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Wednesday, January 5th, 2005

Time Event
11:09a
Another book ...
So, those of you who have been paying attention know that I've been "stuck" in a couple of books not much to my liking for a few months now, and no doubt recall that I was looking for something to fill time with pool-side while The Girls went swimming last week. Well, The Wife had given me this book as part of my Xmas haul, and I'd already gotten a few chapters into it, so I figured I could do worse. Fork It Over : The Intrepid Adventures of a Professional Eater by restaurant reviewer Alan Richman is not exactly my "standard" reading, but it does hark back to my many years in the food industry and associations with many in the restaurant field (indeed, Mr. Richman and I do have quite a number of common acquaintances), and it did prove itself to be a fun and fast read.

It has been suggested to me a number of times over the past 30 years that I should consider doing food writing ... as I have a reasonably respectable grasp on both food and writing ... but I think my "vibe" on that line of work was much like Richman writes about here, a good way to take the joy out of the dining experience! As I was working my way through this book, I was feeling that it didn't "hang together" particularly well, until I realized that this was collection of various pieces written by Richman for GQ, Bon Appetite, and Food & Wine with one or two bits thrown in for continuity. I guess the point of this book is to give "outsiders" a look into the life of a "professional eater", but this, unfortunately, led more to kvetching than to culinary voyeurism.

Sadly, there were gems of said "culinary voyeurism" (especially the chapter on truffles), and I found myself reaching for the phone to read passages to my Mom. I worked for my Mother for nearly 20 years doing food P.R., and, naturally enough, my whole "food perception" is tied up with her. Of course, my Mom died just about a year ago (it will a full year in a week), so there's that "slap of reality" every time I, out of habit, want to call her about something. (sigh) I should write a book about the pitfalls of working most of one's adult life with one's parents ... I don't think most folks appreciate what a huge hole their passing leaves for those who are not just losing a parent, but a boss, mentor, friend, dining/travel companion, etc. etc. etc.


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