Medium Raw

Medium RawMedium Raw
Anthony Bourdain

Oh, Anthony. You’ve been growing up since your Kitchen Confidential days, certainly. I love that you are more contemplative, more thoughtful. You seem cognizant of gender inequalities in a way you didn’t before you had a daughter (at least that I never saw this before).  You continue to point out that the people who help feed us, who do back breaking work in America’s kitchens, are so often people vilified in the media and told to “go home.” You recognize that the Ecuadorian filleting fish will be treated differently than the Irishman pouring your beer, although their immigration status is the same.

You recognize that hard work is not enough, that you were tremendously lucky. “And luck is not a business model.”

Still, the targets of your most vicious attacks are often women. Alice Waters, Sandra Lee, Paula Deen. (I am NOT, under any circumstances, defending Paula Deen’s recent horror show. Bourdain’s attacks predate any of that.) And that just makes me sad. And disappointed. And hopeful that you will continue to grow.
I’m not saying that I hope Bourdain starts attacking more men. Instead, I hope that he will focus on attacking hypocrisy, on attacking issues. I’m sure he is smart enough to know the difference.

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9 thoughts on “Medium Raw

  1. I don’t really know enough about his comments or books to comment. I think I read in a media source at one time that he was very disparaging towards Sandra Lee – but i didn’t get the impression that it was a female thing – i thought it was a “using processed crap” to start your cooking comment. I don’t really know enough to comment I guess.

      • It is always disappointing when someone who is an adult professional has not yet learned how to appropriately criticize…in other words, they don’t produce an effective critique of, in Sandra Lee’ s case, her recipes and instead make it a personal attack. It’s the difference between saying “you suck” and saying “your fettucini alfredo would be improved by using all fresh ingredients, particularly heavy cream and fresh pasta”.

      • Right. It’s also disappointing that he doesn’t recognize that people have different cooking skills, confidence levels, and life situations that might make them choose Sandra’s method. And they aren’t lesser people for doing so.

  2. I really don’t understand why someone feels it necessary to put others down. If they are not your cup of tea, fine, but why keep haranguing them? Just talk about your food, your style. Not everyone is a chef.

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