On Food and Cooking – Tomorrow Never Dies, and Neither Does Yesterday

on food and cooking by harold mcgee
I entertain this somewhat naïve notion that The Delicious Life is at once both wildly famous (wildly, I say! wildly!) and yet coquettishly veiled in anonymity.

Nobody knows who I am. Nobody knows me. Nobody knows that I am the person who writes this blog. At least, that is the mystery I have tried to maintain. In the blogosphere, I go by my first name only, which is not an uncommon name, and nowhere on this site have I ever posted an identity-exposing picture of myself other than a somewhat blurry photograph of naughty overindulgence. I almost never let on to anyone I meet and greet on a day-to-basis, that I have a blog. And certainly, no one from my past knows.

Basically, I just assume that there is no connection between my real-life identity, my face and The Delicious Life Sarah. I don’t know why I am like this, I just am.

Of course, it does occur to me on occasion that the people in my life outside the friends and family who do know might stumble across this little speed bump on the grand freeway known as The Internets. This is the web. Everyone is friends with Tom, and though there may be 56 convoluted degrees of separation, we are still, unequivocally, all connected. The Internets.

However, I just assume that without a photo of myself on the blog, with my clever cover-ups and an ingenious ability to reveal every detail without revealing anything, people I know or have known would never realize that virtual Sarah of The Delicious Life is the real-life Sarah from their own lives. The Sarah they knew in college. The Sarah they met at that party. The Sarah who was the object of their complete and utter lusty adoration last year, last month, last week.

That Sarah. The Sarah.

Okay, so I’m quite sure that no one has ever referred to me as “The Sarah,” but a girl can play her fantasies however she wants. (Being the object of complete and utter lusty adoration, however, is total reality.)

Though we may be connected, no one would every really “make the connection.”

Or so I thought.

It has now happened on more than one occasion that my deliciouslife inbox will surprise me with a “From” field that is all too familiar. The email is usually some variation on “Hi. Not sure if you are the right person, but I came across The Delicious Life blog and I think you might be Sarah ____. (?) We went to college together/worked together at BFD/met at a mutual friend’s party/etc.”

It makes me chuckle quietly at first, but in all honesty, I end up just slightly shaken, not stirred. It is not the coincidental nature of it that is disturbing – there are strange flukes of fate everyday. No, it is simply the fact that omg, someone I know has found me. Dorothy and her merry band of missing-fits have pulled back the glittering pink curtain and…hello! It’s Sarah?!?!

I’m not entirely sure why it scares me, and I’m not even sure if fear is the real emotion I feel about it. It’s really something on two levels. One, I am a very different person now than I was back whenever “back then” happens to be – middle school, high school, college, employment. People I know in my real life would shake their heads in utter disappointment if they knew how much I’ve changed into a small, bitter, cranky, whining, highly unemployed blogger who pathetically pours out her soul to any stranger who will read.

Two, The Delicious Life has been a place where I very therapeutically expose a lot of feelings that I never expressed back then. I am blunt, brutally honest, and allow myself to be the bitch that I kept handcuffed under a Hello Kitty exterior before. But I have not so safely assumed that to the eleven The Delicious Life readers, it is all just a story. To the people I know in real-life though, these are my real feelings and these stories are often about them, or in some way related to them. It might, well, hurt them to know that yes, I was mad/pissed/annoyed/thought their shoes were ugly.

So, as much as I have tried to simultaneously re-live yet hide from my history, I have come to accept that I can no longer suspend my disbelief because…

He found me.

But you know, it isn’t surprising. He is search and find. ;)

At this point, I can’t recall exactly when it was that he sent me that email. Perhaps it was March or April, but no matter when, it had been years and years since last we had been in contact. His email was also different from the others. It was not a curious inquiry of whether The Delicious Life Sarah is Cal-class-of-ninety-*ahem* Sarah. No, he knew it was, and simply sent me a note letting me know that he had found my blog. He is confident and sure of himself like that. I might say “cocky,” but I wouldn’t want to offend him by that, though subtle cockiness was one of the things that attracted me to him in the first place. Most of all, he is always right. Yes, this is Sarah. The Delicious Life is my blog.

