• Mon, Apr 30 2012

The Day I Ate Whatever I Wanted. (What Would You Eat?)

7:30. At dinner. Ex-boyfriend telling waiter I will most likely have a glass of prosecco, the beet salad and the steak tartare as my main, and that “we will share the chocolate souffle, even if she says she doesn’t want it”. This is a logical assumption, because this is what I order at restaurants around 100% of the time. Not tonight, buddy!

7:31: Telling waiter I will have the crabcake to start, then the shortribs.

7:32: Asking about desserts. Really investigating this shit. Like a detective.

7:34: Apparently there is an ice cream pie.

7:34: Asking if the ice cream pie could properly be described as “glacial?”

7:35: Asking if there will be some manner of chocolate sauce on this ice cream pie.

7:35: Asking if there will be nuts of some sort.

7:36:There will be an Oreo crust? There will be! Sold, waiter! Sold on ice cream pie!

7:37: Asking if instead of prosecco I could have a glass of… Bailey’s.

7:37: Ex-boyfriend looking at me as though I am insane.

7:40: Ex asking if I am, maybe, upset about my birthday?

7:40: Replying “every time you order for me I think about throwing myself off the Titanic.”

7:41: Ex flustered, asking if that is seriously offensive, I’m laughing like a legit super-villain crazy person, now. I think it’s all the food. I think this is probably why Roman Emperors were always killing people. Telling him I am pretty sure ordering for people is still mandatory south of the Mason-Dixon line.

7:42: Thinking a lot about feminism.

7:43: Ex-boyfriend asking “is this some Megan in Mad Men move? Because you’re mad you couldn’t be there to land the Heinz account?” Shaking head.

7:45: Ex-Boyfriend asking if I can tell him why I am mad at him.

7:46: Explaining that I’m doing a piece on eating whatever I want. Case being made for “you are going to make yourself sick.” Pointing out that “the day I moderately consumed a reasonable amount” was not a catchy title.

7:47: Good fucking God, do not order Bailey’s, this stuff is ridiculous. This is absurd.

7:48: Kind of into it. Asking Ex if he’s tried this, waving it in his direction. Ex drinking scotch, wordless.

7:55: Fuck, this crab cake is delicious. Not as delicious as it could be, though. The pretzel crusted crabcake at Townhouse, say, is better. Irrationally angry that I am not eating that crabcake, on this day when I can eat whatever I want.

8:00: Reminding myself that while this is a free pass eating day, I am not actually going to die tomorrow, unless my heart explodes. Food will still exist in the world, and be there for the eating.

8:20: The short ribs are depressing. Not great. Overcooked, bad layout. Pushing them around on my plate like a sullen child. Making the pieces race one another, one with my fork, one with my knife.

8:22: Knife wins! Go, knife! Fork piece, you will be punished by going in my belly!

8:30: Vaguely aware I’m behaving very badly. I’m just smiling and racing meat pieces and really wish I’d ordered the steak tartare. Realizing that my thoughts are consumed only with food, and not with the social experience aspect of dining. Trying to listen to words, now.

8:31: Words. Reinsurance? Equity. Privately owned company. Murmuring intelligent things like, “Seattle is a place.”

8:35: Staging meat races is fucking hilarious.

8:37: But seriously – why so lame, little short rib? Why are you taunting me with how lame you are?

8:50: ICE CREAM PIE.

8:55: It would be better if it wasn’t made out of coffee ice cream. Telling Ex that I am furious at him for allowing this to happen, and that orange sherbet does taste like perfume. He laughs, but also looks genuinely terrified.

8:57: Ex takes ice cream away from me. Threaten to stab him with my fork. Tension.

8:58: Ice cream returned.

10: Back at the waltz party. Eating a strawberry with whipped cream. Officially too much. Go home and collapse. Sleep for 12 hours.

What I got out of this experience was….

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  • Kylie

    I would eat chicken tikka masala, home made ice cream and apple pie, chocolate chip cookies (or s’mores!), 3 mangos, indian flat bread, and slices of whole wheat/flax toast with various kinds of local cheeses. And wine. LOADS of wine. :) This was a wonderful piece! Cheers!

    • kjon

      Kylie – that sounds freaking incredible! I love tikka marsala and flat bread. Must. Get. Me. Some!

