Occasionally, I run into someone who claims that they don’t know how to cook. When this happens, I have to consciously fight the urge to say “So what you really mean is that you chose to NOT learn how to cook.” (And by cook, I mean cook well.)
I am intrigued by anyone who claims that they can not cook. Especially those that are otherwise accomplished and have advanced skills or degrees, as in: “I can build a car/drone/company, get xyz fancy degree, speak multiple languages, etc. (this list goes on and on) but I don’t know how to cook”. Really? I don’t buy it. If you can learn all that other stuff, don’t you realize that you could learn how to cook if you chose to spend time on it?
Part of it is that I just don’t trust people who claim that they don’t know how to cook…maybe I am merely suspicious of their self awareness. If they have fooled themselves into thinking that they are truly not capable of cooking, then what other major misperceptions do they have?
Instead of trying to convince all of these supposedly incapable cooks that they could indeed learn to cook, I will point out some of the perks of their chosen mindset. So, in no particular order, I present my top ten reasons why you should NOT learn how to cook:
- Self reliance is overrated. If you learn to cook, you will have acquired another essential life skill and, in so doing, reduced your dependence on others. Why should I rely on myself to prepare meals when I could just demand that my family or friends cook for me? Why should I waste time learning to cook for myself when I can simply pay for these services?
- Cooking, meal planning, and grocery shopping take time. You will have more things on your to-do list, more things to get in the way of watching TV. Keeping up with all the latest news, sporting events, and Netflix series merit much more time and investment than the art of creating and sharing a meal for yourself and/or other people.
- You may begin to enjoy food and find pleasure in eating, even more than you thought possible. Perhaps you will notice some strange correlation between the source of the food, the way it was grown, and the taste of the food. This could be a problem because you’ll want to buy fresher and higher quality food.
- Your options for eating out will be drastically reduced. Besides learning that McDonald’s is NOT actually food but synthetic crap that is subsidized by our government and allowed to externalize the gross environmental damages that they inflict on the world, you’ll slowly become aware that their alleged ‘food’ tastes horrible. And you’ll know that you can quickly prepare something much tastier and healthier than that shit, for probably the same amount of money. So all fast-food and chain ‘restaurants’ will be unavailable to you. Then, if you want to eat out, you’ll have to find restaurants that value some of the same things that you do, instead of only patronizing the ones that advertise on mainstream media. Who has time for that nonsense?
- You may develop an awareness of how your body responds to different kinds of foods. This could lead you to the ridiculous notion of Food as Medicine. That is trouble because we all know that western-trained doctors and prescription drugs are the only real medicine.
- Spending all this time with food means that you will probably learn something about food. Your curiosity might be stimulated. Then you’ll want to ask more questions about the origins of foods, cuisines and recipes. This could lead to the acquisition of cultural or historical perspectives, and conversations that that could take away from screen time. Who really cares about the sources, culture, science, geopolitics, socioeconomic issues, and regulations of food? We need to save room in our brains for TV, sports, and news.
- Once you’ve recognized cooking as an excellent way to nurture relationships, then you might try to instill a love of cooking in young people…even (GASP) the males! Whoa…hold on there! We all know that boys should never be allowed in the kitchen, they should only be playing sports or doing math and science activities. Anyway, kids just cause trouble in the kitchen and interfere with your cooking.
- This new knowledge of food may lead to all kinds of thoughts that you’d rather not think about. Such as: Why can’t I pronounce most of the ingredients in these packaged boxes of ‘food’? How is it possible to buy a hamburger for $1? Why are the workers that picked this food treated like third-class citizens? No one can answer those questions; it is better not to ask.
- You might reconsider the food component of your budget. This means you could spend more money on food. Instead of seeing fresh, local, toxin-free food grown by well-treated people as expensive, you might see it as a bargain. Instead of seeing a luxury vehicle, a huge empty house, or sweat-shop produced designer clothing as essentials, you might view those things as optional accessories. Here is something especially dangerous: you might even voluntarily reduce your spending on high-price things that don’t directly affect your health as much as food.
- Eventually, you’ll realize that carefully selecting and supporting certain people, farms, food-producing companies is a simple but powerful REVOLUTIONARY ACT. Indeed, the way you spend your food money (or any money) may be more powerful than anything you do on a ballot. This is a blasphemous idea, indeed! Better stop thinking those crazy thoughts immediately.
Now….Who is going to cook my next meal?
p.s. If you ever change your mind and decide to take on this gargantuan task, you might find some good books on my recommended cookbook list. But before that, I’d recommend quality time and with your favorite cooking people.
p.p.s. I have several beloved family members and friends who claim to not know how to cook, and I love them dearly, in spite of this shortcoming. They, obviously, know that I have approximately 6,182 other shortcomings, so it evens out.