November 08, 2006
When I was 5 years old, we went to visit family friends whom we visited on a regular basis. My father is from Chile, and the parents of whom we were visiting were from Chile (father) and the Philipines (mother), and therefore we ate alot of differnet spicey and ethnic foods.
Unfortunately, being a product of an immigrant father, there were some very strict rules, especially surrounding the dinner table. One classic was that you had to eat everything on your plate before you could actually leave the table.
Well, this famous meal was laced with the vile weed, and instant tasting of it made me gag. I suffered through 4 hours of sitting at the dinner table trying to keep down this insufferable cilantro-filled hell. Oh, I complained, saying that the food was making me gag, and that I couldn't eat it, but I was forced none-the-less. The other children left the table within the first hour of the ordeal, and yet I sat there (my father thinking I was just being stubborn) until I spooned in every last morsel.
Of course, at the time I had no way of indicating or knowing that it was the cilantro in the food, and I did not encounter the evilness until man years later....
... eating at a thai restaurant. I was with work friends, anxious to partake in this new cultural experience. I smell something weird, which kind of makes my mouth water in a not-so-good way. I think nothing of it, take a bite and immediately gag and slightly throw up the food. This is the moment when I first learned the name of my nemesis.
i have since come to know cilantro well... we play a little cat and mouse game know and then. I work in a rural village in Ecuador,and there it is, lurking in my first bowl of soup from my host family. I am asked over to my wife's aunts for our first "couple" supper with individual relatives, and cilantro is there waiting unexpectedly. (Interesting to note, after we both explained to them that I was "alergic" to cilantro, they made me a quick pita pizza with olives... another vile substance. But I ate those olives quite happily knowing I was avoiding the cilantro).
People say I will come to like ti if I just keep trying it. I'm sure I could convince myself to like a quick kick in the crotch if done enough times, but that doesn't mean I want to go through the experience. My mother in-law even says she came to like it after hating it, and I call her a liar! My father in-law tries to sneak it into my food in little doses, but the nose and tongue cannot be fooled.
I hate cilantro! I have found solace in this brotherhood of cilantro haters.