Monday, February 6, 2012

Food movements

The Local Dirt

I remember eating raw peas from the garden, wild strawberries, and tomatoes still warm from the sun; getting apples from an orchard and how the cider got sweeter as the season progressed.

I'm sitting in a hipster hang-out; it's big on ambiance and offers food following every culinary trend: vegan, locally produced, sustainably grown, certified organic, non-GMO, gluten-free, fair trade...

Instead of eating a laundry list of industrially produced chemicals, they consume a laundry list of industrially produce ideas. Is any of it fresh, I wonder. And would anyone notice if it were replaced with stuff from Walmart?

I see The Local Dirt, the first edition of a free magazine promising to inform the reader about "the slow food movement", and start to read:

"More and more people are focusing on improving their diets in order to enrich their health and lifestyle."

"Enrich their health"; let's say organic kale is more nutritious than normal kale. Does that mean we can eat less kale? Seems odd when we're supposed to be eating more vegetables. And some nutrients are toxic in high amounts. Perhaps the organic kale should come with a warning label.

As for improving your lifestyle, a "lifestyle" is the manner in which the group you belong to behaves. So if you try to improve your lifestyle you're trying to improve your appearance by acting as if you belonged to a higher social class.

The author could have just been at a loss for words, but I find their choice interesting.

The next page features a story mocking the viewers of the Food Network:

"I'm not just some guy off the street, you know! I watch the Food Network."

That poor slob gets his comeuppance. And the reader can laugh, knowing he's better than those people.

Other articles make rather odd claims:

"Cast aside as bourgeois and elitist for their over-priced vegetables and meat, the modern farmer is often considered high-class and snooty."

The author goes on to show that farmers aren't as snooty as nobody thought they were.

There are also some possible slanders:

"There are loads of markets, vendors and businesses touting their "fresh, local produce," but buyers should beware of these fraudulent vegetable stands."

The snippet mentions that the reader should look at a list of approved vendors. You'd think a person could tell, just by eating the food whether it was good or not; but things like taste, ironically, seem to have been pushed to the side by modern food movements.

I'd rather scrounge in the woods for wild strawberries. Then go eat a Twinkie.


  1. These kinds of thinkers seem to forget about the pleasurable part of eating. To them, it's all about being true believer. Eat what you like, in moderation, but indulge yourself every once in a while.

  2. I think part of the reality is, people eat this sort of food so they look affluent. Just like they used to hire French chefs, or drink certain delicacies. The true believers are just cover.

  3. This is why I'm not allowed to read the "L.A. Weekly".