Am I What I Eat?

15 weeks, 30 days, 1500 minutes. That’s how long I have spent in Beckman 204 and every single one of those 90,000 seconds contributed to my growth as a writer and as a person. I came into Chapman University thinking I was going to do work just to do work and I never thought Chapman’s mission statement of making me into a global citizen would actually apply to me. I mean, I’m just an average kid who plays basketball for the team and trying to get by. English has never been my strongest or best subject so I never truly enjoyed writing the 5 paragraph prompts on Hemingway’s ridiculously  hard to understand stories. I didn’t think the headaches and late nights those papers brought me before class had much of an impact on my ability to write but now, I appreciate the foundation in rhetoric I have.

15 weeks ago, I still remember vividly sitting at desk, staring intensely at my blank computer screen, trying my hardest not to think about how I’m going to get through this while extremely overwhelmed by work demanded in the syllabus. Through this English 103 course, I now have a better grasp of the quote “Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you what you are” by Brillat-Savarin because of the various factors food is tied with. I have explored the relationship between food and different cultures by entangling my own Chinese background and the food I ate as a child to the food I am still consuming as an adult.  I also learned about international table manners that pertain to different people in different countries. With that, I was mind-blown by how much politics food can have over people and just the other day, a protestor of Chick-fil-A came to my dorm to tell me to not do a day of service for Chapman because they were sponsoring the event. Though I do not believe the statement made by the president of Chick-fil-A is offensive, many took it as a discrimination clause. I believe in the freedom of speech and I don’t understand why someone would ask the Dan Cathy, the president of a Christian-based restaurant chain, what constitutes as marriage. Quite frankly, my chicken burger has nothing to do with that and I still eat at Chick-fil-A not because I stand with them politically, but because I think I have the right to a good chicken burger.

15 weeks ago, I would have dreaded the idea of writing a research based recipe story, a manifesto and a huge research paper that would require me to go out and do some in field digging myself. I’m not exactly shy but the idea of having to go interview someone doesn’t sound like the best way to spend my Saturday. In fact, I stated in my first blog that “As ready as I am to take on the next 15 weeks, I am dreading the part where I will have to go interviewing other people.” Every time an interviewer would want to talk to me after my basketball game, I would try to get out of it as quick as possible because I would feel the tremendous pressure on me to not sound stupid. The idea of what I say to the reporter will actually be recorded frightens me because sometimes, actually a lot of times, I speak before I think and that’s a huge problem for interviews. However, through the encouraging words from my peers and professor, I have sucked it up, and just went with it. The dread I was feeling in the beginning of the semester has transformed into triumph because now I feel like I can conquer the world. Of course, that’s a hyperbole and I often misuse a lot of those in my interviews and that’s why interviews are not my cup of tea. But green tea is.

15 weeks ago, I never would have thought I was capable of writing and starting my own blog and just like how rice needs an abundant amount of water, sunshine and care before it turns into something so delicious, I thank you Professor Keefe for molding me into the individual I am today. I really enjoyed the watching of King Corn and though I watched America Revealed: Food Machine late, I enjoyed it all. I think if we were divided into partners or groups and we had to watch the film together that would have been more effective because it’s always good to have someone to keep you on check. Words cannot describe how grateful I am for the past 15 weeks and thank you English 103 for making me believe I can contribute to the voice of our generation.

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