There is a journal called Appetite which describes itself as ….an international research journal specializing in cultural, social, psychological, sensory and physiological influences on the selection and intake of foods and drinks. It covers normal and disordered eating and drinking and welcomes studies of both human and non-human animal behaviour toward food.
I wonder what they would make of the amount of attention paid to eating and drinking in a virtual world?
Food is everywhere in SL. As are places to find it – kitchens, bakeries, coffee shops, street vendors, hot dog stands (I guess that counts as a street vendor) Dining room sets that allow you to sit alone or with others and chat over elaborate tableware and delicious looking dishes. Plates of cookies and candies that are set out on coffee and cafe tables.
In a study released in the May/June 2013 issue of the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior (May/June 2013), investigators (who are these “investigators”?) from The University of Kansas Medical Center explored alternative weight management delivery methods. The solution they are investigating — virtual reality for weight loss and weight maintenance. They were doing this in SL. One intriguing observation, “Individuals who want to participate in real-life scenarios without real-life repercussions can use virtual reality.” Maybe. If it works – more power to them.
Back to the dining room sets – one of the most beautiful I have seen of late comes from Apple Fall. It’s called the Anashara Dining Set. Look at the richness of the design and the detail of the different elements that come with it. Stunning.
One of the best things about being around a table are the things that happen there. I like my tables to have a patina of use. The scratches, knicks, burns and bruises that remind me of the life that has been lived around them. Like to Harjo poem below.
Perhaps the World Ends Here
Joy Harjo, 1951
The world begins at a kitchen table. No matter what, we must eat to live.
The gifts of earth are brought and prepared, set on the table. So it has been since creation, and it will go on.
We chase chickens or dogs away from it. Babies teethe at the corners. They scrape their knees under it.
It is here that children are given instructions on what it means to be human. We make men at it, we make women.
At this table we gossip, recall enemies and the ghosts of lovers.
Our dreams drink coffee with us as they put their arms around our children. They laugh with us at our poor falling-down selves and as we put ourselves back together once again at the table.
This table has been a house in the rain, an umbrella in the sun.
Wars have begun and ended at this table. It is a place to hide in the shadow of terror. A place to celebrate the terrible victory.
We have given birth on this table, and have prepared our parents for burial here.
At this table we sing with joy, with sorrow. We pray of suffering and remorse. We give thanks.
Perhaps the world will end at the kitchen table, while we are laughing and crying, eating of the last sweet bite.
From The Woman Who Fell From the Sky by Joy Harjo. Copyright © 1994 by Joy Harjo.