Thursday, January 12, 2012

R.I.P Foodie

A piece I wrote for Urban List on the death of the foodie. Enjoy.

I love food. I truly do. I do not love being labeled a foodie. The term is an abomination. It is a vernacular I would like to see die a painful death of 1000 paper cuts at dawn.  Fixing 'ie’ to an energy source suddenly implies that I, amongst others, am one of ‘them’. Perhaps it is my abomination of crowds but I get nervous when bound to a group. And not a group carved by the Darwinism inspired forces of friendship or profession; but one of those horrid mass media terms that puts “foodies” right up there with “devastating” (insert any natural event involving water be it a flood or wet creek bed) and “horrific (insert fire and do not discriminate - bbq, back burning, flash fire, volcano or inferno.  

Foodie is also an ugly word. It insinuates all those guilty lifestyle traits one does not possess or doesn’t always want to own up to – privileged, well-travelled and over indulged. Hands down foodies are the new wine wankers – they throw around words like “terroir” and “paysanne” or god forbid “fusion”. They also invariably have their secret little spots to eat, generally down Matrix inspired laneways, that only 5 other people in the universe know about and they begrudgingly hand over the details, barely concealing their desire to shout  “you see, I know all there is about food, I am the epitome of good taste. I am truly glorious.”
It gives me the right royal irrits because “foodie” is so far removed from the real world of food production. Professional kitchens for instance, are full of tattooed madmen, drug fiends, knife-wielding obsessives, big tempers and open flames.  The hard work, ugly shoes and dismal pay are glossed over by “foodies” busy enjoying their line caught fish and talking about their boutique farmed sheep – a piece of meat many would struggle to identify even if Mary bitch slapped them in the face with her little lamb.

I also don’t like foodie because it insinuates fatty. And if you love food invariably you are not thin. We should be. We need to get it right. There are old crack addicts. There are old vagabonds, old soldiers and even old bogans. But there are absolutely no old fat people. None. Good food - will kill you quicker than anything for sure.
We eat better than ever but our professions also no longer see us working a field, or down a mine banging bits of industry together. Foodie is not a by-law that can disregard the importance of being the right weight, and by right I mean healthy.

So R.I.P foodie. It’s 2012. And while it’s been swell, it is time to coin another nonsensical term for an amassed group of people who eat. Preferably one that doesn’t end in ‘ie’.

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