I love to eat, but I am something of a picky eater, to put it mildly. The foods I like I REALLY like. The foods I dislike I truly, deeply hate, and a gun to my head would not persuade me to sample even the tiniest morsel.
This presents a problem for me on the (very) rare occasions when I am invited to a dinner party. The Host or Hostess of a dinner party, I assume, puts a lot of time, effort and thought into what they serve. The polite thing to do when presented with an unpalatable dish would be to sample a few bites, rave about the quality and the cook's culinary abilities, and then push the plate away. You can then blame a big lunch for not eating more, excuse yourself from the table, and go find a private spot to projectile vomit.
My problem is that I have such an aversion to the foods I dislike is that, as I said, I cannot sample even the tiniest bite. Take corn, for example. I know, I know, everyone on earth loves corn. Everyone but me*. Corn on the Cob, a favorite of young and old alike, is my least favorite way to serve corn. I can't even handle watching other people eat it! If I were to have a even the teeny, tiniest nibble of a niblet, I would not have time to find my projectile-vomit private spot. I presume that my blowing chunks all over the dinner table would put a damper on the festivities. I would feel bad if that happened.
I realize that my colorful description of my behavior might prevent some of you from inviting me to an upcoming get together. That would be too bad, as except for the vomiting thing, I am a delightful party guest- I don't drink too much (unless there is an open bar, or someone else is driving), I have several amusing anecdotes that perhaps one or two of your guests haven't heard dozens of times already, I have a Perfect Wife, so I won't be hitting on any attractive relatives, and, best of all, I can bring DVDs of the many community theatre productions I have appeared in. These are excellent for when the party has reached an apex and you'd like everyone to go home. Just pop in a title like Sweet Charity, and I guarantee the house will be empty in minutes.
So sure, I am a fun guy to have at your party, but what about the food thing? Granted, my story about my trip to the Franklin Park Zoo is hilarious, but it won't make up for me ralphing all over the joint. Not to worry, I have compiled this list of the foods I won't eat to aid you in planning your next dinner party menu:
Meat: There are no meats I won't eat, so if you want to have some big meatapalooza, I'm in.
Fish: Not really crazy about fish, but I can choke most varieties down, even sushi and calamari. No shellfish, though. Lobster is another of those foods, like (ugh) corn, that everyone on Earth loves but me.
Vegetables: I have never, and will never, eat cooked veggies. In addition to corn, if you have your heart set on serving beets, cauliflower, peas, asparagus... Oh, just serve a salad. I'll eat raw veggies. Some of them anyway. I also like potatoes.
Pasta: Everyone on Earth likes pasta, even me. Just don't try sneaking vegetables into the sauce.
Sides: There are some sides I don't care for, like baked beans and Cole Slaw (does anybody like Cole Slaw?), but side dishes are easy to avoid, so go crazy, and serve whatever the heck you want.
Deserts: I'll eat anything desert-wise, so no worries there. Not really crazy about honey or butterscotch-based deserts. To be on the safe side, serve chocolate. Or cheesecake. An extra-special, extra-thoughtful reader recently sent me a Shoofly Pie, which I have never heard of/had before. It was delish. If you serve Shoofly Pie, I may forgive you for serving beets. It's not good enough to forgive corn, however.
I may seem fussy, but I'm sure that you, Faithful Reader, have an aversion to certain foods. Please let the rest of us know what they are in the comments section.
You may also leave invitations to your next dinner party there, too.
*I realize this is the second time I have written about my relationship with corn on this site. Don't worry, two times is plenty. I will not pick that scab here again. Unless, of course some important corn news arises that I feel I need to share.