Toshio Yamamoto likes ramen. I’d say, like he likes ramen more than I like sports. 5654 varieties of ramen he’s tried, reviewed for his website I-ramen-net, and shown on his videos (22 million hits). For 19 years he’s been consuming ramen over five times a week. Consumed? With ramen? It could affect his noodle!! And if you think this story won’t be full of noodle nuggets, phogettaboutit.
Toshio lives near Tokyo where he wrote the book Sosuseki Mencyclopedia (encyclopedia of instant noodles) which I’m sure every college student needs to plan his or her culinary semester. Before he retired to become a full time ramen expert Yamamoto designed electrical appliances. Toshio gives scores to the ramen types he’s tested on a 1 to 5 scale. So far, no ramen has rated a five.
If I were him I’d be having ramen dreams, which I do anyway. Tell me if you’ve ever had this one: You’re in the bath tub taken a ramen bath, noodles all around, some rice, some buckwheat, noodles under your chin, tickling your armpits, a few noodles have floated up your nose. Your buddy is calling you “Ramen Nose” and then you notice a few of these noodles are moving, wiggling. You grab one, then another, then conclude a few worms have been mixed in with the ramen. Worms!! You’re swimming in worms and you can’t decide if you ate ramen or worms. That’s when I usually wake up.
Eating this much ramen might make you do weird things. Like glue together a small football player statuette and call it “Ramenowski.”
Or go out backpacking in the ramen fields, then try to get a TV crew to follow you for your proposed show “Roaming for Ramen.”
Or hire the kids band “Spaghetti Eddie” to play at your wedding where as your ramen away to your honeymoon, wedding goers are showering you with fettuccine, tying macaroni to your car. When the guests think you’re drunk, tell them “No, I’m completely soba.”
Was that a bad one? Miso sorry!
And don’t give me the standard Vietnamese “Pho sure” reply. Or get all German on me and say that was “Lo Mein” or Chinese or whatever.
The point is ramen which, when it was originally introduced in America, was considered a luxury item. Seriously, these packages which you and I have sometimes bought for as little as .10 each was once “luxury” and expensive. But some of it is still very expensive, and very salty, and very tasty and maybe worth trying new samples every day for nineteen years. Hey, whatever floats your bowl. Udon good for the world of Japanese noodles, Mr. Yamamoto.