Dancing With The Stars apparently can't get the point across unless it spans the length of a feature film, so this season it borrowed its extra hour from one of my favorite change-the-world reality shows, Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution, kicking it off the air for a few months.
Though Kirstie Alley's subplot to dance her weight away was a nice spin and moderately entertaining, I've been awaiting the June resurgence of Food Revolution with baited breath. Finally this past week, in a new snazzy Friday night time slot, I was once again watching cameras follow around British chef Jamie Oliver in his attempts to break-through the system and change the way American schools (specifically in Los Angeles this season) feed their children. A lofty goal no doubt.
I love me some healthy food, but I'm hardly a nutritionist, a chef, or a foodie of any kind so my interest in a show that educates people with regards to where their food comes from isn't actually about food. I love this show because the way we treat our bodies and understand the food we eat is directly related to the way we treat our emotions and understand our state of mind, and that's my territory.
We blindly, without much thought or consideration, ingest emotions just as we do food, so when a 17-year-old is asked where butter comes from, given the choice between a dairy cow, sweet corn, or a sunflower -- and picks sweet corn, I can't help but become enthralled.
We lack the knowledge of where our food comes from as much as we lack the knowledge of where our anger, depression, judgments, sadness, or anxiety come from. We scarf down every life experience without a thought as to how it might affect us in the future. Whether or not you ask for things to happen to you -- from trauma, abandonment and abuse, to your first break-up -- it all has an affect on your present state of mind. That's just the way it works.
Like moldy food in a refrigerator, the emotional experiences that we push away in attempts to pretend they don't exist, all eventually spill over and cloud our lives with a nasty and merciless stench of unfinished business. Just as Jamie Oliver is driven to stick his hands in random chicken gizzard-parts simply to help people understand what they're eating, our willingness to dig our own hands into the old mold of our emotional experiences is long overdue.
We live in a country where we not only have zero clue what we're eating, but we have no clue what we're feeling... or why. We make comments and judgments towards ourselves, asking "Why am I so upset?" but we never answer the question, because we're beyond scared to find out the answer. This is why I love people like Jamie Oliver, because whether it's about food or feelings, once you figure out where it comes from it doesn't have such a hold on you.
Until we're willing to go there though, we're just like the Los Angeles Unified School District: refusing to let anyone in, afraid of being exposed.