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Food that makes you particularly sad?

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I was talking to my mom earlier about food that just makes me sad - sad that it exists and even more sad that people actually eat it. Being chow hounds, I know we've all a few. So here are mine.

- Olive Garden. One of my roommates in college was from this tiny little town in Iowa and thought this was THE BEST food ever. The week after I came back from a trip to Italy, she suggested Olive Garden for dinner. I wanted to cry.

- Big Boy. This is my dad's family's favorite restaurant. Even as a small child with very little food experience, I had no problem recognizing it for the crap it was.

- Anything I've ever eaten at my dad's parents' house. It either comes straight from a Chinese restaurant (which isn't always bad), or straight out of a can. My grandmother once made the most inedible steaks on a new grill she just RAVED about - they came out GRAY, all the way through. And she always makes new potatoes, but regardless of what she tries to dress them up in, they just taste like the can.

- My sister's scrambled eggs. Drier than hell and peppered like it's going out of style. At that point, why even bother?

  1. Any all you can eat buffet place even the really expensive ones!

    I just find the way people eat in these places really depressing, and the way the cheaper ones have the institutional easily wipe-downable look.

    I had to go to one for my partners father's birthday last week (most definitely an event where I was not part of the decision making) and the place was packed with what must have been the entire membership for the local lawn bowls club. The people I was eating with (with the exception of my partner who knows better) thought it was fabulous, great food and good value for money but every thing was either fried or cooked to an unidentifiable mass or both.

    Mostly the thing that puts me off is the manic manner in which people try to consume as much as possible - almost like they get a cash prize for eating the most.

    I think food should be enjoyed as an taste/textural journey rather than some desperate act of glutinous excess to beat the profit margins of the establishment

    13 Replies
    1. re: irisav

      It makes me sad to see people salting food, usually without tasting it. In good restaurants I figure the chef would shudder. In chains and fast food places there's so much salt in everything that it's horrifying to begin with. I even see people salting food for little kids and babies.

      1. re: Judith

        watching people salt food without tasting it has always bugged me. Food that makes me sad is my children's hot lunch at school. Ick.

        1. re: Judith

          I totally agree Judith. Salt in this country is way over used. Sodium levels are way too high in chains and fast food. Why buy a good meal if your going to salt it to death and that will be the only thing you taste.

          to think that an average chain restaurant entree has over 1200 mg of sodium.

          1. re: Judith

            Or when they pour some sort of condiment all over it without tasting it first, like Tabasco sauce and ketchup.

            1. re: DishDelish

              What's wrong with adding Tabasco or ketchup if they are things you like? I lived in Louisiana for five years and got addicted to Louisiana brand hot sauce. It is one of those things I put on EVERYTHING I eat now, simply because I like it. Who gives a rip?

            2. re: Judith

              I went to college with a girl who would salt her food while she talked, just kept salting away. She would then taste her food, declare that it tasted like sh*% and push it away.

              1. re: Judith

                Similar to adding wasabi to your sushi. In Japan, you will get your butt kicked by the chef if he/she catches you doing that. Ask for it hotter when you order it so the chef adds a dab more wasabi than usual...

                1. re: Judith

                  I am so with you on those who salt without tasting first. My sister cannot pick up her fork until she has drizzled salt all over her plate. I would excuse it if she just tasted things first and gave it some thought. Now my nephew (her fourteen year old son) does it too.

                  Back in the day (1970s) the food reviewer for the St Louis Post Dispatch came to a fish restaurant I was serving at. He and his dinner partner carefully salted their trout almandine before tasting. I was only in my twenties and we all were quivering in our boots at what his review would say but clearly he was a fraud.

                  1. re: pearlwhitson

                    Heavily salt their food first and see what happens!? Maybe a lesson?

                2. re: irisav

                  What's wrong with just strapping on the feed bag once in a while. That makes me very happy. Food as sport.

                  1. re: chocolatetartguy

                    :-)
                    Everything in moderation, including moderation! I agree.

                  2. re: irisav

                    I think NOTHING other than a trip should be called "a journey", least of all food. But hey. That's just me '-)

                  3. 1. Huge soft drinks in huge cups attached to people by a straw through the cup cap - only seen in the US.

                    2. Wasted food.

                    32 Replies
                    1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                      I second waste.

                      And crab and lobster tanks, where they're crammed in and crawling all over each other. Even though I hypocritically eat them.

