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Potluck Pannick

August 6, 2018

Today is my last day on the road. Well, at least until Friday, when it’s off to Philadelphia. My family thinks I’m crazy, because before I leave Manhattan, my plan is to duck into Flushing for a quick dim sum pit stop.

We’ll see if it happens.

But I’m traveling with the kids, and they love dim sum carts. Back home in Albany, there are still no dim sum carts. Not even on weekends. Plus, now I’ve found a dim sum spot which reportedly has one of my kid’s favorite hard-to-find dim sum dishes… and valet parking. However, I wonder if we’ll even need to take advantage of that on a Monday.

Theoretically, there could be a better spot we could be going. Heck, there might even be a better spot in New Jersey. But this is Flushing. The kids have to see it. Even if it’s just for a quick lunch before driving back to Albany. However ridiculous it may be to brave the traffic and drive in the opposite direction for lunch, it’s not nearly as crazy as driving to Canada for candy.

Once again, this trip down to the city was not about food. That said, this is a food blog, so the stories I’ve got are all food centric. Maybe there’s someone out there who can relate to my tale of woe.

This past weekend, my very first nephew turned one. There’s no tragedy involved there. Only joy. And if there’s going to be a party, you can almost always count me in.

One of my internal rules is that I don’t explicitly write about the food at social events where I’m an invited guest. As someone who publicly writes about food, it helps to put potential hosts at ease to know there parties will not be critiqued online.

I love parties. And I love invitations. Sure, my schedule is awful, but I always want to attend everything I can. Ask irisira. Every now and again, I even show up.

The tragedy comes into play, because I also always want to eat everything I can.

Potlucks are dangerous. There are some food safety people who will always refuse invitations to potlucks because they consider the events to be truly dangerous. That’s not me, although it’s something that should probably be said. Those people live life far too cautiously for my taste. A life of medium-well burgers and hard-cooked egg yolks seems positively tragic.

Of course, the results of food borne illness can be even more tragic. I get that. But I also believe that one can take calculated risks.

Life is for the living.

For me the danger is overeating. And potlucks play into my unique set of issues surrounding food in strange and horrible ways.

The obvious one is that I want to try everything. So when I’m confronted with a table of more options than can fit on a plate, it just means I’ll have to return for multiple plates. Naturally, I’ll take only small portions of everything. But a small sliver of quiche is still probably more fat and calories than a heaping plate of vegetables.

Perhaps the less obvious one is that I can’t stand waste. I want all the food to get consumed, and I’m willing to do more than my fair share to help make that happen. It’s really for the betterment of mankind that I’m taking that third serving of noodles. Because if I don’t, they are just going into a landfill, where they will be converted into greenhouse gasses, and contribute to the accelerating pace of man made climate change.

Putting it into words makes it sound every crazier than it feels.

But there is truth in those words, because I return for more plates of food at potlucks even when I’m not hungry. Those issues of culinary curiosity and waste management are brutal. More importantly, they completely short circuit any of my remaining reserves of self control or restraint.

What I need is some other kind of driving interior belief that’s stronger than both of them combined. Because I was doing so well with the moderation when I was at home. Yet when presented with a potluck I panicked.

Dim sum with the kids will be easier. We’ll be moderate. Well, at least I will be. The young man can’t control himself around those crullers wrapped in rice noodles or baked pork buns. It’s really great to see the kid who doesn’t enjoy food all that much take pleasure in the foods he loves.

I guess the big question here is how do the rest of you food lovers manage yourself at potlucks? I’d really like to know. The profussor could use a little help.

One Comment leave one →
  1. August 6, 2018 10:26 am

    Thanks for sharing the name and address of the dim sum place in Flushing!

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