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Analogous - A little less than a happy high — LiveJournal
"I found myself thinking about her odd theory of the Rice Veil. And I began to get what she was saying. Within this world maybe there are divides that, once crossed, separate people from one another, as surely as if they were in different universes. Once someone begins to use a Japanese rice cooker, perhaps she can never go back. But perhaps this barrier she has passed through is transparent; perhaps she can look back at her former companions in the shadowy world of Those Who Cook Their Rice in Pots with bemusement and contempt." - Julie Powell, Julie & Julia, My Year of Cooking Dangerously


"Of course there is no 'Us and Them,' but them they do not think the same. It's them who do not think the same. It's them who do not think. - Golgol Bordello, Illumination
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cayetana From: cayetana Date: September 4th, 2008 06:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
I particularly remembered that bit. So do you like the book?

She also had a bit about cooking with blood that was in our magazine. I can get you a copy of the complete article. It won a James Beard award. Just sayin.
komos From: komos Date: September 4th, 2008 09:14 pm (UTC) (Link)
It's an interesting read, and I think Powell took on a lot with that challenge. I've found her occasional histrionics a bit grating but I think I understand what she went through. There's a lot to cooking that's about control, and when things start to unravel, it can get ugly. Then again, some of it may have been over-dramatized for purposes of entertainment.

And thanks. I'd love to see it.
cris From: cris Date: September 4th, 2008 06:45 pm (UTC) (Link)
It is Alton's Brown rejection of the rice cooker that forever marks the man as suspect in my eyes.
komos From: komos Date: September 4th, 2008 09:23 pm (UTC) (Link)
Alton has his problems, and inconsistent application of the "no uni-taskers" rule is the least of them. I'm not sure how the rice cooker gets dismissed while the ice cream maker is a regular feature, but whatever.

I have more issue with things like creating jury-rigged setups whose components cost more than a comparable pre-fab offering, some of which are not only uni-taskers, but are one use uni-taskers.

Alton's a gateway chef. His job is to demystify things that would seem magical otherwise and to inspire you to do him one better. I think he excels in that role, at least.
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komos From: komos Date: September 4th, 2008 09:47 pm (UTC) (Link)
Honestly, I've never used one. I know people who swear by them, but I don't think I eat enough rice to be able to justify the expense or the space.

Powell wrote about a fairly heated debate that took place on her blog over them, with zealots on both sides of the coin. What interested me was that the "odd theory of the Rice Veil" seems to have broader applications that extend to other extreme views. For instance (and I'm going to use a particularly hot button issue)... once someone begins to believe that abortion is murder, attempting to talk to them about reproductive rights becomes futile since they believe that such rights are ultimately secondary to a perceived human being's right to exist. There's no real possibility of discourse because there is no real possibility of a middle ground between these ideas. They may as well be at opposite poles or from different universes.
cris From: cris Date: September 4th, 2008 09:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
There is a bridge between the two worlds. That bridge is the pilaf.

komos From: komos Date: September 4th, 2008 11:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
WHICH isn't to imply that there's any connection between rice cooker advocates and folks on either side of the choice debate... I just think the divide Powell talks about can show up elsewhere.

I'm with you on the pilaf, though. I'm utterly neutral in my feelings towards it. ^^
cris From: cris Date: September 5th, 2008 12:39 am (UTC) (Link)
oh, indeed, I think that the divide certainly manifests itself in other ways, like Microsoft / Mac fandom or those who cook with gas and those who don't. I just think that the rice cooker divide, as marked as it may be with zealotry on the extremes, isn't as Manichean as, say, abortion or born-again v. atheist
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