What I learned from Nora Ephron’s Julie and Julia

julie_and_julia1.  I don’t want to cook. The movie was meant to inspire me and whip up a culinary masterpiece.  What it did? Made me run the other way.  Complicated kitchen wizardry. Sewing a duck with those gooey things inside?  Zilch desire.

2.  Forget love, I’d rather fall in chocolate.We were born to devour, savor, lick, munch, sup, and slurp our way into what could be a taste of heaven.  The gods were definitely genius when they adjudged the pursuit of food as the earthy thing to do. Have carnal knowledge of butter, oysters and chocolate frosting, and it is a transcendental, sensual moment. No wonder food and sex use the same adjectives.  And after that movie, I was hungry.  Had an insatiable appetite. For food.

3.  With airfreight, Internet and eggbeaters, there is zero excuse for bland food. Julia Child had to live in France, translate Boeuf and Poulet and build up muscles with a mortar and pestle. We have Brie next door and hollandaise in a bottle, the Beef Bourguignon recipe in one-mouse click and whirring machines that beat everything to a pulp. We’re being spoon-fed, to taste the world on a platter.

4.  Nora Ephron movies leave me like mush and wanting to be a good person again. Wish I were Julia, jolly and good-natured, taking everything in stride (big ones too.) When she blundered, whether the recipe or her life, she took it with her chirpy, quirky charisma. “You can always pick it up if you’re alone in the kitchen. Who’s going to see it?”  Life was like a lighthearted recipe to try, everything a possible divine dollop. Because really, “you could never have too much butter.” Can never have too much joie de vivre.

5.  I’m curious, did those two good men (Paul Child and Steve) really exist? In real life? Butter me up.

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