Have you ever been to a party and the first thing you are asked is "What do you do for a living"?
Then when you tell them (sometimes in minute detail) you watch their eyes glaze over and you can see that they couldn't care less. They just asked the question to fill the empty silence.
So now when I get asked that I normally just say;
I grow, process and market Wasabi.
That is all I say and then I wait for a response, it is this point that I find the most interesting part of the whole conversation.
There are several responses that I encounter;
- Confusion: This is the most common reaction and is normally caused by the fact that the person has never heard of Wasabi, or is confronted by someone who actually manually works for a living instead of being just a paper shuffler in an office. This is normally followed by a quick slurp from their glass, and a frantic eye search around the room to find someone else to talk to. It is funny to watch them planning and making an escape.
- Amusement: Normally caused by reading too much about the horrors of consuming Wasabi, or watching too many You Tube Videos of people writhing on the ground after stuffing Wasabi up their noses. With this reaction I never have to say anything for the next 5 minutes or so while they tell me in detail all about the stuff they "know" about Wasabi and its affects on the human body. It is normally me who wanders off while this is going on. They don't seem to notice as now they are talking to everyone around them, or at least the ones who will listen.
- Interest: This is the least common reaction. This conversation can then expand into Food with recipes and restaurants, or Health aspects such as killing Cancers and Stomach Ulcers, and sometimes into how to grow Wasabi. As someone who has been immersed in Wasabi (in a nice way) for the past 25 years plus, the conversation can last quite a long time. It is a shame that finding this interesting person to talk to is so rare at functions that I do not enjoy these get-together's any more.
However, I am able to talk to you by using the Internet. Use the email connection below to start the conversation with me. My name, by the way, is Michel Van Mellaerts - otherwise known as the Wasabi Maestro.
We can talk about using Wasabi as a food with recipes and cooking tips, or about the health benefits and killing Cancer and other diseases, or about growing Wasabi either as a commercial grower or in the garden. If it has anything to do with Wasabi then I would love to discuss it with you.
Just fill out the form above with your name and best email address and I will contact you.