Eating Art Work

I’ve been thinking about the title of this website and blog.  And moreover, the explanation that I have on the first page of the site, entitled ‘The Beginning’.  Hardly.  So I’m contemplating a subtitle that more accurately describes all the pieces that have come together here.  All the branches and limbs that have sprouted from the original idea.  Which was?

I started a consulting business, helping people who are stressed about daily cooking and as soon as I started the work, it became clear that entwined with, underneath any cooking “issues” – or non-issues – everyone has a Food Life Story.  We have been fed and have eaten all our lives and the story of that journey is unique & fascinating. So I began interviewing people about their Food Life Stories, thinking to write a book.

That’s the main branch. Then it forked.  One limb led me to examining my own FLS and the Eating Art Work drawings were/are smaller branches, still growing from that limb.

The other limb was research, initially driven by the patterns I found in some of the interviewee’s FLSs.  If you were born & raised any time after 1945, post WWII, regardless of ethnicity, socio-economic class or geographic location, with very few exceptions, there was a mammoth cultural influence in play:  the hungry-for-profits food industry.

I began reading about the shift from small shops (bakery, butcher, greengrocer, etc) to supermarkets, about the political shenanigans involved in promoting the industry (that goes back to FDR & WWII), about the all-out marketing effort to convince homemakers (women) that they wanted & needed processed “convenience foods”, about the manipulation and undermining of the home economics curriculum in public schools… all startling and relevant insights into how we became the Fast Food Nation.  I read biographies of cooks and chefs.  It was fascinating and one thing led to another.

But when I read Salt, Sugar, Fat by Michael Moss, Cooked by Michael Pollan and Pandora’s Lunchbox by Melanie Warner, pieces began to fall into place and things got darker.  That’s where I am today, day two of NaBloPoMo.

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