                      1. re: tatamagouche

                        I am saddened by almost all corporate chain restaurants. I don't eat shellfish but I can't imagine eating a crab or a lobster. If I were to explain my reasons I'd probably be accused of being flip. Shrimp are free game, though--not all crustaceans are created equal. And of course, waste.

                        Definitely waste.

                        1. re: Kate is always hungry

                          Ooh, lobsters in tanks are heartbreaking. And I also get sad when the crabs on ice are still moving their claws. :(

                          1. re: Angela Roberta

                            I agree. Everytime I see a tank of lobsters I want to buy them and send them back to the water to live out their natural life span. I'm not even a vegetarian. I just can't see eating something that could live for 50 years +/-.

                            1. re: Kate is always hungry

                              Would they survive? I came close to "freeing" a crab last year. It was in a tank with about ten other sluggish ones, but this one was moving around furiously and staring out at people and it looked so...crabby. I wanted to release him (her?) into the bay, but thought maybe the thing would die anyway.

                              1. re: Glencora

                                I freed a flounder once from of all things, a crab trap. I was wade fishing in Christmas Bay near Surfside on the Texas coast, it was kinda slow, so I waded to a crab trap to due a "survey." As I pulled it up, I noticed a pretty nice flounder, 18 inches or so, maybe 2-21/2 pounds, perfect eating size, along with a half dozen crabs or so. It was all beat up from being in the trap. I opened up the trap and "freed" it into my net. I thought about keeping it, but took pity and let it go. Funny thing, over the next 18 months I caught a 4, 41/2, and a 7 pound flounder from mere feet from that spot. As far as lobsters go, Antony Bourdain has no sympathy for them, calling them some sort of a bug with claws. They have no central nervous system, I've cut there head of from the tail, only to have it crawl around it the sink ten minutes later. Crabs, I have no sympathy. Blue crabs are just plain mean, I've had them pinch all the way through a finger nail, and halfway through the finger. Yeah, I had it coming, but I eat heck out of both of them.

                                1. re: James Cristinian

                                  you might catch hell for that post, although I have a similar opinion about crustaceans.

                                  just be quick and clean. it's probably the closest most of us has to the process.

                                  1. re: Glencora

                                    I had the IDENTICAL experience at a Chinese restaurant a couple of weeks ago, Glencora. I wanted to buy him and turn him loose somewhere in the ocean so he could run away. Egad, I am STILL thinking about that crab! I am remininded of the Roman arena: "Those who are about to die salute you." I hate the way their pinchers are taped so they can't even defend themselves!

                                2. re: Angela Roberta

                                  The saddest thing I think I've ever seen was one of those claw games that are usually filled with cheap stuffed animals or candy, only this one had lobsters in it. Awful...just awful...

                                  1. re: theferlyone

                                    I just had someone recommending a resto. in AL to me on the grounds that it HAD one of those machines. I was like, WHAT?!

                                    Arika
                                    http://rawforamonth.blogspot.com

                                    1. re: ArikaDawn

                                      that IS sad.

                                      but, you know, on the other hand, the smart lobsters know how to evade the claw -- just like the best prize is always out of reach. <sorry about that; i couldn't resist...>

                                      no, it really is sad, and just makes me think so much less of the public who would go to a place like that. sort of like "gladiator" for lobsters.
                                      _________
                                      btw, arika, your stroganoff looks delicious -- and the stuffed cabbage, too. did you go to my cookie-palooza thread? you should post your blog there! http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/564196

                                      1. re: alkapal

                                        in that case Alkapal, if you ever find yourself in STL at the Venice Cafe, avoid the upstairs "Explorers Club" where they had (still do?) a big tank of Oscars (don't know the proper species name) and one used to be able to buy live goldfish to feed them at the bar.

                                        1. re: hill food

                                          this place, hill food? http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?...

                                          http://www.thevenicecafe.com/

                                          http://www.flickr.com/photos/heartlan...

                                          there is no mention of the explorer's club, or their little "amusement."
                                          but these folks look like they just might be twisted enough to do such a thing to little aquatic critters -- esp. that "uncle bill" who bills himself as a "godless mother&^%$#@". grrrrr.

                                          1. re: alkapal

                                            alkapal:

                                            they're really a bunch of ex-hippies who moved into a neighborhood that everyone else had written off. I have no idea if that fish food idea still goes on as it's been a million years since, but in a half-hearted defense - that is how Oscars are fed. they also helped a friend's early bio-diesel documentary effort "Fat of the Land" back in 94.

                                            If not for them, I think the neighborhood would be a lot crumblier than it is now.

