In life we make weird associations with experiences on the outside and internal emotions. One such oddity that I had experienced had to do with clam chowder. Now for these who are unfamiliar with this dish, it is a typical New England soup best served hot. I had never tried this dish, partly because of not knowing enough about it, but I first heard of it in 2017 when I had done my initial half marathon in the cape cod scenery. At the finish line they were serving this soup for all the athletes.
There was another simultaneous race that was going on named the CHowdah challenge ( 39.3 mile run) and I saw those runners complete their tough race and gulp down this chowder soup. For some weird reason, I associated that day that only chowdah athletes were worthy of chowder soup. Crazy I know. And from that moment I felt I dare not try this concoction of soup as I was not worthy of it.
Truth be told I am a complete soup aficionado of all kinds. Lobster bisque, mushroom, broccoli and Cheddar, asparagus, ham and pea varieties make my mouth water just thinking about them. In fact the first thing I do when looking at any menu is the soup selection.
But I had never tried the clam chowder till this race when I completed the chowdah challenge myself and reached out to the finishers food tent and had a few sips of this much anticipated meal. I carefully held the bowl in my left hand and gingerly filled my spoon with the potatoes and clam chowdah, lifting it to my nose, taking in all the scents from each morsel. I savored the flavors and let each gulp warm my throat and tantalize my senses.
I had earned this small cup of soup. I now bore the right to enjoy a clam chowder dish from any menu in the world. I was on cloud 9. Yet here is the thing. There was no correlation of my consumption of this New England favorite and me running this event. Yet to my brain, I was forbidden to even try the tasty clams.
I wonder how many associations that we make each day, each hour, and each minute unconsciously without realizing it. Fears, doubts, erroneous judgments may all stem from these connections that we create as we experience our external world and seed them with emotional responses within the body. And here in the depths of our cells lie all sorts of associations waiting to be percolated at the right time in the perfect chaotic scenario.
I got over my weirdness of the clam chowder soup. Did I enjoy it?absolutely, and I still cannot believe it took me this long to appreciate such fine cuisine. Time to break these associations as they develop and not wait a lifetime.
I love you