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November 11, 2010 | 12:00 a.m. CST
by Caitlin Giddings
The eating, it was intense. I started slow, steadily built momentum, then established a frenzied sort of rhythm. Crouched low to the street, I clutched my first conquest — a sesame bagel — close to the chest like a jittery squirrel afraid a predator might swoop in at any minute. Large, doughy chunks went down un-chewed. A banana, a bag of Oreos, two personal pan pizzas and a Tear ’n Share packet of Peanut M&M’s would soon follow. I planned to tear without sharing. Here, huddled on a curb in downtown St. Louis, eating was my business, and let me tell you — business was good. Keep reading.
by Hannah Hayes
Dear Mr. Bourdain,
My name is Hannah Hayes, and I consider myself a pretty big fan of yours. I have all of your books lined on top of my crappy, leaking refrigerator between two Martinelli’s Gold Medal apple juice jugs. I think your thoughts on vegetarians and hollandaise sauce are genius in its purest form. I even made sure that my college radio show wasn’t scheduled for Monday night this semester so I wouldn’t miss a second of your show, No Reservations. Keep reading.
by Lauren Hughes
Confession: I am a foodie who despises seafood. Really, it’s not my fault. I blame my parents. The extent of my seafood exposure as a child was limited to Van de Kamp’s fish sticks, and I don’t even think that counts as fish at all. It’s a shame, honestly, because I’m jealous of those who can savor salmon. I’m envious of those who delight in oysters on the half shell. I get green-eyed over those who close their eyes as they bite into a perfectly cooked tuna steak. Because when I eat any of it, my gag reflexes set in, and I reach for a napkin. It’s not a pretty picture. Keep reading.
by Kathleen Majorsky
“Cupcake” was my first word. Yes, that’s right. Not Mama nor Daddy but cupcake. Because of this pivotal event in my life, I have logically concluded that I was put on this earth to fulfill my cupcake destiny. My destiny has a name. The National Cupcake Crawl is what I affectionately call my creation. I have taken it upon myself to seek out some of America’s most delectable cupcake treats. Keep reading.
By Katie Maupin
I hit the door running and made a beeline for the fridge. I flung open the freezer door and dodged the frozen foods that came flying out of its cramped depths, picked up a frozen brick labeled “Ground beef,” and crammed the rest of the cold packages back into the overly full freezer. I tossed the beef into the microwave, hit auto-defrost and as I went to grab a shower, handed the dinner off to my mom like two wrestlers do in a tag-team match. Keep reading.
by Courtney Shove
Like Holy Communion, the appearance of the doughnut box in the kitchen became a regular Sunday-morning ritual in my family. The mixed dozen didn’t come from a fancy patisserie but from the Kroger bakery within walking distance of our house. Seated on a barstool with flecks of glaze stuck to my thin lips and fingers, I was never told that devouring four doughnuts for breakfast was one of the Seven Deadly Sins. Keep reading.
by Kathleen Sprouse
Gammy’s order to grab cream from the downstairs refrigerator might have sounded like a chore to most young kids. But for me, my grandma’s request was permission to open my favorite refrigerator. Pulling with two hands, I would slide the glass doors across the metal tracks. Barely clearing the 8-foot-tall basement ceiling, the refrigerator beamed with red and white letters scrolled across the front: Coca-Cola. Keep reading.