Reasons why you might find Fran eating with her eyes shut

I don't know about you, but I'm not keen on unnaturally-coloured food. My gardener husband is always experimenting with new varieties such as purple carrots or white strawberries and I make a big fuss. I want my carrots orange and my strawberries red or not at all, thanks. 

Likewise, if he puts beetroot into a dish and it dyes everything crimson or bleeds onto the plate, I lose my appetite, having anticipated dinner, not a Tarantino production. For me, beetroot has to be kept in a dish of its own at a safe two metre distance and wearing full PPE.

I could only eat this while wearing a blindfold  

'I've cooked you some tuna with mash and veg,' my husband said earlier this evening when I emerged from the front room having tutored three students in a row. I was ready for dinner. 

I went into the kitchen. 'Where is it?' I said.

'On the plate,' he said. 'Where you're looking.'

All I could see was a flat slab of what looked the colour of putty. 'That's not tuna.'

'Yes, it is.'

'It's white,' I said. 'What terrified it?'

'It's albacore tuna,' he said. 'It's naturally white.'

'It's anaemic tuna,' I said. 'It's the same colour as the mashed potato. The same colour as the cauliflower. The same colour as the frozen wastes of the Antarctic, the same colour as a church candle, as a wedding dress, as a ....' 

'You're taking this a bit far,' he said. 'Are you going to eat it?'

'I'm going to embarrass it,' I said, 'and see if it pinks up a bit.' I addressed the plate. 'You naked, pallid thing, you, brazenly lying on my plate, all cowardly and ashen. You should be ashamed.'

'It's not working,' he said. 

'I bet it doesn't get to socialise with other tunas,' I said. 'I bet it gets shunned.'

'Don't be ridiculous.'

'Do you think it's a ghost tuna?' I said. 'A spectral tuna. That would explain things. Although it would raise a few other questions.'

I made myself a rainbow salad: tomatoes, red and yellow peppers, lettuce, and 25 capers, and dressed the offending item in bright colours before taking the plate to the table. 

'If frightened fish is all there is,' I said, 'frightened fish it'll have to be. But no way was I eating it when it was white on the plate like a lazy quarter pound of lard.'

I began to eat. 

Five minutes later, he said, 'What do you think? You'd eat it again, wouldn't you?'

'With the lights turned down,' I said.

'It tastes all right, though, doesn't it?' 

'I'm not sure,' I said. 'All I can taste is capers.'

A poem in memory.

The ballad of Al Bacore

I met a fish called Al Bacore.

A tuna? I just wasn't sure. 

I covered up his shame with salad. 

(I'll stop there. He's not worth a ballad.) 


  1. ๐Ÿ˜†๐Ÿ˜†The tuna thing! I could imagine the whole episode and how you and Paul interacted about it. Also, I loved this : 'Beetroot has to be kept in a dish of its own at a safe two metre distance and wearing full PPE.' ๐Ÿ˜†๐Ÿ˜†Totally agree. Such a great post and good giggles. Thanks for sending me to bed in a good mood ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. It's a pleasure! Thanks for making me your bedtime reading!

  2. Oh dear! That poor tuna! I agree with you about weird coloured food Fran. Have you ever read Wendy Perriam's novel After Purple? There is a superb description of a purple feast in it. I've never forgotten it. That purple feast has haunted me.

    1. No, I haven't! I will look it up and perhaps find myself similarly haunted by such a dreadful vision.

  3. You might have overdone the capers a bit, perhaps 20 would have been enough. That plate of pink has me worried. Is it rhubarb soup with white marshmallows? Beetroot doesn't even get into my shopping cart, much less into my house.

    1. I believe it is some concoction of beetroot with bits of mozzarella cheese floating in it. Such things should never be allowed and deserve stiff punishments.

  4. I am weak with laughter. The poem alone was worth it! I once made a pasta dish in my bedsit days. All was well until I grated some elderly Red Leicester over it and it turned a horrible sludge green. It tasted fine so I ate it with my eyes tightly closed.

    1. Thanks for reading! And for your elderly Red Leicester story. Somehow I knew that wouldn't turn out well ;)

  5. Remember red velvet cakes? That is also offended by I-lurve-beetroot ;~)) My sister was horrified the first time she was offered a cupcake of it.

    1. There is so much wrong with red velvet cakes I don't know where to begin.


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