I’m listening to Etta James tear up the song in anticipation of the slated to be catastrophic hurricane or tornado that is poised to slam into the East Coast of North America. Look, I like the Allman Brothers’ as much as the next person, but Etta? Serious? Listen to that woman howl, “Lord, have mercy! Lord, have mercy on a poor child like me!”
She repeats the request and she means it: Both the cry for mercy as well as the “like me” part: In other words, she is not just talking about her own travails.
Which brings me to William Deresiewicz’s terrific op-ed in today’s NYT. Summed up, he expresses his disappointment in a generation or two in the U.S. whose consciousness and sensibility have been raised and heightened by a newfound passion for food, but who fail to apply the new awarenesses to art and literature.
Well, of course, I concur. The lack of context for food makes so much of the writing and discussion about it a severe self-indulgence that has no applicable meaning.
Personally? And you did ask, food is both a relief from the conundrums and stress of history and trauma as well as a way to make contact with strangers.
I do wonder what folks without power and stranded due to the storm will do. Will they choose organic milk? Sustainable soy? Non GMO tomatoes?
“Lord, have mercy! Lord, have mercy on a poor child like me!”