I live in the part of my college town that I fondly like to think of as a drunk’s Garden of Eden. There are about three liquor stores within a minute’s walk from my apartment, and in that same radius, probably around twenty different dining establishments that mainly cater to the late-night munchies crowd. Options include, but are not limited to, a place specializing in both bibimbop and frozen yogurt, a dedicated grilled cheese-ery, and a sushi restaurant sharing its lot with a hardware store.
Now, I pride myself on my dedication to a decently wholesome diet. Why, I think my markedly bougie taste has come to be the trademark of my bougie little blog. There is this one burrito place, though — a shack with questionable sanitary practices that absolutely no one goes to while in their sober right mind. Except, perhaps, for me, and usually between 4:00 and 5:00 PM, head down and opting for carry-out to escape my shame. During my too-lazy-to-cook phase of last semester, I got my $4.50 vegan burrito bowl with extra rice (which, on more than one occasion, I found containing a straggler piece of meat that I had the misfortune of chewing before the realization hit) more often than I would like the internet to be privy to.
Hey guys, it’s been a minute.
I’ve been struggling with mindfulness lately — a weakness I am sad to admit as me from a year ago had really thought she nailed this down. The truth is, sometimes my mind is drowning, sinking deeper into uncertainties and insecurities and fears for the world and the self. I am by no means suggesting that my struggles are unique, or extraordinary in severity. Not at all. This is the most anxiety-muddled period I have ever personally experienced, and how lucky I am to have this be the case. I’ll spare you the dive into details, though I thought that perhaps this post could be a little exercise for you and me both in practicing a more aware style of living life.
I apologize for the impromptu month-long break that I took from this blog. Unfortunately, personal but mostly national/global events have led me to have to take a step back and get my thoughts and emotions in order. To keep this blog as apolitical as possible (which is difficult as I am a very political person), let’s just say that I am… disappointed with recent election results. I am even more disappointed at a lack of empathy some people have towards vulnerable groups that, I believe, are justifiably scared. I fall into a few of those intersections, though I also acknowledge my privilege in other ways.
While browsing my now hyper-politicized social medias, I saw an image of a protester holding a sign reading “put an avocado on racism so white people will pay attention”. I had to laugh at that, because the sentiment is so utterly true. Avocado is trendy, avocado toast is even trendier, and you see countless photos of various avocado derivatives whenever you scroll through everything from Buzzfeed to The New York Times (the latter of which received backlash for suggesting a recipe for guacamole replacing avocado with peas — how blasphemous). It also shouldn’t come as a surprise that there is a certain…demographic that is particularly invested in avocado and its permutations. I am very active in the “foodie” Instagram culture, enough to be able to notice a general trend of privilege and disconnect from issues afflicting other portions of the population. This isn’t to say that this is necessarily these peoples’ faults – it’s easy to fall into social bubbles and completely natural to want to belong and thrive. To be candid, I developed this fancy-schmancy avocado toast knowing full-well that it would probably be popular in that bubble. Why, when I posted a teaser photo of this on my Instagram, that post got more likes than any of my other photos. In light of all that’s happening in the world right now, it is kind of funny how much people care about avocado toast.
This is a bit of an interim post while I figure some things out in my real life. Call it what you will – filler, shameless self cross-promotion, a poorly constructed metaphor for classic young adult angst. The pretentious part of me is tempted to label this as an homage to a better headspace. That sounds ridiculous, though, doesn’t it?
Let me cut right to it: this post is about buckwheat porridge, my recent yet extinguished “obsession” with it, and the upsetting reality that I am someone that seesaws between passion and apathy.
Over the summer, buckwheat porridge was one of my absolute favorite breakfasts, if not for its heartiness then definitely for its versatility as a springboard for creativity and excitement. It became a weekly breakfast, a habit that continued to change and evolve. I would constantly revolve toppings, spend late mornings trying to create a visual narrative surrounding the porridge to practice photography. When strawberries, then figs, and then stone fruits came in season, I couldn’t wait to go to the markets and find those tiny, yet so very sweet Michigan strawberries or feel around for the jammiest figs. My love for this breakfast was so great that it even led me to once again dabble in my sporadic love affair with videography.
I have a secret to share with you: I generally avoid using any refined fat in my food. It’s a secret that the cook part of me is ashamed to admit, because it goes against one of the most trusted restaurant-isms that fat = flavor. The health-fanatic part of me, on the other hand, abhors the nutrient dead zone of calorie-dense, artery-clogging oil or butter. Meanwhile, the liberal arts college student part of me recognizes that I have placed a health halo over low and even “no-fat” foods and that our culture has absolutely no clue what is actually healthy or not.