Anthony Bourdain, Medium Raw: A Bloody Valentine to the World of Food and the People Who Cook
I stayed up almost all night last night reading Bourdain’s 330-page screed on food and foodies. Good shit. A little tired today but totally worth it. I love Bourdain’s pound-it-out writing style, which is more “raw” than “medium”, and he has far too much respect for his readers to try any bullshit. It’s not always pretty, it’s not always right, but it always feels like a smart and fallible human being struggling to make something worthwhile out of the messes he’s made and the mess we’re all in.
Who will work these fields?
No. Really. Somebody’s going to have to answer that question soon.
If, somehow, we manage to bring monstrously evil agribusinesses like Monsanto to their knees, free up vast tracts of arable land for small, seasonal, sustainable farming, where’s all the new help coming from? Seems to me, we’re facing one of two scenarios. Either enormous numbers of people who’ve never farmed before are suddenly convinced that waking up at five a.m. and feeding chickens and then working the soil all day is a desirable thing. Or, in the far more likely case, we’ll revert to the traditional method: importing huge numbers of desperately poor brown people from elsewhere to grow those tasty, crunchy vegetables for more comfortable white masters. So, while animals of the future might be cruelty-free, which would allow those who can afford to eat them to do so with a clean conscience, what about life for those who will have to shovel the shit from their stalls?