episode 36 :: what is a foodie anyway?


It’s a good question, actually. And I get it a lot. So I’m going to do my best to answer it. And in this relatively short weekend episode I pose the question to you. Are you a foodie, or are you an eater? Listen and find out just where you stand.

Paula Deen is out to kill anyone who watches her show or follows her recipes. And if you don’t believe me, I have further audio proof. Again, the difference between a foodie and an eater – or a hillbilly for that matter.

And our dearest Padma, cashing in on her celebrity, has really taken a leap off the deep end. Doesn’t make us love her any less, but a collective WTF is in order when you hear what she’s done now.

Listen to episode 36 now and find out exactly what a foodie really is.

Music in this episode by P.O.D. Download their song in the iTunes store.

Short, snarky, and sweet, I extend my thanks to all of you for your continued support of My Life as a Foodie.


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  1. I was very interested in this episode loved how you mentioned that in Italy the world stops for lunch.
    The Italian culture is almost identical to the Syrian culture, our world does stop for our biggest meal of the day which is lunch almost every one closes their business ; hair salons, clothing stores even food stores and markets.
    It was so wonderful, it was time for all the family to get together have lunch and talk. Created so much closeness in families, and above all it created traditions.
    Missed it very much.

  2. I used to HATE the word “foodie”, almost as much as I hated the word “blog”. I called myself a “food whore” and told people I write a “food website”.

    Then, I finally had to come out and just deal with the truth…

    I AM indeed a foodie and I write a food blog.

    : )

  3. I didn’t even know what a foodie was until just a couple of years ago. True it is a strange word when you say it, but what other word would you use in it’s place? I love “food whore” though!

    Enjoyed your show. Keep them coming.

  4. Thanks for your comments!

    Jo, I love the term “Food Whore” — almost wish I’d used it. “My Life as a Food Whore” has so much more panache. 🙂

    Afaf, I appreciate your words about Syrian Culture. Sometimes I wonder if we’ll ever have those cultural experiences here, where the world just shuts down for lunch so we can actually stop and appreciate our food and spend quality time with friends and family instead of this 30-minute rush to get a quick bite to eat and run errands. It’s maddening.

    I completely understand that there is work to be done, but at what cost? We’re missing out on so much by robbing ourselves of that time together.

    Leitch, thanks for your post. I too love the term “Food Whore.” Check out Jo’s other site – Food Whores. She wasn’t joking about that, just in case you thought she was. 😉 The girl’s serious about her addiction to fine cuisine.

  5. hey phil-

    loved the podcast! especially the paula ladeen part – feel the same way about her! if i happen to catch her on the food network my arteries seize up upon sight AND i sit there agog at whatever concoction she is throwing together…

    and did you see this on serious eats today? the etymology of ‘foodie’ — they blame Gael Greene, going back to 1980, as coining it, and as the first time it was used…




  6. Thanks Charles. Glad to know you have the same feelings about Paula Deen as I do. She’s a really warm person, nothing against her personally. But her food makes my heart hurt.

    Thanks for the link to Serious Eats. I did not get a chance to read that this morning. It’s true — some people are venomous when it comes to the word “foodie.” And for every reason we’ve all had doubts about using it. Sounds too cute. I think so too. But Gourmet, while kind of overused, just sounds too pompous.

    I’ll settle for food geek or food whore if it gets really bad. I’m just waiting for the fall out.

  7. Foodie, Food Whore, Adventure Eater… all good in the name of culinary progress for the US. For a culture that has the highest population of “educated” people, the largest middle class, the “best” in opportunities, why are most people in the states killing themselves slowly with the food they eat? Not to get on the soap box with Phil but eating just to “make a turd” is not the way to go through life. Food is and should be an experience for all to enjoy, rich or poor. Some of the best “foodie” experiences have been out of kitchens with poor lighting, one burner or even open fire. Street food off oc carts. Shrimp off of a skewer from the guy on the beach. All “foodie” worthy. Food made with fresh, local, seasonal ingredients and the more important, love and passion, is what makes food great. I guess what I’m trying to say is if you see something interesting, eat it! Try it! You’ll probably think, wow, this is the best thing I’ve had all day (until the next thing jumps out at you).

    Take the long lunch. Go to the local market and try to buy the main ingredients that require you to pick by hand. Stay away from boxed or can food that have expiration dates beyond your next car payment. Turn off the television. Turn on some nice music and enjoy the company you have spent the time and effort putting this food together for. You know what good food leads to…..

    Regarding Paula and her followers, KEEP EATING THIS!! The more this style of food you eat, the sooner you will die from it and we’ll all be better off. Keep up the good work Paula!

    Phil, keep up the fantastic work! It is good to hear a brothers voice from the states and always a treat to see new episodes pop up on my computer. Little presents from the states.

    Ate logo! I’m off for a mortadella sandwich. It’s lunch time in Sao Paulo.