                                            I do wonder about ethics when feeding, say, a boa. Is it less ethical to feed live versus dead? what about watching? do rodents have dignity or are we projecting? I don't know.

                                            1. re: hill food

                                              aaah, i'd never have a rodent or a snake. but i just had a dream about a parrot. ;-)

                                              the oscars are these? http://www.fishdeals.com/cichlids/osc...

                                              "let them eat pellets" -- marie cichlidette
                                              _______________
                                              ok, to save this post, i must ask if the cichlids were eaten by customers as crispy fried fish?

                                              at hong kong palace the tilapia in the tank all seem to face toward the hall from the kitchen to the dining room, like they are watching for the net, or waiting for a reprieve. i love crispy fish, but haven't yet condemned one of them. but i'm not really a tilapia fan.....

                                              1. re: alkapal

                                                Yep, alkapal, those are oscars. You are right in saying, "Let them eat pellets." While a live food isn't bad for them ever now and then, too much is thought to cause a disease called "hole in the head" due to poor nutrition. Cichlid flakes and pellets are a more balanced diet for these fish. Not to mention, lots of times feeder goldfish are kept in less than optimal conditions so can introduce diseases of their own to any fish that eats them. Ok, I'll hush now. I'm a huge fish fanatic, if you haven't guessed and have kept many different types of freshwater fish and cichlids over the past 15 years.

                                                1. re: alliedawn_98

                                                  alliedawn, now you can name one "marie cichlidette! ;-)

                                                  1. re: alkapal

                                                    I have to admit, you've completely lost me!

                                                    1. re: alliedawn_98

                                                      in my earlier post, i was riffing on a quotation famously attributed (perhaps incorrectly) to marie antoinette, in her response to the peasants demanding bread: "let them eat cake." http://www.straightdope.com/columns/r...

                                                      hence for cichlids, "let them eat pellets." marie cichlidette.
                                                      _________
                                                      to save this post: frozen "hot pockets" make me sad -- totally tasteless, and a big waste of calories.

                                                      1. re: alkapal

                                                        ROFL! Ok, I gotcha now!

                                                        Hmm, food that makes me sad........cooking something so delicious that there are no leftovers for lunch the next day! Last night's pork chops with caramelized onions and roasted red peppers comes to mind.

                                                        1. re: alliedawn_98

                                                          speaking of leftovers: i am really sad when i go to someone's house for dinner on turkey day, and they don't offer any of the voluminous turkey and dressing leftovers for me to take home for tomorrow's lunch. i love turkey, dressing and cranberry sauce (yep, the jellied kind) sandwiches!

                                                          1. re: alkapal

                                                            I think that is sad, too. Having guests and not offering leftovers is an odd one to me, especially when there is a ton of food. But, that is probably just because of the way MY family did things; we always sent guests, be they family or friends or acquaintances, home with plenty of leftovers.

                                                            Mainly, I think it is sad when people eat by habit, like when they eat the whole plate-sized serving regardless of how hungry they are or when they heavily salt their food BEFORE tasting it.

                                                            I also find it very sad when people judge other foods and tastes without considering the difference in culture.

                                                            I find it sad when people think that organic means that something was ""done" to food rather than knowing what was actually left out of the growing process.

                                                            And, last but not least, those addicted to ranch dressing! Sorry to those who love it but does it really need to be slathered on and do those who eat it know how much oil is in that stuff? Sorry, being picky here :)

                                                            I'm not so big on waste because if you can't eat it, then don't stuff yourself just because you put a bit too much on your plate. Waste is bad but I don't condone making someone finish their plate, especially kids or elders in homes/facilities.

                                                            1. re: MinkeyMonkey

                                                              ranch is made with buttermilk and mayo -- so the only oil would come from the mayo. i don't see how that is so different in oil content versus, say, a vinaigrette.

                                                        2. re: alkapal

                                                          That is true. Ate one once (thought it would vaguely resemble a calzone) and it was dreadful. Not even guilty-pleasurish junk.

                                            2. re: hill food

                                              I love Venice Cafe. Used to be one of my favorite St. Louis spots!

                                              1. re: hill food

                                                I used to keep Oscars, with a tank of guppies next to it and a glass u-tube between the tanks. I viewed it as a reverse Darwinism test, if the guppy was smart and brave enough to swim up and over into the next tank he was lunch.

                                                As to lobsters/crabs/shrimp, I'm with PETA (People for Eating Tasty Animals). Lobster fisheries are sustainably managed and it seems to work, crabs don't seem to be having problems. I'm iffy about farmed shrimp, I think more needs to be done about pollution caused by it.

