Too Cheesy for Words

It’s Here in Black and White

SHELDON:  What’s wrong with your face?

WES:  What?

SHELDON:  Your face.  You look a bit queasy and your nose is all wrinkled up.  Did someone break wind?

WES:  No.  I just read something really weird.

SHELDON:  Weird?

WES:  Not just weird but disgusting, too.  And creepy.

SHELDON:  Weird, disgusting, and creepy, too.  I didn’t think you read National Enquirer.

WES:  I don’t.  It’s not National Enquirer.

SHELDON:  Paranormal Review?

WES:  No.  Yuck!  This is just unbelievable.

SHELDON:  Ah-h-h!  The New York Times.

WES:  Uh . . . no.  It’s an item in this trivia book I’m reading.

SHELDON:  Oh, much better.  I prefer non-fiction.


Felony Cheese

WES:  It says that in Italy it’s against the law to sell wormy cheese.

SHELDON:   H-m-m-m.  A little out of the ordinary as far as laws go, I guess.  Still, public health is important.

WES:  It’s not the law itself that’s so bizarre.  It’s the scoff law.

SHELDON:  I don’t follow.

WES:  According to this article the people of Sardinia don’t take too kindly to laws governing wormy cheese.  But they’ve found a much too bizarre way to skirt this particular law.

SHELDON:  I’m not sure I want to hear this.

WES:  The Sardinians place a perfectly good round of cheese in the cupboard and leave it there for a couple of months.

SHELDON:  Surely even the Sardinians have refrigeration by now.

WES:  That’s not the point.  While the cheese is in the cupboard flies lay their eggs on it.  It seems the enzymes produced by the larvae break down the cheese into a “tangy goo.”

SHELDON:  You’re right.  That is disgusting.

Travel Warning

WES:  That’s not all.  Apparently by Sardinian standards this is gourmet food.  They call it casu marzu.  They eat the cheese, larvae and all.

SHELDON:  Oh, dear.  If I weren’t invisible I think I’d be awfully pale about now.

WES:  I know.  It’s . . . What?  Say that again?

SHELDON:  Oh, right.  Well, even we muses have linguistic glitches now and then.  We call it the Yogi Berra effect.  His muse just gave us fits.

WES:  Just the same, I’ll bet neither of them ever heard of  Sardinia’s wormy cheese.

SHELDON:   Lucky for them.  Anybody would find the whole idea pretty revolting.

WES:  Anybody but the Sardinians anyway.

SHELDON:  Well, if you’re ever in Sardinia, I’d pass on the casu marzu if I were you.

WES:  I’d be surprised if casu marzu, once eaten, isn’t passed on one way or another.  Just the same, I think I’ll skip Sardinia altogether.  I couldn’t afford the baggage fees for barf bags.


© 2011 The Wit’s End Scribbler


This entry was posted in Essays and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Too Cheesy for Words

  1. Diane says:

    Do the Sardinians export casu marzu to the U.S.? Maybe they send it to Mexico, instead, where the gourmand can wash it down with Tequilla — with worms — maybe then the alcohol will kill the germs!

    • WES says:

      Diane–In my opinion the only place to export casu marzu is to the nearest landfill. As for the Tequilla, that may work, although I think pouring it over the casu marzu and flaming it would be preferable to ingesting the stuff in the first place. In any case, please do not serve it with gumbo.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *