No judgement here. This isn’t about a person’s lack of fashion sense nor someone else’s questionable “did you hear the one about…” humor. Right now I’m eating a bowl of breakfast cereal that is familiar enough that I feel like I’m tasting it with each spoonful. The crunch and texture help me believe that it’s any other morning of breakfast ritual. All I’m missing is the flavor perception.

Some mean bug has settled in my head, clogging it in myriad creative ways. For the last few days, it’s meant I’ve been able to taste little or none of what I’ve been eating or drinking. I realized over dinner last night that it reduces eating to a mechanical exercise in mastication. It gets pretty boring after a few bites when those waves of flavor satisfaction aren’t in the picture. The bulgur pilaf had great texture to enjoy, but I missed out on the nutty flavor and the richness of the pistachio oil I’d stirred in before serving. The pork tenderloin’s stuffing of blue cheese and walnuts added more textural interest to dinner, but I could only barely perceive the sharp tang of the cheese’s character. Such a drag. Didn’t keep me from having strawberry ice cream after dinner, though! Some comfort transcends tastelessness.

I’m a little worried about the dinner party tomorrow night (a couscous reunion I’ll be writing about soon) and not being able to verify the flavors of all the various dishes on the menu. I’ll have to enlist help from friends for that. And trust the memory in my cooking muscles as I go through the motions without being able to smell or taste the progress.

This is quite a minor roadbump in life, to be sure. And actually kind of a fascinating one. But I am looking forward to getting back on the taste track here soon.