Ordinary Sunday Brunch: Culture Quick Links

Andrew Donaldson

Born and raised in West Virginia, Andrew has since lived and traveled around the world several times over. Though frequently writing about politics out of a sense of duty and love of country, most of the time he would prefer discussions on history, culture, occasionally nerding on aviation, and his amateur foodie tendencies. He can usually be found misspelling/misusing words on Twitter @four4thefire and his writing website Yonder and Home. Andrew is the host of Heard Tell podcast.

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11 Responses

  1. fillyjonk says:

    Hi2: so there’ s a precedent for bureaucrats coming down on kids selling food out of their front yards. (Though I suspect the risk today is lower because they almost always use disposable cups).

    Fo3: Sophisticated people like to snark on Guy Fieri but everything I have ever read about him suggests he’s a good guy – on several occasions he’s arranged to feed people who were, for example, put out of their homes by wildfires. I also read somewhere that when a business he had featured burned down, he called the owners to be sure they were OK and made an offer of help. To me, that kind of thing overrules the odd hairstyle and loudness.Report

    • Fo3 I saw him doing a live in-studio spot on one of the morning shows, I forget GMA I think, and they were doing normal banter and host commented he looked tired and his reply was “Not yet, but I’m going to be I have to leave straight from here and fly home for a PTA meeting.” NY to CA for school PTA meeting. Little things like that I find impressive.Report

  2. J_A says:

    Fo6 Jamie Oliver’s Jerk Rice

    First and foremost: Cultural Appropriation is a stupid concept

    Second, and almost as important: The concept of Cultural Appropiation should die

    Now that the important bits are out of the way, let’s talk about Jamie Oliver’s Jerk Rice Fiasco

    Cultural Appropiation is stupid, but Origin Denominations are not.

    Jamaican food is surprisingly good and tasty. The reason is both the spices and the cooking techniques they use. You cannot throw non Jamaican spices like Jalapeños. non Jamaican foodstuff like eggplant, and non Jamaican techniques (*) and call it Jamaican X. He might as well have called it Kung Pao Rice, and claim it was inspired by the Chinese flavors.

    He’s essentially “appropriating” the reputation of the Brand “Jamaican Jerk” to sell (apparently lousy) stuff to people. It’s not different from bottling fizzy alcohol flavored by potatoes and call it Champagne Vodka.

    Had he had the same (IMHO deserved) pushback without the words “cultural appropiation” being uttered, no one would have disputed his fake rice deserved to die. The culture war makes everything culture war. I hate it.

    (*) You can’t “jerk” rice. Jerk is a cooking technique that is done in a barbecue. Try barbecuing rice.

    On a separate note, I ate at one of his restaurants last Thursday. It’s good, but not good enough to justify the price tag. His food is quite simply, with good, but basic ingredients. Neither the techniques nor the ingredients justify paying twice as much as you would pay in another placeReport

    • Andrew Donaldson in reply to J_A says:

      I have an eternal dislike for Oliver for other reasons, namely when he tried to launch his TV show stereotyping my
      Appalachian brethern, got his self-righteous arse handed to him by the locals, then proceeded to whine and cry about it in the media. Granted I’m biased, but I can take a good WV joke or two. This wasn’t that, he was purposefully mocking people under the guise of helping people, which is the worst sort of hypocrisy.


      • this is also when he earned my scorn. Someone going in, telling other people how to live their lives, without actually seeming to care about their struggles and experience.

        He also has a distinct strain of the killjoy in him; the sort of person who says no one should ever eat cake ever, not even once a year on their birthday.Report

    • PD Shaw in reply to J_A says:

      I was writing my own comment before reading this, and while I agree with you on cultural appropriation, to me the issue is more that if someone gives me something that they call Jerk rice, a Jerk BLT, or Jerk Ice Cream, there should be something about it that is connected with “Jerk” cooking or flavoring.

      The piece also indicates that Oliver has designed menus for schools, which I think is worthwhile. When the schools were required to offer only low-salt items, the food became flavorless and kids stopped eating it.Report

  3. PD Shaw says:

    [Fo6] I believe this Indian writer has just appropriated “jerk” cooking as an Indian dish:

    the word “jerk” is traditionally used to adjectivally describe pork or chicken or some other meat turned into a spicy Caribbean curry. . . . In the case of jerk pork or jerk chicken, which I have eaten in London and in Jamaica, I get a distinct taste of Indian spices in the curried dish. I have never thought it appropriate to abuse the chef or the institution that served this dish of “expropriating” my Indian culture.

    I wonder if he’s actually eaten any “jerk,” or whether it was some fusion cuisine. Jerk flavoring is from habeneros and allspice, both indigenous to the Americas. Still agree with the writer’s basic point, that particularly in the context of the Colombian exchange, a lot of food origin stories are suspect.Report

  4. Aaron David says:

    Ar4 – My wife and I have a lovely friend, a beautiful Chumash woman who wore a backless wedding gown deliberately to show off her full back tattoo.Report

  5. Oscar Gordon says:

    Hi5: The sea stories from WWII and before are a lot more ‘bad breath distance’ kinds of tales. A modern Navy would be very unlikely to have such a tale, since often enough, the crew of the ship doesn’t have to have actual human eyes on the target.

    I have a few, but nothing so life and death.

    Regarding the Metallica video, they do a fair job, but I still prefer The Dubliners.Report