                                              2. re: alkapal

                                                Oooh, great thread! I plan on starting my trial holiday baking in the next couple weeks so I'll definitely post if i find any new cokies that are holiday worthy.

                                                Arika
                                                http://rawforamonth.blogspot.com

                                          2. re: Angela Roberta

                                            Even worse was the way the cooks killed them at a restaurant I was a server at years ago, and the evil way they would show this method off to freak out the servers: put the live lobster on the cutting board and with a chef's knife slowly cut them in half from head to tail. The poor things were still moving after getting halved... way inhumane!

                                            1. re: enanochow

                                              I saw an old Julia Child episode yesterday where some chef showed her the way to slaughter a lobster. It was as you describe. Brutal. They chef said it was less painful for the lobster than being put in boiling water alive.

                                        1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                                          yes -- some of those ultra-ginormous sized soft drink cups are rather alarming. i went to see a movie for the first time in a while the other day and my movie companion came back with a cup larger than my head. it was too heavy to lift easily and too large for me to hold / maneuver with one hand. i'm not a fan.

                                          1. re: Firegoat

                                            >>Live baby octopus

                                            Amen, Firegoat. And any of the other pets that the idiots on the travel channel feel the need to slaughter and eat for the PR sake of it all.

                                            1. re: dolores

                                              Very subjective. Who keeps baby octopi as pets? In impoverished Bolivia and Peru Guinea Pigs are raised for cheap protein, like we raise chickens, (Get off the 7 train at 61st street in Queens and try some.). Do you eat lamb or veal babies? Ever looked into the big brown eyes of a cow? Slaughtered and dressed your own meat? If not, are you a vegetarian? I won't eat supermarket chicken, but I hunt. I know what I'm eating.

                                              1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                Yeah, but you know you only feel the need to hunt for the PR sake of it all.

                                                Killing animals is mean. Meat is okay, but only if it's not a recognizable part of an animal and it comes on one of those nice white styrofoam trays. Or better yet, cooked and plated with a nice garnish.

                                                Add to the list of foods that make me sad: battery-farmed chicken.

                                                1. re: alanbarnes

                                                  Guys, you're dragging up an old well-worn out issue where none was raised here. Dolores didn't say she was anti-meat. And the only question here is what food makes you sad.

                                                  I think she agreed with me that eating animals while they are still alive and eating pets made her sad. Although she can certainly correct me if I'm wrong.

                                                  Pull back those anti meat attacks. She never said that. Nor did I. I grew up on a farm, I've beheaded many a free range chicken and gutted deer. I was just answering the question of what makes me sad. Eating animals alive makes me sad.

                                                  1. re: Firegoat

                                                    Firegoat,

                                                    A thousand pardons if I offended you. That was not my intent. Neither was it my intent to insult anybody's decisions about what foods they choose to eat, be they animal, vegetable, or otherwise. As a matter of fact, I'm completely with you when it comes to eating things that are still alive: I draw the line at yogurt with active cultures.

                                                    My comment was directed to the comment that the "idiots on the travel channel feel the need to slaughter and eat [pets] for the PR sake of it all." In most of the world, eating meat is preceded by killing an animal. And especially when it comes to large animals that are eaten to celebrate major events in a community, the slaughter is often an integral part of the feast. So when, say, Tony Bourdain includes the ritual slaughter of a lamb as part of a show that includes the village feast where that lamb is eaten, he's not trying to shock or titillate, he's showing a culture where people know their meat and where it comes from.

                                                    I don't like the prevalent urban attitude that meat is a commodity that should be as far-removed as possible from the animal that died to provide it. And I have a major issue when somebody claims that trying to re-connect those dots is nothing more than a PR stunt. Hence my sarcastic reply to dolores.

                                                    It's my firmly-held opinion that if we all looked dinner in the eye more often before pulling the trigger, dropping the axe, or drawing the knife across the throat, we'd eat a lot less meat. We'd make sure that meat animals were treated more humanely while they were alive. And we'd be physically and psychologically healthier in the long run.

                                                    1. re: alanbarnes

                                                      "It's my firmly-held opinion that if we all looked dinner in the eye more often before pulling the trigger, dropping the axe, or drawing the knife across the throat, we'd eat a lot less meat. "

                                                      Absolutely. My husband and I eat meat, but, since we got our dog, I find tasks like cutting up a whole chicken much more difficult.

