Sesame seeds and other figments of the Popular Imagination

Today my grocery list was deceptively simple: sesame seeds, napa cabbage, scallions, ground beef and won-ton wrappers.

So far I’ve learned International food means spaghetti, Matzo balls, taco shells, sushi wrappers, occasionally a token British tea or German chocolate. Sesame seeds are figments of the popular imagination, and you can do an amazing range of things with nuts.

I started at the Pacific Market, forty five minutes later, after walking up and down every aisle I left with an orange and some hot dog buns. The token associates I did find to ask were stocking pastas no where near the international foods and while very polite, were quite unhelpful. There were sesame seed candies, rice paper, and dried seaweed but no won-ton wrappers.

Next stop, Safeway: lasagna noodles and ground beef. For the first time that I can remember, there was no one readily available to ask. They had sushi wrappers, and loads of canned mexican-style beans. Not a single sesame seed, lots of peanuts, cashews, almonds, pecans, sunflower seeds, but not a single sesame seed.

Finally, I went to Whole Foods, behold, bulk bins and sesame seeds! Then, two associates later, won-ton wrappers, napa cabbage, and scallions.

Things I learned today: scallions is just a fancy name for green onions, and having lots of grocery stores is a Useful Thing.

I would like to note the other locations *did* have napa cabbage and scallions (once I realized what they were) but with out the won-ton wrappers there was no point


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