November 15th, 2013....
Tis the season. The season of chocomares. What is that you ask? Well children, gather 'round, grab a cup of drinking chocolate and let the chocolatier explain.
Let me start by saying we love what we do. Truly. We get to get up everyday and go to work (like most people lucky enough to have a job) and then begin to make little teeny tiny shiny things that make people happy. Thousands upon thousands of scrumptious decadent treats made from chocolate, cream, butter, fruits, and spices and booze; lots of booze. We slave over them, we make them perfect, we do it en masse with ribbons and bows. It is an extremely satisfying way of life on many levels. But it has it's drawbacks.
Now don’t think for a second this is gonna be a complaint filled screed whining about our first world problems. This is a morality tale plain and simple.
Chocolate is a passion, a lover, a muse, and a bitch. When the chocolate wants to go out on a date without you it puts on it's fishnet stockings, wears a little red dress and puts on 6" stiletto heals. No excuse, no warning. Chocolate can go sideways at any moment and refuse to cooperate on any level. It does not care if there is a deadline that you must meet or an item who's stock is dangerously low. You must be patient with chocolate and talk nice to it. Most days it will love you for it and then, without warning, it will break your heart and get all streaky and blotchy and grainy. It happens to the best of us.
The betrayal seems personal, and sometimes there is no other obvious reason, but if you look inside you can often see that there is some scientific reason. The weather has changed and the fog has settled and the humidity has risen. This the meteorological explanation . A temperature probe or thermostat has failed by a couple of degrees of calibration and you don’t notice until a few hundred pieces have come out terribly wrong. This is mechanical. Then there is just the mystery. You fought the good fight and checked your equipment and everything in the chain and found nothing that could provide a clue as to why thiss has happened. Chocolate will come home at 10am with it's panties in it's purse and not say shit.
A couple seasons of these random betrayals and you start missing sleep. Your dreams are plagued by flowing rivers of chocolate rising slowly around you. An eternal incoming tide of sweet brown liquid; enticing and enveloping with a sensual aroma and feel. It is soft and welcoming and the dream floats along with a pleasant enough vibe until you are stuck. Trapped in place as the rising tide gets higher and higher and you cant move. As the chocolate rises past your waist panic begins to creep up your spine and the warm glow begins to take on a violent reddish hue as you realize that the sticky brown goo coming up to your chest just wont stop. You begin to thrash in bed and your spouse is alarmed as you scream in your sleep about cracked truffles, bloomed caramels, and burnt sugar. Her attempts to wake you are fruitless as you plunge deeper and deeper into REM and the tide creeps up to your chin.
Then it gets weird. Employees past and present float by taunting you with epithets designed to inflict misery. Pieces of equipment, crucial to the process explode and crumble in a jumble of broken parts designed to humiliate you. Thousands upon thousands of finished pieces of chocolate suddenly turn into excrement before your eyes. As the final gasp of breathe reaches your lungs before the incoming tide closes over your breathing orifices you awake with an audible scream of panic. Your heart is racing and your disorientation is palpable as your sweat covered body shivers in the dawning realization that you are actually alive. It was just a dream. Another chocomare has had it's way with you.