I’m Neurotic

Or maybe, if you know and love me, you’d just call it quirky. Semantics aside, I know this about myself. Over the last year or two I would even say that I’ve come to embrace this about myself. But today when several people from my new office went out to lunch together I had to grapple with a tough decision – how much of this do I show to these people whom I hope will respect me professionally and personally?

Now, I’ve eaten out with someone from work every day this week without incident – Monday was sandwiches, Tuesday was salads, Wednesday was Italian. The problem arose today when I was invited out for… sushi.

How do you explain all of the following food-related “rules” to someone who doesn’t know you?

  • No fish – except for sometimes white fish if it’s cooked correctly, crab if it’s mixed into something else like artichoke dip, or scallops.
  • No meat that looks like the animal it used to be, especially if it’s still on the bone – no ribs, no wings, no roasted chickens, no pork chops, no meat that’s “undercooked”.
  • Vegetables are complicated:
    • Cooked broccoli, yes. Raw broccoli, no.
    • Cooked carrots, no. Raw carrots, yes.
    • Cooked bell peppers, yes. Raw bell peppers, no.
    • Celery, no. 
    • Brussel sprouts, no.
    • Lettuce that has a normal looking leaf, yes. Lettuce with all those fancy lacy leaves, no. Spinach, no.
    • Black olives, yes. Any other olive, no.
    • Raw tomatoes, yes. Cooked tomatoes – unless they’re in some kind of sauce or soup and are so mushed up that they really don’t resemble solid tomatoes anymore – no. (ps, I know tomatoes are technically a fruit, but they seem to fit into this section.)
    • Cucumbers, yes. Pickles, no (I’ll nibble on one that came on the side of a sandwich sometimes, but I would never ask for just a pickle). Actually, I really don’t like anything pickled.
    • Dried vegetables, not really (i.e., sundried tomatoes). Dried fruit, yes.
  • Cheese, YES – except for any cheese that crumbles… except for feta, which is okay sometimes.
  • Breads of any kind under any circumstances, yes – except for rye… I really don’t like rye.
  • I don’t really love chocolate, which isn’t that weird, but people always act shocked… maybe because I’m a woman and women loving chocolate is a blatant stereotype that I can’t seem to get away from. I’d much prefer something savory.
  • Nuts are questionable:
    • Peanuts are okay if they’re in something, like Chinese food, or if they’re flavored somehow… like honey roasted or whatever.
    • Cashews and pistachios, yes.
    • Walnuts and pecans, no.
    • Almonds, sometimes.
  • Hot dogs from a baseball game or off a barbecue, yes. Hot dogs cooked at home in a pan or microwave, no. Sausage, bologna, pate and other mystery meat, no.
  • Lamb, no. Duck, no. Pork, sometimes.

I’m sure there are more (if you know me and can think of anything that I missed, let me know), but even with the list above there’s a lot of self-sensoring that may need to be done if I think my new coworkers aren’t ready for my neurosis…



Filed under the belly rules the mind

4 responses to “I’m Neurotic

  1. kb

    Wow! Yeah, you might want to keep that list to yourself for a couple months.

    I’m with you on the chocolate. It’s overrated.

  2. Sara

    I am obsessed with your vegetable break-down.

  3. Justin Renard

    Hey…I know you and I still found that list shocking. I feel as your loving boyfriend’s brother, who fancies himself eurotrash, it is my obligation to challenge you on these not so edible neuroses. If not just for your hilarious dead pan responses to my feeble attempts.

  4. Kristen

    You forgot all of the coffee and dairy rules other than cheese. Not to mention the lobster tail… :k

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