    • Stephanie

      YES! My goodness! This sounds incredibly delicious. I wish I knew who you were so that we could eat this together and not be tired of saying “Oh Damn that was good. what’s next?”

  • peep

    I find it interesting that you always find subtle ways to work in how slender, beautiful, perfect skinned etc. you are (or other people think you are) into your articles. I don’t think I’m the only person that’s noticed this either.

    • Jennifer Wright

      IT’S SO AWESOME BEING ME.

      Also, my skin is pretty shitty.

    • Lindsey

      She IS thin, though.

      And I think people really watch and police what you eat regardless of what you look like. When I was very thin people would DEMAND that I eat more. Now that I’m plump people look at me in disgust when I got in for my 3rd, 4th, and 5th slice of pizza.

      And you know, it IS rude to assume someone has a fast metabolism because THEY ARE GETTING A BAKED POTATO. Stop the presses! Thin woman eats lunch, let’s ask her personal questions about her body!

    • JaneM

      From the pictures I’ve seen Jen IS thin and beautiful in a traditional way. I guess she could try to wear a disguise but if you’re a skinny pretty girl people do comment when you get a baked potato. She’s not bragging. It’s just how life is.

    • Nancy

      It’s completely rude that that guy commented on what you were eating. I HATE IT when people do it HATE IT HATE IT. I need to come up with some more come-backs for those people.

    • Spastastic

      Would you rather she talked about how ugly and fat she is when, according to her pictures, she is obviously not? I’m not seeing humblebragging here, I’m seeing acknowledging basic truths about her appearance when talking about her appearance.

  • Cee

    I would eat loads of carne asada tacos, anything that comes with a dip and dipping tools (guacamole, salsa, pico de gallo, hummus….fries with gravy). An horchata, a mango lassi, red wine, a chocolate suffle with home made vanilla ice cream topped with caramel and sea salt.. and finish it off with crackers cheeses. I always have to end the day with something savory.

    • Jennifer Wright

      I have never actually had a horchata, but I’m now kicking myself over not having a mango lassi. Also horchata – good? I think I’m thrown because it sounds vaguely like “chowder.”

    • Cee

      lol I’m trying to say Horchata in a way that sounds like chowder now.

      Horchata is good, it depends where you have it, though. It is rice water so whoever makes has to make sure that the rice has thoroughly dissolved or blended, then you add a bit more water, cinnamon, vanilla extract and sugar. It tastes like very..cinnamony milk.

      Now I MUST have a mango lassi!

  • Lindsey

    breakfast: http://www.recipegirl.com/2011/03/01/cinnamon-roll-pancakes/ They’re on the verge of too sweet, but a big glass of 2% milk takes care of that. A few slices of bacon. Mixed melon fruit dish.

    Early lunch: tea, but just with scones, clotted cream and lemon curd, strawberries with cream, and a nice cup of mushroom bisque. Also, I’ve never been able to find clotted cream in a grocery store that wasn’t absolutely rancid.

    Late lunch: toasty chicken salad sammich. With a strawberry lemonade, but TART lemonade and sweet strawberry.

    Snack: rum and coke and some movie popcorn. Maybe I’m watching a movie.

    Dinner: tomato basil in angel hair. Plus a little salad with poppy seed dressing. This is with a shirley temple because they are delicious and grenadine makes me happy. Dessert would be a sampler of creme brulee.

    Also: seven layer bar. A bite or two of steak. A bite or two of lasagna. Moroccan tea. Cheese plate. Maybe an extra-large serving of oreos. A hot dog from my local hot dog plate, one chicago style minus pickle and hot pepper, one with just onion and ketchup.

    So, I think it would be a two day eat fest. I have a sweet tooth.

  • Carling

    I kiiiiiiiiiind of do this all the time anyways, and I think that my eating-all-the-food day would probably involve more blendy drinks. I would have so many pina coladas. So many. And then some tiny cinnamon rolls (find a cinnamon roll recipe; make it; cut the strips really, really, really small, and roll them into little quarter-sized rolls; bake them in a normal baking pan; put on icing; eat them like they’re popcorn), and then prosciutto and melon and really, really soft buffala mozzarella, and then more booze. Probably a Bloody Mary to switch things up, and then finish it up with whiskey sours.

