I happened to buy some sandwich/storage bags at the store yesterday. I admit that I use them liberally to store stuff  when all Tupperware is in the freezer or dishwasher. Or when I’m sending out a lunch with the seven-year old. I opened the baggie box and out popped a coupon propaganda booklet blob. And I stared at the over processed picture of the woman smiling at me and said,”Rachel Ray?” Seems she’s in cahoots with Ziploc doing “freshovers”.

I don’t watch her show except if people at the Y are watching and I happen to glance at their screens. But I used to watch her half hour recipe show and was conscious of her rise to fame from modest family beginnings. I knew about her dog and her marriage. And that she was sweet and driven.

Seeing her photo enhanced Barbie doll bright white smiling self made me think about what I might be willing to sacrifice for fame and the almighty dollar. Would you feel your soul seeping out of you as the machine squeezes you for your essence to sell, sell, sell? My husband said, “She’s making gee-gobs of money. She’s fine.”

And then I thought about an episode of Anthony Bourdain’s show where he’s out actually hunting with the crazy French chef. This extraordinary chef once owned a restaurant which had earned the most Michelin stars you could get. And he burned out. And now has a tiny place somewhere and he’s all about the nature of the pairings. If the quail eats these berries than that’s how the meal should be built. And then they served up the deer Anthony had so proudly shot.

I often think about what I have chosen in my life. Averting the rat race for the road abandoned. Especially, as I stroll through my forties, I am increasingly proud of where I am standing and what I am accomplishing. And that it’s not about money but about self fulfillment and family. That’s what I got from the odd French genius chef. It’s about life. And food, of course.

As for Rachel, I hope she gets out before they eat all of her soul spread on toast points with cream cheese and caviar. Things that stay too long in baggies rot. And I hope she forever enjoys these pictures of having been that skinny. To have reached your ideal weight or your ideal bank account amount, may also dawn the recognition that this isn’t really where you wanted to be.  There’s still a blessing in knowing what you don’t want as much as what you do. I hope you, and me and Rachel Ray, find happiness. And receive a nice “freshover”.

If you have any thoughts, please drop a word below in the comments. Or

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  1. I keep thinking of this post (and Rachel Ray’s glossy smile) this week! So applicable to anyone on reality TV … even Olympians are “used”. Best line: “Things that stay too long in baggies rot.” Love the metaphor, well said!

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