Sometimes, I think there are three types of people:
- pan-foodies, and
Fav-foodies have a single favorite food that they champion to death. Chocolate, pizza, ice cream. Sometimes it changes. Last year I became very nostalgic for cafeteria-style corndogs. I can appreciate other foods, but at the moment, there is this favorite thing I must share with you now.
Pan-foodies have trouble identifying with a single food. They love many or all foods. I have a lot of trouble at the buffet because I eat like a vacuum cleaner. I refuse to endorse one food above all else; please don’t strand me on a desert island.
Anti-foodies are those rare folks who—you guessed it—scorn the above. I don’t like to go out and eat. Food is not meaningful; it’s a bother, not unlike sleep. Wish I didn’t need it. I like Soylent, but only because it’s closer to non-food.
Whichever category you fall under, you can see a bit of the appeal from the other categories. Maybe I’ll be more productive as an anti-foodie, or more diverse and accepting as a pan-foodie, or more joyful and unashamed as a fav-foodie. I’d argue that one of these approaches is superior.
To live the empanada life is to experience each day as pregnant with delicious possibility. It’s the fav-foodie approach. You have figured out the thing. You eat it delightedly, without regret. You’re more than happy to tell other people about it. You comfortably trade other things for it. Even if the ingredients change a bit, you have an idea of the main components and structure. It doesn’t have to be right for anyone else, but it’s right for you.
Being a pan-foodie can be problematic when it comes to life. It’s impractical. You have trouble making tradeoffs. And eventually you waste all the time you could have spent developing a relationship with a favorite food. Your inability to discriminate leads to being overweight. And now you are stuck with assorted bits and pieces, mediocre leftovers. A pile of photos for every food is more similar than you’d think to no photos at all.
Anti-foodies are similar enough to fav-foodies that they can get by, especially if they can find joy in their food substitutes. However, there’s annoyance instead of constructive dialogue when the topic of food comes up. You tend to bring negativity to the party. People don’t get it. “Anti” is a fine and honest internal self-label, but it’s an external turnoff. Just pick a food and be happy about it. It’s OK, Soylent is in fact food.
Here’s the question we want to ask ourselves: what do we need to do in order to establish our favorite food?