I went and listened to Eric Schlosser speak the other night. Eric wrote “Fast Food Nation” and wrote and produced the documentary “Food Inc.” Of course it strengthened my resolve around eating locally and organically and it outraged me to see how we humans are conspiring with corporations, profits and industrialization to create a world of fat people who wish they were skinny. It astonishes me to see how much we invest at all levels of humanity to create, as a McDonalds slogan said a few years ago, “One World, One Taste”. As an I Am type Eccentric and a Soul type 7 and a committed seasonal gourmet eater this idea terrifies me much more then war, terrorism, or even global numbness.
“One World, One Taste” is the ultimate expression of industrialism, it seems to me, and it certainly speaks to what is happening in the world with our food supplies. There is nothing more basic to our survival then food and water, and we are messing with it in such amazing and unbridled ways that in just one generation the way that the food moves from the ground to the fast food window has become unrecognizable. “One World, One Taste” means that every burger and every french fry where ever it is in the world must and will taste exactly the same. In order to do that there have been chemical factories created that manufacture flavors that are injected into the burgers that are starting to come from cloned cows and the genetically modified potatoes that are grown perfectly shaped to be able to become french fries with the least amount of waste. The taste of a fast food french fry isn’t from the potato or the oil it is from the chemicals injected into it to create that flavor. “One Taste”. Oh don’t get me started.
“One World” of fat people wishing they were skinny. So here we are being bombarded with messaging to eat our fast food and drink our Big Gulps by beautiful people. So we keep getting fatter and fatter, and all the time we are told we should be skinnier. We are getting diseases that are associated with obesity and eating disorders at an astonishingly rapid rate of increase. Poor children have a 50% chance of getting type 2 diabetes. Rich kids are twice as likely to get an eating disorder in order to be skinny like the people they admire. So they head off to some fast food place and then immediately crouch over a toilet. They are starting to advertise fast food with Teletubbies, Teletubbies were created on Public Television for pre verbal babies. We are preparing our kids for fast food before they can walk or talk. “One World” indeed.
All of this makes me mad, can you tell? Here’s the real challenge of it to me, though. In the paradigm we live in this is good business. In the paradigm we live in this makes sense and we can turn off our attention to it and just keep moooooooving along to the slaughter house like it makes no difference, because this is good business, standardization is good, efficiency is good, lowering costs so we can lower prices is good. All these things are really and truly good and we look for them in every business and in every interaction that we make. We live and breathe that air and we think it is the only air there is to breathe and if you don’t breathe this air the only other choice is to just stop breathing. That is what it is to be living in a paradigm or a world view. “One Taste, One World.”
We need to wake up and smell the dirt. We need to find the event horizon and step into new air. We need to take responsibility for Our World and Our Tastes. We need to get conscious of who we are, both who I am and who we are. What I need and what we need.
Eat Local – Act Global
Image from http://dididoesitagain.tumblr.com/