Bob Shacochis will read and sign his latest book, Domesticity: A Gastronomic Interpretation of Love, from 7-9 p.m. Thursday at Inkwood Books, 216 Armenia Ave., Tampa. A columnist for Gentleman's Quarterly, Shacochis won the 1985 American Book Award for his first collection of stories, Easy in the Islands. His first novel, Swimming in the Volcano was a finalist for last year's National Book Award.
Here is a taste of Domesticity:
Of the gastronomic truths
that help illuminate human existence
perhaps the most tantalizing is that each life
can be identified and tagged with a single
edible entity _ I hesitate to say food _ that
embodies the personality of an individual.
For the author and celebrated eater Calvin
Trillin, the centerpiece of his gastronomic
crest would be _ presuming he could
possibly make up his mind about such a
portentious emblem _ a slab of barbecue ribs.
... Don, a roadside entrepeneur who vends
fireworks and Christmas trees, would be
required to sport a bill cap bearing the Ding
Dong logo. Likewise, my gastronomic
mentor Captain Tay would have his maritime
license stamped with the image of a chili
pepper. In the wisest of New Age societies,
we would abandon the celestial interrogative,
What's your sign? and replace it with the
more vital, revealing, and intensely serious
question, What's your food?