                                                        1. re: alanbarnes

                                                          "I don't like the prevalent urban attitude that meat is a commodity that should be as far-removed as possible from the animal that died to provide it. "

                                                          Alanbarnes, I think you've hit the nail on the head. We are very removed from the origin of our food, especially in North America. Everything is pre-packaged, everything is prepared, if we wanted to, we could never cook a single thing, eat out all the time, defrost or nuke all manners of food. It isn't just meat, it is all food.

                                                          I just spent the last few days making kimchi with my mother. It is a time-consuming endeavor, even with us using bought chile powder, so we didn't have to process, dry and grind the chiles. And of course, we didn't grow any of the vegetables, or make the fish sauce or the shrimp paste, or the sweet rice flour. It would be so much easier to go out and buy pre-made kimchi. But that is the problem. We no longer appreciate the true value of food, because we no longer have to put in the effort to procure it.

                                                          I agree completely with your opinion that we'd all eat less meat if we had to raise and butcher our own animals. If we knew how much work was required to bring meat to the table, you can bet we would value meat much more, and we'd probably be more willing to eat parts of the animal that aren't tenderloin or filet.

                                                          I'm not sure I agree we'd necessarily treat the animals more humanely, I'm not quite convinced that we are all so humane that this would be an automatic response. There are plenty of examples of inhumane behavior that leave me astounded by how cruel humans can be.

                                                          Food is work. In North America, we are fortunate to have so much good food to eat, and not to have to work so hard to eat. But we have also lost many of our food traditions, and we have devalued food to the point that we tolerate practices such as battery-farmed chicken. It is a difficult situation. I recognize the need to change our attitudes, but I'll admit, I whine a little when I see the cost of my organic free-range chicken. And I am one of the lucky group of people that can afford the luxury of paying more for my meat, in order to assuage my guilt about sustainable agriculture and toxin-free food. Because there is no doubt that paying for premium quality food and having the time to process it is a major luxury.

                                                          1. re: alanbarnes

                                                            alanbarnes, I wasn't insulted, although I did feel like the person who posted after me was taken out of context.
                                                            I appreciate the apology although it was unnecessary, as I am a meat eater who lives pretty darn close to the land.
                                                            I didn't mean to start some sort of debate on animal slaughter, my only point was....
                                                            a food that makes me sad
                                                            eating something alive that I think might realize it is being eaten alive and put in pain at being alive and being dissolved slowly by stomach acids and aphyxiation.
                                                            I'm not saying it is wrong.
                                                            I'm not saying people shouldn't do it
                                                            I'm just saying it makes me sad every time I see it.

                                                            1. re: alanbarnes

                                                              I wholeheartedly agree. There was a recent article in the NYT (or was it Bon Appetit or Gourmet?) about a Halal meat market. Two journalists went in to get a goat. They described the process of selecting your live goat and then they watched the slaughter.

                                                              I just returned from Portugal and I visited the small town of Mealhada, famous for it's leitao assado (roast suckling pig). These pigs are weened at two months and then slaughtered. After our wonderful meal, our server asked us if we wanted a tour of their kitchen. It was amazing but shocking. We saw their operations from beginning to end (minus the actual slaughter as they had all been killed for the day). Baby pigs freshly roasted and just outside the hot ovens. Pigs dressed and stuffed and sewn shut awaiting the oven. Many pigs hanging in the walk-in. It was an amazing experience and although my initital reaction was sadness, I quickly got over it and was just respectful of the pig, the people and their culture and the whole process in general. I am so grateful for the opportunity to see it all and to learn.

                                                              1. re: lynnlato

                                                                A photo of some suckling pigs on the spit, awaiting roasting.

                                                                 
                                                                1. re: lynnlato

                                                                  The article about the Halal meat market was in Gourmet, August I think. I found the article beautiful, and thought a lot about Ruhlman's Soul of a Chef. My reaction wasn't universal; apparently plenty of readers sent in letters to complain that it was inappropriately graphic. *snort*

                                                                  Food that makes me sad is all the pre-packaged crap people eat at the office: canned soup, "Healthy Choice" boxes. Plastic food eaten with plastic utensils.

                                                                  To balance: food that makes me happy is watching lunchtime at my boyfriends Montessori school. Everyone brown bags it, but they eat it off plates with silverware and even transfer their drinks to glasses. Cloth napkins at every setting. Peanut butter and jelly becomes more civilised in an atmosphere like that, and leftovers from dinner are much less likely to be mocked.

                                                                  1. re: thinks too much

                                                                    so-- your BF is a montessori school *teacher*--not a student, right? :)

                                                                    1. re: soupkitten

                                                                      *grin* Yes. Teacher. I have many flaws but that would not be one.

