Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Mr. Bento and My Search for Meaning

Here you see Mr. Bento in his original package. You will also see the perfect existential paradox it presents: the box is covered with information but all of it in Japanese! Isn't that just like life? The message is very rich, but the medium is opaque unless you have learned the language.

Undeterred, we wander about the internet forest and pick up clues. How these clues assist me in my Quixotic drive to create the perfect Bento lunch, this blog will reveal over time. My husband has type 2 diabetes being managed with diet, and so he must be somewhat careful about what he eats. I wake up early by nature, and enjoy pottering in the kitchen before daylight. And I love a nice lunch & hate junk food...So careful little micromanaged lunches are perfect for us.

I have been known to cheat on Mr. Bento with this 'laptop lunch system':

This little cutie is designed for schoolchildren and is especially loved by families whose children have food intolerances that rule out school lunches. But given what is served in the typical school cafeteria, I think all children can benefit from a box lunch with real food inside. I enjoy all the little compartments this one has, and its neat carrying case:

We also have some achingly cute little Japanese sauce bottles (labeled "Mama's Assist") with animal heads & shapes; I like to dream about Japanese Bento-Babe mamas in the dim light of early morning, filling their little darlings' sauce bottles with soy for their onigiri of the day.

All around the world, people loving each other through home-made lunches...