In my family, there's always salt and pepper. But mostly salt. Everyone at the table always has to move their right hand or their left to reach the salt, or to pass it down the table. The salt shakers are in constant motion, being dropped, picked-up, passed, shaken, and vice versa, when the salt shaker is lost (which happens most often) and my family has to practically eat with one hand and pass with the other. Of course, there are other things on the table, such as juice, hummus, pita, and such. But the salt is most important.

Then there's the pepper. It's on the side, a bystander, alone, and yet together - something that comes with the set but is rarely, or, at least not used as often. Once in a while, when something is in need of a spicing, the pepper comes along, but it still remains quite solitary.

Originally... or maybe not quite so... I got the idea because of a bowling trip, where a bunch of silly girls were giving themselves funny names such as "salt and pepper, long ears, bigfoot, marshmallow, mushrooms, sugar and spice," etc. To them, it had a simple meaning, funny and cute. To me, salt and pepper is somewhat of an icon. I stand as a person among others, but I feel apart. Salt and pepper is somewhat like being together and single at the same time. Crowded... and yet alone.

I observe my life through another's eyes. Sometimes to me life seems so simple, and I seem to myself so wise and understanding. Other times it seems so impossible and incomprehensible that I am caught off-guard, surprised at how naive I am and how mundane my life seems. I'm trapped between two worlds, where I teeter off to one direction, then the other. I either go with the flow, or fight against the current. I look at myself from above, from my soul, or from the surface of my soul, typically outside of the shell, on top of its protective armor, where I see the world as it seems to those who laugh so innocently around me.

Salt and pepper is the feeling of being together and alone, amidst a crowd but standing apart. It is understanding the enchanting temptation of belonging, yet detaching myself just enough to feel unique.