u.s.a.-themed food

No American flags this time. Oh wait, there was one.

This week at work is Diversity Awareness Week. It’s been really great with lots of speakers and awareness messages strewn about etc. Right up my alley.

But as I perused the list of events when it was first released, I experienced trepidation as I realized that Wednesday would be a “USA theme” for Diversity lunch in the Firm’s canteen (I think that’s “cafeteria” in Amerenglish). Not the least significant reason being that I had no idea that anything American needed some special PR for diversity and inclusion.

I never eat in the cafeteria. At the most I will get a salad to go/takeaway. But I knew as one of the firm’s 5 American employees out of 5 million staff- I needed to represent. Yesterday was that day. I was worried. What would they offer other than hamburgers? I racked my brain for another food that wasn’t just stolen from another culture and then bastardized by Americans.

You know what though, they did good. Yes, there was a huge American flag draped over the salad bar when you first walked in. (That made me embarrassed and I averted my eyes.) And yes, there were hamburgers. But there was also gumbo, jambalaya, cheesesteaks, bean enchiladas and blue crabcakes. You’ll never guess what I got:

USA hamburger

See blog readers, I would do anything for you. It’s maybe the first and last time in my life I will eat a hamburger for lunch at work. But look, the damn thing wasn’t going to photograph itself.

Now, I think I have mentioned it before, but, the British are VERY polite eaters. Not that this is surprising. I often marvel in restaurants how the average diner sitting next to our table always eats his/her entire meal with a knife in the right hand and fork in the left. They cut the food and then the food comes up to the mouth on the fork, still in the left hand. Because you cannot put down your knife. Americans would just switch the fork over to the right hand after cutting. Let’s be honest. Americans would use a shovel or a foot if they could.

So while eating a hamburger in a law firm cafeteria by myself , I decided I would give these civilized people one more chance. Surely, a hamburger and fries would be eaten with the hands. Wrong wrong wrong. I actually watched two young Associates, in suits, cutting hamburger pieces with a knife and fork and then eating off the fork. One of them dipped fries in ketchup with a fork. The other one, seriously, used his fork to stab a french fry and then his knife (in the right hand of course) to spread some ketchup on the fry. Let me tell you, if I could have a created a youtube video of this, I would have. And guess what? You would have watched it. And you would be amazed too. I love that the country known for the unhealthiest food in the world has the best table manners.



Filed under culture i guess, food

4 responses to “u.s.a.-themed food

  1. I prefer a spatula, like any civilized person.

  2. treeennner

    i love it! i think we could learn a thing or two from these peeps ; )

    i just learned how to eat with the fork in my left hand … im so proud of myself.

  3. I never understood the switching thing, just never made sense to me. Why do people do that? Is it hard to cut with one hand, and eat with the other? I guess that’s the European in me – although this summer I’m pullin’ the trigger and getting the blue passport – USA USA USA!!!

  4. I love that the British eat that way! After my first trip to Europe I re-trained myself to eat with my fork in the left hand and knife in the right. I heard that the switching hands thing came from the Revolutionary War, where Patriots used it to show where their allegiance to America, as opposed to the Loyalists, who would obviously still eat like Brits. Look it up on Wikipedia, maybe!

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