If you know me, you know that I have an obsession with food that borders on the unhealthy. I am always hungry. I know you’re thinking that I’m exaggerating and that there is no way that I could be hungry immediately after I eat, blah blah blah, but I’m here to tell you that it’s a thing that happens. Everyone here can vouch for this. My friends know that I need to be fed every 2-4 hours or serious hanger sets in. I lose all of my charm when I’m hangry. When I used to have a real job, my boss knew that a meeting had been going on too long when she looked at my glazed expression and realized that it was time for me to eat again. Basically, food is my favorite. That’s why I knew that Jim Gaffigan’s Food: A Love Story might be my spirit animal.
Jim and I share a lot of food opinions. For instance, we agree that both sushi and salad, while perfectly acceptable food items, do not count as meals, although our reasoning is vastly different. Here’s mine: how can it be a meal when I’m hungry again in 30 minutes? This is just a snack or an appetizer. THIS IS NOT A MEAL. STOP TRYING TO CONVINCE ME THAT SUSHI WILL KEEP ME FULL. I never thought I’d quote Dolores Umbridge, but this is a lie. I’m happy to go for sushi, of course (it’s food, after all), but you should be prepared to take me for more vittles less than an hour later. Sushi is really just a warm-up for whatever I’m actually going to eat for my meal. The same goes for salads. I keep trying to eat salad as a meal. It always looks so healthy and refreshing, but I don’t understand how people can survive on this. I’ve heard all of the propaganda about putting more stuff in there (“Add chicken! It will totally keep you full!” More lies.), but at the end of the day we’re still talking about a bowl of lettuce. Salad-as-a-meal really only works if it’s one of those late night meals that you eat right before you go to bed. By the time I’ve brushed my teeth and put my pajamas on, the salad is fully metabolized and will not be sticking around to give me crazy Cliff Huxtable dreams. These rules don’t apply to taco salad, of course. Jim and I agree that the taco salad is the king of salads and the only acceptable salad meal. The fried tortilla bowl has a lot to do with this.
Be warned: reading or listening to this book is going to make you hungry. It’s like when you get sucked into watching Diners, Drive-ins & Dives on Food Network and start grazing on whatever you can find in the kitchen while you fantasize about the shrimp sandwich that that guy is making on the beach in Key West and start checking out plane fares to see how feasible it is to have that sandwich in your immediate future. Not that I was doing that yesterday at all. This book has chapters praising the wonders of bacon, barbeque, french fries, cheese, cheeseburgers, and cake just to name a few. (There’s also a chapter about a guy who is drinking a cup of KFC gravy, but that one actually didn’t make me hungry. Just awed at this man’s dedication. It’s possible that he’s trying to join The Church of Bloggessianism where there is extra gravy for everyone.) Even Jim’s complaints about seafood don’t make me not crave it. Instead, I start thinking about how it’s actually better that he doesn’t like fish or shrimp it because it leaves more for me, and then we’re right back to looking at plane fares to Key West. I’ll trade him all of his seafood for all of the hotdogs and McDonald’s that the universe has allocated for me. I think we’ll both be happier this way.