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What Did You Eat Yesterday?

What did you eat yesterday? I started my day without breakfast as always, unless some readers count a cup of coffee as part of it which would then quite effectively dispute the past ten-odd years of my life as breakfast free. Before any nutrition enthusiast or somebody along those lines walks up and starts lecturing on the utmost importance of having the most important meal of the day, let me simply say that I run just as fine with a cup of milky brown fluid since anything more than that would probably mean excess which in turn would yield no benefits except for a couple of unnecessary trips to the toilet that seemingly represents good digestion but is in fact a huge pain in the ass, pun absolutely intended. Anyway, lunch was slightly overpriced, piping hot fishball noodles at a foodcourt. It was delicious though. Dinner was rice with fish fillet, sunny side-up and sausage, plus a large Coffee Jelly Milk Tea. Nothing fancy, nonetheless it made my stomach quite the happy intestine. Some readers might ask, don't you cook? Yeah, but that would be once in a blue moon. Unless I have the culinary expertise of attorney Kakei Shirou from the manga series 'What Did You Eat Yesterday?' by mangaka Yoshinaga Fumi.

The first chapter begins with a fellow attorney in the law firm throwing the above question to his other co-workers one day. While most wouldn't really bother recalling since anything that goes down the food tube and such is probably far too trivial, Shirou actually rattles off in explicit detail his entire menu, much to the shock of his colleagues. What makes the situation way more surrealistic is the seemingly huge effort required to churn out those dishes, yet in Shirou's case the whole episode feels like one of those cooking shows by some famous English chef or something. Indeed, the manga sets the culinary cum gastronomic happenings as important catalysts for life. Shirou brainstorms and prepares each meal with love and pride. Naturally, he shares such moments with Yabuki Kenji, a talented hairstylist who shamelessly (?) sticks to the same salon for more than ten years. Kenji is also Shirou's roommate and partner. Their encounter and eventual permanent coupling are given some light in one of the chapters. Rest assured though in case any reader jumps six feet backwards at the mere mention of men in love with men, the manga strongly dwells on Shirou's cooking and such just like its counterparts. Intimacy between Shirou and Kenji if any is largely implied, and their interactions are mostly everyday, light-hearted banter with occasional serious deviations like family issues and relationships with other people. In other words, this isn't considered the typical BL (the series is classified as a cooking manga). 

Speaking of relationships with other people, Shirou has an interesting episode with a housewife Tominaga Kayoko. Both became friends over an enormous watermelon that was on sale at the greengrocer. However, before that was a rather shaky start which involved persecution complex due to a totally innocent depiction of an unbelievably handsome middle-aged man devouring a big slice of watermelon on a hot day that eventually led to a comical though not too willing declaration from Shirou. In any case, Shirou went on to forge friendly bonds with Kayoko and her family. 

As for Kenji, his eloquence is a tool for excellence and quite unfortunately, disaster as well. Kenji's co-workers have marvelled just how capable he is at dealing with quirky customers. One particular customer simply blabbers in a single breath her preferred hairstyle, overwhelming just about everybody else. Kenji smoothly takes over and gives the customer not only what she has requested, but also a very good reason to patronise the salon again. Because of that, the owner has no choice but to keep Kenji around.

I suppose that I can't end the post without sharing some of my favourite dishes from the manga. I have only read until the second tankoubon (there are nine volumes to date) but I reckon that it is sufficient. Strawberry jam (not quite a dish but it's the first thing that pops out of my head), Oven-roasted Chicken, Milk Jelly with Black Syrup...hmm... 

Eccentrically Yours.  

Written by J.Fluffysheep ♪

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