Thursday Apr 08, 2010
Reverence de Jour
The other day I caught a snippet from a show that had food maestro Jamie Oliver from England visiting the school system of a West Virginia community well-known for its deplorable health situation—an overwhelming number of obese parents and obese children. Their ignorance about quality food destined them for a life of serious health problems and a shortened life expectancy.
Jamie was trying to show the folks in power that their health problems were easily traced to the awful processed foods served in their schools (home too) beginning in the elementary grades. There was, of course, incredible resistance by the establishment to altering the status quo—despite the facts.
To make a point, Jamie visited a first grade class and began showing them an assortment of vegetables and fruits. It was shocking. None, or nearly none, of the kids could identify a potato, tomato, broccoli, and so on. Of course, these same kids could immediately identity any number of fast foods. Many of these kids were quite willing to eat a dreadful concoction of chicken parts (bones, cartilage, skin, fat) that Jamie had whipped up in a blender, as long as it was prepared to resemble golden deep fried nuggets.
Not knowing the source of food means there is no reverence for the living things that sustain us—which is a smoldering recipe for disaster.
And reverence, in the sense of deep respect, is the point here.
Reverence for creation, life itself, fellow travelers, is the key for a meaningful quality of life that cannot be purchased or inherited. Reverence is also the bedrock of art and all that it gives to those who are willing to step up.
I was wondering how you were going to work art into this food story. You are the chef!