He and I have a history, which I should keep to myself because I certainly wouldn’t want to reveal too much if his wife reads this. ;) I have never met his wife, don’t know her name, never even seen a picture of her, but I have to assume she is gorgeous because you know, he has always had great taste in women ;)

But still, without revealing any melodramatic, traumatic, therapy-requiring stories, I have to give him credit. I came to Cal from Ohio, eating a Midwest high school cheerleading diet of Lean Cuisine, Subway if it was a special occasion. He grew up in the Bay Area. Though we didn’t know back then, I know now that he has influenced this Delicious Life.

He was my curious, careful, glorious first

He was the one who took me to dim sum for the first time.

He was the one who introduced me to crispy pan-fried noodles at 3 am.

He was the one who took me out in San Francisco for the first time. To a real restaurant. The kind where you have to make a reservation.

He played When in Rome for me and The Promise is one of my ATF songs of all-time. Yes, redundant because that’s how much I love it.

Those were things that have influenced this Delicious Life.

And so it’s only appropriate that once again, he would influence The Delicious Life. Not only did he find me, but after how many years, he remembered my birthday and found the secret desires of my heart, buried in the text, because he is good
at reading between the lines.

I’m glad that I didn’t act like a complete psycho to him. (Just a little psycho, but not completely.) I’m glad that we didn’t graduate and say good-bye in a horrible, painful, weepy way. I’m glad that we got back in touch.

Because I love the book.

Be good to the people in your life today, because even if Tom isn’t your friend, everyone can be googled tomorrow, and you never know who’s reading.

** a year ago today, my avocado looked good in this blog **

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 JoAnna July 27, 2006 at 7:44 pm

WHO SAYS it’s never as good as the first time?

I wanted to be sure that this was going to be better than the old version (which I already own) so I checked it out from the library. It’s completely entrancing. It should be required reading for anyone who is around food professionally.

Reply

2 KT July 27, 2006 at 9:13 pm

I’m currently making my way through this book.

LOVE. LOVE. LOVE.

It is such an incredible reference. I keep reading ahead to read about ingredients I am using.

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3 KT July 27, 2006 at 9:13 pm

I’m currently making my way through this book.

LOVE. LOVE. LOVE.

It is such an incredible reference. I keep reading ahead to read about ingredients I am using.

Reply

4 Maure July 29, 2006 at 4:50 pm

dear the sarah:

are you the same sarah that was the
“absolut” girl at comic-con xii?

the smile looks familiar…

Reply

5 sarah July 29, 2006 at 5:23 pm

LOL! maure, i was wondering you had been – i missed your comments! (it might have been me, but i’ll never tell for sure)

joanna: oh! required reading for anyone, not just professionals! okay, maybe “anyone” means “foodgeeks” LOL!

kt: hello fellow foodgeek ;)

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6 Maure July 29, 2006 at 7:22 pm

sarah – i missed me too!

i’ve been a faithful reader, but of late just haven’t been able to come up with any witty/stupid comments to add to your ever delightful blog-o-sphere.

hey, is it too late to get in on the “getting to know you” blog from way back on 6/28?

actually i don’t think it was the comic-con, i think i met you at a
witness protection mixer and cotillion out in thousand oaks.
nice gams by the way.

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7 Anonymous July 29, 2006 at 7:37 pm

doesnt all this sound a bit too narcissistic….sorry…every one of us are…. to a certain extend…but u’r write up is indeed interesting……..

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8 Anonymous July 29, 2006 at 7:37 pm

doesnt all this sound a bit too narcissistic….sorry…every one of us are…. to a certain extend…but u’r write up is indeed interesting……..

Reply

9 sarah July 31, 2006 at 5:59 am

maure: i’m disappointed. and to think that all this time, i believed that witty stupidity just came naturally to you. *sigh* i am shattered.

oh yeah, and that was me at cotillion – i guess that control top pantyhose really does do wonders!

anonymous: oh yes, totally narcisstic – but i can’t find it in me to apologize for it because isn’t that what blogs are for? ranting, raving, bitching, moaning, fantasizing self-congratulating navel-gazing therapy. :)

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