All I Want For Christmas Is Salt

When I was a child I was envious of deer.

Because I wanted a salt lick to call my own.

I did not realize they were lures set by hunters.

I just wanted to lick salt.

I salt my toast and my no-syrup pancakes.

Never syrup. Only salt.

My pizza must have anchovies... or I will salt it too.

I rage at fancy restaurants that shame me for requesting the salt shaker that is missing from my table.

I considered buying a 25-pound bag of salt on my last trip to Costco.

One day, eating mapo doufu, it occurred to me

I never salt my Sichuan.

How strange!

I never felt the need.

But of course not --

Doubanjiang, dou zhi, pickled greens, soy sauce...

Sichuan's salt delivery vehicles are multitudinous.

Sichuan food is sufficiently pre-salted.

I thought I loved Sichuan because of the ma and the la

Because of the complexity, the heat, the passion and the politics

But maybe, all along,

It was just the salt.