Sunday, 18 December 2011

shopping for chocolate

When you go into a store – it doesn’t really matter what kind – and you look for something to buy, there’s always a series of complex and pressing questions that you ask yourself. Sometimes this process is elaborate and well thought out, whereas other times the process can be trivialised.

Let’s take an example: say you’ve just walked into a world class chocolatier. I use this example because I have a direly sweet tooth and chocolate is always a safe bet when trying to find something that everyone can relate to. So, you’ve just walked into this state-of-the art confectionery. There is an unlimited variety of chocolates to choose from; all your favourite colours and flavours, sizes and shapes, smells and ingredients. Everything your mind can fathom and more. As always, there’s going to be some chocolates that you wouldn’t dare try – maybe durian chocolate, or 86% pure dark, or giant fire-ant coated chocolate, or wasabi-infused chocolate. Some may be chocolates you might try on a daring day, but you may not normally choose, and others might be chocolates that you find mundane and too bland (but note that without the tasteless and generic, there cannot be the exceptional).

Of course, strolling through the aisles, left unattended or bothered by salespersons and other patrons, your mind wanders and contemplates – this chocolate is too expensive, this chocolate seems too sweet, this chocolate smells funny and this chocolate melts too soon (although in the lattermost case, I cannot believe any good chocolate melts too soon). Given an infinite amount of time, you are bound to come across the perfect chocolate, or at least a handful of the most perfect chocolates (perfect here being personal and subjective). But, as with all life’s dilemmas, you do not have an unlimited amount of time. Time is pressing. The chocolatier may be closing, or your ride may be leaving soon. Maybe you have a prior engagement or maybe the world is ending. Whatever the case, you only have so much time, and for complexity’s sake, let us assume that you do not exactly know when you have to leave – only a rough idea.

Now, say you really want to purchase at least one chocolate. Just one, to make it simple. All these considerations come to mind. But, say you haven’t made the purchase and have to leave for any of the abovesaid reasons (or other, that is fine, too). You will be left wanting, and on your way out of the store, wondering; ‘Maybe I should have taken that chocolate because it was not too pricey? Maybe I should have taken the other because it was perfectly delicious? Maybe I should have taken yet another because of random reason #293?’

Whatever the reason might have been, you have left, never to return. And you are empty-handed with no chocolate to savour or brag about. Nothing, in effect, besides your cold, hard, conscience. That, and the burning questions in your head, that you will continue to ask yourself, and extrapolate upon.

Are you going to buy that chocolate now, or not?

p/s: been away for a couple of weeks and will continue to be for another few. hence, the typing entries out on word and copypasta-ing to blogger whenever i can. note the capitalisation where i normally would not. in any case, be back when i can. also, incoming chunk of entries very sporadically

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