Bill Maher Talks With Chef Alice Waters

I love my digital recording machine because it allows me to record the shows I cannot concentrate on or watch if I am either away from home, or if I am in the writing realm. Last evening I watched Friday’s, Real Time With Bill Maher Show, and was immediately drawn to the interview that Bill did with his guest,  Chef Alice Waters. I learned a lot about her and listened to the vision she adopted at the early age of nineteen, when she went to France to find out more about food. When she returned to California, it was with a deep-rooted conviction of serving up the new California fresh food diet, because she understood the reasons that this was the better way to eat. Slow Food as Bill called it. She said it was the opposite of Fast Food.

She is co-owner of Chez Panisse, in Berkely, CA. One day, in the 1990’s, she noticed an empty rundown schoolyard while walking to work at her restaurant. After making an inquiry the school superintendent welcomed her ideas to nurture, guide and teach school children about natural foods, and she has been deeply involved with the school system ever since. She has teachers intentionally immerse their students in their food projects, by introducing them to the benefits of growing, cooking and eating what they have grown. Alice Waters is also bringing the idea of fresh garden foods to many children via her book “The Edible Schoolyard” , and to everyone else with her cookbook “The Green Kitchen”.

“There is a huge obesity problem in our country and it started after WWII”, Alice tells Bill in her interview. “Things changed. They had all of these chemicals they didn’t know what to do with and so they fertilized our food with them. From there it was a downward spiral.” (I am not quoting her, this was the gist of this part of their conversation).

Here is today’s Featured Article on the cover of BlogCatalog

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About Theresa H Hall

As a professional vocalist. licensed broadcaster, artist, published poet, lyricist, writer, essayist, critic, animal lover and budding pastr View all posts by Theresa H Hall

3 responses to “Bill Maher Talks With Chef Alice Waters

  • Lynda Lehmann

    She has her own powerful vision. The more power to her. We need more people to get involved with the schools like this, with whatever talents they have to offer.

    I think Bill Maher is a hero of rational thought! I adore him for his courage.

  • DeathAngel

    I am currently watching the exchange (had to record it since I was moving at the time). I like her basic ideas, same as I like most of what Maher says. But the thing that often gets me is their uneducated nonsense about chemistry and pesticides. I am a fan of chemistry and am studying chemical engineering, so I know a thing or two about it. But those 2 clearly don’t. Saying Microwave heating is evil/unnatural is just stupid, Maher’s explanation that the molecules start to vibrate very fast and that when he ingests them it is bad for him is just astoundingly naive, almost like he never had chemistry in school. The fact that a lot of chemicals are used to get rid of bugs and other crop-hurting things is also protrayed as bad, although without that, we couldn’t feed most of the people on this planet and most of the pesticides and other chemicals don’t even end up in our food, or in such low quantities that they don’t matter. It’s the same thing with him saying that heating food kills the life force, which he even labels as “sort of logical”. Matter of fact is that heating certain things is the only way to make them edible, it kills bacteria, activates proteins, destroys toxins etc. That doesn’t mean only cooked food is good. But he presents is so single-minded and without reason that it astounds me. At least her reply clearly stated that she has no scientific knowledge in that area (and she at least said some of the good things about cooking). And their adversity to long ingredient lists is, in most cases, totally useless as well, since our muscles and digestive track doesn’t care if he gets his carbohydrates through a cooked potatoe or through potatoe-extract mixed with water. And also most of the other ingredients they could mean are just for prolonging the durability of the food or changing its color, both of which have no impact on the quality of the nutrients in the food.

    To conclude, I think everyone should take Bill Maher’s advice on food and medical issues with a grain of salt, since he takes it a few notches too far, without any knowledge backing it up. The basic idea to eat healthy, no fast food, cook for yourself etc. is solid. But he just radicalises it a bit (funny since he is so opposed to religion, but those things seem to be working as religious substitutes for him). 😀

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