Thursday, March 22, 2012

god of fire

i'm not a religious kind of man, but if there is a god, he/she/it/whatever, made the burrito. god knows i love a good burrito. i love them spicy, muy picoso, si. i don't know. when i was a younger man i guess my senses were keen and i didn't need stuff like hot sauces. i enjoyed food with very little flavoring as i preferred cleaner tastes. or whatever.

now i'm an old fart. my taste buds are dying. i need something, a catalyst, to get the senses working overtime. at least that's what anna tells me. i think that somehow i've developed a taste for hot sauces. there was a vogue back in the '90s when collecting boutique hot sauces was the trend. now only the hardcore lovers of the stuff buy these specialty brands.

well now i did it. i've been out of sauce for some time but when we were in a cost plus last weekend i spied a newer, to me at least, sauce called dave's insanity ghost pepper. okay, i read the label that this is some very hot shit but i've devoured other dave's insanity sauces with little ill effect where all those bottles had the same warning labels.

i was wrong. nearly dead wrong. see, i stopped at the local taqueria for one of god's own burritos for dinner tonight. i planned on smothering it in the ghost pepper sauce. which i promptly did. i also put a little dollop on a few tortilla chips to test the sauce's strength. at first not too bad. i then put more on my chips and sat down to my feast.

the burn was smoky and low. i felt it in my palate where the burn pitched in intensity and my lips started to sting. then my breath got shallower while the sting got stingier and spread to the back of my throat. still, it wasn't too bad. until i got two-thirds into my burrito. then holy fuck! i ripped thru four cans of soda in a single minute. i unfolded my burrito and scooped out what i could of the sauce. then i ate the rest of the burrito. the burn smoothed out a bit for a moment then returned with a hallucinogenic rush. i saw the alpha and the omega.

nearly three hours after the meal there is a lingering stinging in the back of my throat and my palate. my breathing returned to normal. the mucus has dried up too. i'm no masochist. i prefer pleasure over pain. and yet the ghost pepper sauce was delicious in a perverse fashion. i won't be devouring this bottle. instead i'll use it sparingly. drip it into my food rather than plop thick globs of it on my burritos.

if there is a lesson in all this it is this: burritos are one of the most perfect foods in all of creation. hot sauces however are an acquired taste. best to use them with caution unless you want that hard-won taste to be nuked out of existence. in the meantime, i'll see if i can mix a little ghost pepper sauce into my salad. i like to keep me on my toes.


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