Crab has always been one of my favorite foods. I have fond memories of going out to eat with my parents and ordering crab legs and getting not only the adventure of finding and picking for the perfect peice of meat, but the satisfaction of that scrumptuous bite dipped in butter and then put in my mouth.
One day, whole crabs were on sale at the QFC (buy one, get one free!) and I couldn't resist, I bought two whole crabs. This was going to be the best dinner ever. Crab legs with steak for dinner one night and crab cakes for dinner the next. What could be better?

I learned some things that day.
Lesson #1. Crabs are not that easy to open.
I have learned since that you can bake them for a couple minutes and they will just crack right open, but I went the hard route and just pried and pulled and swore a lot. I went online for tips and found footage of people breaking open crabs until finally I got it open and learned...

Lesson #2: Crabs are gross.
Nothing could have prepared me for the smell of this freshly opened crab. I was not expecting a mustard yellow ooze to be surrounding all my crab meat I wanted to use for crab cakes. This is what the scene looked like:
Rachel: oh my god, what is that?! Oh gross, I think the crab is bad, ew ew ew...[running out of the kitchen]
Chris: i think that's the tomalley...
Rachel: Tamale? What the hell are you talking about, tamales are delicious, this is disgusting.
Chris: (on wikipedia) "The hepatopancreas of crab is called tomalley; in crabs the tomalley is yellow or yellow-green in color..." It's the internal organs.
Rachel: why do you know this...and why didn't you warn me?! I think I might be sick if I go back in there...oh god, the smell is starting to spread through the apartment...[while cleaning in the sink] gross, gross, gross...

Lesson #3: pre-processed crab meat is worth every penny.
I know it's expensive, I know you like to be crafty and thrifty and do-it-yourself when you can, but in this case, save it for the professionals. You will save yourself time form the tedious picking of meat, you will save the hassle of having your home smell like crab organs and you will still have your appetite afterward and be able to enjoy your dinner.
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