In case you hadn’t noticed, I’ve been a bit obsessed with ice cream lately. Food editor is my day job at American Woman, and yes, I do enjoy concocting delectable treats from my home kitchen as well. However, when I’m not baking, frying, or simmering in the kitchen, my second favorite pastime is reading. So…no recipe today. I thought I’d discuss personal taste.
I’ve been thinking quite a bit lately about how subjective taste is. What makes one person love something that another person has a hard time swallowing, let alone enjoying? The other night my husband and I sat down to watch a movie. After fifteen minutes he left the room to watch a hockey game on another television. I continued to watch the movie. It wasn’t the best movie I’d ever seen, but it wasn’t the worst, either. I found the character studies fascinating, even if the plot left a bit to be desired. And I enjoyed the movie enough to want to sit through it until the end to see how the conflicts were resolved.
Sometimes that happens to me with a book. I’ll continue reading one I don’t particularly love because I either a) find enough enjoyable about it that I want to finish it, b) am hoping it gets better, or c) am hoping that even though I figured out whodunit by chapter three, the author will prove me wrong and give me a totally different ending I didn’t see coming (and man, when that happens, I love it!)
But there are other times when I pick up a book and toss it aside after a chapter or two. Often it’s a book that has gotten rave reviews. Sometimes it’s even a book by an author I’ve read and enjoyed previously. When this happens, one of two reactions occur. I either a) wonder if there’s something wrong with me that I don’t get what everyone else sees in the book, or b) scratch my head, wondering why everyone else can’t see the flaws in plot and character that jump off the page at me.
Then there are times where I fall in love with a book and recommend it to friends, only to have them question my taste. Or worse yet, my sanity.
For many people peanut butter is the perfect food. For me it sets off my gag reflexes. I’m more a Cherry Garcia kind of girl. Taste. It’s one of the unsolved mysteries of the universe. Why do you suppose that is?