                                                                2. re: alanbarnes

                                                                  You are so very right. Seeing animals slaughtered for food does add to one's appreciation and even helps you to truly savor our meat. A living thing has its life ended for our pleasure/survival. Gluttony and waste seems out of the question now. Food coming from styrofoam containers at the supermarket on the other hand, much easier to mindlessly pig out.

                                                                    1. re: alanbarnes

                                                                      Amen. I've killed animals on several occasions for food, and while I certainly didn't enjoy doing it, I was able to and it gave me a much deeper appreciation for the meal.

                                                                  1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                    Hey! Hey! Hey! *I* used to have a pet baby octopus! It hitchhiked home in a bag of sea urchin we had for dinner. The kids walked down the beach and got a half bucket of sand and a bucket of sea water and we had a happy baby octopodi in a gorgeous huge glass bowl. But poor baby! Despite food and fresh sea water twice a day, he died in about a week. The oceanographers at Scrips Institute of Oceanography (where my husband worked) told me the REASON the baby octopus died was because I failed to provide him with a hiding place. They said he died of embarassment. I shouldn't have watched him so much....

                                                                    But we would have eaten him when he grew up. Hey, we ate my pet chickens when I was a kid. Who knows? We may have eaten his mother. I love octopus. Small as pets, large as food. '-)

                                                                  2. re: dolores

                                                                    "other pets that the idiots on the travel channel feel the need to slaughter and eat for the PR sake of it all."

                                                                    LOL. Are the "idiots" "slaughtering" someone's "pets" against the pet owner's wishes? It LOOKS to some as it's for PR sake, but I find it educational, albeit occasionally unappealing.

                                                                    1. re: dolores

                                                                      During the 80's there was an Italian cannibal film genre, one of whose conventions were scenes showing the killing, butchering and cooking of a live animal (crocodile, pig, turtle etc). These films were roundly criticized for actually killing animals on screen.

                                                                      In the new milennium I see more graphic slaughter every day on the Discovery, Food, Travel channels.

                                                                      1. re: chocolatetartguy

                                                                        gore sells. look at success of saw 5. horrible crap.

                                                                        1. re: alkapal

                                                                          There is a big difference between the gore in saw 5 and the reality of where all of our food comes from. If the two of you are vegans please ignore this post. If you are not then realize that the meat you eat is actually the musle of an animal. The word slaughter house contains the word slaughter for a reason. Perhaps understanding where the steak in the neat plastic package came from and respecting what was involved in that is less sad than ignoring the sacrifice involved entirely.

                                                                          1. re: keith2000

                                                                            keith, yep, i was anticipating a comment similar to yours, because of the brevity of my comment -- my shorthand. here is my concept, in a little more detail.

                                                                            saw 5 is a gore film, i know. slaughtering animals is not analogous to a gore film, and actually serves a purpose of feeding us. but, like horror films, there is an ever-increasing use of violence and the sight of blood (though with killing a food animal, it is necessary violence) on tv.

                                                                            my point was that people need more and more titillation as the threshold for violence is lowered due to desensitization (proven scientifically). and (many) people seem to go for it.

                                                                            like movie producers, i think tv executives and producers certainly believe that people want and need more titillation in order to get and keep their attention -- whether that titillation is provided by sex or violence.

                                                                            but i do believe there will be a backlash from those who will never opt to go to a theater for the viewing of saw 5, but just "happen to see" the bedouins slaughter a goat in the desert on the "fine living" network with tony bourdain.

                                                                            no vegan here. i grew up hunting in the everglades, and we ate the deer and wild boar we shot. i love my baby back ribs today, or lamb kabobs.

                                                                            in short, i know where and how animals are killed for my eating pleasure. i just don't want to see it on tv.

                                                                            1. re: alkapal

                                                                              oops! Meant a "raised" threshold -- more violence needed to "get our attention."

                                                                              1. re: alkapal

                                                                                I don't think that the reality of where our food comes from is titilating. I like what Bourdain's show does. He shows people and cultures that are linked to the food they eat. People who understand fully where their food comes from and what it means to eat meat. They are not showing "faces of death" lets torture an animal for fun. They are showing the truth. The blood that goes along with it is not excessive it is reality. I think the western world needs to see it. We are not desensitized. We are over sensitized. The idea that "I'll eat it but I don't want to know that it bled when it was killed" makes me sad.
                                                                                I do not like to watch gore films. I will slaughter a goat or a chicken. Once you have done that you can not help but respect your meal. It is hard to be glutenous or wasteful when you saw it die and I believe this country has a problem with being both. Not everyone has been lucky enough to hunt in the Everglades. I think it is important for everyone who eats meat, young and old, to see the animal die.
                                                                                Anyone who becomes aroused or titilated watching it has problems and should seek imediate psychological help.

