Corona robbed me of my taste so I tried some rank foods for your enjoyment

What else is there to do in isolation?

Like an unhealthy proportion of students in the UK right now, I recently found myself self-isolating in light of a corona scare (living in a house of eight, it was only a matter of time). Around the same day my positive test result came through, I woke up that morning and realised I could no longer smell. After a good hour of spraying deodorant up my nose, I deduced that this was probably the loss of smell and taste associated with coronavirus. And so began the longest week of my life.

The lack of smell was manageable – being immune to male housemates farting in your face (yes, twenty-year-olds still do this) was actually quite nice. But it turns out the only thing I really enjoyed about isolation was being able to eat massive amounts of food because there is quite literally nothing else to do. Now, even this one pleasure had been taken away from me. My porridge suddenly resembled mashed potato, my coffee tasted of nothing more than muddy water, and I definitely ate some gone-off veg without being able to detect its gone-offness. Not actual real-life complaints, I know, but it was enough to push me over the edge.

So, with my dissertation work sitting idly in the corner, and a sense of despair creeping in, I took the only naturally logical course of action and decided to try all of the mildly gross things in my kitchen, for science. Here’s what went down:

1. Balsamic vinegar

Rating: 5/10

Pretty nothing-y overall, but it turns out my oesophagus was still in complete working order. It burned a wee bit on the way down.

2. A lemon

Rating: 7/10

Honestly, this could have been any sort of fruit. Not even blindfolded, with a gun to my head could I have told you it was a lemon. At best it was a spicy orange. Next.

3. Coffee grounds

Kenco? More like Kenc-no

Rating: 0/10

The least joyful eating experience I’ve had to date. It was as if I’d shovelled gravel into my mouth, and it served as a reminder that I can no longer enjoy my morning caffeine hit. Moving swiftly on.

4. Soy sauce

brb, just drowning all my food in soy sauce

Rating: 8/10

One of the most outspoken flavours of the lot, I was pleasantly surprised to detect at least a hint of salt. I had a couple more shots, just to ~feel~ something.

5. Raw garlic

Rating: 3/10.

Points given only for the crunch. My housemates did not appreciate the garlic breath that was sustained for the rest of the day.

6. Straight vodka

like water, but ~spicy~

Rating: 9/10

Stealing from the precious isolation voddy supply was risky, but worth it. As it turns out, the grievances of losing your smell and taste are more or less remedied by the fact that you can down shots as if they’re water. Cheers, ‘rona!

So there we have it, the rankest foods in my kitchen, tried and tested for your entertainment. What did I learn? Not much, except I miss the taste of coffee, and isolation is the perfect time period to go on a bender.