Wednesday, July 31, 2002

Hero [Chron] I love Julia Child -- I would even call her a "hero" on the same scale as, say, E.B. White and Ted Williams -- but this kind of nostalgic fetishism only trivializes her real accomplishments.
She will have reunions of sorts with her famous kitchen in the next few weeks. One of its Peg-Board walls was dismantled and reinstalled at COPIA; the rest went to Washington, D.C., and the Behring Center of the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of American History. Hersh recalls the museum staff's approach to preserving the famous kitchen as awesome: They cataloged and photographed everything, from stove to windows, blinds to drawer contents. As reinstalled in Washington, the kitchen should be as we all remember it from countless TV shows, "right down to the toothpicks."
The article also mentions that she's writing a memoir of her and Paul's career in the "diplomatic service."

8/1: OK, I take it back. I must have been in a particularly vicious mood yesterday. The mere mention of COPIA darkened my vision with rage. And the element of self-congratulation that goes with the celebrification of Julia and, especially, Alice Waters, is irritating, at least if you have to live in Berkeley. Not to mention Mondavi's profound love of himself, in which, at least, he is alone. On reflection, however, it is actually a great idea to put that kitchen in the Smithsonian, which, when I visited last year, was surprisingly boring. There was a big display about nylon as I recall. But I would have to say that Julia Child is more important to me than synthetic fibers.


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