Last night, I had my first class session of Poetry Workshop. When I got to the room where it was being held, I saw my professor leaning over something at the end of the table, deep in concentration. He was peeling the skins off of three large, cooked fish. With his bare hands. My professor, ever the outdoorsman, had caught those fishies (a salmon, a trout, and a whitefish) in Lake Superior just five days ago. He had smoked at least two of them--the salmon was less smoky, I thought. Yes, indeed, I ate those fish. Not a heaping helping, but I ate those fish. More than a mouthful of each. And only the salmon made me reach for my Diet Coke to wash it down. Go figure. But I am extremely happy about the progress I'm making, even so few days into this experiment, and I made a valuable connection last night: fish is a wonderful vessel for other flavors. Kind of like chicken, you could say. Why does everyone compare everything to chicken?
Anyway, back to day five. Here I am, with a little bowl of chopped, dried dates. They're scary looking, I have to say. They look hard and sharp and jagged and maybe a little bug-like. To me, anyway. But you put them in your mouth and they're really quite harmless. They taste a bit like raisins but with a deeper flavor--muskier? Is it muskier? Maybe that's an unappetizing word to apply to it. I mean, it's dried fruit. It has a dried fruity taste. But what I mean to say here is, these dates seem to be inoffensive to me. I don't know that I'll finish my whole helping, but only because a third of a cup (the serving size listed on the back of the bag) seems to be a lot more dates than I anticipated. But you know what? These suckers would be very good in trail mix.