Friday, July 07, 2006

From the "Things We Knew Already" Department.

In the June 4 edition of Time, we found an article entitled "The Magic of the Family Meal". The author tells us that regular reliable family dinners are where, it is said, kids benefit from the communication and interaction and exploration of ideas they just do not get in the drive up lane at Mickey Dee's or slinging a frozen pizza in the microwave.

Further, it is shown that in this sort of environment, kids reap the benefits in adolescence as they're less likely to smoke, drink, use dope, get depressed and suicidal develop eating disorders (although we here at Law Down On The Farm have always considered eating at fast food outlets something of an eating disorder) and so on. Studies by respected research institutes demonstrate clearly what has been self evident to anyone with eyes and ears, that things have changed since the advent of the microwave and the drive up lane, and not for the better.

When the idea of wholesome cooking for the family became anathema to Mother and Father and such practices were disparaged by their contemporaries and the media as lame demeaning drudgery, something was lost that is very difficult to regain. So say the professors and the savants.

It's a lot easier to figure than that. Go to the supermarket and have a look at what's in people's carts, and then look at the people pushing them.

I'll bet my last Confederate dollar that the people who look like they're going to be doing some righteous cooking for the family are a lot more relaxed bunch than the scrawny folks with one container of yogurt and a broccoli stalk, to be consumed alone in an empty room. Well, they can have it-give me the groaning board and good friends and family all around, even if I'm getting a little broad in the bottom these days.

Common sense will tell you that far from being a hated chore, good home cooking was a matter of some pride to folks when I was a youngster (and one heckuva feather in the caps of those who did it), and it offered an opportunity for the exchange of ideas and, dare I say it, the kind of love and companionship that people are so starved for? We're so damned busy trying to be hardbody, rising executives that we forget what's been there all along-preparing, eating and sharing food is a pleasant thing-it's also a social and political statement about the kind of world you want and the kind of folks you want the kids to grow up to be.,9171,1200760,00.html


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