Once upon a time, I thought that a bowl of vanilla ice cream was a sad thing. I have always been sure those surveys naming vanilla as America’s favorite ice cream flavor were wrong. Could there really be people–and so many of them!–who would choose vanilla over chocolate?! Or strawberry or peach or coffee or caramel or mint chocolate chip or …. you get the idea.
But especially over chocolate. I have never understood choosing anything over chocolate.
That was before I became middle-aged, though, and suddenly foods that I’d ingested and digested quite happily all my life began to cause problems. Including chocolate. It took years, literally years, before I would finally acknowledge it, but chocolate triggers serious heartburn. And while I tried to convince myself that it was still worth it, eventually I had to come to terms with reality. Chocolate was not worth it.
If someone were to survey me about my favorite ice cream flavor, I’d still say chocolate. But I’ve exchanged chocolate for vanilla, and since I discovered Trader Joe’s French Vanilla, I don’t have any regrets. My criticism of vanilla ice cream has always been that it’s bland, even flavorless. But not the Trader Joe’s brand. This is a plain ice cream that still seems decadent. (As it should–it’s ridiculously high fat.) It’s pretty good even on its own–but how much better smothered with sea salt caramel sauce!
Although I sometimes miss variety as well as chocolate, it turns out that I do find it comforting to have the dessert decision already made. And maybe Richard Feynman and Dr. Sturgis from Young Sheldon are right: I could be saving myself at least a day and a half of life just by eating the same flavor of ice cream every night.
My theme for Slice of Life 2022 is finding inspiration in the writing of others. Each day I plan to find my slice in someone else’s words or forms. Today’s idea comes from A Food Prompt at Writing to Learn, Learning to Write.