If you grew up in South Africa (possibly also in the US and UK?) at the same time as I did, you'll remember the old Electrolux slogan: "Nothing sucks like Electrolux". Well, I have now conclusively proved this slogan wrong by discovering something that sucks a lot worse: losing.
Yup, the votes are in and counted and my story didn't win the Can You Twist short story competition. Do not pass Go. Do not collect R10,000. A thousand thank yous to those kind souls who did vote and to my cheerleaders who were so encouraging throughout the competition, but in the end those who did vote for me were outnumbered by those who didn't. Well done to Ragel whose story won, but I'd be lying through my teeth if I said I wasn't gutted.
In my depressed post-loss blog trawling I found this over at Andreea's blog and thought it might cheer me up. Nothing like some gratuitous list-making to brighten my mood…! Andrew of Very Good Taste has posted his totally subjective list of the 100 good, bad amd ugly things that every omnivore should try. He's asked other bloggers to do the same, so here goes mine. The rules are as follows:
1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.
4) Optional extra: Post a comment at Andrew's blog linking to your results.
My total is 58 and there are very few things on the listI absolutely won't eat (I don't like pain, so the phaal and scotch bonnets were immediately out!). Insects give me the heebies, and the jury is still out on fugu (is a fish realyl worth the risk of death??) and abalone. Abalone is now so endangered and expensive that abalone (or perlemoen) in South Africa is the target of an organised gang of professional criminals who think nothing of stripping the coastline bare and threatening or assaulting people who get in their way. South Africa suspended all abalone fishing in February of this year, so please don't eat any abalone in SA – it was definitely caught illegally. After much thought, abalone remains on the list but I would have to be very sure that it came from a farmed and sustainable source before I tucked in.
So – on to my list!
1. Venison – hell yeah!
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare (or my sister-in-law's Italian take on it, anyway)
5. Crocodile – and it really does taste like fatty chicken.
6. Black pudding
7. Cheese fondue
9. Borscht - delicious, despite my not liking beetroot
10. Baba ghanoush
13. PB&J sandwich - a school lunchbox standby
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns – possibly the best dim sum ever
20. Pistachio ice cream – the true test whether an ice cream shop is any good
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries – from hedgerows in Cornwall. Marvellous.
23. Foie gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn, or head cheese
Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper27. Dulce de leche
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl
33. Salted lassi
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a
fat cigar – half a point I guess
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O – aaaaah, university days…
40. Oxtail – of course!
41. Curried goat
Whole insects43. Phaal
44. Goat’s milk
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
47. Chicken tikka masala
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut – highly overrated in my opinion…
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal
57. Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV – God bless the Belgians
60. Carob chips
66. Frogs’ legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost, or brunost
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
79. Lapsang souchong
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict - and various riffs on the theme
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant – had the a la carte, but at least it was a three star. Half a point?
85. Kobe beef
90. Criollo chocolate
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee
If the list were mine, I would also have included:
– fresh buffalo mozzarella
– aged Parmigiano cheese
– bone marrow
So… what's your total?