Killing To-Die-For Food
I’d like to eat a butterfly.
Let’s be honest, if I wanted to have open and truthful conversations about myself, then I wouldn’t be sitting here writing a blog. So being nominated by *slurps (go there for tea with Odin the octopus, you’ll enjoy it) for a Liebster Award brought some difficulties for me.
As part of the nomination process, *slurps allowed me two options: answer a list of personal questions (what’s your favourite meal?, etc) or answer just one big question (If you had only one day left to live, where would you go and what would you do?). But my answers bored even me so much that I couldn’t see the value in inflicting them on others. However, the questions did get me thinking of another bastardised mutant mash-up of a question.
What would you eat if there were no consequences to it?
I don’t just mean eating loads of chocolate or chips if you weren’t going to get fat or sick from it. What I mean is, is there something that you’ve always wondered about how it tastes but that you can’t eat, like … music, or light, or a cloud, or the colour blue, or stripes, or sadness, or a memory? Or is there something more material that you would eat if it wasn’t going to hurt or do damage, like a lightbulb or a dvd or a ship?
Or is there a thing that can be eaten but that you’re never going to eat in real life?
Everyone’s got different cut-off points about eating things. Most of us discount the potential pain of plants when considering food but then have very vague rationales behind what animals we will and won’t eat. (I have blogged before here about the moral awkwardness of eating a chicken sandwich while watching birds eat). I’m generally against the idea of eating horse but I once had a casserole that was gorgeous and only found out afterwards that it was horsemeat. So I know that there are things that I don’t want to eat out of confused principles which are, nonetheless, possibly gorgeous to taste.
But if I could eat something and not have to worry about the consequences, eat it as if it was only happening in a dream and would not result in harm to either the creature or myself, then I would eat … a butterfly.
Not SO strange, you may think. After all, insects are eaten across the world in many forms, it’s really only cultural traditions and financial considerations that prevent some western societies from snacking down on deep-fried little-things. (For some odd reason, prawns have fallen through the crack of those sensitivities despite looking like slugs that have been skinned by a particularly depraved serial-killer).
And you might even accept that the majesty of a butterfly does indeed create an enticing prospect, were colour and pattern in some way to be transposed into taste.
And then there’s the fact that I am a butter-fiend. As a kid, I would take a pound of butter from the fridge, grab a knife from the drawer, and wander round lopping off chunks of butter and popping them into my gob and letting them melt there. (I could eat half-a-pound in one go). So the implied notion of the buttery-ness of butterflies has always had an appeal*.
So far, a lot of you might be thinking why not do it, if only the once? It’s only one small butterfly and I squash flies and eat meat anyway so, what the hell, it’s not that much of a moral leap and it probably won’t kill me.
But here’s the kicker. …
When I imagine this delectable combination of colour and beauty, there’s one more detail …
… the butterfly is still alive.
You see I want to imagine the buttery beauty fluttering around inside my mouth, as if delivering the colourfully creamy sensations to different spots in a random and tickly manner.
And, bad and all as I am to be an insect-squashing carnivore, eating some beautiful defenceless thing ALIVE is just a step too far for me.
But I can still dream of tasting the beauty.
And this is why you shouldn’t ask bloggers questions about themselves. But apparently the tradition of the Liebster Award is to take the opportunity of your nomination to in turn nominate some other bloggers whose work you enjoy, particularly bloggers who are relatively new to the blogosphere.
So I’m not sure if these good people would like to be associated with someone who wants to eat live butterflies, but you should check them out anyway and, if they don’t object, I am nominating:
She didn’t have any of her brilliant cartoon-drawings in her last post but we’ll presume that was a one-off aberration and forgive her for now. From ‘sub vaginas’ to ‘old-woman cats’ in one week, she’s not new to the blogosphere or in need of awards but this is one of the best things on the internet so have a look.
“I am here”, she says, in small letters. And, sure enough, there she is. A wonderfully mordant wit with a taste for the ghoulish and a vocabulary to die for. As dora puts it: “and i digress. extremely.”
The Griff makes a wonderful, if ultimately doomed, attempt to keep me abreast of what happens in young people’s lives – gaming, graphic novels, music, drugs and orgies (I may have made up the last two but it’s still good). More big words here too.
Barbara makes a wonderful, if also ultimately doomed, attempt to keep me fed on more than just crisps and butter.
And in the tradition of the nominating process – but as adapted by *slurps and further mangled by me – perhaps the nominees would answer one or both of our two questions:
If you had only one day left to live, where would you go and what would you do?
What would you eat if it was possible and there were no consequences?
Or make up an even better question that forces you, like me, to reveal things about yourself that will probably lose you followers, gain you haters, and possibly get you arrested.
*Apparently, butterflies – or at least one kind of them – taste like dried toast. See here for the scientific research by Esther Inglis-Arkell in io9.
Image thanks: Blue butterfly by Gregory Phillips, red by Richard Bartz, others by charlesjsharp. Award backdrop from Club Penguin