Sunday, August 22, 2010

to touch rice

In the centuries-old tradition of sushi apprenticeship, years must pass before you can "touch rice."

Those wishing to learn to master sushi must spend years watching and observing; in the meantime, they wash dishes and mop floors.

Times are changing, and some sushi academies are letting students "touch rice the first day."

I submit that the ancient traditions are likely to fade, losing out to the immediacy of the modern age -- the tyranny of instant success.

Patience is a casualty of the age of immediacy. Patience, from the Latin word meaning to bear, to suffer.

We can't bear to wait, to suffer; we're insufferably impatient. (Or maybe it's just me.)

Take it a poetic, metaphorical step further, this delay, this deferral before one can touch rice.

(Reminds me of how decades ago the Boston Celtics routinely made rookies sit on the bench for a while -- the whole first year? -- before they could actually play in a game. Maybe that is still true to a degree, but I doubt it.)

So, tradition says the sushi maker waits years before being allowed to touch rice. By metaphor and analogy, can we say that these delays are long gone, too?

-- To touch the baseball

-- To hold the pen

-- To tap the keys

-- To fire the gun

-- To start the engine

-- To tell the student

-- To hold the chalk

-- To diagram the sentence

-- To touch the heart

-- To say the prayer

-- To take the step

-- To hold the brush

-- To click the mouse

-- To hear the confession

-- To roast the coffee

-- To make the tea

-- To wear the ring

-- To announce the score

-- To state the opinion

-- To drive the train

-- To touch metal

-- Smell honey

-- Eat locusts

-- Hold breath

-- Exhale

1 comment:

Patti said...

I'm OK with all of them except for the locust eating, PK.