Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Stupid Nose Cumin Bread

<>I’m an olfactory moron
Trapped in my own aroma-challenged hell
It’s worse than an allergy or eczema
You see…I don’t smell.

First thing Tuesday morning, I set things in motion a nice supper. Homemade soup simmering in the crockpot. Bread machine set up to pop out a loaf of pumpernickel at 6:30. I could hardly wait. Supper made and ready-to-eat when I come in the door is my idea of a happy end to a busy day. I left work a bit early and even had time to whip up a salad before we all sat down.

The soup was really yummy. We put sunflower seeds in the salad so it was crunch-licious. But the bread was a bit off. At first I couldn't figure it out. I don't make pumpernickel often because the kids don't like it. But still.

Then I realised. Instead of caraway seed I used whole cumin. My slice had a warm, cumin-y taste. Every bite got a bit warmer and spicier. Just drink milk or water with it and it's okay, but not what you expect from pumpernickel. MMMMPPHHH.

My darn nose has not worked right since I got Graves Disease about 3 1/2 years ago. Graves is an auto-immune disease that screws up your thyroid. It did all kinds of whacky things to me, and now I'm better. But I have gone from being an awesome smeller to a sheer idiot when it comes to aromatic identification. I miss knowing with my eyes closed it that's an apple or a pear. I worry that I have something on my shoe and I'm the only one who doesn't know it. I miss how good smelling makes tasting feel. I miss smell memories. I still get flashes of brilliance. Earlier this week I was walking down an elementary school hallway and I smelled a mixture of lemon and carnation and lavender that made me think of a summer day in the back yard in a house where we lived in South Vancouver when I was 6. It smelled like sunshine and lying in the grass and looking at the sky and having nothing to do. Maybe it was someone's perfume, but I don't think so. It smelled real. Maybe it was an olfactory hallucination, like when people lose a limb and feel phantom pain. I don't know.

I can still remember how a lot of things smell, and I occasionally experience exquisite congruity between an object or being and the smell I perceive. Most of the time smells are pretty much what they should be only duller, and occasionally they are way off the mark. I haven't brushed my teeth yet with Prep H, so I guess I'm doing okay.

Question: What! Did you think I actually own Prep H? HHHHHMMMMPPPHHH!!!

mompoet: blundering with nostrils agape

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