The undersigned, dear reader, is a man who takes his food seriously. This much has become clear over columns of weeks gone by, and is by now positively banal. So much so, in fact, that you might be justified in wondering why this is a point that needs to be brought up at all.
And therein, dear reader, lies a tale.
Planning my day around my meals has been a daily and recurring endeavour for the past so many years. There are (and you’ll scarcely believe this) philistines who do it the other way around, but you and I, people of discerning tastes, know that is the wrong way to go about it.
First, we plan what we want to eat today and where, and then we figure out other tasks of a more mundane nature that can be done around our meals. Such as, say, a career.
Except for dinner. Dinner is out of my hands, for two reasons. First, I land up home fairly late in the evening, and the cook swings by at an earlier hour. Second, decision making about dinner has been taken out my hands, I suspect, because my menu choices revolve exclusively around meats. The redder the better.
Now, I know that vegetables must be consumed, and that they’re healthy for you and that they contain stuff that the body truly needs. It’s just too bad that the rest of the body and the tongue can’t see eye to eye on what needs must be eaten, but it’s fine. There are things that need to be eaten, and that is all there is to it. Except for one thing, dear reader.
The undersigned, otherwise a genial, easy going, tolerant, broad minded man, turns into a virulent tweet spraying, obscenity mouthing rabid freak upon sighting a particular item on the dinner menu: aloo gobi ki sabzi.
Why, in a universe otherwise so indescribably beautiful, did the creator choose to put a plate of aloo gobi ki sabzi? What was it about a hideously yellowish shade of yellow that appealed to our maker so?
And above all, why does humanity, with the capability now of sending a car to Mars, insist on eating aloo gobi ki sabzi for dinner?
There I am, pleasantly tired but positively famished, waiting at my own doorstep, thinking pleasant thoughts about the dinner that awaits me within. Probably won’t be mutton, I chuckle to myself, but find myself hoping for maybe some chicken, or perhaps a nice prawn curry. And in a few fateful moments, my life crumbles around me, as I find myself lifting the lids to, in succession, dal, chapati and – there it is – aloo gobi ki sabzi.
This is not, I plaintively tell my wife, not what we work for.
This is not, I add, the reward for a hard day’s work. It cannot be, I add (having built up a nice head of steam), what we live for. At which point I’m pointed in the general direction of a website that extols the benefit of cauliflower.
And that is why, far as I’m concerned, food delivery apps really ought to win the Nobel Peace Prize sometime soon. Piping hot food in 30 minutes flat, and much more importantly, no potatoes or cauliflower to be seen for miles.
Genius, if you ask me.
He doesn't expect the paradox to be resolved in his lifetime