Whittard’s hot chocolate is pretty nice. There are various flavours, from mint to white chocolate and caramel. They come in well-designed boxes, and yadda yadda yadda. You see, this essay will not focus on the hot chocolate itself. Hell, if you want to read a proper food review you are barking up the wrong tree with this here blog, my friend(s). What concerns the author presently is the blurb on the packaging of said hot chocolate.

Among the hot chocolate flavours is run-of-the-mill ‘regular’ hot chocolate. On the side of the box bearing said comestible is some writing. The writing describes the product as ‘unashamedly rich’. As is our wont, this got us thinking about some pretty deep philosophical issues.

Firstly, is hot chocolate capable of feeling shame (a necessary condition, surely, for the conscious lack of shame denoted by the phrase ‘unashamedly’)? One suspect not, being an inanimate object n’all. Secondly, supposing hot chocolate were capable of feeling shame, would its being rich be a likely source of said shame? Surely the opposite is the case: as far as hot chocolate if concerned, lack of richness (i.e blandness) is, one would think, far more worthy of shame than is richness. ‘Unashamedly Bland’ – now there is hot chocolate with some balls.

Now, it may be that the makers of the hot chocolate are intended as the objects who are displaying a lack of shame. But this cannot be: supposing, as is surely the case, ‘rich’ is understood as the negation of blandness, rather than in its pecuniary sense. Given this, it cannot be applied to the makers of the hot chocolate; it can only apply to the hot chocolate itself. But this richness was the attribute towards which the shamelessness was directed; hence the shamelessness must too be borne by the hot chocolate, in which case we are back with our original problem: how the fuck is such a thing possible?

We have, basically, a dilemma: either the hot chocolate displays the characteristic of feeling shame, or the makers of the hot chocolate display the characteristic of lacking blandness. Either of these options is unacceptable. I don’t know what to do. I can’t sleep. I’m scared.


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