Anthony Bourdain

Bourdain suffered with depression for decades, compounded by years of opiate use. Purportedly he had been clean for a lot of years, but that $hit takes its toll. No clue if he was on any meds for his depression, but you have to be in a dark, dark place to leave this world willingly when you've got an 11 year old daughter.

Terrible sad, Tony was a guy that made me laugh a lot, and later in his career, made me think. The world is a little bit lesser without him. RIP Tony.

Caveat...I am a Bourdain fan boy. I've read every one of his books, and seen every episode of his shows from A Cook's Tour, to No Reservations and even his lesser known and short-lived "The Layover." I even forced myself to watch the dreck reality show he was on "The Taste." His books are well worth your time.

Hopefully in his death, people realize he was more than just the guy that ate the a$$hole out of warthog in Nairobi. He was a self-taught documentarian and writer. He published several works of fiction, and wrote a couple of episodes of the HBO series "Treme." No formal training, just natural talent.

Tony's politics were liberal, but the thing I respect most about him is that he could find common ground with just about anyone. One day he might be having lunch with Iggy Pop, or a bowl a Pho with Barack Obama, the next he'd be shooting automatic weapons with Ted Nugent, or riding in a swamp buggy in the Everglades. He may not have agreed philosophically with a Ted Nugent, but he respected him as a human being. 

That is a rare trait in this day and age. It has become a world of hot takes and righteous indignation. If you don't agree with me, then you've offended me or committed a "microaggression." Tony really had a soft spot for the poor and oppressed in the world. I think that was the one thing that bothered him most...to see people being exploited or dehumanized.

As famous as he became, I think Tony was always uncomfortable with his celebrity. He was most at home being on the road with his crew. That was his family...and I think that tortured him. He so badly wanted his marriage to Ottavia to work for the sake of providing his daughter with a stable life. But the road was his mistress, and it eventually took its toll I think on the marriage and it ended.

I didn't know him personally, but I felt like I did because he was so honest and open which made him an amazing storyteller...not just of his own life, but the life of others. 

This $hit just sucks.

WTF is a microaggression?  

You knew who the guy was.  His programs weren't "shows", it was him and what he brought to the table.  The thing I appreciated about his politics was he'd call out **** on both sides.  I dug that.  I don't ever think he was over eager to talk politics.  When you're a global traveler petty pissing matches in American politics probably takes a backseat as to what the rest of the world has to offer.  

His passing really struck a nerve.

https://blogs.scientificameric...ons-its-complicated/

The term microaggression or microgression was a well intentioned piece of research that was designed to identify "subtle racism," however it was quickly expanded to include "subtle sexism," and then just overall xenophobia/religious bigotry, etc.

But as with any burgeoning sociological idea, there is a lot of room for misinterpretation, and there are a lot of hetero white millenials that have hijacked the term and incorrectly use it to classify someone disagreeing with them. We've seen a generation of people raised by parents who don't tell them no, who have "considered their opinion as an equal," since birth, and raised a class of people whose sense of entitlement goes well beyond material things. They cannot handle when someone disagrees with them, or tells them they are wrong.

To me, Tony's death marks the beginning of a decline of a generation who subscribe to "we can disagree, but we can coexist." People with a more liberal worldview for have always been considered "tolerant." However, the extremely tolerant are become less tolerant of the intolerant. (Thank Bill Maher for that pearl).

Tony excelled at humanizing everyone who traditionally has been dehumanized. He was a big advocate for the rights of undocumented workers in the restaurant industry. He wanted to show the first world the humanity of the third world. Just because you grew up with a dirt floor, doesn't mean you don't have pain, or don't want love, or your children to be healthy. And food was the starting point for that. He got people at their most vulnerable, when their guard was down, when they were breaking bread together. When he first started, that was his schtick. He was Andrew Zimmern, before AZ. He was the guy you tuned in to see him eat warthog sphincter, or snake bile, or BBQ iguana. But over time it became less about that, and grew into what it was.

