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Author Archive: "Sadie Stein"

Books for the Peckish Reader

I am of the school that likes to read while eating. (Is that even a "school"? And of what — reading?) No, needs to read while eating. I know this is both very bad manners and apparently bad for the waistline, too: I have read that the dieter should eat without distraction, so as to be aware of exactly how much he is consuming, for fear, I suppose, of gobbling down too much while engrossed in the story. But I can't help it. Whenever I am alone I reach for a stack of well-worn, badly stained volumes that are always close to hand. Lately that pile has gotten just a little taller.

It's commonly supposed that serious eaters enjoy an experience unhampered by other distractions. But for me, the pleasure of eating is heightened by reading about it, by combining two chief comforts into one super-pleasurable multisensory experience . Tamasin Day-Lewis, in her memoir Where Shall We Go for Dinner?, writes chidingly of her boyfriend's practice of reading at the table. For Day-Lewis, civilized conversation is a crucial part of the pleasure of dining, and she wastes no ...


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