1. LemonadeLover

    LemonadeLover Member

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    What would fear taste like?

    Discussion in 'Research' started by LemonadeLover, Dec 9, 2015.

    My thinking is that fear would taste like something rather unpleasant, maybe bitter or sour (like those horrible toxic waste sweets). Anyway, if you could make fear into a food, what would it taste like to you?
     
  2. peachalulu

    peachalulu Member Reviewer Contributor

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    I'd look to the context before settling on anything outside of the scene.
    It could taste like blackberries if my mc was picking them and a bear came along.
    It could taste like Binaca if a prostitute, spraying her mouth in between clients, has just had a john pull a knife on her.
     
  3. BrianIff

    BrianIff I'm so piano, a bad punctuator. Contributor

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    Tamarinds.
     
  4. LemonadeLover

    LemonadeLover Member

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    It's not for a scene. I was just wondering about turning emotions into different foods (bit of a weird thing to think but I've got writers block)
     
  5. Inks

    Inks Senior Member

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    There are many types of fear and unless you have ever licked a person who is afraid, you might not know what it tastes like. First of all, taste is more about smell then actual taste buds so I have to paint a better concept.

    Your standard fear is served as a sour gelatinous mass that dissolves in your mouth that has a slightly dull metallic taste mixed with urea. The acrid taste lingers in the back of your mouth as the bitter mass slides down your throat and exits your nostrils upon exhaling. Immediately your next breath feels cool, and the earthy aftertaste makes your stomach twist in revulsion, but it goes no further. A warm sensation begins in the breast and extends out through the hands with perhaps a slight tingle, raising the hairs on the back of your neck and making your knees weak. The next bite is no different, but it becomes harder to breathe and the rush of your heart grows more rapid until your body acclimates to it.

    Stronger versions taste like popping a bloody pus-filled blister in your mouth and squeezing every drop out with your teeth and savoring it on your tongue. Sucking the wound clean and swallowing it down. Though this cannot be served as a dish unless it is congealed or whipped into a thick jelly like before. Regardless, it is a dish mention to be savored and should not be mixed with other fatty oils unless you want to linger all the more.
     
  6. Wreybies

    Wreybies Thrice Retired Supporter Contributor

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    10,000 likes are not enough for this post. :)
     
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  7. DefinitelyMaybe

    DefinitelyMaybe Contributor Contributor

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    The first thing that popped into my mind is that fear would taste like rusty nails. But, I have absolutely no reason to think that.
     
  8. Wreybies

    Wreybies Thrice Retired Supporter Contributor

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    I think you just need to give a good line of thought for why fear tastes the way it does when you describe it. It's an emotion. In Storm Constantine's Wraeththu series, she made a habit of describing any day that appeared to be the kind of day in which dodgy things were going to happen as a day with a "metallic taste to the air". *shrug*. Not something I've ever experienced, personally, but she was sufficiently consistent and matter-of-fact with her description that I knew that any metallic tastes mentioned meant shit was about to get real. ;)
     
  9. Link the Writer

    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    When I'm afraid, my throat clutches and my mouth feels like I haven't had a drop of liquid in days. I feel dizzy, my vision begins to blur and my knees begin to weaken. Breathing becomes a struggle and my stomach feels tight.

    At least that's how I experience fear.
     
  10. SethLoki

    SethLoki Retired Autodidact Contributor

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    Nails = Iron = The taste of blood. Mesuspects your subconscious planted that @DefinitelyMaybe ? For me...cue some little drums and a touch of melodrama:

    Curiously @Link the Writer touched on parched as I was composing the reply below...

    Adrenalin squeezed from fear dries the mouth (stay with me on this). One feels the same sensation after a salty meal—a nagging thirst. Such a thirst would promote itself from nagging to raging and consume you should you be cast adrift and neath sun on an endless ocean. Such consumption would break your will and drive you to drink; to drink seawater. Such a deed, mouthful by mouthful, would fill one with dread as much as the stomach full of life ending slosh. And such a taste then, such a taste would be brackish, strong brine, fear would taste like strong brine. In a dry mouth.
     
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  11. Inks

    Inks Senior Member

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    Yeah, the taste of drinking your own blood is not really good. The case which I think of "metallic" is because I was at the dentist and undergoing a procedure with a very full belly with at least 2 pounds of food and lots of soda. I was just a kid at the time, but they switched from procaine to gas without asking if I had ate anything. Mother was told I could eat with the procaine, so that is why I had a huge breakfast since I would not be eating solid food for awhile.

    During the procedure-
    Me: "I taste things.... I am scared."
    Doctor: "Just some blood. It is almost over"
    Me: "Everything is sparkly"
    Doctor: "That's nice."

    Ten seconds later, projectile vomited all over him. That fear was the taste of dental tools, gas and lots of blood in my mouth. Did not catch the reference to "The Exorcist" at the time, but I left feeling very queasy and hungry. So I guess you can say fear is also the taste of vomit to me.
     
