Reblogged: 88 Souls in Rice

This is the second reblog in a series showcasing my hubby’s posts from his site, Gozumezu – Sharing Japanese Mysteries.

Every time I eat a bowl of rice, I remember when Hitoshi and I first met. He told me to finish every last grain in my bowl or I’d lose my sight.

Now when I tease Hitoshi about leaving grains in his own bowl, he tells me his eyesight is already bad.

This post tells two versions of the story about why we should not leave even one lonely rice grain sticking to the side of a rice bowl.

rice stalk

baby rice stalk (Credit: Hitoshi)

What about you? Did you grow up with special stories about food, how to eat, manners or the like?


When I was a kid, my grandma would often sternly say, “Eat every single grain of rice in your bowl. Don’t leave any of them.” I would look into my rice bowl and see two or three grains stuck to the sides.

It was difficult to pick up a grain of rice with chopsticks when I was little. I also didn’t care. I just wanted to finish my meal and watch TV.

I also hated to have my rice bowl checked by grandma. One day I had to ask. “What’s the matter with leaving one grain of rice, grandma?”

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10 thoughts on “Reblogged: 88 Souls in Rice

  1. Thank you for the link. That was very interesting to learn.
    I think now a lot of people are not aware of the effort it takes to produce food. There are currently talks about the milk price here in the UK as supermarkets are literally squeezing dairy farmers dry.
    We should be more appreciative I think.
    Mind you, I always finish my rice…

    • Very true. I certainly didn’t think about the work that went into growing a peach or making pasta. I think it was an article about throwing out food that made me think twice. It’s not just the initial waste but also wasting the time and resources of the entire chain that got your food in front of you. This article also suggested shopping daily instead of weekly to cut down on waste. In Calgary, we lived next to two stores and shopped several times a week. It was great! Our fridge was almost always empty and we only bought what we needed for a few days. This was the same in Japan where we had only a tiny fridge. Now we live in the suburbs and buy more at once and then I forget what we have and keep throwing out food. Time for a change!

  2. Just left this comment at his blog:
    Very nice and funny story. Thanks for sharing.
    Interesting to see that every culture although diverse, use the same tricks to make kids eat their full meals.
    Thanks Hilary!

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