He's nibbling at a Som Tam in an Isan restaurant. He discards every seed, pseudo-seed and red bits. When it seems that he's done it a drama takes place: he mistakes a green chili for a shred of long bean, he absentmindedly forks it, chews it and swallows it. For a few illusive moments nothing happens, like the lag between the release and the burst of a bomb. Then his palate explodes and his face flares up. Torrents of lava flow on his scalp and brow. The organic device travels the digestive canal, setting tongue, stomach and sphincter on fire. They say that chili is an excellent disinfectant. Call him skeptical, narrow-minded westerner: he still prefers mouthwash and bidet.
Photo "Green chilies sold in HAL market in Bangalore, India", by Rajesh Dangi (CC), from Wikipedia.org
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