Let me tell you all about my latest TV obsession.
I can’t say right now how long this newest obsession will last (given that it’s only aired 2 episodes) but I can tell you that it is simultaneously the most interesting and disturbing thing I’ve seen on television in quite awhile.
I’m talking about Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution.
Have any of you seen this show?! It’s completely amazing. Jamie has set up camp in the fattest town in America (Huntington, West Virginia) to help reform the way these people look at and eat food.
Watching this show is kind of like watching stuff on National Geographic; it’s completely enthralling but totally foreign. In the first few episodes of the show, Jamie met with a family who were all overweight (well, obese to be accurate) and he put something like a week’s worth of food on their kitchen table to show them how they were eating and the table was stacked a foot high with frozen food (pizza, corn dogs, you name it, it was on that table). He also met with a first-grade class and showed them vegetables and asked them to name the veggies. None of the kids knew what ANY of the veggies were!! Don’t believe me? Watch this promo clip: Potato or Tomato.
When I was 6 years old, I was planting radish seeds with my McDonald’s Happy Meal garden toy. Anyone else remember that? It was the Happy Meal that came with a plastic hoe and a packet of seeds and taught you how to grow your own garden. When I was 8, I was picking strawberries (until my brother accidentally pulled the strawberry plant out b/c it looked like a weed during it’s off-season) and picking the wild raspberries that grew on my back hill. To that end, when I was 3 I was picking wild blueberries with my dad in the backyard!
This show was both heartbreaking and disgusting. Jamie did an experiment with the kids to show them how chicken nuggets are made. He broke down the chicken and showed the kids which parts were good (breast, thigh, wing) and which were bad (gullet, carcass, etc.). He then mashed up all the gross stuff in a food processor and placed it in the frying pan. He asked the kids how many still wanted to eat it and ALL of them raised their hands. They knew it was bad for them. They knew it was made out of bones and blood and guts and yet still they said they would eat it. It’s as though they associated “fried” with “good”, so even though they saw Jamie make these “nuggets” with rejected chicken parts, they didn’t care.
Your heart breaks for the people in this town. The lunch ladies who would rather cook easy food than cook food that wouldn’t be sending these kids well on their way towards a diabetes diagnosis. The m0ther who relied on a deep fryer to cook dinner. The kids who knew about “tomato ketchup” but had no idea where that product actually came from.
I highly recommend that you add this show to your DVRs pronto. You really won’t regret watching it.
(And while you’re at it, add Undercover Boss. Boo and I have been watching that and it’s actually really awesome.)