                                                                    2. re: Firegoat

                                                                      While live baby anything can be cute & adorable, I'm guilty of enjoying freshly prepared young vertebrate & invertebrate.

                                                                      1. re: OCAnn

                                                                        Don't get me wrong, I'm a meatatarian - not a bunny hugging PETA lover. I just can't stomach the idea of eating a creature alive, particularly not an octopus. Just humanely kill it, don't play with your food.

                                                                        1. re: Firegoat

                                                                          Many cultures in East Asia would disagree

                                                                          1. re: takadi

                                                                            I'm sure they would, but the question was what food makes ME sad.

                                                                          2. re: Firegoat

                                                                            I'm w/you there; I like my food dead. However, a little squiggle of the amaebi (sweet shrimp) in my mouth actually tickles my fancy. But it is, indeed, dead (beheaded before my eyes) before it goes in my belly!

                                                                        2. re: Firegoat

                                                                          there is a resturant in DC that serves pickled baby octopus as a garnish on a martini. that is SAD

                                                                          1. re: anunez

                                                                            Why is that sad? Are you an olive person?

                                                                            1. re: c oliver

                                                                              olives are wrong - lemon twist.

                                                                              names anunez, please.

                                                                              I want my little shy cephalopods grilled. in any case octopi should not be pickled and served as a drink garnish. do we put herring in cocktails?

                                                                              1. re: hill food

                                                                                we put worcestershire sauce in bloody marys. so, anchovies, we do!

                                                                                1. re: alkapal

                                                                                  OK that's a fair cop.

                                                                                  oooh I would try an anchovy in a bloody. but they're salt cured, not vinegar.

                                                                                  good idea. I like the visual - I think I know what next Friday has in store...

                                                                                  1. re: hill food

                                                                                    hill food, you want "pickled"? just drink a lot of the bloody marys! ;-)

                                                                                    ps, LOVE "cranky mccrankpants"! LOL! and you want to "swim, like dolphins can swim..." bowie "heroes" fan?

                                                                                    1. re: alkapal

                                                                                      who?

                                                                                      I wish your grits are laden with cheese and garlic at any time of day.

                                                                                      1. re: hill food

                                                                                        cranky?? that's your profile name, right?
                                                                                        and bowie? who doesn't know bowie?

                                                                                        thanks for the good grits wishes. back at ya!

                                                                                        1. re: alkapal

                                                                                          what, Jim Bowie? forgive me but I don't see where dolphins occur in central Texas.

                                                                                          1. re: hill food

                                                                                            hill food, you know, too many bloody marys just might cause this dissociative disorder you apparently are experiencing. (hill food, meet profile) i'd seek professional help. ha ha.

                                                                                            ___jim bowie.
                                                                                            harrumph. i'll bet jim bowie never said, "let's dance! .... under the serious moonlight...with my bowie knife strapped here to my le-eeeg." {;^D

                                                                                            ok, now i'm envisioning david bowie and jim bowie, circling each other, ready to tangle. hahahaha. english cross-dresser vs. american icon. well, i guess we'll just see what happens in this "new america."

                                                                          2. All you can eat buffets and big gulp sodas have already been mentioned - those are high on my list of food crimes.

                                                                            I'll add:
                                                                            highly processed food for children (lunchables embody this to me)

                                                                            13 Replies
                                                                            1. re: Cachetes

                                                                              I get very sad when I see children drinking sodas. At least adults should know how bad that crap is for them.

                                                                              1. re: mojoeater

                                                                                Worse yet is when I see things like those vibrantly colored "fruit" drinks (eg. Hi-C, Hawaiian Punch) in baby bottles. Not that I'm saying it's right, but with children, I could picture them nagging their parents until they would get some soda (because that's what I did as a kid). But if you're at the stage where you're drinking from a baby bottle, chances are that you have absolutely no say in what you're eating or drinking.

                                                                                1. re: Miss Needle

                                                                                  When I was in high school a classmate of mine would give her daughter a bottle of Mountain Dew because it helped wake her up and make her less crabby so they could both get to school on time. She didn't LIKE doing it, but,"the day care they have here at school makes me check her in 15 minutes before first period so I don't have a choice." Right. Sad.

