There are religions. There are stereotypes. And there’s all this about food.
As my current squeeze Abshishek Bachchan might go “There are two types of people in this world. Foodies and non-foodies.” I belong to the second type. And it might consist of only one person.
At least, I’ve never met anybody who has the same attitude to food that I do. And it is this. The human body is a machine, or a set of higly complex, precise, inter-linked machines. It needs fuel, like any other machine. Input, processes, output. Simple.
Now, since the aforementioned processes include varied chemicals and constitute the running of machines of different sizes, performing different functions, the fuel requirements are different. The input/ouput equations are different too. Simple, again.
Why, oh, why can no one understand that?
I am normally a very sociable, friendly person. I like being with people, doing things that groups of people usually do. But I hate eating with other people. This is a bit of a problem since eating is such an integral part of our social systems. Most people believe that “the family that eats together, stays together”. Well, really. I love my family but the long sermons about how I’m not ingesting enough protein and doomsday predictions about my future health are enough to make me want to run. I fear, honestly dread weddings and other such functions that bring together large groups of people related to me by blood. South-Indians love fattening up their family members, especially ‘young, marriagable ones’. Reminds me rather eerily of the story of Hansel and Gretel….
And that is family, people who are genuinely concerned about my well-being. What is this about colleagues and friends? People seem to take it really personal if you don’t share their food habits. I mean, its a damn religion in itself. So we have the pure vegetarians who will make life miserable with their snide remarks about ‘flesh-eaters’ if they can’t convince you to switch. There are non-vegetarians who will smirk over the ‘rabbit-food’ you are eating. Now, being a little bit of each, I get hit from both sides. I am used to a staple diet of idlis, dosas, rice-and-sambhar and the elixir of every Tamilian’s life…..curd rice! On the other hand, I enjoy a Mac’s burger, the tikkas from Bade Miyas, chicken pizza and sorts of things that cater to my carnivorous urges. Oh please…I just want to enjoy these things without anyone else’s opinion!!!!
People’s insecurities seem to come up while eating. They need you to eat like they do. Problem, problem. I don’t enjoy half the junk that my friends enjoy ingesting. Like Lucky once said, “Everything gives you acidity!” So, popcorn, rava dosas, sweet corn soup, gulab jamuns are all out. And I’m fine with watching other people eat and abstain myself. Honestly. No one would think of teasing a diabetic about the food he/she is missing out on. So why needle a person who has another kind of health issue with certain foods?
One time I do get back at these types is when it comes to chocolate. Yum, yum, YUUMMMMMMM!!! I am a confirmed choc-a-holic. Sizzling brownies, Death by Chocolate (at Corner House in Bangalore), Mud pies, ice-cream, melted Dutch truffles, Swiss truffle cake (at Brownie Point), dark-to-the-point-of-being-a-black-hole cocoa…I can down them all. Thanks to a set of good genes, I don’t put on weight visibly due to these sins. And I gleefully do a deli scene right out When Harry met Sally while my genetically-less-fortunate companions shoot daggers at me. *Smirk smirk*….life has its justice.
But coming back to my cribbing, I don’t get particularly excited over food (except chocolate!). I follow a policy of live and let live (or rather eat and let hog). Oh…but I still like men who cook.