9/26/2016
How to talk about food on television

My laptop's out of commission. Something about a thermal sensor. It thinks my laptop's extra hot, or my fan's close to breaking, and it throws up a warning that I should not use my laptop until I have it checked. "Sure, I can," I go, and the fan starts to whir louder, way louder than usual.

Well, that's what I assume is the problem. I had it checked and it's not the fan; despite a replacement it still whirs loud. So, tomorrow, off I go to the service center, and I'll be without a laptop for a week, I hope. Two, possibly. Three, heavens, please, no.

I'm writing this on the home PC. I have to do everything on the home PC for the foreseeable future. Since I could still open my laptop, I proceeded to back most of everything up - and, finally, fix this little thing; the system hard drive conked out, apparently, or perhaps maybe, because of ants, so we had to buy a new one and do a fresh install. I think I'm set, but I'll have a check later once I'm finished with this.

I spend a lot of my time in front of a computer. Inevitably. If I'm not doing work that pays, I'm doing work that doesn't, or just faffing around with K-pop videos - don't judge me; it is keeping me stable. Without it, I'm at the mercy of my phone, but that isn't always fun, so I'm at the mercy of the actual television instead.

Imagine that. You're sitting in front of the television, changing the channel. Once this passed as productive for me, because my job actually involved watching television, over and over. Now it feels very, very weird.

I resort to television because I've nothing left to read. Technically that's not true, but I've finished my copy of Monocle and the bookstores here don't stock the new issue yet. I'm not quite in the mood to start reading a book, or finish one of the handful I left hanging halfway through. (I'm so sorry, Anthony.) I could've finished my copy of Lucky Peach, but somehow it got boring by the time the recipes came on. This is weird, because I bought it precisely for the recipes, or at least a few of them.

I did watch cooking shows as a kid. Still do today. However, I think I have reached a point when I acknowledge that no amount of watching instructional cooking shows will make me a better cook - that would require a lot of training in the kitchen, and I'm halfway between "can't be arsed" and "will you please?" Like most people, I've moved towards those shows that center on stories, preferably led by personalities. (Have I redeemed myself, Anthony?) In my case, that means the surprisingly academic for its name Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern, or whatever Jason Yeoh has, which is perfect considering the Chinese heritage of seemingly everything I eat, and the fact that Shalla and I are flying to Malaysia in less than two months' time. And the occasional instructional cooking show too, because I flick channels.

Yesterday, I found myself watching Sandy Daza. He was showing off one of the items at his restaurant, Wooden Spoon - some salad made with boiled eggs, salted eggs and century eggs.

And then a familiar face came on.

"Oh, it's this show," I said to myself. I knew this show. I know Chichi was on it, in her food blogger capacity - it was all over my Facebook timeline a week or so ago. I know this show was produced by the production company EJ founded, which brought me back to that one night when Krizzie invited me to one of her events she mounted as Arts College Government president, when I awkwardly waited at the Central Plaza and bumped into EJ, who gave me the last business card in his possession.

So, well, I watched, because what else do I have to do, yes?

And then another familiar face came on.

"Jill's here, too?" I thought. But of course she'd be there, too. Another name I met in La Salle, now also blogging about food, although she's describing things from a sensory perspective as opposed to Chichi's more technical one. That much I gather from what little I caught of the program. I did that for a living for a while, after all.

Just what exactly have I been doing with my life all this time?

And your responses...

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