I had the rare opportunity to hear him speak at a book signing event a few years back. As you would imagine, he was even more foul mouthed and charming in person. He was no longer constrained by 60 minutes. It was a supposed to be a 1 hour talk, followed by an hour book signing. Doing the math, there were 120 people there which meant at most they were budgeting 30 seconds per person. The talk went 2 hours, the signing went 3, and Tony was gracious, shook every hand, smiled for every selfie, and was just very gracious. I got to speak to him for about 30 seconds, and all I said was "Tony, your work on all fronts has really impacted me in more ways than I ever expected. Whether it's your books, magazine articles or shows, I've always taken away something from them that struck a chord with me." He stopped signing, reached out and shook my hand, and said 'I sincerely thank you," and held on to the hand for what seemed like an eternity, and gave me an extra squeeze. I doubt it meant as much to him as it meant to me, but I think that's what made Tony, Tony. Whether he knew you for 50 years, or just met you, he had a way of making you feel like you were important.

The line I remember most from his talk...he was talking about the time he was in Liberia and almost died form eating contaminated sea snails his fixer bought at a local market. "In my line of work, you get used to the fact you're probably going to be riding the thunderbucket. But this was different. This was the pain of 1,000 hot knives jabbing my innards whilst a woman in 6" stiletto heels danced the marimba on my balls. Had death come calling that night, I would have welcomed him with open arms just to be rid of the pain."

A wordsmith for our times.

Chongo posted:

https://blogs.scientificameric...ons-its-complicated/

The term microaggression or microgression was a well intentioned piece of research that was designed to identify "subtle racism," however it was quickly expanded to include "subtle sexism," and then just overall xenophobia/religious bigotry, etc.

But as with any burgeoning sociological idea, there is a lot of room for misinterpretation, and there are a lot of hetero white millenials that have hijacked the term and incorrectly use it to classify someone disagreeing with them.

I was being a bit facetious simply because I'm ****ing sick of horse**** terminology for how many different ways people can be assholes.  It's just another way for people to get wrapped up in their own ****, or as you stated, let it be hijacked and never actually do anything productive.  Time to be more reductive and simply say, "don't be an asshole and respect people except if there's evil seeping out of their hole".  The newest twitter made terminology of the week doesn't make anyone smarter.  

When I talk about post modernism/structuralism collapsing in on itself this is exactly it.  As far as the extremely tolerant being less tolerant of the intolerant, that's the reaction.  It's easy to see for anyone who is paying attention.  

As someone with a history background (and not "I'm gonna be a gym teacher") I've always been an advocate of and proud of the fact history follows the techniques of hard sciences and not social sciences, which are awash in indeterminate, circle jerk academia.  History can certainly be revisionist and all histories in themselves are subject the bias of their author regardless of objective intent but these are events that occurred.  There is no doubting these events, only the interpretation.  

I always viewed Bourdain as a historical biographer.  What you saw was social history on the most first person, individualist level.  There was no denying what you saw or what was relayed as behind the scenes.  Documentaries and travel shows can be pretty milquetoast.  That was never the case with Bourdain and it was all done with who he was and how people responded to him.  I think the most outstanding quality is the people and cultures he visited all saw him as one of them.  A working stiff with rough edges.  Other shows it always seemed like "Let's be nice to VanillaFace and show him a few things.  Thanks for coming VanillaFace".  

Because of the work I do I met him several times. Last time I saw him was at Broadway Panhandler on 8th & Broadway in NY (now closed) 6 years ago. He stopped in looking for a huge paella pan. I just happened to be there when he rolled in. 

He never liked people trying to suck up to him. He dug people that talked to him like they were actually interested in the culture of food. 

Everything you’ve heard about his despise of people like Guy Fieri and Rachael Ray is not accurate. He despised them far more than has ever been reported. 

To his last days he never hid the fact having drinks at the bar after a night at the restaurant with every degenerate, strung out, wide eyed dreamer, burnout line cook was the best time of his life because it taught him that regardless of who you were or where you were headed you had this undeniable love of making good food for people you’d never know or be thanked for. 

He will be missed. 

Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain. Everything going for them and every resource available. And they chose to opt out. 

Somehow everyone needs to know their light is someone’s light that needs them to keep their light going no matter how dim they think there light is. Everyone needs a becon. 

CJ, it's never that easy.  What we see and what they see in that moment are vastly  different.  They weren't cowards, they were buried under their perceived past sins and couldn't see anything else.  I think if either had the briefest of human contact at those moments there would've been different outcomes.  

Mental health continues to be stigmatized and it's deeply ingrained in our culture.  When they immediately associate a moment of unavoidable pain and despair as a perceived failure it just adds fuel to the fire.  If they can't see beyond the darkness piled on with immense perceived failure and shame how easy is it to call the "Suicide (I'm a failure) Prevention line".  Stupidest name ever.  You know what would be a million times better?  "We Get It line".  

