|Matthew Fort, the famous culinary critique of The Guardian giving us precious advice on food writing...|
“Wrong! Wrong! Wrong! You’re absolutely wrong!” That’s what Matthew Fort, the famous British culinary writer from The Guardian told me this week. Why wrong? Wrong because I invested every minute of the last ten days in some extraordinary complex research to be able to enlighten my readers with the most detailed report ever about Pierre Bourdieus theories on taste. These theories are furiously interesting and I thought I couldn’t drop them on my blog without elaborating them with some in-depth clarifications.
In my boundless ingenuousness I was actually convinced of the fact that my readers were dying to know even the tiniest detail of how this French sociologist substantiated the fact that we’re making a complete fool of ourselves thinking that we possess something like an “own personal” taste. I was about to expound this with a whole list of quotes, historical settings and so on, but now what do I hear? The reader remembers at most one minuscule fact per text! And the reader doesn’t want to be wearied after a long day at work with heavy stuff! And the reader – yes, it’s you I’m talking about, Miss and Mister – wouldn’t even think of starting to read a text which is clearly longer than 850 words! That’s the situation of that reader of ours, according to Matthew Fort.
And here I stand with my dissertation of 527 000 words on taste and sociology. After ten days of the most thorough scrutiny, ten sleepless nights of wrestling with sociology books and even a skipped beer tasting class in order to dissect this knotty material, what do I learn? Nobody gives a damn! Too shocked to capitulate, I try to counter Fort’s depressing message arguing that maybe MY readers shouldn’t be compared to HIS readers, underlining the fact that I am pretty sure that the readership of Nathalie’s Italian Foodblog is undoubtedly more refined and sophisticated then those miserable, uninterested toddler readers of The Guardian he is writing for. But it is of no avail. Fort keeps looking at me with this friendly but determined look full of compassion similar to that of a nurse dealing with patients suffering from dementia: “Of course there are three blue rabbits jumping on top of your bed, Miss Stevens. Will you please swallow these little pills for me now?”
And so there is nothing left for me to do. You will have to react and save your reputation yourselves! Write a long letter to this distinguished British fellow or even better… Jump on a Thalys and go to London to explain him personally what kind of exquisite thoroughbred readers you are. Unless of course – and my heart bleeds at the mere thought of it – you agree with this English top writer and confirm that I can expect so little of you indeed. Think twice though. Because if you really declare yourselves part of the bunch of miscreants that Fort described, you owe me thirteen beers. Emotional compensation for the beer tasting I missed for “wrongly” believing in you, you treacherous readers!