Wednesday, May 23, 2007

The Three Rs

You might be wondering what I do aside from eating on this senior program, or what I'm doing in between blog posts. Like traditional learning, it can be summarized from the above acronym.

1. Reading
I love to read, and I read almost everything. If I'm particularly bored at the dentist's office, I will actually read a copy of Bikers Today or something like that if it's there. Granted, if Gourmet is on that same coffee table, I will pick that up first.

Reading about food was what got me interested in writing about food. Furthermore, I'm hoping to improve as a food writer/blogger through examples.

I'm currently reading three books:
- Choice Cuts: A Savory Selection of Food Writing from Around the World and Throughout History (Mark Kurlanser, ed.)
- Eating My Words: An Appetite for Life (Mimi Sheraton, former NYT food critic)
- Best Food Writing 2006 (Holly Hughes, ed.)

If you'd like to read with me, I suggest beginning with the latter. The Best Food Writing annual anthologies is a sampler of a diverse array of topics, from barbeque to candy bars to childhood. It was the 2004 edition given to me as a Christmas present that culminated in this senior program proposal. I may write reviews upon finishing this reading.

2. Writing
What you see in this blog post. Something I've learned is that reviews take longer than I thought, even with a subject in mind. I've also learned to take detailed (though discreet) notes at the dinner table.

3. Arithmetic
Okay, so recipes have numbers in them. And you can use proportions (from pre-algebra) to make them for greater or fewer servings.

But my project title is "Food = Life, Food = Art" (whenever I don't feel like saying the "equals" sign, I say "as" instead). And although I can't draw a still life of fruit, aside from a lopsided banana, eating and writing are things that I hope to refine - discovering the complex layers (insert cake metaphor here) within each. With that said, one larger theme I am working on within this blog is what food means to me and to people in general. I wonder if I can sum it up in one large statement - "Food = Life" is deep, but a little broad. Aside from that "equation," my next guess would be "Food = Emotion." Couples save the top layer for their wedding cakes for sentiment. For a crude example, after a person throws up a certain food, they often are not willing to eat it at a later time in their life. I have a feeling this is a question that will take longer than three weeks to answer, but for now, that's my conjecture.

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