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Aug 2012
The first enchilada was created in the summer of 1968
In a small house near Seal Beach
In Southern California.

The house was owned by a friend of my dad's
Or my mom's
And we had gone over for dinner

I was eight

I would like to say that it was a cool beach pad
With wood paneling, all the rage back then
And an Eames recliner in the corner of the living room

I only remember the paneling
but since I am writing this
The Eames piece stays

We had gone for dinner
And the owner of the house had made enchiladas
Beef ones as I recall with sauce from a series of Old El Paso cans

I can still smell and taste them
They were the first world food I had ever had
Besides canned Chinese food from the supermarket which doesn't count

And because I loved them with their ground beef and sauce
Their hot oil softened corn tortillas, sour cream, cheese and green onion
And little tiny bits of black olive

They became the prison guards
Throwing open the gates of my suburban Connecticut upbringing
Letting me leave the confines and walk freely in the sunshine for the first time

They were followed by many other firsts
Sushi, Crepes, haggis,Β Β tiki masala and sea urchin to name a few
All of which owe their very existence in my life

To that first enchilada.
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