I’ve gotten very skilled at the art of not mentioning food in polite conversation. It seems like whenever I do, someone will have a strong opinion about what I should be eating. Mention that I had Frosted Flakes for breakfast, and someone will shake their head and say, “You have to watch this documentary about cereal, it will open your eyes to the horror! You’ll never eat cereal again!”
It seems like lately there are a million documentaries about food. Ever since the documentary “Supersize Me”, everybody has an opinion about what we should be eating. And in general, if you like it, you should definitely NOT be eating it. But I like the foods I eat. Most people do not like being told what to eat. But most people like to tell others what to eat. “What did you have for dinner last night?” is the innocent sounding question. But be careful how you answer, lest you get involved in a geo-political debate about whether chickens have rights.
Even vegetables are off limits. I can’t just buy a potato anymore, it has to be a locally grown potato. It has to be a super potato! It has to be a potato that didn’t benefit a huge corporation, or a poor laborer in another country. It has to be a potato that didn’t come into contact with any scientists. My potato purchase has to make a statement against corporate greed, the government, and childhood obesity. And when I eat the potato, it has to be in the most unappealing form imaginable, perhaps a potato shake, with salmon and berries thrown in.
If the foodies had their way, researching the food I ate would be a full time job. For every food I bought, I would need to watch a documentary about it. Then I’d have to question the store owner. I’d have to ask them, where did you get this berry? Then I’d have to call the producer, and ask them what kinds of chemicals they put into that berry. And if it was a chemical that was questionable, I’d have to find a new store, and start the process all over again. I miss the days when you could just walk in a store and buy a hot dog without giving a rip where it came from.
I don’t really mind if someone has an interesting diet, but it just bugs me when people tell me what I should be eating all the time. I actually think it’s rude when I mention that I ate a hamburger, and someone goes on and on about how I should never eat another hamburger again. As political as I am, I never ever mention politics in polite conversation, unless someone begs me about my views. Same with religion. It’s a personal matter. And I think food is just as personal. I never tell anybody what they should be eating, I figure they are intelligent enough to figure it out for themselves.