The View from My Kitchen

Benvenuti! I hope you enjoy il panorama dalla mia cucina Italiana -- "the view from my Italian kitchen,"-- where I indulge my passion for Italian food and cooking. From here, I share some thoughts and ideas on food, as well as recipes and restaurant reviews, notes on travel, and a few garnishes from a lifetime in the entertainment industry.

You can help by becoming a follower. I'd really like to know who you are and what your thoughts are on what I'm doing. Every great leader needs followers and if I am ever to achieve my goal of becoming the next great leader of the Italian culinary world :-) I need followers!

Grazie mille!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

The Sneakers Bistro Flap: Offended By Bacon? PLEASE!

More Ridiculous “Diversity” Dreck

What are they putting in the water in Winooski, Vermont? The home of Gretel Ann Fischer, the execrably unsportsmanlike “winner” of last year's “Next Great Baker” competition on TLC, has apparently produced yet another looney-tune.

Winooski has an “Operation Bloom” program. Local residents and businesses can “adopt” and maintain a flower bed located near a city street or road. Kind of like the “Adopt a Highway” campaign you see in a lot of communities. And, of course, the “adopter” gets to put up a sign on “their” flower bed advertising their contribution. Sounds harmless, right? Well, it would be if not for idiots.

A local restaurant, Sneakers Bistro and Cafe, an establishment that has received national recognition for its quality bacon, placed a sign in a flower bed located near a busy traffic circle. The sign, a common yellow diamond-shaped highway sign, read “Yield for Sneakers Bacon,” with the words “yield for” appearing above the “Sneakers” logo, and the word “bacon” underneath. Okay?

If I'm lyin' I'm dyin', somebody got their panties in a wad about that sign. Initial reports identified the complainer as a Muslim woman. Later reports said she was not only Muslim, but vegan as well. And she was “offended” by the content of the sign, saying it was “insensitive to those who do not consume pork.”

At this point, you're probably either outraged or laughing your ass off – or both. Keep laughing, 'cause it gets better. The restaurant actually took the sign down rather than “offend” the woman. In terms of a polite, civilized response to this ludicrous inanity, I am dumbstruck. And the kicker is I don't know at whom I am more outraged, the cretin who lodged the complaint or the morons who acted on it.

Let's address the first subject. As William Shatner once famously said, GET A LIFE!!! What the **ck is wrong with this woman? “Insensitive to those who do not consume pork?” What's next? Boycotting the grocery store for advertising a sale on pork chops? Picketing the local barbecue joint? Come on! I know a few Muslims and a scad of Jews and none of them care a single miniscule fig about being around bacon as long as nobody asks them to eat it. I'm not much for schwarma or gefilte fish, but I don't go out and get all puckered about places that serve it. “None for me, thank you.” That's how real people live their lives.

The latest reports are saying that the perpetrator of the insanity did not object so much on religious grounds as on philosophical ones. She was apparently more offended as a vegan. I don't have a problem with vegetarians or vegans. I even agree with some of their stances on the inhumane treatment of commercially raised food animals. But why are her vegan sensibilities only offended by a place that advertises bacon? Shouldn't she be demanding that Ronald McDonald shinny up the pole and remove the word “hamburgers” from the McDonald's sign? Surely that's insensitive to those who do not consume beef. And those “cowz” that Chick fil A employs to exhort people to “eat mor chikin” ought to send her right into apoplexy.


But what about the doofus owner who actually caved in to her fanatical demand? Well, the restaurant is getting pasted for it. And rightly so.

The denizens of Winooski dropped Gretel Ann and her “Cupps Cafe and Bakery” like a hot rock after her nationally embarrassing debacle unfolded on TV. I've got a feeling that “Sneakers” may be next. Virtually none of the commentary on the issue has been supportive of owner Marc Dysinger's decision to kow tow to the whim of one, single, solitary, sole protester. This wasn't a movement. There were no pickets or petitions. This was one petty little piss ant with a small mind and a big mouth.

Oh, sure, the restaurant tried to spin it. “We are here to serve people BREAKFAST, not politics. We removed the sign that was located on public property as a gesture of respect for our diverse community. There were also concerns raised about safety. Removing it was not a difficult decision. We still love bacon. We still love eggs. Please have the political conversation elsewhere.”

Uh-huh. I swear if I hear that mewling “diverse community” dreck bleated by one more PC sheep I'm gonna toss my cookies. Oh wait......better not......they're not gluten-free cookies.......I may offend someone. But I guess Dysinger is just parroting the party line put forth by the City Manager, Katherine “Deac” Decarreau, who babbled a lot of PC-speak like, “The cool part of living in a diverse community is that it’s not always comfortable. It’s a fascinating place with lots of opportunities for conversation. The city has to pay attention to a lot of factors while acting within what we can regulate.” And, "We welcome a rich and respectful dialogue among the people that live, work and dine here. We believe that diversity and dialogue is a critical part of what makes us a truly desirable place to be."

All of which is a circumlocutious way of saying absolutely nothing.

But Yelpers, Facebookers, Tweeters, and others are having a lot to say. Things like, "Thanks for supporting and giving into the Muslims! I'll never eat at your restaurant!" Things like, “You are idiots. Plain and simple. Just don't advertise at ALL then, because everything could be offensive to someone.” Things like, “You caved, plain and simple. Over BACON. UNREAL Hope you don't have #Redskin potatoes on your menu.” Or, on a more philosophical note, “Evil first gets a foothold by censoring speech. how sad that u accommodated it.”

There's even a Facebook page dedicated to telling Sneakers' management how you feel about the whole thing.

Decarreau said, "It's blown up beyond all imagination." I don't know, “Deac.” Some people have pretty vivid imaginations. Witness the commenter who, with tongue firmly in cheek, suggested that Kevin Bacon may need to change his name.

My mother was born in Vermont, so I particularly like this one: “We Vermonters are told to be tolerant of everyone else's culture, yet we are not allowed to perpetuate our own culture, which, by the way, includes bacon. McKenzie Brothers, Harrington's, VT Smoke & Cure, Dakin Farm, & David Zuckerman's Full Moon Farm are all fine businesses that sell bacon. Outsiders who come to a new geographical area to live should respect local customs, not demand we change them to please themselves. As for me, you will have to pry my bacon from my cold dead hands!”

I know Vermonters and I know there are two things they won't tolerate; dishonesty and foolishness. Gretel Ann found out about the dishonesty. Does Sneakers want to become an object lesson for foolishness?

C'mon, Sneakers, grow a pair. Put your sign back up while you still have a business to advertise.  

1 comment:

  1. Absolutely ridiculous!!! So…if we are a “diverse community”, why to succumb to this absurd demand from someone who chose to be a vegan? And the mind boggles what’s next… Boycotting the bakeries because someone is following the “wheat and gluten” free diet? Shutting down the coffee shops because someone ”doesn’t do” caffeine? Just when I thought that this sort of nonsense can’t get any worse, it just did… Why??? Too much time on someone’s hands, the stupidity at its “best” or both?