  8. Great show as usual Phil. I think to myself, I could do that… then I realize, nah, don’t really think I could carry it alone. I like Paula Deens Southern draw – but the food sounds deadly, maybe once in a while. 😉

  9. Short show Phil, but I loved it. I like the word foodie and I think it just seems to fit.

    Agreed Paula Deen seems like a sweet woman, but people who follow and idolize her (there are several) have set the bar way too low.

    A friend of mine ate at Paula Deen’s restaurant in Savannah years ago. She referred to it as overpriced cafeteria style food. You can get that stuff anyplace and at home. Who wants to go out to eat homestyle foods? I go out to eat special things, or things that are complicated to make or that I can’t do. I think people go there now just in hopes of seeing a celebrity. How much friend chicken, boiled cabbage, macaroni and cheese can you stand to eat anyway?

  10. Hi Michelle. You just taught me something. I had no idea Paula Deen even had a restaurant. I think the less I know about her, the better. I do respect that she managed to make a success out of herself after being left by her husband with her two sons. I’ve been on the receiving end of that situation and it’s not cool at all. I give her props for making a success out of herself. I just hate her food and I find some of the things she has people cooking at home to be irresponsible. May as well eat a gun.

    Rick, thanks for your comments as well. Took me about 5 episodes to get used to being a one-man show, but now that I know people are listening, I actually know I’m talking to someone – not just myself. 😉 In the early episodes, I’d have a magazine in front of me with a picture of someone on it and that was my audience. A little creepy, so that had to stop.

    Don, your comments are always entertaining and actually belong on the show! 😀 It’s so true, and yet so sad. For a nation of supposed “educated” people, we sure seem stupid when it comes to food, and what’s right and wrong for us. We just put into our bodies whatever it takes to make a turd. That’s really a sad state of affairs. It’s always great to hear from you, especially knowing that you’re listening in Sao Paolo. Hope to see you upon your return to the states.

  11. Great show Phil! As you well know I do not consider myself a foodie and I admit that I am one of those people who eat to “make a turd” like Don stated (great reference btw Don!) But it’s your show that inspires me to eat better food. Will I ever be a “foodie”, I doubt it. I hate that word as much as I hate the word ‘Twitter”. Im not a fan of labels and I never will be. Do I enjoy good food? Sure, however my intrests lie in other areas of my life and I tend not to think of food as something to be revered. But again you inspire me to think about my food. You and you alone have already convinced me to eat better things and thats all I can ask for! Cheers to you my friend!

  12. Phil – I love your podcast!!

    Being from the south (Atlanta), I must say I’ve had some crazy “sustenance” dishes growing up, but nothing like some of the dishes Paula Deen made.

    My wife and kids watched the “fried mac and cheese show” when it originally aired. You should have seen the “WTF” look on the faces of my kids who are 13 and 8. That was just wrong……dead wrong. Thanks for bringing that to light. Your rendition of Paula Deen was hilarious.

    I’d like to make one request. PLEASE continue to discuss beer in your podcast. So many food magazines\podcasts cover all the nuances and regions of wines, but very little about beer. If anything, beer food pairings is all that’s discussed not how it’s brewed, flavor profile, or how it was brewed.

    Keep up the great work!!!


  13. John — thanks for your comments!! I love knowing that there are others out there equally as offended by Paula Deen’s food as I am.

    I appreciate your input on the beer/food pairings. It’s something I’ve been mulling over for a while, waiting for the right way to approach it again. I will definitely bring some beers back on the show. I have a really interesting story to share next episode that will help bring beer back on the show in the right way.

  14. I was listening to this last night while working out and a long ass reply came to mind, now if i can just remember it.

    Here’s my take on the foodie thing. I never heard of the term until you told me your idea for starting a podcast. That’s when I looked it up. I’m more of a foodie in training. I was raised on deep fried foods, meat and taters with no salt or butter. basically i grew up without flavor. Most of this comes from laziness and comfort zone. For me its the same with craft beer. You give up taste for convenience and price. You strive for mediocrity (kinda like the Pittsburgh Pirates) and it pisses me off because I hear “uhhhh why do you have to be all fancy huh. why cant you just eat/drink something.” because I like flavor way too much that’s why. Like Campbells soup commercial, I like the taste of taste.

    As a culture Americans are programmed to work your ass off all costs. I just ended a 10 years position in IT with a company where I had to work through lunch or eat at my desk. Work needs to get done and get done now is what was always preached. We only get 30-60 minutes for lunch and that’s generous because its all about the mighty dollar. I had to support people all over the world so if I wasnt at my desk or replying to an email within a few minutes someone would bitch. that would also carry over to everyday life. People don’t want to wait. they want instant gratification and no effort involved. I think all of this started when kids stopped eating glue and lead based paint chips

    Now that I’ve been laid off since Feb I’ve viewed it as a well needed vacation. I’m learning to appreciate more not just with food but everything in life. I don’t think we’ll ever see our culture embrace the meal lifestyle but that doesn’t mean we cant start it within our own families.

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