Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Giving things a second chance

What what YOU do for a Klondike bar.... the second time around?

Let me tell you, I used to not like Klondikes at all. I was more of a vanilla ice cream type of person- the ratio of chocolate shell to actual ice cream in a Klondike was too much for me. The chocolate came across as an annoyance rather than a bonus, hindering the taste of the ice cream. I would always try to eat the chocolate shell first, which wasn't that good to begin with because the shards of chocolate in your mouth took forever to melt and were overly sweet. They just weren't as enjoyable as ice cream sandwiches for example, which were moist and chewy and more balanced than a Klondike bar, not to mention a lot less messy. Klondikes came across as just an all-around 2nd choice ice cream dessert... I would never reach for one if I had a choice, but I would occasionally eat one if there was nothing better.

The other day, however, I came home to find a big pack of Klondikes in the freezer, which my mom had apparently gotten at the local wholesale club without asking me. So I decided to give Klondikes another chance, figuring that it was better to eat them rather than let them go to waste. The first one was pretty mediocre. I wasn't too excited about having them, but having some ice cream is better than no ice cream after all. And so I came back for seconds and then thirds. And the interesting part was that as I had more, I started to look forward to eating Klondikes after mowing the lawn or finishing my homework or while I was watching TV. I don't know if I finally "acquired" the taste, or if I simply discovered a better way to eat Klondike bars.

You see, I always used to eat the Klondikes the same way: pick off the chocolate shell first, then try to enjoy the goopy ice cream mess inside without distraction. I was getting tired of that method, so I decided to try something new- I straight up bit into a Klondike bar and chomped my way through. And then I realized, that was the way it was supposed to be eaten- chocolate shards and vanilla ice cream together in one bite, not eaten separately. Each bite had a creamy but crunchy texture to it. You would chew into the shards of chocolate while savoring the vanilla tones as the ice cream melted first, leaving the chocolate on the top of your tongue, slowing melting away and leaving a nice aftertaste. That delayed melting of chocolate is a nice contrast to the ice cream and really allows you to enjoy each bite. The cold introduction of the ice cream, the combination of chocolate and vanilla at the same time, and finally the chocolate finish before you start over with a fresh bite.

So you never really know about the foods and desserts that you dislike. Perhaps you haven't given it enough of a chance, or the problem lies in the way you think and perceive the food rather than how it tastes. I know Klondikes have won me back over. But that got me thinking, if I can give ice cream bars a second chance, I most certainly can give people second chances as well. That initial negative impression I might of had with someone might be totally false now. Or I haven't yet discovered a truly admirable characteristic of a person. Friends, family, or strangers... second chances can sometimes lead to awesome things. But it's important that you give them that chance to begin with. (Broccoli and brussels sprouts remain as exceptions, but I'm working on it.)

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