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The Right Flavoring by Dr. Juan Harrison

The Right Flavoring by Dr. Juan Harrison
  • PublishedFebruary 14, 2024

The other day my wife did her Wal-Mart pickup; I spent the next half hour or more unpacking the trunk and restocking the fridge and pantry. A bite of the grapes was almost like a mouthful of flavorless styrofoam. After several minutes of slicing and dicing a small watermelon, I took a bite before I closed the plastic container. Blah. It literally had zero flavor, unlike the one I picked up from Braum’s the other day. Another benefit from shopping in their produce section was to be able to do a quick taste test on two bags of red and white grapes. The white ones had far more sugar and overall flavor.

Some of you might have noticed recently that the government sent out notices to restaurants to reduce the level of salt in their food. I can live with that because I can add the salt myself. If it’s too salty, there’s no remedy. Still, I do love it when my lady friend cook puts out those turnip greens at South Main Café in Paris that taste like Mama’s. Throw on a little pepper sauce and you’re off to the races as you’re clutching your corn bread and slurping down those pinto beans.

People, marriages, workplaces all have a certain kind of atmosphere. If they’ve got the right mixture of personalities, it can be a fun place to spend 8 to 10 hours a day. If not, a day could seem like an eternity. Just like a good stew, seasoning is everything.

Some married folks are lucky or blessed to marry as kids and manage to find the right ingredients to make it last for 50-60 years. It’s different for each couple as they bring their own lifetime set of flavorings and ingredients to the pot. You stir them altogether and see what comes out. With the right amount of selflessness and some give and take, you can get an almost heaven on earth. Too much selfishness and demanding one’s way and you’re looking at an early exit or a miserable, flavorless, marriage that is more about enduring rather than endearing oneself to a partner and helpmate.

Life can be tough, at times, almost unbearable. What lets some relationships crash and burn or die a slow death while others around seem to flourish and can serve as a role model proving you can make it all depends on the right combination of seasoning and flavoring. Too much or too little of the things added to the mix can lead to a predictable end or a lingering death. The two chefs stirring the pot have to learn from practice how to get that winning combination to win the blue ribbon. Some give up too soon and throw out the baby with the bath water. Some spend a miserable lifetime together holding their noses and making faces with every bite. The price is worth it if you can persevere. Failure is not a good option. Hopefully, you were or have been a lucky chef instead of suffering in silence.

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