Broccoli is corruptible apparently
The restaurant has a delicious salad with broccoli, cashews, onions, and bacon. When I sat down with my plate, including the broccoli salad, I found a flyer at my table:
Oh for pete’s sake. At least they’re not participating in the ridiculous messages that the nutrition of vegetables is “ruined” by the addition of things like dressing, but we’re seriously using the word “corrupt” here, as it relates to broccoli salad? Broccoli is not corrupted by the addition of vegetables, nuts, bacon, and dressing, and I like my food without a side of moral panic thanks, I’ll leave it to Santa to decide if broccoli salad is naughty or nice.
They are confused about what processed means
“Processed food” is one of those food moralizing buzzwords, but what does it actually mean? I googled it as I ate my delicious cup of clam chowder with bacon. Technically anything that changes food from its natural state – including cleaning, chopping, heating, cooling, etc. could be considered processing, a more conservative definition comes from the Economic Research Service (ERS) of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) processed food is food that has “undergone a transformation from the raw form either to extend shelf-life — such as the freezing or dehydration of fruits and vegetables — or to improve consumer palatability of raw commodities — such as transforming grain and animal products into bakery and meat products.”
In other words, if my clam chowder was never “processed” by the USDA definition, it would contain raw milk straight from the cow, no butter, no cream, no bacon, no clams (unless they were fresh), and no salt or pepper. By the technical definition the potatoes would be whole, the clams would be in the shell, and the whole thing would be room temperature – never heated nor cooled. You know, never mind, it’s too hot for soup anyway. These kind of buzzwords, often used passive aggressive food choice one-upmanship helps no one. If we want to have a discussion of health we need to do a little better than buzzwords and broad generalizations.
People Can still Be Ridiculously Inappropriate
As I finished my lunch and got out my computer, a gentleman who was with a small group at a nearby table came up to my table. And then this happened:
Him: I’ve been watching you eat and can I tell you something?
Me: Maybe, can I ask you something first?
Him: I guess…
Me: Why were you watching me eat?
Him: You were just sitting in my line of sight.
Me: (looking around) There are 5 or 6 of us in your line of sight, is it just me or are you monitoring all of us?
Him: (getting irritated) Look, I just wanted to say that I see that you’re choosing healthy foods and that you’re making a change in your life. I was trying to give you a COMPLIMENT!
Me; No sir, you don’t know anything about my life. You have stereotypes about fat people, you monitored my behavior because I’m a fat person, and you are congratulating me on rising above your stereotypes. That’s not a compliment – it’s creepy and it’s rude and what other people eat is not your business.
Him: You’re the rude one if you can’t take a damn compliment!
WT actual F? In what world is it appropriate to go up to perfect strangers and comment on their food choices? I’m just trying to eat my naughty broccoli salad and processed soup here. This idea that people should monitor the behavior of fat people and then comment on it has got to stop. I’m lucky that I think and speak and write about this stuff all the time so responding is almost a reflex at this point, but people shouldn’t have to practice rebuttals and prepare for battle just to go have some lunch. The biggest lesson from my lunch – we have got to do better than this.
Like the blog? More Cool Stuff!
Book and Dance Class Sale! I’m on a journey to complete an IRONMAN triathlon, and I’m having a sale on all my books, DVDs, and digital downloads to help pay for it. You get books and dance classes, I get spandex clothes and bike parts. Everybody wins! If you want, you can check it out here!
Like my work? Want to help me keep doing it? Become a Member! For ten bucks a month you can support size diversity activism, help keep the blog ad free, and get deals from size positive businesses as a thank you. Click here for details
Book Me! I’d love to speak to your organization. You can get more information on topics, previous engagements and reviews here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org!
I’m training for an IRONMAN! You can follow my journey at www.IronFat.com
A movie about my time as a dancer is in active development, you can follow the progress on Facebook!