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The First Time

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First time
Mariyah Gonzales

They were grilled lamb chops, seasoned simply with salt and pepper. Served with saucers of crushed garlic in pools of vinegar and small mounds of rice. I think I was seven. We ate with our hands, on the floor cross-legged and my fingertips were like raisins by the end. I don’t remember there being anything special about that night, just my mom, dad and I in our living room for dinner.  It wasn’t anybody’s birthday, not the start or end of anything but it may have been when I realized food could be enjoyed. Lamb chops weren’t a chore but a delight! They were satisfying and I felt like I was participating in the meal. I mean, I was conscious of what I was eating and I appreciated it. I felt like I had discovered a great secret, both the world’s and my own, that we could desire for something deep and grand and then find it fulfilled.

Since then, I have often forgotten about my discovery-too many careless, instant, unloving meals will do that to you. But all it ever takes is something wonderful like a poached egg to remind me.

 

First Time
Erwan Heussaff

It was December 2006, I was in France, it was grey, I was miserable.

That summer I had the greedy notion of thinking I could manage both a job and my college work load, and it was all going smoothly until I realised that there would be no time off for the holidays. This would be my first Christmas alone and it didn’t actually seem too dismal at first.

One morning I braved the harsh winds intensified through funnel streets, walked the frosted border of the Seine, head down and collar up, to reach my workplace as quickly as possible. Something felt different; the bells on the butcher’s door were stilled, the colourful arrays of table cloths had not been brought out, the smells of roasted chickens and mulled spiced wines were absent, and the hum of buzzing conversations were muted. My first thought migrated to an opening scene of one of Romero’s movies, my second to the realisation that this was so much worst: It was Christmas day.

On my way home that night, I went to the only open supermarket I could find, bought some poppy seed baguette, a flank steak and a big deliciously expensive bottle of margaux. The grocer asked me what my plans were for the evening and I told him ‘a night at home’ was all; the look that ensued made me feel so alien that I started feeling sorry for myself. He sighed, said that it was unfortunate, gave me a free massive piece of foie gras for my woes and sent me o ff to my demise. That’s when it started; there are times the universe just seems to spite us. I turned on the radio and terrible pop star renditions of Christmas songs seemed to be on loop; I drank; I switched on the television and every channel had some kind of heartwarming program on; a swig; I went on the internet and Google had that annoying Santa hat on the second ‘O’; guzzle, guzzle. There was no running away from the long arm of despondency. I sat there, bottle in hand, steak going cold, watching Wallstreet; it was one of the loneliest days of my life. All of a sudden, the doorbell rang and I knew for certain it was the ghost of Christmas past coming to teach me a life earned lesson. I opened the door and there stood three friends huddled together with plastic bags clinking a way, giving away their contents. They too were home alone and decided it would be best to share in our misery. There we were, two Arabs, a Cambodian and a Filipino, we drank wine, feasted on our free foie gras with caramelized onions and ended up not being so bad.

I would never replace that piece of crunchy bread with foie for a decadent Christmas meal.

Food is about the right flavor at the right time.

 

4 COMMENTS

    1. Iza Fugen May 28, 2013 at 7:56 pm

      Very nice article :) Kudos!

    Reply
  1. Pingback: A little party never killed nobody | Little Rushfoil

    1. bedah May 29, 2013 at 2:23 pm

      three christmases ago i was good friends wth a french girl living in singapore. It was her first asian christmas and she was lonely so at the last minute we and a good friend from india zoomed across the causwaY to visit her ex ( also a good friend of ours) in kuala lumpur. his kitchen was apartment was a lad’s place so the kitchen was severely utilised but laurie and i grew some balls and made it work work made it work. It was awesome – garden potatoes in garlic and butter, smoked salmon and my first foei gras. Couldnt find crackers, so made do with toast. We had the candle table lit and everything so of course francois sat at the table shirtless in his boxers offering me sparkling grape juice (so halal in kuala lumpur eh). Was merry making as merry making should be. Thanks for the article erwan, made me reminisce this, my friends are home now and im happy for any chance to remember them and the good times

    Reply
    1. johnny sereck June 7, 2013 at 7:07 pm

      My first time
      The date was 2005
      My family went on a vacation in thailand
      I was pissed about the trip because I wanted to go to disneyland . As a young lad like me back then I only ate from the closest mcdonalds or just order burger from room service.

      But one crazy night my dad decided that we should go around the city. For whatever reason all of us agreed on coming, . We went everywhere traveled to least visited places in thailand.

      The whole gang suddenly got hungry and my dad suggested that we should grab a bite at the nearest kfc. When we got to the nearest kfc we kinda felt full , maybe from to much breathing? . As we were going back to our room my dad suggested that we grab a bite from the hotels restaurant . My mom ordered sweet and sour mahi mahi which is not even thai (I think). It was weird, it was just the generic sweet and sour fish but it made realize that food brings people closer and it made me think that from a generic recipe that my whole family enjoyed, our family was closer

      That’s why I pursue food to give people what I experienced and give them something to remember

      Johnny

    Reply
 

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I gained weight because of a sedentary lifestyle and overly indulging in foods I knew were bad for me, eating out too often, taking the easy route (microwavable dishes) and not caring what went in my body, before I knew it reached 240 lbs. I lost weight through pure dedication, tireless hours of hard work and yes, food. I cooked my way to fitness, making sure to only feed myself tasty well prepared dishes with all the right stuff, the perfect fuel, taking me down to 150lbs. Of course I indulge from time to time, as the fat kid still lurks inside of me; here you will find a little bit of everything for the sole purpose of sharing my passion for food and life.

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