“C’mon, Ty, you got to try this!!” I was on my knees for my friend Tyler to try some boba, a Taiwanese tea with little black tapioca balls. We were at the mall and wanted something sweet, so I recommended boba. Tyler is a picky eater, as a friend with a nut allergy, he’s very cautious with what he eats. So, after interrogating me on what’s in boba, I reassured him it has nothing he’s allergic to. He finally decided to order his first ever Oreo boba milk tea.
His reaction was exactly what I was expecting. When I saw his eyes light up, I knew that my job was complete, and he was hooked. I knew this wouldn’t be his last boba.
Food is something everybody needs, and in many situations, craves. So why not spice it up and try something new? After all, research shows there are many benefits that come with trying new foods. One takeaway is it connects cultures.
Each bite of something different can create a new sensation that you may not have experienced before. As food helps bridge cultures, people experience diversity. For example, in my neighborhood there’s a yearly party, which is a great way to introduce new foods to new people. I can remember my mouth watering at things as simple as hotdogs, burgers, cream cheese wontons and curry. As you might imagine, my neighborhood is fairly diverse. New dishes are always being made for these parties, and it’s a way for people to learn from each other. As folks learn how to cook new dishes to spice up their palate, these new dishes actually add to the diversity of neighborhoods.
Food links cultures, helps people forge communities, and teaches us about another culture’s food palate. Whether you try creamy pastas from Italy, the spicy rice cakes in Vietnam, or even the plantains of Panama, you certainly will gain a new tasty experience. And, what about Tyler? Now, he’s way more accepting in trying new foods. Just the other day, we ate at Bonchon, a Korean fried chicken place, and he loved it. So, in the end try to be like Tyler, and sample tasty new experiences.
ThreeSixty Fall News Team students wrote op-ed stories, inspired by the #360YouthVoiceChallenge, which is inspired by youth.