Thursday, March 10, 2016

"Life Is Like an Onion....."

So I was listening to Riida Ohno's radio show Arashi Discovery this morning, and a listener sent in an interesting Carl Sandberg quote  that ultimately had Riida ruminating about pork miso soup.

"Life is like an onion. You peel it off one layer at a time,
and sometimes you weep."

The original idea that Riida was talking about became something else entirely; that's something you kinda expect from him--he's an original thinker.  His 5-minute radio show is often one of the highlights of my day but I couldn't enjoy it at all if it weren't for the fan who uploads and translates; thank you, twosen (any quotes I use today are to twosen's credit).

Riida, it seems, does NOT like ninjin (carrots) and I can kinda relate.  Carrots have been off my happy list generally for years but I still use them, though (for the betacarotene and all that).  And he doesn't like big chunks of food in soup.  I kinda do because I want to know what's in there and also because I can be a bit lazy about chopping.  (Not as bad as my mother, though, who was known to put entire potatoes and carrots in stew just because she didn't care to cut them up.)  But one soup where I do cut veggies very small is my Golden Potato Soup, and I had been intending to make some a couple of weeks ago.

Cooking has been next to impossible while I've been ill.  The one time I really tried to make something, the results were so dreadful that I had to throw all of it out, take the trash out immediately, and seriously air spray the house.  Plus I think I wrecked my small skillet.  It was not a worthy attempt.  And, anyway, I just didn't want to eat because I was coughing so hard.  All I could do was survive on small bits of stuff that didn't want cooking, and that meant that I ignored some food items that should have been used up.

So, yeah, I abandoned the carrots on top of the fridge because there was no room inside.  That would have been okay if I had gotten to them sooner but when I checked today they were in bad shape.  And I checked on those carrots because Riida talking about pork miso soup made me think of Golden Potato Soup.

Now I had never heard of potato soup of any kind until my family wound up in Texas when I was eight years old.  I was really very ill that spring.  (It was one of my many immune system illnesses--we just didn't know what that stuff was back then; everybody simply thought I was a sickly kid but no one questioned why I was often ill.  I still believe that someone medical in one of the many states we lived in should have figured out, at the very least, that the real reason I couldn't do PE was that I had asthma and scoliosis and not that I was merely lazy.  Folks, I could NOT breathe!  Little wonder I couldn't move around.) 

I remember that kind Texas neighbor who made potato soup for me saying something like, "Put you lots of fresh ground pepper in there and tater soup will get rid of the punies." 

No doubt, I still need something to help me get rid of the punies.

Trouble is that I lacked some ingredients today for the soup as I like to make it but I'm not spending any more money until I make some so I made do with the basics:  onion, potato, carrot, butter, and seasoning.  The result was not an attractive-looking soup but it sure tastes like it could fight the punies.  It's pretty good stuff.

And I'm gonna keep Riida Ohno's most important thought from today in mind because he contributed something deeply meaningful to Sandberg's pithy quote:

" is like an onion. You peel it off layer by layer and sometimes you cry. As you peel it to the last layer, does your life end? No, the heart is left! You become a person with a heart.

That's what it means. Right? That's a great quote, though! There are a lot of things to weep for in life, right? As you overcome each one, all the uselessness falls away and the heart remains....."

Thanks, Riida, I needed that; and thanks twosen for translating so I could understand it all.  And thanks, too, to that nameless long-ago Texas neighbor who cared about a kid with the punies.

To check out the translation of Riida's show, follow this:
Arashi Discovery March 10, 2016

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