    ….And then I would throw up violently.

  • B

    it actually really bothers me that women on the internet writing first person pieces either have to write about how ugly they are (lots of people) or how pretty they are but they are suicidal and have their lives falling apart (Cat Marnell). maybe some people are good looking and happy. no need to flip out about it.

    • B

      sorry meant as a response to peep,

  • Sam

    You always are able to eat whatever you want (depending on pricing, o’course), so I pretty much believe you SHOULD always eat whatever you want within reason! I eat dessert with every meal but am overall pretty healthy.

  • natalie

    ok yesterday was one of my glorious eat-anything days (of which there are few and far between) i ate:

    BRUNCH
    scrambled eggs with chorizo sausage
    toast with butter
    glass of sangria
    coffee w/ milk

    SNACK
    churros with chocolate
    cappuccino

    DINNER
    tapas: mini chicken sandwich
    3 sangrias (there was a celebration going on, i don’t usually drink this much in one day)

    glass of red wine

  • Lauren

    I think this is one of my favorite articles you have written, probably because I’m currently eating clean and not going over 1300 calories a day so this is pretty much how I intend on acting the day after my friends wedding that I’m dieting for. I do however feel slightly sick just reading about it.

    I honestly don’t think I could even say what I would eat without regret – I wouldn’t be able to eat it all in one day or I would regret missing something.

  • Arnie

    I pretty much eat whatever I want all the time. It always worked fine for me, until I moved to America. Now I should probably start paying a little more attention, as there is far, far too much wonderful (and easily accessible) food in this land of deliciousness.

    You make it sound like so much fun, though! I need these s’mores cookies. As soon as I’m done with work, I am going to google a recipe and try to make some, I have decided.

  • Jamie Peck

    These days for me are called “weekend days.” They generally involve lots of brunch, Chinese food, Thai food, burritos, fried fake meats, margaritas, and chocolate. Not all at once, though. They also tend to spill over into Monday because who throws out perfectly good leftovers? Oh fuck, I just remembered I still have a chocolate chip cookie sitting on top of my fridge. Yay.

    • Andy

      This is easily my favorite Gloss article to date. So damned funny.
      I eat like this after half-marathons, or every 15+ mile run during marathon training.
      Best things:
      -duck confit. It’s like the decadent love child of bacon and roast duck.
      -chocolate chip cookie dough. Cliche I know, but the key is it must be homemade and eaten as part of actually making cookies to share. Warm fuzzies all over the place.
      -thick-cut bacon, ideally in the company of eggs benedict, potatoes dry-fried on a cast-iron skillet in duck fat, and a large mimosa.
      -Homemade cheeseburger with aged white cheddar, caramelized onions, honey mustard, avocado, bacon, heirloom tomatoes and a toasted onion bun.
      -old-fashioned strawberry shortcake on actual shortcake and very softly peaked whipped cream.
      -cocktail made of 50/50 champagne and elderflower liquor.
      -(ditto to the girl who said tikka masala, and add in a generous serving of veggie pakoras and the kind of naan that has raisins and cashews in it).

      And drink a LOT of water all day to fight of the salt-induced puffiness and general icky-feeling that comes from too much grease.

    • Jennifer Wright

      Oh, my God, Andy, I think you have hit upon my ideal menu. Champagne and elderflower liquor is obviously the ideal drink combination to go with cookie dough.

  • Sam

    I actually did this yesterday, for some reason i went crazy with the food. For brunch I had waffles with strawberries and whipped cream, eggs with cheese! and gravy!, yogurt and fresh fruit (at the time it seemed rational to add something normal). Lunch was a huge cup of frozen yogurt with all kinds of sweet goodness on top. Dinner was Japanese food, and midnight was a taco. I feel really sick today. Lesson learned.

    And yes, people will judge. My brother was like, “you’re splurging today huh?” My boyfriend didn’t say anything, I think he was relieved I wasn’t counting calories.

  • MR

    Yeah, you should eat whenever. I don’t limit myself to any specific type of food, cause it’s one of life’s true delicacies. But lately I thought why not experiment with Cajun, cause there’s lots of seafood, and my girlfriend can eat and likes seafood. It’s really good, and she really digs the Etouffee. I been favoring the Blackened Catfish Filet myself. Sounds like you had a really good time. :)

  • Tania

    Poutine. All the poutine. I would find every restaurant that serves various types here and gorge.

