Why I Blew Off OFF and the Salon d’Agriculture

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Why I Blew Off OFF and the Salon d’Agriculture
Today, practically everybody I know is in Deauville for the Omnivore Food Festival (OFF) – performing or watching or schmoozing. Next to Le Fooding’s events and other Generation C etc. features, there’s no place I would avoid more. Why? Because of the schlep? No, it’s a quick train ride and besides, a friend offered to drive me. Because of the cost? No, because several folks “invited” me. Because of my lousy French? No, because vision is not language specific. I skipped OFF for the same reason I avoid wine tastings, baguette “best-of’s”, most cooking shows and truffle festivals – I detest being shown what to do, or told how something should taste or how to do whatever, unless I need to know. It’s like learning about latrine placement or map reading in the Army – who cares until you need to know? (Now a minute for my kids’ explanation: “You don’t go because you hate to make nice, do small talk and stand around.” Hummm, they’ve got a point.) The only exception I make is for the 10-minute segment on France 2’s Télématin, especially when it deals with different kinds of peaches or eggplants or camembert at Rungis; that’s useful stuff to know. But standing around watching the young wiz-kid chefs whip up a frothy sauce or manipulate their Pacojets – I’ll skip it. As for the Salon d’Agriculture, one trip nuzzling cows à la Jacques Chirac was enough for me and while I’m confessing to my sins I’m also against art tours, cocktails and gala parties. What I did instead was eat at: Les Choses 12, rue Monge in the 5th, (Metro: Cardinal Lemoine, Maubert-Mutualité) T: 01.71.50.70.61 Closed Sundays Lunch menu 16 E, à la carte 35-45 E.   Les Enfants de Paris 116, rue Amelot in the 11th, (Metro: Oberkampf or Richard Lenoir) T: 01.47.00.70.74 Open 7/7 Lunch menus at 10.50 and 15.50 (2 or 3 courses), à la carte about 30-35 E. ©by John Talbott 2011 If you’re in a shopping mood, Bonjour Paris’s Amazon Store has a collection of books, movies, gourmet items, electronics and so much more. In other words, you can buy everything from soup to nuts and help Bonjour Paris at the same time.
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