I get hungry if I am up past midnight. I might be watching a movie, writing, talking to myself or experimenting with makeup in the bathroom, and I feel this irresistible urge to eat. So then the next logical step is to go to the kitchen, open the fridge and check out what is inside. I do that and I see the olives. Why hasn’t anyone told me that there are olives in the  house? Why did I not get the memo? There are so many meals I could have eaten with olives. I could have had lentil soup and olives, omelet and olives, coffee cake and olives, anything. Everyone in the family knows I love olives. Actually, the reason why I was sold on Brick (A cute coffee place and restaurant in Astoria) from the first visit, was the kalamata olive paste they offer with their chewy bread. When I first tasted it, I could not believe someone had actually come up with such a heavenly tasting deliciousness, full of salt, oil and texture.

Olives have everything I look for in a food item which is salt. I love salt and I put it on everything. As a matter of fact, my health-conscious friend was appalled when she saw me grab that salt shaker and sprinkle it over my dish without even trying it first. But then again she is the one that needs three sugar packets and half a pack of milk in her coffee so I forgive her that one. We all have our vices, our little idiosyncrasies that do not harm anyone else but ourselves.

I feel the same way about pasta, mom’s coffee cake and watermelon. No matter how much I have eaten or how delicious the meal was outside, once I come home and see pasta on top of the stove, coffee cake on its glass cake dish, or watermelon in the plastic container, I sit down and eat again. I have to or I can’t go to sleep. Many people complain that when they eat late, they can’t sleep well. I wish this would happen to me. I have no problem sleeping like a lamb after a full meal. As a matter of fact, the only time my sleep is disturbed, is when I am hungry or particularly hung up on a food or a dish I passed over.

So I pour myself a bowl of tarator (homemade plain yogurt, minced garlic and cucumber, olive oil and salt) and put a handful of olives inside. Triumphant, I take the bowl with me and sit down in front of the computer. It is the epitome of satisfaction for a couch potato like me: eating while watching TV, reading or aimlessly typing in the computer. It helps creativity (not really but I have to justify my meal somehow).

I ponder upon why I feel so completely sated right now, gulping my tarator and savoring the salty goodness of the little green olives. I even suck on the pits trying to get their essence out and scrapping the last of the pulp from them with my teeth. Once I am done, I steal one more olive from the plastic container in the fridge and then go to sleep.



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