Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Relationships, Food and Life Lessons...

As most of you know, food is such an intregal part of my life. I love to cook. I love to eat. I love to share good food with people I care about. And most of all I love to share stories about all of the above. If you think about it, food is interwoven into all of our social make-ups-- memories, rituals, holidays and religion. For instance, next week is Thanksgiving and sure it is about the family and the thankfulness but it is more about the food and the sharing and the tradition. But that does not mean our meals will all be the same...

I just read a great little read, The Gastronomy of Marriage, an autobiography laced with cooking and relationships and a pending marriage- a memoir covering six months of the authors life. It is about the similiarities and differences found in all relationships... played out at the table.

As a food lover and writer, the author uses food and dining as the central metaphor and oh there are differences. She likes to have the menu planned in advance; he actually seems uneasy if it's not a last-minute inspiration. His family taught him the light, clear flavors of Chinese cooking, her Italian heritage taught her about rich sauces and deep warm tastes. Like all relationships I have been in, there are tensions, rewards and panic... but most of all there is a common love for food that keeps all the other items in check.

I was drawn to this book because of the food but it reminded me of a lesson we all need to remember: Diversify your tastes and celebrate your differences! So often we discount people because we have different palates. Just because Sam likes Sushi and Penny devours Pot Pie does not mean that they are incompatible. These differences are like spices. A pinch of this, three pinches of that, a little compromise and a lot of learning is needed to create their own meals, their own life ...and maybe, just maybe if stirred right that will be the most delicious meal of all.

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