JULY 28: Throughout human existence, one question has burned uppermost in the minds of people around the planet, whatever their sex, race or culture: What's for dinner? And evolution has eventually produced the right answer: Asian foodwhich is now top of the culinary hit parade everywhere. But what is Asian food? The question might be better phrased: What isn't? For gourmand Allah Wasayo, the perfect meal is a nice carpet. Most people lack variety in their diets, says the 55-year-old Pakistani, who likes to follow his lunch-time fillet of Axminster with a dish of broken glass and some grass clippings. Wasayo is just the latest in a long line of creative Asian diners featured in these pages, including a woman who lived largely on ice, a man who claimed to eat only air, a female who was eating her way through a beach, and so on. But unlike those 'niche' diners, Wasayo also eats Western food. At a buffet in a five-star hotel in Karachi recently, he ate 15 platefuls of conventional fare. But he found it ultimately unsatisfying, and sneaked off afterwards for a snack of light bulbs and pulverized teacups. 'I eat carpets, cups, saucers, pieces of glass, pulao, chicken karahi and grass with the same fervour,' he told the Dawn newspaper. (Incidentally, adventurous diner Wasayo may be easy to feed but his marriage proposals are always rejected. Families believe he may eat any prospective wife--not a joke. ) But whether the dishes include broken glass or not, most Asian meals share one particular trait: they are generously packed with spice and fibre, which means they pass through the human digestive system much faster than Western food. This can be a life-or-death problem, as Brigadier Jeff Little has discovered. It's this London soldier's job to put together ration packs for British troops. They've told him that they want Asian food: specifically chicken curry, lamb tikka and pulao rice. Active military men need to down 4,000 calories of food every 24 hours. But soldiers in combat get restroom breaks only once every 72 hours. 'What the effects of curry will be remains an uncharted area,' an Asian Age report on the new Asian rations said. Military commanders fear extra breaks could spoil the fighting rhythm and spell battlefield disaster. Top food scientists at the Ministry of Defence in London are using chemical analysis to reproduce Asian flavours but without spice. 'We are including a sachet of Tabasco-style pepper sauce for the guys who know they can handle a hot one,' military food specialist Major Andy Main told the press. Meanwhile, a reader sent me a fascinating report about a mysterious explosion at the SardineMuseum in Japan. While commiserating with people of that country about the loss of the facility, the question has to be asked: why does Japan have a sardine museum in the first place? Do other minor foodstuffs have their own institutions? Is there a Baked Bean Collection or an Institute of Liver and Onions? The answer is no. But the SardineMuseum has been running since 1982, so it must pull the punters in. It contains sardines, pictures of sardines and 'household effects from the homes of sardine fishermen.' While waiting for it to reopen, you may wish to visit the BurntFoodMuseum in Massachusetts, United States. But don't plan a trip just yet. The museum is 'temporarily closed due to fire damage.'