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Ruth Neubauer

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Food Talks: Wabi-Sabi Pie

Posted: 08/10/2012 2:11 pm

The "All You Can Eat Buffet Breakfast at the Fat Cat" Saturdays and Sundays from 7:00 a.m. till 1:00 p.m is run by a tiny sophisticated lady from the south of England who specializes in Scottish Eggs. We might wonder how she got to this small summer town on the lake, this place with such a name and do it all so well.

There are 15 tables ahead of us. We choose to wait of course. Like everyone else waiting outside, it's obviously worth it.

From the dessert table, I hear whispers:

"I'm not the kind of berry she'll recognize and I'm not all that sweet. Betcha she won't want me. She'll want Ms. Banana Pie over there with all that overly sweet white look-alike-whipped cream. Or Ms. Latice Cherry Pie. Little does she know the cherries are from a can from some far away country and they've almost lost their shape 'cause of the thick, thickened gooey sauce that slakes over them like they don't even exist. She likes sweet stuff, chocolate stuff, lemony stuff, croissants, and flaky pastry. I'm kind of on the small side too. One slice of me and there's hardly much of me left for the next non-believer.

Hey!

You!

Hey you over there looking down at me
judging me for what I'm NOT --
tempted by those voluptuous more obviously seductive rich and recognizable Sweeties.
Hey you!
I know there's a part of you that likes the simplicity of simple --
the wabi-sabi of irregularity, the natural look of things and people. I know that part of you and I'm beginning to think you might just pick me after all.
I'm small. Unrecognizable. Not sumptuous. Lacking cream. Fighting for every inch of crust containing me. A little too much gelatin, I know, but mostly berries. I'm mostly berries. I'm not pretentious. I just am what I am. What you see is what you get.
Isn't that your favorite thing?
Really?
Actually?
Isn't that the simple, textured truth of your aesthetic?

I know you get tempted.
I know every time you walk into Kathryn's on University Avenue, every single time you walk in there you have to eyeball every single bit of bakery sweeties they so shamelessly display.
You look every time.
Like you want it all.
I KNOW you want it all.
You poor thing. Having to feel that way and then let go of wanting it all so much. That must be awful. But that's what I know about you and your temptations and your difficulty resisting and the torturous, completely unfair situation you're in wanting it all so much and having to withhold/withdraw/say no/defer/postpone/talk to yourself like crazy.

Yes I know all this about you.
Which is why you should, and likely WILL, pick me to eat.
You will in fact delight in simple little berry-pie me.
Even if you take little tastes of all the others, I now believe we'll be together.

In mutual bliss.

With all due respect.

Knowing we're pleasing ourselves and each other.

In mutual bliss.

For however long it lasts."
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Post-Script:
When you look at yourself through the eyes of Food, you get surprised at how well Food knows you: your habits; your preferences; your secrets; your patterns.
Try it. You'll see!

 
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