The street outside our building is a crunchy carpet of acorns, a harbinger of colder months up ahead.  

You know what I think about when I see acorns?


I grew up watching the movie, “My Neighbor Totoro,” which is about two girls who move to rural Japan and discover a big furry creature named Totoro, who according to their most enlightened and indulging father, is the keeper of the forest.  They proceed to be all cute while going on adventures together.  The movie was made by Hayao Miyazaki; later in adult life I learned that he is a very highly acclaimed artist, but when I was young all I knew was that I liked a delightful movie on an unlabelled VHS tape that magically appeared in our basement.

Anyway, I desperately wanted to have a Totoro in my own life; a gigantic, bumbling friend that took great joy in little things like afternoon naps and umbrellas.  I suppose over the years I have cultivated my inner Totoro: I like naps, and I’m quite fond of a red umbrella that we have.  I get very happy when the Panko breadcrumbs are on sale.  And so on.

I think I also tend to run like Totoro’s little friends.

I wonder what sort of diet Totoro eats.  If he is the forest’s keeper, I would suppose that he keeps his consumption to a minimum, so as to respect the forest’s spirit.  He would probably only eat acorns and nuts that have fallen to the ground, and keep a mostly vegan and raw diet.  In choice of diet I hope that Totoro forgives me, as I tend to eat all sorts of dainties, but otherwise our intention is similar: I try to eat just enough, not too much, and eat everything that I buy and not be wasteful.  I try to remember to be thankful that I have enough food to eat, and good food at that.  I try to keep it simple.

I think I’m going to go eat a handful of almonds, and maybe chomp on a stump of cucumber.