I didn’t even know before this past week that there was a creator of instant ramen noodles. They seemed eternal in their delicious, three-minute glory. Surely they had always been, and always would be? But lo! I have learned that one single man was the architect of the ramen revolution that nourished me through college. His name was Momofuku Ando, and at age 96, he has gone to meet his maker.
The Economist has this to say:
For centuries men and women have turned to the east for the secret of life, health and happiness. But Momofuku Ando taught that there is no need to climb half-naked up a mountain peak, or meditate for hours on a prayer-mat, or knot one’s legs round one’s neck while intoning “Om” through the higher nasal passages. One should simply:
Peel off lid.
Pour boiling water.
Steep for three minutes.
Stir well and serve.
Of course, they are talking about “Cup Noodles“, whereas I’ve always preferred the “Top Ramen” product line, which they describe as “yellowish, wormy bricks in cellophane bags”. Yes, yes, I can see them now, rapidly collapsing into a soup in a pan of boiling water. Only one more minute until my MSG-laden reward! Mmmmm!
The fact that Chikin Ramen was the original flavor and has always been my favorite makes me feel a personal connection to the Creator. And the fact that he lived to age 96 while eating his own product almost every day reassures me that I’m not walking into an early grave by continuing to partake in the oh-so-convenient foodstuff. In fact, it’s time for lunch, and I have some in the cupboard… my meal awaits!