cooking on. And the best part about this new phase in my grown up life? I always had leftovers for lunch, and I didn't have to grocery shop as much as I used to because real food lasts way longer than a bag of Mr. Christie's Rainbow Chip Cookies. Go figure.
But then Dan and I moved in together and for the first time in my life I had to deal with a picky eater. I don't know about anyone else out there, but my sisters and I were literally not allowed to be picky eaters. We had no allergies or special dietary considerations, so if we didn't eat what was cooked for us, we didn't eat. Simple as that. And today my sisters and I are generally not picky eaters; we will try most things people make for us, and decide from there if we like it. So imagine my utter confusion when I started making dinners for Dan and I, and he would examine the plate with squinted eyes and quiz me about the ingredients before taking a bite.
Dan was a picky eater!
Fact: picky eaters annoy the piss out of me. JUST TRY A BITE.
Anyhow, to be fair he wasn't nearly as bad as some picky eaters I've come across but I did have my moments where he'd be chewing a mouthful of something--with a furrow in his brow--and I would find myself gripping my dinner knife just a little more tightly than is considered psychologically sound. But as with all relationships we have found our groove, and these days there are rarely moments when there is something that Dan has a trepid distrust of eating.
Until last night.
On my last trip to the grocery store there were some heirloom baby tomatoes on sale, and I got positively giddy over these. Of course heirloom tomatoes are readily available at the Saturday morning farmer's market but people, I can't get up early enough to make it to that. Be serious. So when they showed up on the shelf of my grocery store I bought a glorious assortment with the plan to turn them into a simple tomato salad served alongside chicken and lemon potatoes.
As I was washing them up last night I thought that the colours of these little acidic fruits were so beautiful, and when jostled all together the tomatoes reminded me of jellybeans.
Such pretty little beans.
So I prepared the meal and we sat down to eat. As the meal wore on, I noticed a little collection of the purple tomatoes piling up at the corner of Dan's plate.
They're like gemstones.
"Sweets, why aren't you eating the purple tomatoes?"
Then Dan gave me a sheepish side-look before responding, "Because, they're purple. Tomatoes are supposed to be red."
"Are you for real? Have you even tried a bite?"
"But sweets, they're purple. They look like they're rotting."
"Dan, have you tried a bite?"
"You have to try a bite. You're thirty years old, this is crazy."
"Yes, seriously. It tastes exactly like the red ones."
Then Dan speared one purple tomato, took a deep, holding breath (the sort of breath one might take before changing a baby's diaper), squeezed his eyes tightly closed and quickly shoved that tomato in his mouth before starting to chew in a frenzied panic. I mean, with a production like that you'd think I'd asked him to eat a baby tarantula instead of a tomato.
"Alright," he gulped. "I ate one! I ate one! Do I have to eat the rest?"
It was impossible not to laugh. And now I know what somebody is getting in their stocking this year instead of an orange.