No haiku this time but a kind of crush yes. Watch the clip. I’ll wait. Stop what you’re doing and watch when he goes to Claudio’s house for a meal. Start paying special attention around 8:03. Watch his face around 8:43. When he bites his lip and looks away for a second. It just breaks my heart.
I love this show. Not just for his incredibly sharp insights into all the places he visits. Not for all the beautiful food he eats. I love his honesty and his sarcastic humor. I think that he gets a little over the top with the bloodlust sometimes but even that I can respect. He loves to eat meat and unabashedly promotes all things carnivore but at the same time doesn’t want you to forget where that luscious insert name of pork product on his plate came from. It was once part of a living creature who breathed air, walked around and stretched in the morning just like you.
My brother Mike was a real cynic deep down. But even deeper down underneath that hard gruntyness there was a sweet and special loving person. He had a very critical eye but was someone who loved life with all its greatness and all its sucky parts too. He loved his friends and was very loyal to them. He just had too many disappointments of late and stopped trying to find that balance anymore. The hard side took over and told him that things were never going to get better and not to dream anymore. I valued my brother’s opinion so much because if he liked you it was only because you earned it somehow. If you were lucky enough to earn his respect, that meant that you were cool. Bourdain seems kind of the same way to me. That’s why I love this clip. He says that he doesn’t usually think that people are good and that we can really all get along with one another but at that one moment he almost believes in that dream. He has hope.
The last time I saw my brother’s friend Mark he told me about a visit he had with Mike in San Francisco. It had been a beautiful day and they ended up in this tiny bar somewhere near the waterfront. Mark said they had a karaoke machine going and all these characters were getting up there and singing. My brother was in such a good mood that he actually signed up to sing a song. It stood out in Mark’s memory because that was so unlike my brother. He had gotten so caught up in the communal happiness of the moment that he wanted to everyone to see. They had to leave before they called Mike’s name so Mark never got to find out what song he wanted to sing. I wish I knew what that song was too. I’d make it my anthem.