Good Potato and Bad Potato

Good Potato is delicious.

Bad Potato is rotten.

Good Potato is best with sour cream and chives.

Bad Potato is best when you are pretty full already.

Good Potato engages in regular god meditation, in which Good Potato is not a potato but a god.

Bad Potato daydreams about equally bad bacon.

Good Potato tenses the pubococcygeus during orgasm, preventing ejaculation and preserving Good Potato’s essential jing.

Bad Potato dissipates Bad Potato’s yang energy every sexual encounter.

Good Potato drinks the elixir of eternal life.

Bad Potato drinks mercury while loudly referring to it as “reverted cinnabar.”

Good Potato keeps the secret of the Daoist register passed down to him by the Perfect Man.

Bad Potato shares the secret of the Daoist register with the sky, the sun, and the sea. Really, Bad Potato is quite talkative.

Good Potato achieves ecstasy by staring into the eyes of Good Potato’s lover. This is the “eye staring sexual tantra dharma.”

Bad Potato has never felt such an ecstasy. Bad Potato loudly tells everyone that it does not exist. This is the “inadequate potato loudly boasting perfection tantra dharma.”

Good Potato decides that Good Potato has lived long enough. Good Potato hops into the oven. Good Potato slowly bakes.

Bad Potato watches.

Good Potato becomes crispy. Good Potato becomes even more delicious. (It is in fact quite surprising that Good Potato was delicious while raw.)

Bad Potato ventures to ask, “Doesn’t that hurt?”

“That’s only a concern for Bad Potatoes like yourself!” says Good Potato.

Zing!

Good Potato and Bad Potato is a classic Zen story. Just ask Huang-po!

9 thoughts on “Good Potato and Bad Potato

  1. It is in fact quite surprising that Good Potato was delicious while raw.

    I don’ t consider it surprising at all. Raw potatoes can be quite tasty if eaten with the proper preparation.
    This story notwithstanding, I do think it’s somewhat difficult to tell which potatoes are Good Potatoes and which are Bad before they’re cooked.

    S

  2. I do think it’s somewhat difficult to tell which potatoes are Good Potatoes and which are Bad before they’re cooked.

    So a potato is essentially a Heisenburg vegetable, whose contents are impossible to discern until the potato is cooked and opened? Perhaps until it is cooked the potato exists in a moral void, neither good nor evil until it is tasted.

  3. well, potatoes do have a tendancy to sprout tentacles and become squishy if left alone too long.

    Perhaps the bad potatoe was a good potatoe once, and the good potatoe would have become a bad potatoe, no matter what he did, unless he jumped in the oven!

  4. So a potato is essentially a Heisenberg vegetable, whose contents are impossible to discern until the potato is cooked and opened? Perhaps until it is cooked the potato exists in a moral void, neither good nor evil until it is tasted.

    Difficult, not impossible. Perhaps there are instruments which could aid in the determination of a potato’s inherent morality; perhaps those of sufficient spiritual advancement can sense these things without external aid. I merely refer to the observational capabilities of the normal sensorium.

    – S

    Note:
    The roshi Suzuki Shunryu once said,

    Someone was sitting in front of a sunflower, watching the sunflower, a cup of sun, and so I tried it too. It was wonderful; I felt the whole universe in the sunflower. That was my experience. Sunflower meditation. A wonderful confidence appeared. You can see the whole universe in a flower. If you say, ‘Oh this is a sunflower which doesn’t really exist’,

    and here he laughed,

    that is not our zazen practice.”

    Can one advance toward enlightenment by means of potato meditation?
    Possibly… if you pay attention to San Francisco roshis.

    You may also wish to consult Shimizu Yoshiaki’s article, “Multiple Commemorations: The Vegetable Nehan of Ito Jakuchu“. Among other topics, he considers the question of whether a vegetable can have the Buddha nature.

  5. Is it wrong of me that I prefer my potatoes microwaved?

    In no way! I would recommend, though, trying them roasted in an open fire. Wrap them in a couple of layers of tin foil, and stick them right into the campfire, near the bottom. Take them out about half an hour to forty-five minutes later (with tongs or a sharp stick), and very carefully unwrap the foil. Let ’em cool a bit, and chomp away.

    You can put butter or margarine or other similar topping on them then, or… you can put a partial cut in the potatoes when still raw, shove a little butter in there, and then wrap them and put them in the fire.

  6. Now I’m hungry. And I too prefer the microwaved, as via oven it takes too long. One would have to throw a potato in at any time, on the off chance one would want a potato later.

    Perhaps Bad Potato would be better if he tried Potato Bonzai?

Leave a Reply