The Food Fetishist: She Threw the Hat on the Bed

She threw the hat on the bed. We all know what that means, right? Someone or some “thing” is going to die. Maybe it will be me. Maybe it will be her. Maybe it’s us? Who knows. Within hours of me finding her hat on the bed, we broke up, which means that the “thing” that died was us. Who am I kidding: it’s me that’s dying.

She is my temptress, my mistress, my lover. She is food. She is alive, she is wanting, she is waiting. If only I could heed her call. If only she could comfort me in this time of need, but she can’t. Nothing can fill the emptiness.

What do you do after a breakup? You take somebody new out to dinner. Or better yet, you take a retread (someone tried and tested) out to dinner. After all, who has the mojo to meet somebody new when your heart is pounding through your ears and the little man in your stomach is kick-boxing and doing backflips. I need to forget. I need to satiate myself with the company of someone beautiful and try somehow to eat some food. And what about my new gig–my food olumn at BlackBook? How the hell am I supposed to write about food if I can’t eat?

First I pick the restaurant, and then I pick the girl. And where better to take her than to Rye in Williamsburg. It’s classy, understated, and has some ridiculously good food. Now that I know where I’m eating I just have to find the girl. Oh yes, it’ll be Sarah. Sarah is a down-girl–a girl that is up for anything. This is what I need. I need Sarah to writhe on top of me, slap me in the face and tell me, “Stop being such a pussy!” I make the call–she accepts. About an hour before the date, I get a call back. It’s Sarah. She says, “I heard you broke up with your girlfriend and you’re looking for a romp.” I said, “I don’t really know what a romp is, but if it involves ripping your clothes off and doing all sorts of dirty things to you until your head spins, then yes.” Oh, honesty. I’m always getting into trouble with that honesty. I’m not a moralist, so why can’t I just say what she wants to hear, so we’ll both have a good time? Because I can’t. Lying, manipulating or tricking a girl into sex is the way of the weak. It shows no backbone. If you want to do something risque, just be up front about it and it will eventually happen. If you want to have no-strings-attached sexual encounters, cool. Just don’t piss in the cheerios and kill anyone’s buzz. So where does this leave me? Alone on a Saturday night. Why did I break up with Celia? Was she a hot-mess? Was I scared? Did I dump her before she had the chance to dump me? This is awful.

There’s no such thing as a bad decision—there are only slews of bad decisions. One bad decision needs another, until you have a snowball of bad decisions, which becomes an avalanche. And this is where I am now, buried under an avalanche of bad decisions.

So where does a person eat when he has no appetite? You go home to Mama. But what do you do when your mother lives overseas and you need some TLC, and not just any surrogate will do? You go to Tanoreen. Let me explain how to make a good decision about food. This might be the only thing I’m good at right now. If you’re in a bad place and you need something to lift up your spirits, comfort food might be the first thing that comes to mind. But this would be wrong. The last thing anybody needs is a bunch of fried pig’s balls and a bowl of mac and cheese. And maybe some of you Yogis out there are thinking Indian curry. “It’s spiritual; it’ll bring you back into your body and make you mindful.” Wrong again. What you need is some soul. Not soul food, but something with a pulse. What you need is food with heart and soul. and it’s at Tanoreen.

Tanoreen will get you high. Tanoreen will take you to another place. It’ll make you other than who you are. It will start with a giggle. Then you’ll chuckle to yourself and you won’t know why. But it’s the spices. It’s the amazing and top secret Tanoreen spices that will make you lose yourself—if only for a hot second. What you do after that to take the edge off is up to you. And remember, what you do in these critical moments will determine the type of person you are, and what type of person you’ll become. I’m on my way to Tanoreen. I’m on my way home to Mama.