Let's clear the palate, if we may. We've had a string of long, engrossing entries to the Overlooked Gems of My Lifetime of late, and sometimes it's important to take stock of the simplest of pleasures, which is what I found myself doing the other night when, in the course of a little get-together with neighbors, I bit into a cool, crisp stick of celery.
"What a great vegetable!" I thought to myself. Firm, easy to handle, great looking, packs a solid crunch, able to hold toppings, and - maybe most importantly - refreshing as all heck! Think about it, you've been gabbing away at a party; drinking; at some point hovering around the appetizer table, where you're wolfing down squares of tomato pie, cheese and crackers, and anything that will hold some kind of sour cream-based dip, and you realize it may be time to freshen up that overworked mouth. You may try to work in a swish of your next sip of wine when no one's looking. You could duck over to the bathroom and rinse your mouth. Or you could pick up a stick of celery and chomp into it, not missing a beat in party time. Oh, that fantastic CHOMP that a stick of celery makes! A stick of celery in the middle of a party conversation and you're good to go. Laugh all you want. Lean into your friend's ear to better make your important party point. Celery was here.
There are those who despire celery, including one public figure whose distaste for the vegetable shouldn't surprise me based on his history of public food faux pas! Some try to stomach it for its health benefits and wonderous negative calories (see here, too), but to no avail. For shame! Towns greater than these foliks have taken pride in their past history a center of the celery industry. I sense that the difficulties some folks have in loving celery is tied into an inability some have to enjoy the bitter fruits of life. It's their loss.
Paul McCartney himself has made celery a part of his musical palette. Think of the cute ways you can serve celery. Oh, celery! I'll leave those of you equipped with Quicktime with this.