It's curious to hear such remarks, which any other man would reserve for drunken company, come rolling off the master's sober tongue. Granted, he's imbibed a bit extra on this particular evening. Where his usual fare is two cupfuls, and no more, he's already downed four. Two is enough to redden his face. After four he glows like a red hot poker. His distress is showing, yet still he soldiers on. "One more." He holds out his cup. The wife pushes back.
"That's enough, is it not? You're overdoing it." Her look is disapproving.
"It may be a bit much, but from here on I'm in training. Ōmachi Keigetsu says we should drink."
"And Keigetsu is?" The name Keigetsu carries no weight with the wife.
"Keigetsu is our foremost modern critic. If Keigetsu says we should drink, then drink we should."
"That's rubbish. I don't care if it's Keigetsu or Baigetsu, one needn't drink to one's own detriment."
"It's not just drink. He also says to socialize, pursue amusements, and see the world."
"That's worse yet, even. And this is our preeminent critic? Please. Men with wives and children chasing off after amusements ..."
"Where's the harm in amusements? Keigetsu aside, if I had the funds I'd be well inclined to partake."
"Then blessed is poverty. Pursuit of amusements, at your age, would only be the death of you."
"I suppose in that case I'd best hold off. In return, you can treat me better at home. Indulge me with a grand meal each evening."
"I do the best with what I've got."
"I wonder. I'll save amusements for later, when wealth comes my way. Enough then for tonight." He hands her his rice bowl.
The master proceeded to put down, if my reckoning is correct, three helpings of chazuke that night. As for me, I scored for myself three pieces of pork and the head off his grilled fish.