Tuesday, October 18, 2011

A Bore? A Drag?

Kind of related and unrelated.... In my blogpost about Lyfe Kitchen I wrote about "healthy" eating out and Maribel brought up a good point. She commented about how since she eats healthy on her own when she does go out "health" is not the priority. I thought that was a good point. I mean, are we trying to stay healthy or "perfectly healthy". Unless you hold and live by extreme standards of "organic", 'local", "sustainable", etc, oh and let's add constantly counting calories, 100% of the time (and if that's the case you better grow most of your own foods and for sure cook and prepare them) then laboring over what to order when eating out, trying to make the perfect healthy choice is well, boring and a drag.

I've written my concerns about becoming a drag many times in past blogposts. The kind of "drag" that complains when eating out about calorie count, about unhealthy foods, about what other people are choosing at other tables, etc. Or maybe I'm the one to order customized food unsatisfied with the menu choices or maybe not trusting the kitchen/resturant with my health. I've also not wanted to become someone that pretends to have the highest of standards and then go on a 1/2 price fun sized Snicker's binge the day after Halloween!

I was reminded of what it sounds like to be with this kind of person/people this past Saturday.

Mark and I live 1 blk away from a Foster's Freeze and we've been known to take a walk down the street, every once in a while, late on a Saturday night, for a soft serve ice cream....or a cheeseburger. Well, this past weekend that's exactly what we did. There we sat on the tiny little stools in front of Foster's Freeze enjoying our first PBJ Twister....omg it was seriously yummy! Anyway, along came a group of about 5 or 6 friends, I'm guessing they were around my age, or slightly younger, 4 men and 2 women. As they stood in front of the menu board laboring over which meal to order or skip in favor of a Twister or Sundae, the women especially started talking about the calories in the food choices. They talked about how much fat was in this, how much sugar was in that, which bad choice was worse than the other! Are you kidding me? You are at Foster's Freeze! What do you expect?

To top it off, and I don't want to come across too snobby but, they were already overweight, some more than some others, and I'm pretty sure non of them exercised on a regular basis... As I sat there "sleaze-dropping" I couldn't help but roll my eyes and be bored by the whole thing...geez... But this reminded me of my own same boring behavior. I never want to be a bore or a drag. I've got to relax or don't eat out and freakin' complain about it for God's sake.

I'm guilty of the same behavior and I don't like it! We all eat out at different times for different reasons. Most people eat out because they don't cook or prepare foods themselves and it's the only option they give themselves. Me? I eat out when I have to, and on the rare occasion when I chose to. When I'm at a resturant I'm going to stop complaining, I'm going to stop over analyzing menus, and I'm going to stop talking about calories.....promise.


Hanneke said...

Haha, love this, probably because I recognize myself in it.

I am also working on that. I cook mostly at home and I am very conscious about it. On top of that I have colitis so I need to keep that in check too. I also learned that if eating out is a rare occasion instead of a few times a week I enjoy it so much more. I really learned to enjoy it and not question everything I eat. I do still mind portion size, lately I just like to order appetizers, sometimes two!

If friends invite me for a dinner at their place they often ask me what I eat because I am known for being health conscious. I always say I eat everything they make. And I do, and I will compliment them on everything too. I see this as good manners and enjoyable company. Besides I do really appreciate their effort.

I love your thoughts Tracy, thanks for sharing!

Bobbi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bobbi said...

I'm a long time lurker but this brought me out. I was shaking my head at your post yesterday. I thought you got way to wrapped up in the everything meeting your standards that you missed the experience. IMO, the experience was going out to support a new restaurant that is aiming to provide a healthy meal. I thought it was funny that you ordered something that you KNOW you don't like and then spent considerable time complaining about it. What did you expect? It was like you set the meal up to fail IMO. I live in the eating capital of the world - New Orleans - and we love to eat out and celebrate when a new local rest opens. Everyone here understands there are opening kinks and not to judge too harshly by those opening kinks.

It's funny when we hear someone and think omg... is that what i sound like? Hello epiphany.

Your blog has really motivated me to do some new things... In fact, your cooking class posts inspired me to put on my own cooking class at my house with friends. We have found an instructor and are putting our classes and goals together right now. So... Thank You for That! On our list of goals we have 'learn how to use pressure cooker'!


Maribel said...

Sounds like you may have had an Epiphany.

A while ago I had somewhat of an Epiphany. I have a sister in law who is a recovering alcoholic and our family events always have some sort of alcoholic beverage around. So I asked her if it was difficult to be around..was it tempting? She explained that SHE was an alcoholic, not those around her. it was HER issue and reality is that these things are part of life and that just because she has a problem doesn't mean everyone has to cater to her. She NEEDED to deal with the issue and not have everyone deal with HER issue.

That was my Epiphany with food. I was being judgmental about what everyone around me was eating. I was being a "hater" because they did it without thinking, over-analyzing, fretting, etc. Then I realized...well, it's MY problem and I'm not ok with eating that way, but other people may be ok with it...heavy or not it's completely their prerogative.

That Epiphany is what changed my perspective on "bad food" too. I thought that changing my eating habits meant I was NEVER going to eat a cheeseburger EVER!! That was causing me stress...well, the thing is I don't have to give it up forever (by the way, another one of your blog posts helped with this thought), just not regularly...better yet, rarely.

That leads to my eating out as a treat and not a habit or regular practice.

Sorry, that was a long-winded comment! Apparently I have much to say about the subject. LOL!

Tracy Reifkind said...


It will be an interesting weekend coming up as I will be eating out numerous times and get to "test drive" my new attitude!

Lucky me that we are staying with our BFF's Fawn and Aaron, they probably eat better than I do. And I always come home with new inspiration and ideas from Fawn.

Tracy Reifkind said...


Welcome! I definitely see your point about supporting new business, and about the experience of eating out and I will only get a little defensive about one little part....I did not want to go, it was never my idea, it was Mark's. I was trying to make good from a unwelcomed situation but as you pointed out, I got what I asked for...an unwelcomed situation! Lesson learned.

I hear there's a killer Bikrams studio in New Orleans...

If my kitchen was a little nicer and a little bigger I would definitely invite people over to cook. In fact Mark is always complaining that anytime family or friends come over to eat I pull someone into the kitchen to teach them how to cook! He always says afterwards, "I didn't know it was going to turn into a cooking lesson"

I'm convinced once you use the PC a couple of times you will be hooked. I just steamed some chinese long beans for the first time this morning in about 2 min. I'm going to start experimenting more with veggies. But the PC is the king (or queen!) of the "one pot meal" (sorry crockpot!)

Tracy Reifkind said...


I like the comparison you made about your relative recognizing that her experience was not that of others.

I really don't believe there are any "bad foods". I don't go out of my way to buy organic anymore, veggies or meat, but I have nothing against either. I often choose to eat candy and other sweets that use HFCS, although I admit I feel better when I choose candy with real sugar, but a "chick-o-stick" here or there is not going to kill me.

I define "bad food" as any food that I let make me feel bad, and I have to make that decision before I eat it...that's why after I left Lyfe I ate a cookie! The cookie made me feel better than the edamame!

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