 

 

 

Currently reading the long Robin Williams biography, "Robin," and there's a guy who got into the self-checkout line but had dealt with pain and depression his whole life. Turns out his diagnosis of Parkinson's was incorrect and they discovered after his death he had Lewy Body dementia which had no treatment or cure and he was headed for a really dark place. Yes, his family missed him and was incredibly sad but that particular affliction would've been a long, lonely road of hell. 

Depression often has nothing to do with failures.  Though someone who already has depression can see many things as failures.

I saw a pretty insightful tweet thread from a gal after the Bourdain death.

To paraphrase...people often wonder why the victims didn't reach out or say anything to anyone about their thoughts or pain.  Depression changes your perception and it robs your ability to reach out.  Also robs your ability to network, to create or maintain any circle of friends or acquaintances. 

It's not sadness.  It's physical and mental anguish and it's a fatal level of apathy.  It can rob you of many things.

YATittle posted:

Currently reading the long Robin Williams biography, "Robin," and there's a guy who got into the self-checkout line but had dealt with pain and depression his whole life. Turns out his diagnosis of Parkinson's was incorrect and they discovered after his death he had Lewy Body dementia which had no treatment or cure and he was headed for a really dark place. Yes, his family missed him and was incredibly sad but that particular affliction would've been a long, lonely road of hell. 

I remembered reading an article about Robin Williams shortly after he had taken his life and that Lewy Body dementia sounded like a particularly awful disease to live with.  Apparently there were times where he knew how bad he was getting and felt like a burden on his family and that may have contributed to him deciding to end it all.

DH13 posted:

Depression often has nothing to do with failures.  Though someone who already has depression can see many things as failures.

I saw a pretty insightful tweet thread from a gal after the Bourdain death.

To paraphrase...people often wonder why the victims didn't reach out or say anything to anyone about their thoughts or pain.  Depression changes your perception and it robs your ability to reach out.  Also robs your ability to network, to create or maintain any circle of friends or acquaintances. 

It's not sadness.  It's physical and mental anguish and it's a fatal level of apathy.  It can rob you of many things.

Exactly.  The last thing people want to do is rush to anyone to share their misery. One, because they'll either get the "cheer up" which is the dumbest thing you can say and you should be punched in the taint or someone who wants to fix it.  When struggling with intensity of perceived failure and shame the last thing is being around people who don't get it, would have no way to get it and said person is glad that person/persons never will get it.  To get it sucks.  That's why even a presence to just acknowledge and even say nothing is helpful.  Yet, it is almost impossible for people to reach out. 

The stigma in this country simply doesn't empower someone to reach out coupled with the massive struggle raging in the first place.  It's sunk in on a cultural level.  

BTW, when I mention failure it's perceived failure by the individual.  This is why it's hard to fathom for people on the outside who know the person as a success.

fightphoe93 posted:
YATittle posted:

Currently reading the long Robin Williams biography, "Robin," and there's a guy who got into the self-checkout line but had dealt with pain and depression his whole life. Turns out his diagnosis of Parkinson's was incorrect and they discovered after his death he had Lewy Body dementia which had no treatment or cure and he was headed for a really dark place. Yes, his family missed him and was incredibly sad but that particular affliction would've been a long, lonely road of hell. 

I remembered reading an article about Robin Williams shortly after he had taken his life and that Lewy Body dementia sounded like a particularly awful disease to live with.  Apparently there were times where he knew how bad he was getting and felt like a burden on his family and that may have contributed to him deciding to end it all.

Yes in the book he'd already gone through periods for, say, an hour where he was physically there but mentally gone and silent, and then he'd snap out of it. Scary to his loved ones. Middle of the night paranoia, too, one night he woke up convinced his good friend Mort Sahl who lived nearby was in great danger and it took his wife till 3:30 a.m. to talk him down. That and the thrashing in the middle of the night is why they were sleeping in separate beds.

http://gossiponthis.com/2018/0...nto-cheating-rumors/

Kind of a rag of a site, but it seems there is some mounting evidence that his GF's infidelity may have been a contributing factor. Although if someone is in a depression so deep they are willing to end it all, it's hard to say that it was just one thing that caused it.

Particularly concerning is how quickly Asia Argento has begun using Rose McGowan, her fellow Weinstein Sister, as a mouthpiece for her defense. 

"She doth protest too much..." 

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