As part of the non specific breeding program to produce a race of super warriors who conquered the world through pomposity, posh accents, tea time, the best language in the world and cricket, I was bred into the embers of what was once an empire, who stole countries through the cunning use of flags. As such, I have been specifically genetically engineered to live at the bottom of a mine, to live in a land where sunshine is a kind of vague idea that happens for a fortnight a year (I don't get a tan, I spontaneously burst into flames), and to drink copious amounts of somewhat vile tasting fermented vegetable products.
More than a century and a half ago, the British claimed India which was a heck of a lot smarter than America putting a man on the moon because you can get spicy food and tea from India but the only thing that you get from landing on the moon is creating a diversionary tactic so that two superpowers locked in a very peculiar geopolitical dance don't accidentally blow up the world with nuclear weapons. Somewhere down the line, the genetic ability to eat spicy food was passed through the gene chain to me; and as such, I quite enjoy blasting my four functioning taste buds with spicy food which comes with warning labels and where it is rated in millions of Scoville units.
Yesterday, my boss took one bite of a curry pie from a local pie shop in Mosman, asked me if I wanted the rest and so, I cut out the bitten bit and had the remainder of a very nice pie. This is somewhat remarkable in Mosman because this is the suburb which is its own local government area and has no cheap and nasty fast food chain restaurants within its borders. Sorry Ronald, your big red flappy shows aren't welcome here. Sorry Colonel Sanders, the only place that you'd be allowed would be Mosman RSL where you're going to find actual army Colonels. Sorry Jabba the Hutt, neither you nor your brother, Pizza, would be allowed to pedal your particular brand of Italian flat bread here. Domino's? Only in the Seniors' Centre and even then, of the Double-9 variety.
As for the rest of Mosman and the hope that there might be spicy food somewhere? Forget it. The kebab shop in Mosman doesn't have kebab sauce. What kind of suburb is this?
To be fair, I don't know what kind of sauces that the burger joints that charge more than $15 for a burger use because I'd rather not spend that kind of money on a glorified sandwich. I'm especially not spending $18 for smashed avocado on toast. Y'all can laugh about that if you like but when the ingredients cost $1.29 per sandwich and you're being charged a markup of 1295%, someone is hosting an art show by Mickey Bliss. In case you're interested, I did the maths and to build a house out of avocado toast which was seven layers thick (and thus using avocado as mortar, it would cost roughly $177,000 to build the average one story 3-bedroom house.
I do know that as I walk around IGA, Aldi and Harris Farm Markets, there is nothing by way of spicy food to be found anywhere. None of the noodle packets are of anything hotter than Beef, and probably the hottest sauces are either sweet chilli or French mustard. Shopping in Mosman for anything spicy or interesting is like walking around on the moon, looking for a telephone box - it ain't happening and it can't be found.
I want spicy food. I want it to be so hot that it comes with a warning label from the Department of Health and Human Services. I want to be keeled over on the floor with blood pouring out of every conceivable orephus because it's so hot. I want to breathe fire that makes my lacrimal ducts appeal to the UN's Court of Arbitration on Human Rights because it's cruel and unusual punishment. I want to fart fire and brimstone and be declared a disaster area an have the Hazmat Squad arrive because it's so hot.
Instead I get a world where I'm completely surrounded by Chicken and Beef flavour, where Barbecue Sauce is the only alternative to Tomato Sauce, and where I feel like a criminal when I smuggle in kebab sauce into Mosman and pass across its borders. Entering Mosman is like entering a separate country except there's no passport control (but there would be if it was legal; just to keep out the poor people in case an epidemic of poverty should break out) and entering the 1950s. This is a land where quinoa and rocket are considered as foods but where coriander is not.
On my way to work every day, I look out of the window and see places like Pendle Hill, Harris Park, Granville, Auburn and Flemington and see that very same United Nations of colours and spices which motivated the race of super warriors who conquered the world through pomposity, posh accents, tea time, the best language in the world and cricket, to go out and bring back all the spices and chilli that they could find. It has been said that dishes like Vindaloo were invented as a joke to make the English look foolish as they doubled over on the floor in the foetal position from the hotness of the food. I arrive in Mosman every day and see a range of spice and hotness that barely registers on the scale; catering for an audience who thinks that spaghetti is pretty neat (and only comes in a can) and which is completely devoid of fire and fury.
And as for that pie? I checked that too. $9.50. Seriously. It's enough to make you wish that you were living at the bottom of a mine, or been blown up with nuclear weapons. At least then you'd know that there was hotness.