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  12. SethLoki

    SethLoki Retired Autodidact Contributor

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    Or someone else's... ...that's strongly flavoured with with their overdose.
     
  13. sidtvicious

    sidtvicious Contributor Contributor

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    My immediate thought isn't so much a flavor, but a sensation. Ever taken too big of bite and swallowed too fast, there's a cold chill/spasm that moves from the base of your throat all the way down the spine. It's quite a unique feeling.---which kind of was the point of @peachalulu 's post. Variation based on the individual.
     
  14. matwoolf

    matwoolf Banned Contributor

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    The taste of soil crammed in a cheek, buried alive, and having to swallow that same soil to create a cavity, then quickly, somehow, placing a plastic straw in this cavity to breathe, even if a short straw reaches the surface atmosphere. Plastic and dirt in this first instance example.

    Or perhaps in the second example there is a dragoon of hairy spiders, and their legs creep across your nose, and you also, this man, you are tied up by leather straps attached at the wrist. You scream at the sight of spiders, and they scream at your scream. Spiders screams - and their breath tastes of flies. Your last thought is fly breath which is cold and metallic, like sucking a rusty nail, I think so. Then all these big spiders eat your tongue, a party almost, and finally you get into the swing of things, [you are not dead] cannot taste spiders, but you smell them all, dirty spiders, no rainfall in the spider forest for months, then chapter two where it rains a river of spiders.
     
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  15. Fouad FARJANI

    Fouad FARJANI New Member

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    You know what they say, It is better to be feared than loved, if you cannot be both.
    So, I wouldn't say it tastes any worse than good, since love as an ingredient make things taste better, fear would make food taste even better.
    Think of a Chef cooking for an oppressive King for the first time.
     
  16. Xoic

    Xoic Prognosticator of Arcana Ridiculosum Contributor

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    Animals can smell fear because it dumps a cocktail of hormones in your blood, just like excitement does. There's adrenaline, but there are other things as well, I don't remember specifically what. I think most people above came pretty close to describing it as something metallic, like blood, but there are a few extra bitter spikes in it too. Vomit is pretty good. Maybe like sweat a little. Or maybe like copper, or like having a battery in your mouth. The word alkali comes to mind.

    I just remembered—cannibals and warrior tribes who would drink the blood or eat the heart of fallen enemies (including hunted animals) prized the blood or heart immediately after the kill, especially if the prey was excited or afraid, because of the hormones in it. They didn't know that's what it was, but they could definitely taste the difference. They just called it manna or life force. They'd get a nice jolt from it, I guess sort of like sucking on a battery.
     
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2021
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  17. Joe_Hall

    Joe_Hall Member

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    2005 in Baghdad Iraq in the middle of a barrage of 16 katusha rockets, I was sitting in a totally inadequate bunker with my teeth slamming together not knowing if my next breath would be my last. I have the very distinct memory of a new penny taste in my mouth. I guess for me, if I had to give fear a taste for a character, that would be the taste I would give it.
     
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  18. Javelineer

    Javelineer Member

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    Came to say this.

    2002 Afghanistan, 2014 Ukraine, 2020 Nashville, etc. Of all the times I've really feared for my life (or, worse, for the lives of people I cared about), the most distinct memories I have was of the sunken feeling in my stomach, the dry lump in my throat, and the taste of copper on my tongue.

    I don't think this is universal, since everyone experiences fear differently and would presumably "taste" it differently, but it seems that the phrase "coppery taste of fear" used to be a fairly common one in certain strands of literature. I recall Frank Herbert being fairly fond of it.

    But yeah, if fear has a taste, it tastes like new pennies or rusty nails.
     
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  19. Homer Potvin

    Homer Potvin Funky like your grandpa's drawers.... Staff Contributor

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    Chicken
     
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  20. Chekhov's pen

    Chekhov's pen Member

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    "fear tastes sssssssoooooo sweeeeeet..."
    Glimmering eyes, discordant teeth. Darkness.

    was I... the only one to immediately go there?
     
  21. Fervidor

    Fervidor Senior Member

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    I'm imagining it having a rather intense taste - something that hits you hard pretty immediately, makes you tense up and gets your heart racing. The ones that come to mind are sour, bitter, spicy, minty or some combination of those. (Say, intensely sour with a bitter undertone and a sort of burning chill.) Or perhaps it doesn't taste like any of those things, but those are the closest words to describe it. Doesn't necessarily taste bad, but will be unpleasant if you're not prepared for it.

    I also think it might taste, for lack of a better word, wrong. Like you intuitively worry that you shouldn't have eaten that thing, even if you don't recognize the taste at all. This one time I got accidentally tricked into taking a gulp of rum thinking it was soda, and I immediately spit it out. Not so much because it tasted bad, you see, but because I didn't expect it and my instinctive reaction was that there was something very wrong with that "soda."
     
  22. Stephen1974

    Stephen1974 Member

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    Peanut Butter.
     
  23. Xoic

    Xoic Prognosticator of Arcana Ridiculosum Contributor

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    Smooth or chunky? Choosy mothers and inquiring minds want to know.
     

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