There are two kinds of people in the world: those who think Brussels sprouts are disgusting and those who say, “Oh you just aren’t cooking them right!” I hate the bastards with a passion and when I first heard of a substance that some people taste as bitter and some people can’t taste at all, it became clear to me. You see, before this substance was tested, there was no evidence that people tasted things differently: it was entirely possible that you and I experience exactly the same sensations when we eat pears and it might be that you don’t particularly like how they taste and that I do. But now we know that, in at least one case, people are having a physically different experience when they eat. I’m sure that’s what’s going on with Brussels sprouts: those of you who think they are palatable cannot possibly be tasting what I’m tasting. To me, they literally taste like poison and I cannot imagine how someone once tried one and considered it to be food.
My antipathy to these nasty little cabbages is so great that I’m reluctant to mention that they’re considered a Christmas dish in Britain, but I must say:
- Don’t do it.
- If you really have to, make sure they’re optional.
And please shut up about there being nice ways to cook them. We will never believe you and, if you tasted what we taste, you’d realise that they are too horrible to be fixed even with bacon: it’s as pointless as spraying eau de cologne on a skunk.
My casserole was appreciated at the ski lodge tonight but not because I’d balanced the flavours so well.
“Thank God you cooked something soft,” said Don after a hard day’s skiing. “I don’t have enough energy to chew.”
We played a hearty game of canasta last night after tea but I don’t think anyone is up for more than a round of after-dinner mints tonight.
 That’s the vegetables, not the people who tell you to sauté the leaves with bacon. (Mind you, I’m not fond of the latter and I wish they’d shut up.)
 My friend Sharon’s father lost his sense of taste after a blow to the head in a car accident. This is the point at which he started eating brussels sprouts, saying, “They can’t hurt me now and there’s a theory that they’re actually good for you so it’s time the buggers worked for me rather than against me.”