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My New Jewish Food Channel
By Ted Roberts
I was watching the food channel last night. I don't know why the
network hadn't filtered out Jewish viewers. After all, the pork
resources of the world are finite, you know. But no harm done.
Naturally, I looked away since they were making a pork roast. Not a
respectable, rectangular brisket - not a voluptuous hen - not a
happily bubbly kugel, but a lumpy, bumpy pork roast. A pork shoulder
easily identifiable as the limb of a mud-coated animal that in his
previous life used to run around grunting in the farmyard. In fact,
my vivid imagination pictured Jews - food obsessed Jews - from all
over America either clicking the remote or turning their eyes away.
Jews, champion eaters of the world, and some smart alecky ad agency is
offering forbidden fruit.
Ugh! Why not pickled pig knuckles? But as I sank deeper and deeper
into my revulsion - BAM! - as Emeril says, the culinary idea of the
century hit me. You spend $100,000 a minute displaying Emeril,
Rachael, and Martha. And a roast-loving Jewish viewer covers his face
with his hands. At least that's what my rabbi told me to do. Don't
look - not very effective marketing. But then the light bulb over my
head exploded! The most stupendous merchandising idea of the decade.
The best idea since Joseph went into the dream interpretation
business. My best personal idea since I conceived of cat food spiked
with birth control chemicals. (Don't worry, cats can't read! I'm
talking birth suppression chemicals seeded in the cat food. Get it?
No need for expensive feline surgery.)
My new idea! A JEWISH FOOD CHANNEL!! Bring culinary civilization to
the wilderness of Arkansas, Kansas, Idaho, etc. Backwoods hideouts
and rural enclaves where natives shamelessly make sandwiches of
bologna and white bread - then they grease them up with mayonnaise.
They'd faint at the sight of a cinnamon bagel.
Why should only Northeasterners and a few emigres in Florida salivate
over a bowl of stuffed kishke, rolled cabbage, chopped liver? Tell
the world! We cured Polio, didn't we? Split the atom, right? And
practically single-handedly introduced a hesitant world to
Monotheism. Why shouldn't our fellow planetarians eat ruggele instead
of dull, doughy biscuits? And if there's a golf channel, a ping pong
channel, an Albanian soccer channel, a mountain climbing channel, why
not a Jewish cooking channel?
Furthermore - once my channel was established - ANYBODY could watch -
even non-Jews, even my Southern friends who know of no fish except the
bottom-feeding catfish. The first big show would be two hours of
devotion to Gefilte fish (and they're really hard to catch). And
yes, I would reveal my bubbe's secret - a culinary concept called
"over-raisining". One stuffed cabbage - one cup of raisins. Her
second secret, "skip the rice and heavy on chopped meat" - that, I'd
save for the second show. But again, as to the audience, there'd be
none of those filters - like we block kids from watching underwear
commercials or worse, the typical bedroom programming. Even anti-
semites could watch as long as they didn't take notes! How long would
it take to convert them around once they electronically viewed a
bubbling, golden yellow kugel on a 332-inch screen?
And just to be ecumenical, occasionally we'd do Hungarian Goulash or
Southern Fried Chicken or Irish Stew - in the early morning hours when
all good Jews are spreading chopped liver on rye as a late night snack
or dreaming of the same. Oh, and that white bread in the grocery
store - also banned. There would only be one prohibition! We know
far better than that. NEVER would we use that orange American cheese
that my Southern friends - SPRINKLE OVER SALAD. Not Gorgonzola, not
Blue, not even Swiss, which is also sinful. But American cheese!
Visit Ted's Blogsite:: Scribbler on the Roof or his
Website: www.wonderwordworks.com or
buy Ted's collected works at http://www.lulu.com/content/127641
from the Febuary 2012 Edition of the Jewish Magazine
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