    (For non-Canadians, poutine is fries, cheese curds, and gravy. Mmmm.)

  • Eagle Eye

    So…my parents are arriving next week for two days (coincidentally the two directly after my last two papers are due) and I intend to eat All.The.Things. because they will be free as my parents are going to pay for them and I am a broke grad student and I’ve been surviving off whatever is still in my pantry and yogurt.

    I AM SO EXCITED!!!

  • Amy

    Waitwaitwait, you went to St. John’s!? You must have gone to Annapolis, because we in Santa Fe ate whatever we wanted every single day, damn the torpedoes. Case in point? My roommate and I roasted a whole pig underground for Reality one year. Delicious.

    • Jennifer Wright

      I always heard you guys knew how to party like Romans.

    • Ashley Cardiff

      You were in the underground pig roasting class??

      What was that like class of ’03?

      (I started in SF but graduated in Annapolis)

    • Amy

      Yes! SF03! I can’t believe you heard of it — we’re FAMOUS! It almost makes up for the fact that we were terrible students.

  • MaryAnnC

    My weight is a yo-yo so I’ve tried many ways to eat and not gain weight. I finally figured out that you can eat whatever you want and not gain weight. I just cut back on the amount. I don’t eat low- n0- calorie/fat foods because they’re gross. Since I’ve cut back on the amount I eat and not what I eat I’m thin again and staying that way. It’s not as hard as I thought it’d be with the exception of coca-cola. I can’t give that up AT ALL and that’s my splurge (as in one a day and not 2-4 a day like i used to do). I know it’s one of the worst foods out there but if you do the math that’s about 400ish calories saved per day. I also run about 3 miles 5 days a week.

  • porkchop

    Once, on a college band trip, I had been craving fried chicken for hours, and when we arrived at our destination, it was a wonderland of fried chicken. There were trays of fried chicken from horizon to horizon. I didn’t count how many pieces I ate, but it is a miracle I didn’t make myself sick.

  • Niki

    I’d eat my weight in pasta, fresh mozzarella cheese, and cupcakes.

  • Sabrina

    I did this on Sunday. It tends to be my Sunday ritual. My boo and I ate eggs benedict with pasta and lobster for lunch accompanied with Bloody mary’s and creme brulee for dessert. Then, a short while later for dinner, we had clam chowder and the biggest chicken schnitzel you’ve ever seen with gravy and mashed potatoes. Then, we stopped at a gas station for corn nuts and slim jims. It was bomb.

  • Catie

    CHOCOLATE FOUNTAIN. Maybe for my nightstand. That would be happening.

  • Tanya

    There’s just SO MUCH I want to eat, it wouldn’t be a day, it would have to be a MONTH. It would probably alternate between Thai, Indian, Japanese, and Turkish food. It would involve Eggs Benedict with smoked salmon and buttered spinach on the side. It would have pizza with extra tomatoes, anchovies, and artichokes. There would have to be Montreal smoked beef (and poutine, but that goes without saying). Oh, I’d go to Scandinavia for the pickled herring, lingonberry, and fermented shark (but will I like it?! I guess I’d have to see).

    I’d have berries and peaches, a slice or two of pumpkin pie followed by cinnamon apple pancakes the next day (unless there’s real maple Canadian syrup involved, then I’d just want crepes). There’d be panna cotta, cupcakes, and macarons. Tiramisu, mochi, and caramel waffles with a mug of hot mint tea. Pistachio, rum raisin, and macadamia ice cream – hell, ALL THE ICE CREAM. OH MY GOD.

    One month, not even a year, is obviously not enough for this. It would take a lifetime, but what an amazing lifetime that would be :)

  • Nessy

    Oh, someone makes pretzel crusted crab cakes? I think I’m going to have to try them. I love crab cakes. Also, fresh mussels (P.E.I.), clam chowder (Cape Cod and Cape Hatteras style, not so much Manhattan) and baked clams. And sushimi. I like seafood, basically.
    I would eat all of that in one day if given the chance, and then top it all off with chiles rellenos, because they are delicious.
    And Thai food. Spicy, spicy Thai food…
    And tres leche cake…
    And a trip to the hospital because I am dying.