I took a closer look at this shot and realized the M&Ms weren't anywhere near perfect. The stamped "M" was rubbed off in places and barely visible in others. The casings were cracked. Most of them seemed to be covered with a dusty coating.
I probably could have culled the herd by individually examining each one, selecting only the uncracked, properly labelled ones and then giving them a careful wipedown to get rid of the unphotogenic traces of dust. I probably could have massaged the image a little longer in Aperture to further raise the perfection meter.
I suppose if this were a commercial photo shoot and the results were supposed to appear on a menu board or website, this would be how I'd spend my day. But it was just for me - and you - so reality prevailed. These M&Ms, like every bag I've ever brought home and shot, were imperfect examples of a rather imperfect food. And as I look at this last pic, it's more than good enough to take me back to the afternoon this was taken.
I think the world would be a happier place if we learned to accept things as they are instead of wasting inordinate amounts of time polishing them to an unrealistic sheen. I think we'd all be better off if we applied this kind of thinking to people as well as things.