Loyal, rotten food, and finding your way home

Loyal. Yes, I am loyal when it comes to good authors. If I really love a book, I usually try to read everything else they have written. Ruth Reichl is one of those authors. Tender at the Bone, being one of my favorites. Quote: “food could be a way of making sense of the world. . . . If you watched people as they ate, you could find out who they were.” This is a perfect summary of Tender at the Bone, where she grows up watching food and people, particularly her strange mother, and the often rotting food she serves to her guests.

I relate to Riechl, not so much that my mom served rotten food, but that I feel I am a starer. I love watching people, learning about them and what makes them tick. Growing up in the midwest, I was a product of the 80’s. Yes, jello mixed with whipped cream, or pears molded into jello. I could go on, but what I’ll say is that I agree with Riechl, you can definitely learn about people by watching what they eat.

I just finished Riechl’s newest book and I could not put it down. Sunday morning I woke up early and decided to snuggle up against Chris and read as much as I could before my stomach made such loud growling sounds that I would wake Chris up. 100 pages later and I still another 100 pages to go (380 pages in total), we decided to finally roll out of bed. I silently geared up for my run later in the day where I could finish the book. The book? Delicious by Ruth Reichl. This quote stood out to me the most from her book, especially the part about food and finding their way home.

“A great meal is an experience that nourishes more than the body. The feeling stayed with me. The next morning, when Mother, Mr. Jones, and I were walking through those strange, crowded downtown streets, where people were sticking their hands into pickle barrels, pointing to smoked fish, and eating sliced herring, I saw the scene in a whole new way. They weren’t buying food: They were finding their way home.” page 277

Delicious is about a girl who ventures to New York City to work for a food publication. She learns a lot about family, sisterhood, love, and so much more. Riechl has a way of weaving multiple stories into one. She shares a story between two sisters, a father and daughter, an employee and employer, and multiple co-workers, oh and somehow brings James Beard into it all. Weaved in with food, food history, and World War II. It is a definitely a book to read, and you will want to postpone your to-do list to finish it. Warning: If you liked her die-hard foodie books, this has a much softer side.

Oh, by the way, I finished Delicious on my run, and now I only wish there was a sequel. Ruth Reichl, you may have only been a non-fiction writer, but I think you just opened a world for yourself in the land of non-fiction.


Running shoes connected by history

Running shoes have a history. They tell a story of where a runner has been. If you have not yet seen the cover of the most recent Boston Magazine, then you will not want to miss it. They acted or reacted fast after the Boston Marathon. The cover contains 120 running shoes in the shape of a heart. Each pair was worn by someone who ran the Boston Marathon. A clever and meaningful way to honor the 2013 Boston Marathon, both for the runners and those impacted by the events that transpired at the finish line.

It makes me think about the history and journey of my running shoes. The many, many pairs I have worn through that are still in my closet. I have had a hard time parting with them. The worn soles of the miles I have put on them. Whether I was running and reading on the treadmill, or passing the time outside there was a story that followed each of my runs. It might have been the book I was reading while on the treadmill, the novel that kept me going, or the new knowledge or insights I learned from a business book while on my daily run. It might have been the houses I passed in my neighborhood and the music that kept me energized. Whether inside or outside, each pair of running shoes helped me process my day, my work issues, my family life, whatever dilemma was thick in thought was sure to have been mulled over in my current pair of running shoes.

What were each of those runners thinking about while running the Boston Marathon? Was it their first marathon, or one of many? Did they struggle to finish that day, or on their way to breaking a personal record? How many miles were already racked up on that pair worn during the Boston Marathon?

That cover photo brings together many lives and untold stories of how each runner got to the Boston Marathon. You will want to read the article (shared above) from John Wolfson, the Editor-in-Chief of Boston Magazine and how they were able to quickly change their cover issue, as well as interview each of the runners that have shoes on the cover, who tell their stories of their race. Copies will be on newsstands on Tuesday, and other stories not included in the print edition will be online. I would like to get a copy.