Wednesday, May 24, 2006

UPDATE: My One-Month Plan to Seduce the Chocolate Man

(Does Paul A. Young speak something other than Chocolate?)

I thought I had given up on my plan of seducing or destroying the Chocolate Man, finally coming to terms with the fact that Paul A. Young is a successful, young chocolatier and I am not. In fact, I only entered his store this past weekend because my friend Kaori wanted to buy a chocolate gift for someone, and Paul A. Young’s four-piece box seemed the perfect thing.

We stood in front of the day’s offerings, and the Chocolate Vulture immediately came sweeping in, ready to make our box. But we continued to debate, and Mr. Young soon became impatient.

“Why don’t you try this one?” he said. “Caramel Sea Salt. It won best chocolate in the entire world ever ever at the definitive world chocolate world event of events.”

Actually, I had tasted the Caramel Sea Salt truffle two weeks before and found it to suffer from multiple personality disorder (a common problem with Paul A. Young chocolates). But how to tell Kaori to avoid it?

“どう?“ Kaori asked, cleverly switching into Japanese.

“普通“--nothing special," I replied.

The Chocolate Man’s face darkened, as though he had understood what I had just said. He glared at us as we picked out four different chocolates. When it came time to go to the register, he passed us off to another employee.

“I have things to do!” he declared, stomping out of his shop.

On our way out, I taught Kaori a new English word: nemesis.

“Is it like worse than ‘enemy’?”

“Oh yes, Kaori,” I said, stopping in the street. “It’s much worse. Much, much worse.”

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