No Edamame for Me

Once upon a time, someone took the Wee Little Miss out for sushi. That someone was not me. The Wee Little Miss was hooked instantly, and has since dragged me very reluctantly to have sushi, to which I was very reluctantly hooked.

Recently, the Wee Little Miss and I decided to indulge and have lunch at a sushi restaurant. Now, mind you, I have only ever eaten sushi with the WLM. Not once have I ever snuck out to do this on my own, nor have I dragged The Hubbster to a sushi place. This is an experience that is exclusively a me-WLM thing. That should make it pretty clear that I’m not super experienced in these places.

Well, when we went this particular time, it was to a restaurant we had never been to before. At this place, they serve some kind of dumpling (which was delicious) and some edamame as appetizers. Except that we didn’t know these appetizers were coming to us. So, when the waitress brought them, it was quite a surprise.

If you’re unfamiliar with edamame, as I was, they are basically underripe soybeans still in the pod, which have been blanched and salted. They are eaten by sort of nibbling the pod open and ingesting just the bean from the inside of the pod.

Interesting fact: Edamame look exactly like sugar snap peas. Don’t believe me? Look.

Which is it? Edamame, or sugar snap peas?

Hint: this is the edamame. But you would never know that if you’d never seen edamame before or even been told that this was a thing that people eat, or how to eat them. I’m just saying.

Another Interesting fact: There are no instructions provided when you get edamame in a restaurant. Like, not even a warning, man. Come on.  I’m already reluctantly eating and enjoying raw fish. Warn a girl.

When the plate came out, the WLM saw dumplings and edamame, and knew what to do.

Know what I saw? I saw dumplings and sugar snap peas. Sure, that seemed weird, but no weirder than sushi seems to me. So, I dove in accordingly. I shoved half of that puppy in my mouth, took a solid bite, and began to chew. And chew, and chew. I’m sitting there thinking how awful it is, but I don’t want to be rude, so I keep chewing.

I then look up and see the WLM giving me the strangest look. She’s watching me, like she’s waiting for something to happen.

I shook my head and mentioned how gross it was. How it’s like chewing on a fuzzy stick. Gross.

At this point, the WLM, in true WLM fashion, says nothing and proceeds to demonstrate how to properly eat edamame. Apparently my way was wrong, and rather akin to eating corn with the husk.

How was I supposed to know that?! Nobody told me, especially the WLM. I told her I was relying upon her to help me know these things. She insists it is common knowledge. I disagree. Why serve me beans with husks and fuzz on them if I’m not supposed to eat it?

Come on.

Live and learn, I guess.



Did you know that when you learn new languages, it becomes more difficult to remember how to say things in your native language? It’s true.

For example: It is pretty common to, when learning a third language, substitute a word you can’t think of or don’t know for one from your second language.

Or… in my case, you just can’t speak coherently for the most part, in any language. I am a pretty good writer, and when it comes to being on the phone, I manage to function well. But what I’ve found is that the older I get, the more difficulty I have expressing myself accurately in English. This language barrier can become a problem, because everybody else in my household only speaks English.

I say all kinds of crazy things. Usually, my antics involve coming up with the word in other languages, talking like Ricky Ricardo, and then finishing with an incoherent string of English words that begin with the right letter but are not the right word, followed by my own version of sign language that probably makes no sense to anybody but me.

Take yesterday, for example. I was working diligently to tell The Wee Little Miss something about the toilet. (I have no idea what it was that was.) I couldn’t come up with “toilet” — I said a few words that started with the letter T, but was unable to manage the correct term.

The Wee Little Miss looked at me strangely. She eventually figured out what it was I was trying to say, and told me. Later on that night, I was trying to tell The Hubbster about the incident; clearly, when a linguist forgets how to use language, the linguist’s spouse should be notified just in case of … well, anything. Alzheimer’s, dementia, general dribbling out the ear of one’s brain, and so on. Well… I couldn’t remember what words I had used to say toilet. Like, at all.

I went and inquired of The Wee Little Miss what words I had substituted for the desired one. The following conversation is something I will never forget.

Me: “Hey, kiddo. What word did I use when I was trying to say ‘toilet’ earlier?”

WLM: “Tub.”

Me, knowing for sure that I had used more than one word besides “tub”: “T. Tuh. Toe?”

WLM, looking at me like I’ve finally, completely lost it, but also completely seriously: “No…….. tuuuuuuubbbbbb. TUBBBBB. TUUUUUUUBBBBB.”

My poor kid thought I had finally gone far enough off the deep end that I couldn’t figure out how to pronounce the word “tub”. It was like that scene in Monty Python’s Holy Grail when Bedivere, when trying to bully the old woman about finding a shrubbery, keeps saying “Nu” instead of “Ni”, and King Arthur instructs him on the proper pronunciation.

Poor thing. Nope, I’m not that out of it. Yet.