Faddists and Face stuffers not welcome


The rudeness of the glutton and the face stuffer is obvious. Equally ill-mannered- though it is politically incorrect to say so — is the food faddist, who makes a point of announcing, wherever he goes, that just this or this can pass his lips, and all other things mush be rejected, even when offered as a gift. …..Both the faddist and the glutton have lost sight of the ceremonial character of eating, the essence of which is hospitality and gift. For each of them, I and my body occupy center stage, and the meal loses its meaning as human dialogue. Though the health-food addict is in one sense the opposite of the burger stuffer and the chocaholic, he too is a product of fridge culture, for whom eating is feeding, and feeding a solipsistic episode, in which others are disregarded. The finicky beak of the health freak and the stretched maw of the junk-food addict are alike signs of deep self-centeredness. It is probably better that such people eat on their own, since even in company they are really locked in solitude.

This quote from the chapter entitled “Real Men Have Manners” by Roger Scruton published in the Philosophy of Food eloquently and vividly explains why we find sharing a table with picky eaters so unpleasant. You know this person. Maybe this year, when someone at the table begins to complain about the amount of butter in the thanksgiving meal you’ll know exactly why you’re irritated by their self-centeredness disguised as discriminating taste.