Saturday, April 7, 2012

Falling in love with onions and other mysteries of reading

I am reading The Supper of the Lamb and falling in love with onions.  I used to hate onions.  I started liking them in high school when I was working a fast food job, and I found out they could add a lot of flavor to my employee discount chicken sandwiches.  I haven't looked back since.  Reading an entire chapter about them, however, did not sound immediately appealing.  I mean, I'm not a cook.  But, then, Capon's book is not wholly a cook book.  It's a sort of love letter to food or a theology of food.  You probably don't have to cook to enjoy it; you just need to have a soul. Everything can be redeemed and redeeming if you look at it closely enough.
“First, a principle of attention, simply that.  A faith that if we look and look, we will be surprised and we will be rewarded.” – Mark Doty
Should I be falling in love with food I can't prepare, cook, or (sometimes even) enjoy?  Won't it just make me more miserable as I stick to easy-to-prepare food and cafeteria food since it's really all I can manage with my hands in the shape they're in?  Should I risk loving things I can't have? 
"Sometimes you have to watch somebody love something before you can love it yourself." - Donald Miller in Blue Like Jazz
Does it matter?  The love lasts as long as the book, and then a new love will likely take its place.  No one will have been harmed, nothing real lost.  This is not a bad way to live.  For a short time, I can dream of onions in all their glory.  And then on to the next dream.

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