1. This book. It was an impulse purchase at Quimby's, and I regret it (entertainment budget not currently large!). I'm not entirely sure how to talk about what I found so disagreeable about this book without sounding all insulted and beleaguered, but I found the blizzard of cultural references and overwriting almost intolerable. Especially in a tale in which the resolution is our 33 year-old author's salvation in...a blizzard of cultural references (The Onion). Who the guy is in the middle of everything, I really don't know, and I really didn't want to know. I kept tossing the book aside with a Meh, and eventually I did for good. I would have been perfectly happy to read the short story buried in this thing once all the capitalized nouns had been excised and the author unclenched and aged a bit, but such was not to be.
2. This show. My beef with it lies not (exactly) in the realm of gah! gross! first-world-excess!, as we watch the cute long-lashed host slog his way through lots of food, although I don't really get off on that part, but in how fundamentally boring the premise is. Will he get through it? Oh man oh man! Wipe of the brow, a shake of the head, an intake of breath as he regroups, incites the crowd, and eats again. Oh the mugging for the camera...it's so feeb. I am sometimes amazed that Anthony Bourdain gets away with dissing the Food Network so much (even if it's merited), when the Travel Channel has such an aggressively dopey guyfieri-y editorial POV, evidenced in this show and others.
As you were!