                                                                                  Arika
                                                                                  http://rawforamonth.blogspot.com

                                                                                  1. re: ArikaDawn

                                                                                    Oh, how really sad for both the daughter and the mother! I'm wondering if there was an alternate way to get her daughter less crabby without Mountain Dew -- perhaps having her daughter go to sleep earlier. But I'm sure it was pretty difficult for both of them. I hope things work out.

                                                                                  2. re: Miss Needle

                                                                                    On a bus in Mexico I saw a mother pouring Coke from a two-litre bottle into her baby's bottle and using it to make the baby stop crying. She must have thought she was pretty smart, figuring out that high fructose corn syrup and caffeine would get her crying baby to be quiet (for five seconds)!

                                                                                    1. re: Jetgirly

                                                                                      no, the mexican coke uses cane sugar.

                                                                                      maybe the kid's tummy was upset from the road trip. my mom used to let me sip coke and nibble on a couple of saltine crackers when i got queasy as my dad was driving around the mountains heading to our summer place in highlands, north carolina. coke syrup helps to calm the upset tummy.

                                                                                      maybe that was the situation with the mexican mamacita. maybe not.

                                                                                      1. re: alkapal

                                                                                        It would definitely be a sight to see, as jetgirly suggests. But as alkapal points out, it could have been for stomach upset. When I was in Chiapas a few years back, I remember a guy telling me that Coke (I think it was Coke - it was either coke or pepsi) used to be sold in Mexico as La Chispa de la Vida (the spark of life), with campaigns promoting how healthy it was for settling stomach aches. The result was that people abandoned customary remedies for stomach upset in favor of Coke, according to him.

                                                                                  3. re: mojoeater

                                                                                    How do you feel about kids drinking soda with a large chocolate chip cookie? It's always bothered me that a certain chocolate chip cookie chain offers a large soda to wash down a cookie but the milk they sell is the dinkiest size. When they first opened, they only had the large size cookie. Mothers were buying their very young kids a whole large cookie. More often than not, a Coke was the drink of choice.

                                                                                    1. re: Kate is always hungry

                                                                                      Soda really doesn't go with chocolate chip cookies. I think I would rather have my kid drink water than a soda. And a Coke? No way!

                                                                                      I try not to be judgmental regarding what parents feed their kids, because I know I'm far from perfect in that department. But sometimes I see things that are so contrary to common sense (i.e., the whole Coke thing), I have to shake my head.

                                                                                    2. re: mojoeater

                                                                                      I agree. I'm trying to kick my Dr. Pepper addiction (the word "addiction" is NO understatement) because I'm setting a bad example for my near-two-year-old. I caught myself saying, "No, honey. Here's some rice milk for you. Mommy shouldn't even be drinking this (the Dr. Pepper), so I won't subject you to its horribly tight vice grip." She has NEVER had soda, kool-aid, or any of that crap. It will stay that way until she gets a job and can buy her own crap. Hopefully by that time, however, she'll have good nutritional values instilled in her.

                                                                                      1. re: elysah87

                                                                                        Fellow Dr. Pepper Addict here trying to set a better example for my 7 year old. I regularly tell her whow awful it is and that I am not doing well by myself by drinking it.

                                                                                        Dr.Pepper is really like a little taste of heaven.

                                                                                    3. re: Cachetes

                                                                                      Lunchables: Not just the food but the packaging waste. Sigh.

                                                                                      1. re: pdxgastro

                                                                                        i totally agree! now they're doing it for adults, with tuna salad and crackers kind of things.

                                                                                    4. Any food served under cool-white fluorescent lights.

                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: Sinicle

                                                                                        The prepared food in the cases at Whole Foods. a) it's so expensive, relative to the ingredients used b) you have no idea when it was prepared or its expiration date. c) there is no way that the food will be sold, given demand (at last at our WF) and thus is for asthetics only.

                                                                                        1. re: brendastarlet

                                                                                          Oh, I forgot about this one! Yes, WF prepared foods do make me sad. Remember when health food stores used to be healthy? Now, all the WF made foods are high in sugars, salt and fat. Yes, expensive and alternate forms of sugar, salt and fat, but it is still just that, sugar, salt and fat. I tried to buy one of their pre-made deli salads that did not contain mayonnaise and the counter guy could not find ONE single salad without it. He was more shocked than I was when the label for the pasta, mozzarella and tomato salad contained mayo. But, I was out of time and on my way from work to a party, so I picked up a ton of those grilled veggies. Whoowhee, pricey but good.