The Puritan Mark Bittman

I’m reblogging this defense of “pure” pleasure out of understanding but also disagreement. The full value of aesthetics is how it works with ethics to create a deep, pleasureful experience of the world. I choose shellfish from the Gulf Coast not only because of taste, but also out of an ethical concern for sustainable fishing. I eat local for the taste of where I am, and also to avoid “eating” excessive amounts petroleum. Really, hedonists and puritans can live together in the same body.

Edible Arts

ppuritansI agree with NY Times’ food columnist Mark Bittman that the word “foodie” should be retired.

At a dinner party the other night where people were asked to say a word about themselves, one woman said, “My name is” — whatever it was — “and I’m a foodie.” I cringed.

I’m not proud of that visceral reaction; in fact, I think it’s wrong. But I do wish there were a stronger, less demeaning-sounding word than “foodie” for someone who cares about good food, but as seems so often the case, there is not. Witness the near-meaningless-ness of “natural” and “vegetarian” and the inadequacy of “organic” and “vegan.” But proposing new words is a fool’s game; rather, let’s try to make the word “foodie” a tad more meaningful.

The problem is with his explanation for why “foodies” are held in such low esteem.

As it stands, many self-described foodies are new-style…

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