The Loh Life

Mitts off: the fat tax-- part 1

Sandra Tsing Loh weighs in on the controversy behind celebrity Chef Paula Deen's diabetes.

So many of us are still DIGESTING the big, somewhat embarrassing NEWS of the other day.
No, not Mitt Romney, and his 15 percent TAX bracket.

I’m talking about Paula Deen! Yes, Paula Deen!

As everyone KNOWS by now, the popular, longtime TV PURVEYOR of sugar- and FAT-laden Southern COOKING--? Well, Paula Deen has just announced that she has Diabetes 2. She even sounded downright PEPPY about it – maybe because she has a new pharmaceutical SPONSOR.

And of course now the entire NATION is taking AIM, from Anthony Bourdain on down to some former FANS. They feel they’ve been PLAYED, given that Deen kept GAILY throwing chocolate CHIPS on top of COCONUT flakes on top of MARSHMALLOWS on her show, while having KNOWN about her diagnosis for THREE YEARS.

To which I say: You know WHAT, people? Stop it! Stop picking on Paula Deen!

Granted, she makes a pretty BIG target. And except for cutting out sugary sweet TEA, Deen remains thoroughly unrepentant about her WAYS.

As recently as LAST week, Deen was discussing on her show which kind of BREADSTICKS to pair with bacon CHEESE fries. Breadsticks? Bacon CHEESE fries? I can’t even utter those PHRASES without FEELING new cellulite ERUPTING, think bubble wrap going pop, pop, pop on the loose FLAPS of my upper arms.

Sure, one could CALL Deen opportunistic, given that her GROWING list of SPONSORS now includes both Philadelphia CREAM cheese AND diabetes drug maker Norvo Nordisk. At this rate, her NEXT commercials might WELL feature her dropping TUMS while UTILIZING a giant SHOEHORN to get into her SPANX--

But you know WHAT? First, when we get OVER our shock, we REALIZE that somewhat conflicting SPONSORHIPS are nothing NEW for the modern American businesswoman.

I just recently PROFILED the wonderfully talented AND entrepreneurial Queen Latifah, who has been a spokeswoman for both Jenny Craig AND Pizza Hut. Which makes a kind of weird sense because, as I can TELL you from experience, being on Jenny Craig DOES make a person very hungry.

Secondly, in case you haven’t NOTICED, food and COOKING shows are ENTERTAINMENT. Entertainment! NOBODY is cooking what those people are cooking.

I saw a Food Channel SHOW the other day where chefs competed to invent the best COOKIE, either using SURPRISE ingredients like CARDAMOM or USING, as inspiration, a fancy DESSERT like crème brulee or tiramisu.

It was followed by the show CHOPPED, where chefs frantically cobbled together NEW entrees featuring green almonds and barramundi, which were then TASTE-tested by eighties rapper TONE LOC, or someone like that.

What does any of this have to DO with anything?

Having said that, I am of the firm belief that most Food Channel content is SCANDALOUS and UNFAIR. More on that next week.


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