Category Archives: Vignettes

The Baby

In lieu of a full entry, this holiday season I offer to you a report on a continuing phenomenon that I refer to only as “The Baby.” Recently I visited my hometown, and the grocery store there had the following display: A child stares directly at the camera with bright blue eyes while a woman, presumably the mother, nuzzles him or her.IMG_20151117_191701040.jpg

Presumably most of you noticed that while both of the original child’s eyes may very well have been blue, one appears to have been replaced with a hazel-colored eye, that of an adult woman and looking in a different direction. I did not have any explanation for this, except that it looks like the display may have been damaged, and the alternative eye may have been an attempted fix to the loss of the child’s original eye.

In any case, this correction was evidently deemed insufficient because the next time I visited, the child was wearing sunglasses to hide her mismatched eyes.

IMG_20151226_085149825.jpgThe child also sported some fancy new eyebrows to go with the sunglasses. I will continue to examine this display as I visit my hometown and report further changes.

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Vignettes: Indian Dessert

Since I don’t have much time some weekends right now while I struggle to get my oral preliminary exam in, in lieu of “Sam’s Blog Classic” where I repost entries from the old format of my blog, I will write new short entries that I will refer to as “Vignettes.” This week’s entry will be on Indian food, specifically Indian dessert.

Today I ate the most delicious Indian buffet I’d ever visited. Part of the buffet was a platter of small-serving desserts. The proprietors had clearly made efforts not to compromise the Indian-ness central to the establishment, evident in that not one of the desserts was remotely recognizable. There were three options for dessert: a brown pastry-like ball marinating in syrup, a small bowl of what looked like rehydrated bacon bits garnished with coconut, and a white pudding distinguishing itself from the vast array of white puddings in the world by being extra thin and lumpy.

My mother, who was visiting, tried one of the small round pastries and said that it tasted as sweet as it looked, which was far too sweet. When I went up to pick one I had a novel idea. I decided to ask what the items were. The waitress informed me that the white pudding was rice pudding, the bacon bits were made of carrot, not bacon, and the pastry ball was a donut. “You know what a donut is,” she chided.

I took the carrot dish and was pleased taste that it in fact was not excessively sweet. My mother pointed out it didn’t taste like much of anything and I realized that I was more enjoying the absence of sickly sweetness than the presence of any flavor at all.