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Show me love: leave me sushi

April 11th, 2004 · 2 Comments

On Friday, Jay McCarthy linked to this piece but I didn’t look at it closely due to busyness…then Ted came home and while reading through his blogroll sent the link to me: Love Peeks Through Elder Japan’s Curtain of Reserve, which described the romance between Mr. and Mrs. Kudo.

The real-life exchange between Chiyoko and Koji Kudo, wife and husband for 32 years, became the prelude of a love letter she secretly wrote to him and entered into a competition. After it was selected for a book, Mrs. Kudo, 55, a noodle shop manager, and Mr. Kudo, 58, a factory worker, became known as the lovey-dovey couple. Embarrassed, they have yet to show the book to their elder son.

I liked these examples from their relationship:

Neither of them say, “I love you.” Yet she saw his love in other ways.

He would leave untouched her favorite pieces of sushi, sea urchin and salmon roe, and claim to be full. At night, before retiring to his room on the second floor, he would turn on the heater inside his wife’s room on the ground floor.

They remind me of what David Weinberger wrote about what is Unspoken.

The sushi example speaks to me. That’s something Ted would do. He often saves for me some of my favorite foods such as the last few raspberries or piece of salmon. It’s selfless but also special and intimate in a way that is tender and romantic. I remember the moment.

However, saving me sea urchin and salmon roe may not be the way to romance me. I’m not sure I’ve ever had them or that I feel that adventurous, after our last foray into sushi surprises. Even toro or tako might turn my stomach more than my heart. But save me some tomago and I’m taken (especially if you’re my husband, that is!). In fact, I think Ted did just that on our last adventure. We had ordered double sets of pieces, but I had had a hard time swallowing some of the more exotic meats. Ted kindly offered me his share of egg sushi. I remember…

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2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Kris Hasson-Jones // Apr 12, 2004 at 12:10 pm

    The intersection between “how I notice the love I’m given” and “how my partner shows love” is precious and fine, but it’s also something most people (IMHO) need to learn. We’re stuffed full of what businesses want us to buy in order to show love, with the ideas of the people who make movies about what is a romantic and appropriate way to show love. We’re corrupted by all that jazz about “if you loved me, you’d read my mind” (which I consider to be one of the most dangerous ideas in modern society).

    Both aspects can be changed: I can change how I interpret what my partner does, so that I feel loved, and I can also ask my partner to do some of the things I particularly enjoy as loving acts.

  • 2 Julie // Apr 13, 2004 at 12:34 am

    Excellent point. I’ve thought a lot about this myself – what does it mean to give and receive love?! – although I wasn’t thinking about it when I wrote this post – thanks for your insight.