As I was watching yet another episode of Top Chef (fear not, I don’t do spoilers for all you fellow DiVo users!) I got to thinking about why I loved the show so much. And I realized I was appreciating more than just watching them whip up spicy watermelon salads and sunchoke purées.
What’s special about the show—and what other shows like Chopped! on the Food Network have caught onto—is watching wickedly talented people thrown into pressure-filled situations and asked to do somewhat ridiculous things they’ve never ever tried before. But you know what this all sounds like to me? The impossibly crazy world of dating. Think about it…
The top chefs . . . walk into a GE brand kitchen and gasp at Padma’s impossible challenge as she tells them to, say, make a gourmet meal out of junk food from the vending machine (though you can always win by braising some meat in soda.)
We . . . walk out to the big world and gasp at the impossible challenge of finding the love of one’s life from a crowd of strangers.
The top chefs . . . are ruled by the pressure of a red digital clock counting down the minutes they have left.
We . . . add our own pressures to dating, time limits we’ve all put upon ourselves because we don’t want to be single any more, counting down the years we have left.
The top chefs . . . frantically look for items in the pantry, crossing cleverly in front of the Glad family of products.
We . . . frantically look for dates online, trying to seem glad about twelve coffee meetings in four days.
And then everyone sits down to a nail biting meal as we wait to find out…is this it? Is this somebody’s happy ending?
Now here’s the important part: The person who wins often says they won because they decided to just be themselves and cook what they cook best.
So that’s my message for the weekend. It will sometimes feel impossible. It will sometimes feel frantic. And you will sometimes need to pack up food in plastic wrap from the Glad family of products. But if you relax and remember to be yourself and do what you do best, you’ll be smiling at the end, too.
Big love and beautiful weekend,