Archive by Author

Dog

9 Nov

It’s nice being off the street. These people keep me here and call me MJ. I don’t trust them. However, I do enjoy getting free meals and affection. I won’t give anything up yet though.  Getting walked many times a day is nice, but I do miss being able to run around wherever I want, whenever I like. But I like being off the street and having food regularly. I don’t get it though, these people sometimes leave me all alone for hours, and I sometimes think they aren’t going to come back. They do always come back, but I’ll use my teeth to punish them for leaving me. I understand I am powerless to these bigger animals, and will let them have their fun picking me up and holding my paws, even if I look ridiculous because they are stronger. However since they are so big they tend to be clumsier and slower than me so I can sneak past them and steal their food.

One time one of the people was making chicken curry. It smelled delicious. Tonight the humans were once again practicing their strange ritual of eating on the big long comfy seat while staring at the box with colorful pictures. So once they have been sitting there for a while watching the box I notice that their bowls of food are unguarded. I stealthily sneak in and feast upon their meal. Success! That curry chicken and rice was so good I wolfed it down; barely taking breaks to breath. I knew if they discovered me they would take this treat away.

That meal tasted delicious: like nothing I’ve eaten before. I’m not sure for how long these people will keep me, but I could get used to living here. For now these people will take care of me. That and I can sneak their food now and again, and if this is what their food tastes like it must all taste really good. I cannot see anything they cook being better than that soft moist rice with tender pieces of chicken, covered in a delicious mildly spicy garlic brown sauce. It looks almost like mud but tastes great.

However, they did get mad at me, but its fine; they never stay mad at me anyway. I can just charm them with my cute puppy-dog face. If I just nuzzle up to them and act cute they will forgive me.

“Popeye the Sailor Man”

19 Oct

The power of the correlation between thoughts and tangible items such as food allows food to become something greater than simply a meal for sustenance. Momotaro heavily emphasizes the power of the millet dumplings. Whether it is the power of coercion or strength, this symbolism holds importance. Even in the anime adaptation of the story the millet dumplings hold a certain level of prominence. This same concept of propaganda in the symbolism of food shows up in the cartoon and comic “Popeye”.

Growing up I loved watching Popeye fight for Olive. I thoroughly loved his crazy antics and almost unintelligible garbled speech. Also I soon correlated spinach with strength because whenever Popeye would eat spinach he instantly became unstoppable. Whether or not it was done intentionally the product placement promotes eating spinach: directly relating its consumption to fantastic feats of strength. It even mentions in Katie Hewitt’s article “How to Win Kid v. Veggies battle” from The Globe and Mail how kids increased vegetable consumption after watching “Popeye” cartoons.

Under these circumstances Spinach is being turned into a symbol of strength. Rather than a mere vegetable it creates the notion that eating it will make you stronger. Spinach is both mythical in its properties of granting you strength. It also serves as propaganda to increase spinach sales. Whether or not this was its original intention, it still has the effect of getting kids, the cartoon’s primary demographic, to eat spinach. Looking back I see how Popeye’s example has influenced my feeling on spinach.

“How To Win the Kid v. Veggies Battle”

Hewitt, Katie. “How to Win the Kid v. Veggies Battle.” The Globe and Mail. 16 Aug. 2010. Web. 19 Oct. 2010. <http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/family-and-relationships/back-to-school/how-to-win-the-kids-v-veggies-battle/article1674200/>.

Garden Update 10/1

2 Oct

Hey guys, the garden looked pretty awesome today!! So those transplants are alright although only a few made it, but some are better than none. Everything seems to be going well, growing big and strong. I think transplanting stuff on Tuesday will be good, considering that some of the beds are getting pretty crowded. Have a nice weekend guys!!

Garden Update 9/29

30 Sep

Hey Everybody…so the plants have survived this crazy heat wave!!!! All of the plants seem to be doing pretty well, we definitely need to do some transplanting especially the bed on the left closest to the house. I watered the plants, and they seem to be doing well even though they must have been really dried out the past couple days…Looking forward to a yummy feast of our own produce!!!

Magical Feast Among Friends

28 Sep

Tanizaki talks in depth about food and the magic of its creation and general limitless possibilities. Count G and his Gourmet Club give a new meaning to the term foodie, devoting their life to the pursuit of pleasure via food. Count G’s discovery revolutionizes his perception of food, opening a door to creativity. Fancying himself a food expert, Count G is amazed by the Chinese feast that is composed of non-traditional ingredients and cooking methods. Part of the magic of this food is the secrecy of it. True to Tanizaki’s story, even today, Chinese food found outside China differs greatly from the genuine thing.

To celebrate the end of the year, a bunch of my friends gathered at a friend’s house for a dumpling feast. However, this was different from what I would have expected; we got to make all of our own dumplings putting the filling in. When we arrived all of the ingredients for the filling had been already mixed, so their composition was a relative mystery to me other than that one was vegetarian.  We made the dumplings and feasted together. While these dumplings weren’t particularly exotic they were new, because I had never had dumplings like this, and the hands on aspect of their creation only added to the atmosphere. And like in Tanizaki’s story, the importance of a positive atmosphere of a large feast among friends makes the meal that much better.

Finally for dessert we had the truly magical food of peanut butter filled dumplings. I had been completely unaware that you could even do such a thing! Warm gooey peanut butter in a sticky dumpling was a new sensation of sumptuous flavor. Like in Tanizaki’s story, we had used, in my opinion, unconventional ingredients and created an amazing flavor, texture etc. The atmosphere of the gathering, and the sensational authentic Chinese food created a magical feast among friends.

Garden Update 9/22

22 Sep

The garden looked good. Everything seemed to be growing nicely. Some of the plants are ready for transplant. Some are definitely growing a little too close together. The plots along the edge seem to be doing a bit better than those on the middle. I water them pretty thoroughly even though it was pretty damp this morning because I assumed like the rest of this week it would get warm and bright out later. I didn’t see the sunflowers…so whoever got them have a delicious sunflower feast!!

Natural Divergence

16 Sep

The modern “foodie”, as defined as a particular connoisseur of food who willingly seeks out “tasty” food, would be highly criticized by Fukuoka, a staunch advocate of natural simplicity. Fukuoka discuses the virtue of eastern philosophy in relation to food and knowledge; believing that pleasure seeking in food detracts from the true flavor. This contrasts the ideology of a foodie who idolizes food.

Fukuoka would find the basis of food culture to be constructs of western thinking, specifically in nutrition, and the exotic. Both of these, to Fukuoka, by definition defy nature. He would particularly disagree with current health fads for organic food. His philosophy emphasizes simplicity. This contrasts the modern foodies’ curiosity and taste for exotic foods. The process involved in creating complex dishes involving non-local ingredients would be highly critiqued due to its complete departure from nature.

The contemporary “foodie” has become a facet of culture. Permeating media on multiple levels, the idolization of food would come under heavy criticism by Fukuoka. This infiltration to him would display a complete divergence from nature. This obsession with food that in turn fuels highly industrialized agribusiness would further detract from Fukuoka’s beliefs in inaction farming.

Fukuoka would see our overly produced and commercialized food as a rejection of the natural process, and he would disagree with “foodies” culture of pleasure seeking in food. The fact that international cuisine in a city indicates culture and worldliness would be a point of disagreement with Fukuoka who ultimately believed that humans should allow nature to take its course.