Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Gordon Ramsey winner of this weeks Rush Limbaugh award

My morning routine has become more complex now that I try to blog every day, it means I spend a lot of time looking at various sites to see what food news there is out there that strikes my fancy and think is worth sharing. My first stop is JoeMyGod which is a gay political blog that I got hooked on during the election. Every now and again he will post something about food, usually about bacon or some other over the top crazy food thing. Today, however, he posted a story about celebrity chef Gordon Ramsey who called an Australia Journalist a lesbian then showed a picture of a woman with the features of a pig and then made a botox joke.

Now let me be clear, this happened during a food demonstration. A food demonstration. Which brings me to my new regular, if inconsistent, feature - the Rush Limbaugh Awards - given to anyone who acts or speaks in an irrational, offensive, inflammatory, nasty and otherwise just mean spirited way, today's winner folks is Gordon Ramsey for being an ill tempered, homophobic, misogynist and generally mean spirited guy. You may remember that I called Anthony Bourdain the Rush Limbaugh of food for saying that he felt Alice Waters was a little bit too Khmer Rouge for him, well ladies and gentleman the torch has been passed.

This brings me to another topic that is disturbing and pertains to TV food shows in general. I'm not sure where I read this, I read so many books on food and recipes at some point everything becomes a blur, but someone I was reading recently made the statement that more people watch food shows now than ever before in the history of TV and the corollary to that is that fewer people cook now than every before. Cooking has become a spectator sport, and apparently testosterone fueled tirades are entertaining!

If Charlton Heston were alive today I'm sure he'd have a wildly successful cooking show, it could be funny really he could start each show by going out and shooting what ever it was he was going to cook.

Funny and kind of unfortunate I think. In time of yore when Julia and the Galloping Gourmet ruled the airwaves, their shows were meant to inspire people to turn off their TVs and actually to cook. Or is that just me projecting?

I wonder if that is possible now? Or if we have been so sucked into the vortex of agribusiness as usual or made into fast food take out zombies that this most essential of all things: feeding ourselves, has become too much bother? This is a favorite theme of mine so I won't go on any more, you get the point.

My own self involved interest in it has in part to do with my ongoing fantasy of wanting to have a TV cooking, food, environmentally inclined show myself. How can I want to do something that so goes against what I believe? Of course it's all fantasy at this point, but I wonder if it is actually possible to make TV that inspires action not inaction? Is it possible to be entertaining with out being outrageous? Do you have to sink to the level of Khmer Rouge Lesbian Pigs to stay relevant? I don't think so and I certainly hope not, but the proof, as they say, is in the pudding.

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