Another social study from the very prestigious Oxford University in England has determined that the brains of chocoholics react differently when they see or taste chocolate, than people who don’t crave it. I believe the universal response to this would be — duh!

I do love chocolate- -anything…well almost anything. I’m still iffy on chocolate covered bacon, bugs and broccoli, but just about everything else, yup! However, as the years have gone by, I realize that I am not a true chocoholic. I find that the fall and holiday season do tend to increase my chocolate consumption and yet, a true chocolate fiend, I am not.

My sister Carmela is. This highly intelligent, hard-working teacher, wife and mom can be reduced to puddle of babbling incoherence by the mere sight of milk chocolate covered marzipan! So naturally I make sure to purchase it for her Christmas stocking, the minute World Market stocks its shelves with their holiday items.  This small act has been known to stave off the appearance of an unpleasant creature we have affectionately named the ‘Christmas Banshee’- -a stressed out, very unhappy version of my dear sister.

My very old world Italian dad was a chocolate addict and Carmela inherited the chocolate ‘gene’.  Daddy once bought himself a five pound Ghirardelli chocolate bar and every night he’d put it on the dining room table and use a large butcher knife to hack off a chunk. The problem was that the knife went through the chocolate and the tabletop. My mother, a chocolate lover herself, was not amused!

Despite what the science smarty-pants’ say, chocolate has never given me the feeling of being in love, placated a foul mood, or elevated my thoughts to mighty peaks of creativity. But it is a devilishly smooth operator.