1.27.2010

why food?

Certain events in my life recently have caused me to be doing a lot of legal research. Law forums, case studies, pages and pages of definitions, I've been going through them all. And finding everything completely fascinating and mentally invigorating. So why, I'm asking myself, has law never held my interest as a career choice? After all, I'm a natural debater (or fighter, as my family might put it), and strongly believe in standing up for what is right. My grandmother always said I should be a lawyer.

So why am I not one?

I think, after much personal analysis, that it's because I find law, while infinitely interesting (especially in the minutiae of exceptions, clauses, doctrines, etc. - oh lord, I'm a geek), to be primarily and fundamentally negative. There isn't any need for law if there is no dispute, no damaging behavior, no wrongs to be righted. Whatever side you're on, you are engaged in a debate over right and wrong. Which, obviously, society needs in order to function in a civilized manner.

However, I don't want to spend all my time thinking about it.

And besides, I'm obsessed with food. And not just eating it (although that makes up a goodly portion of my interest), but creating it, reading about it, talking about it, writing about it, researching it, advocating for it . . . all of it. I just love food.

I love how food is the intersection of everything else. Culture, history, politics, literature, art, biology, chemistry, agriculture, economics, health - from the global human condition right down to the individual, everything meets at food. Every other legitimate interest I have ever had can be looked at or expressed through food. Food is universal, yet also so segregatory. It is something everyone will experience, but no one will experience all that it can be. It plays a central role in our lives, yet is so often underestimated, ignored, degraded, and misused. But most of all, food is positive. It is celebratory, sustaining, thrilling, nourishing, sensual, and comforting. And where we let those qualities take us can be life-changing.

So. Let's talk about food.

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