Stop your whining, Jamie Oliver

03/30/2012 08:23:00 AM
Chuck Robinson

"Just get off their backs!” is what I wanted to tell Jamie Oliver.
For all the good his “Food Revolution” TV show and related efforts have done, I am sorry his harping has gotten on my nerves so much.
It is clear to me why ABC chose to run “Dancing With the Stars” reruns during sweeps week instead of more of Oliver’s rant. 
We had saved back an episode to watch the other night. It had Oliver talking to a single dad and his two sons. All agreed they were eating too much fast food, so let’s do something. 
What do we do? We go to a fast-food drive-up, and they fill the car with junk food to show them they eat too much junk. Got it. They go home and the house had been filled up with junk food. 
Get it? You guys eat too much junk food. 
Got it, preacherman.
We finally got around to doing something. Dad is sent yet again to a fast-food restaurant while Jamie and the two boys try to knock out a meal for the family while Dad is gone. 
OK, now we are really getting around to helping these people. 
Oliver started his TV career with a show called “The Naked Chef.” (1998-99). Teaching them how to cook should be in his wheelhouse.
 
No, all we get is a lot of quick, rapid-fire video cuts of a meal being cooked. Oliver showed one boy how to peel garlic by smashing it on the counter. That was at least something. 
The capper was when chicken breasts slided out of a saute pan onto the floor. Oliver coached the kid on the “three-second rule,” and back into the pan it went.
This from the guy who famously illustrated his slanted version of how pink slime, the boneless lean beef trimmings that the meat industry has used in hamburger and other products, was made. 
A professional chef should not be coaching anyone on the three-second rule — especially not on camera.
Bye bye, Jamie?
There will not likely be a third season of “Food Revolution,” from what I gather from the Daily Mail online, Guardian online and a website named tvfinale.com. 
Some people posting comments blame ABC for pulling the plug and say the broadcaster should bite the bullet for the good of the nation, which is facing an obesity epidemic.
No, we need to find a spokesman or spokeswoman who isn’t condescending and whiny.
That said, Oliver and the American Heart Association a year ago announced a partnership to open five Food Revolution Kitchens in New York, Los Angeles, Cleveland, Baltimore and Dallas to teach people cooking skills so they can easily prepare healthy food at home. Cleveland’s Plain Dealer reports Oliver expects the kitchens to open in 2012. Awesome. 
I see how Santa Ana, Calif., was treated in February by a visit from Oliver’s Food Revolution Big Rig Mobile Kitchen. 
That is great, and I hope it is a fun, uplifting experience for all they attract. 
Most of all, I hope all those efforts avoid the whiny preaching of the second season of the TV show. 
That won’t sell people fruits and vegetables, folks.
crobinson@thepacker.com
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S    
London  |  April, 12, 2012 at 05:18 PM

You are an idiot. Jamie is trying to do something good for the world while big industry lies to get us to spend more at the expense of our own health. I have lost 2 good friends to heart disease - and I think what he is doing is wonderful. By the way - if your suggestion would be to tell the kid to throw the chicken out and start again because he was a failure, I also think you would make a bad father.

Chuck    
Kansas City  |  April, 13, 2012 at 07:07 AM

Jamie and the video editors could have chosen any other clip to show other than that one. Given the extended diatribe Oliver growled over the meat industry's attempts to kill pathogens and use every little bit of animal, it would seem like he would be at least a tiny bit concerned over cleanliness in the kitchen. Again, dad though he may be, it is as a professional chef with a chain of restaurants that he presents himself to us. When people refer to him it is as "chef Jamie Oliver" not "dad Jamie Oliver." That clip of chicken scuttling across the floor should have been deleted. Of course, E. coli and salmonella are time-tested means of weight loss. Maybe that is his aim. More than that, though -- whining goes only so far. His example is a bad one for the produce industry marketing healthful produce.

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