Monday, August 3, 2009

Benthic

I have always been a bit fascinated by caviar. Initially, I thought that it must be as revolting as the ghastly pink salmon roe that restaurants occasionally litter fish dishes with, but, having tasted tiny traces of the good stuff used as decoration in fine restaurants, I determined to be bold and order some. The photo illustrates a starter at the Château de Montreuil that surfaces from time to time. It's wonderful: a home made thin crumpet with even discs of bone marrow covered with 15gms of Oscetian caviar (No. 3 in the prestigious caviar pecking order, I believe). Lovely, but expensive. So, imagine my delight to discover that lumpfish roe is also really delicious. £1.70ish at Waitrose and costing about 100th of the cost of the starter at the Château. So, lumpfish are my heroes. I decided to look them up.It seems that they are ugly, small and benthic. Benthic? Benthic is new to me - I had to look it up. I read that "lumpsuckers are poor swimmers. Most species are benthic; that is, they spend most of their time on or near the bottom." They spend most of their time on or near the bottom. Gosh, that describes most of my friends. That describes me. I am not a loser any more. I am benthic. Benthic: it has a heroic ring to it. Thank you, lumpfish!

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