DIY Restauranting: picnics!
July 27, 2008
In this day, when gastronomy has sunk into a desuetude, as Jack Saunders said, why go eat slop in a cavern served by sullen teens? Or, are primped-up displays of food actually relevant? Food really isn't fussy. Make it right and enjoy...fuel up. Is that so hard? ---Only when someone is trying to rip off someone else. Then we start our quick slide down. To where we are today!
Eating out is really about culture.
And in many parts of the USA, especially the burbs, culture is nowhere to be found. All that's left are forms of shopping. And I won't let *THAT* get inside me.
So how to go out and get out and see the peeps and check out the scene? Well, any culture worth its salt is public culture, so it's as much on the street as it is in anyone's private food fiefdom.
Any town worth the name has public space, well-placed benches and beautiful hang-outs, and parks that have better views and people-watching than any interior private space.
(OK, so many recently-built US population concentrations aren't worth the name of "town" and aren't set up for civility or conviviality. The park might well be way off to the side. The rest of the place might be paved. But I would hope that most places have at least one nice spot you can slot a good, free, public time into.)
So, now that it's summer---or any time the weather is fine---bag that lunch! Pack a picnic dinner! Whip up your own breakfast box with its own insulated travel coffee mug. Bring out your good stuff! And if the law gets in the way of any imbibing you might want to do, just stash it in other, dark, containers and sip away.
OK, in some places it's not convenient to haul out the china and flatware, but you can cook your chicken at home, cut it up, make up some nice side dishes and salad, get some cheese and olives, etc., and do it up nice enough from a city bench. ...And if you do have some true park space at hand, well, go whole hog, why not. Spread a table cloth, put out candles. Do your own grilling if there are grill-stands.
Come on, it doesn't take long, isn't that messy, results in far better quality, you get cheery service, and it lets you run into just as many people you know, or would like to know, and costs a fourth as much.
Alfresco does the trick!
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