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Could the Chinese Masters be Wrong about Doughnuts? Andrew Neuendorf

Lao Tzu would say, “It is the hole that makes the doughnut useful.”

I’m not so sure though. I bought a box of doughnut holes and dumped the deep-fried balls of dough in the garbage. I wanted to walk around with an empty box marked “Doughnut Holes,” just to prove a point.

Lao Tzu would say, “It is the space within that makes the empty box useful.”

No, I say, it’s the sticker marked “Doughnut Holes” that makes it useful, conveys the joke in a way that an unmarked box could never do.

Confucius said, “Is it not pleasurable to apply your knowledge at due intervals?”

I disagree. I’d rather eat a box of holes and stuff myself on nothingness.

Confucius might reply, “Joy can be found in the eating of course rice.”

No, Chinese Master, you’re wrong again! If you can’t dip a doughnut in coffee and revel in the soggy goodness, you’re just not living.

I wish Wang Wei would weigh in and agree with me, perhaps descending from a mountain holding a short, two-line poem with a really long title, like, “Returning to Ch’angan at Dawn after Nine Months and Nine Days of Eating Doughnuts in my Mountain Home.”

The poem would be simple and clear, mentioning nothing about doughnuts, describing, instead, the silence of rain water running down a stalk of bamboo as the sun begins to light the top of the green moss.