TASTE BUDS….Will Baude and Matt Yglesias are both bemoaning their almost total lack of discrimination in the foods they like. It turns out there’s practically nothing they won’t stuff down their hungry gullets.

My problem is just the opposite. Unlike Will, I continue to dislike olives, coffee, beer, ketchup, anchovies, raw oysters, and hundreds of other items. From his list, in fact, hard boiled eggs are the only item I like.

The problem, apparently, is that both Will and Matt would like the social cachet that comes from disliking certain foods, especially ones that everyone else likes. It turns out that I have that in spades ? I didn’t like peanut butter when I was five, for example, and that was before all that peanut allergy business started up ? and I can tell you that it’s not worth it. Especially when traveling in foreign lands, or in social situations where you don’t have much control over the menu, it really makes life a pain in the ass. For example, I dislike all vegetables. All of them. This is really inconvenient.

And alcohol of all kinds ? it all tastes like diesel fuel to me. That’s inconvenient. I can swill down a bit of red wine to be sociable, but that’s about it.

I can sympathize with Will and Matt’s desire, though. I remember years ago wishing that I wore glasses. I thought they might make me look a little older, give me a bit more gravitas. Then, oddly enough, my distance vision started to go bad when I was about 30, a fairly unusual occurrence. Glasses at last! But it turns out that glasses are just annoying, aren’t they? And eventually I’ll need bifocals. Hmmph.

So celebrate your taste buds, Will and Matt. They serve you well.

POSTSCRIPT: So what do I like? Among vegetable-ish items, only tomatoes. Among liquids, mostly water with an occasional cola thrown in. Among other foods, mostly anything that’s bad for you: chocolate, popcorn, hamburgers, chocolate, grilled meat of most kinds, non-flavored salty snacks (i.e., plain potato chips and fritos, not the weird vinegar flavored stuff or nacho cheese varieties), chocolate, and french fries.

And chocolate. Did I mention that?

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