Bento Boxes

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Those of you who know me probably have realized that I put next to no effort into making meals, unless I have guests. When I have guests, who knows what will happen.

Those of you who know me probably don't know, though, that I am actually pretty decently good at cooking. I just avoid it. It reminds me of domesticated women and staying at home while the hubby goes off to work and getting your 2500 hundred words in, etc.

Now I don't do much in the way of entres. I can cook a fancy dinner, a turkey, or pretty much anything that you can think of. I know next to nothing about spices. Well, meat spices. Parsley, sage, rosemary, thyme, and their ilk I don't really know what to do with. My grandmother's knowledge of meat spices consisted of "salt and pepper". And I still can't figure in my head how the others ought to add to meats. But I had a lot more practice at breads, scones, cookies of all sorts, and cakes. I actually made and decorated my dad's wedding cake, and with the proper tools, can do a nice job. Surprise, surprise, you know my secret.

I've been more and more made aware that my body loathes milk products. So much that, even though I used to really like milk and yogurt and cheese, now being presented with those things makes me want to be sick. Some days, I wonder if every sort of food makes me sick, it's so bad.

Every sort, that is, except asian food. Curry, sushi, chicken and rice, and the like. So when I *do* eat a normal meal, it's usually of that type. In the past year that's meant a lot of going out to eat, but that's financially non-sustainable for me. Even though it's been fun.

Of course, my grandmother would write off this trend as hipster-ism. But there's...something about it that doesn't fit. My favorite thing about making sushi is that it is such a slow process, especially if you're making for guests. It requires attention to detail, and a little bit of love, or OCD. It's genuinely fun to make. I adore having guests, and entertaining. And bringing out sushi to a room full of ravenous people is - well - immensely satisfying. It's like a good cup of tea. I never drink tea alone. When I make tea, I do it slowly and tediously, like a ritual.

Maybe it is just being trendy, trying to fit an image. After all, so long as I'm writing in English, that's all I ever do. Say the words, match the cliche. Include enough variation not to bore your audience via sentence structure, and diction. Watch anime, wear the dress from Nine West, pay the hairdresser in scads for the right look every two weeks. Be elegant and stylish, while retaining your own sense of self. Be just like everyone else, but in your own way. Dye your hair blue.

Do whatever it is that convinces your seratonin receptors that you're happy and fulfilled for the day. Then do that again tomorrow, with enough variation not to bore your id.

Tell me, will your creature comforts make you happy? Preparing your lunch in a Japanese Bento Box, to make it look Cute, in an OCD kind of way? Taking photos of flowers you have always liked, with the focal length and exposure just the way it ought to be? Will your creature comforts make you happy? Will your creature comforts make you happy? Will they?

No. They're all a source of hipster-ism. Trendiness. Trying to shout out to the world who you are through what you feel defines you. For me, it's elegance, simplicity. Clean lines. No patterns. Matching splines. Iambic pentameter. Rhymes. The perfect cadences. Discordance through resolution. Balancing trees in my head, and isomorphisms. Butterflies in the congo. Invisible gradient fields in the wind.

It's all merely comfort food for the soul.