I think what I’m about to write may be the single most controversial thing I have ever thought, let alone written down. I might even be putting myself in physical danger, but I think this needs to be said: I think cheese is the single most overrated food in the western world. Now before you run for your pitchforks and begin lighting your torches, let me explain myself.
I think it was about fifth grade when I first realized that my opinion on cheese placed me squarely in the minority. It was my friend’s birthday, and it was about lunchtime. As his dad lit up the grill, he asked how many cheeseburgers each of us wanted. I was young. I didn’t know any better. I announced that I didn’t want a cheeseburger because I didn’t really like cheese. A silence fell over the party, but quickly erupted into shouts of “heretic!” and “heathen!” As they raised my ten-year old body above their heads and prepared to throw me into a water grave (read: pool), I began to see that I was holding a very unpopular opinion (and that maybe next time I should just peel the cheese off of my burger).
Okay, maybe it didn’t happen exactly like that. Still, the idolatry that people have for cheese would even make God consider giving Earth another bath. To be honest, I simply don’t understand it. Why do cheese lovers want all of their foods to taste exactly the same as the last one? Do you even know what you’re eating beneath the inch and a half of cheese? Here in Parma, the problem is only exacerbated. We might as well just cut out all the unnecessary stuff and just eat entire wheels of cheese for every meal. To be fair, the cheese here is phenomenal; even I have made it rain cheese a few times. At home though, most of the cheese that is readily available tastes like some bland dairy byproduct mixed with some cardboard. That three-cheese mix you get in the resealable bags for nachos and tacos? Craft singles? Yikes. It essentially mutes any of the flavors that were in the meal to begin with.
I’m not saying I don’t like cheese. In the right time and place, cheese can be the MVP of a meal. However, I just feel like it gets too much attention, too much glory. It’s like the Lebron of foods. It’s definitely good, but it often stifles other players because everyone tells it that it’s the man. Sometimes cheese just needs a breather on the bench while some of the other flavors take the court. Your tongue will be happy with some of them, I promise. Plus, when you reunite with cheese in your next meal you might even appreciate it more. And if not, well, then I guess I should go put on my bathing suit.