Wednesday, August 8

Tomatoes

Did any of you catch Jamie Oliver’s new programme on Tuesday night?
I thought it absolutely ridiculous- he doesn’t dig his own garden and plant anything– he has a very posh, very knowledgeable gardener, poly tunnels full of unusual varieties of (this week) tomatoes and a completely staged ‘propped’ house and garden. What incensed me more than anything was the running tap and his overflowing butler sink. He obviously doesn’t have to worry about his water bill with all the MILLIONS Sainsbury's are paying him; it optimised what was so wrong with programmes of this ilk – they talk the talk but don’t walk the walk.
This latest series is just a conduit for yet another book and yet more product endorsements – which you know I HATE with a passion.
I don't hate Jamie Oliver - admittedly he irritates me, but I don't think he's a nasty person or anything like that, but I find the cult of personality that seems a constant these days ultimately unhealthy for the rest of us.

22 comments:

  1. We missed this having foresworn the tv for the holidays but I know that I would have been grouching in an irritated way at the tv.

    Last week I had an interesting cnversatin with a garden writer abut the "Matha Stewarting" of gardening with all the lifestyle personalities with trugs, lace up wellies and fancy colanders, creeping into what used to be straightforward instructions about how to actually grow things.

    I didn't think that it was as bad as she argued - and pointed out how bad cooking programmes are in comparison - but then again I read the RK Allison catalogue and would love to drift about with a trug. How many of the audience do you think actually garden or cook?

    J
    x

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  2. I went through a long period of finding anything to do with Jamie incredibly irritating - particularly those really cheesy sainsbury adverts (only to be outdone by the saccharine of the Marks and Spencer ads) and then he did the School Dinners stuff. Yes there were several books etc taken from the series but I cannot believe that anyone would go through all that grief just to self promote. Maybe he didn't realise what he was getting into but I couldn't help but admire him for it. I do agree with you though. I find it very annoying that just because a celebrity has a nice garden, kitchen, house etc tv producers think they can make a show from it. Who cares? The whole thirst for celebrity has spiralled out of control, but at least someone like Jamie has a talent. The worst kind of celebrity has to be Big Brother or these vapid talent shows. The contestants have their 15mins of fame and then dissapear into obscurity again. Its all so banal!!!
    How is Harry finding the heat? Silas is having evening walks at the moment.
    Love Al x

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  3. Anonymous12:05 PM

    woow she's back! I've recently fallen out of love with Country Living for many of the reasons talked about here....Last summer I visited a recent winner of the business awards, and having seen their wares I can hand on heart say that it was the 'concept' not the actually quality of the product that made them a winner.

    The neighbour...oohhh love the fish!

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  4. Yes, I thought it was all very pretty to look at but there's no way Jamie would be able to keep up with such a large garden himself so it was all for show really. The vast majority of us don't have a large garden let alone a brick oven in it! But I do like Jamie, I think he does some good and tries to give something back in spite of his celebrity status and wealth.
    Gill

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  5. It is very interesting how gardening and cookery programmes have become almost adverts for aspirational acquisitions and lifestyles - you can't have a cookery programme about say family food without it being set in the country side of yester year with product placements all over the place.
    I know JO has some natural talent as a chief and he gave over his celebrity for school dinners BUT does that really justify the millions he is now earning? This current series on C4 apparently was made by his own production company so are getting exactly what he wants to project.
    Hi Jane – I love that phrase, ‘ Martha Stewarting’ – and as we know there are so many Martha wanna be’s waiting for the chance to do it to everything…
    Hello Al and Silas - The M&S adverts are truly toe curling.
    Harry goes out very early morning and then 'chill's out by an open door or window. He's also having his summer hair cut soon which will make him feel cooler I'm sure.
    Hello neighbour,
    Country Living - now don't get me started...... part of me loves the covers, the eye candy that magazines of that ilk offer but it's when I start reading them that the china starts getting thrown about - as they are so up themselves....but so many women lap it all up.
    I was thinking about expressing opinions and having style preferences and how that affects other people (not that I have any acolytes) - I was reading an article in yesterday's Telegraph about how now we all have to turn our back from buying cheap clothes as shock, horror they're bad for the environment... there’re not bad for very poor people you otherwise wouldn't be able to afford clothes. But I feel I am digressing rather....

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  6. Hello Gill,
    Jamie seems like a good father and I almost forgot he did take on those delinquents at 15.... so come the revolution I wouldn't shoot him:)

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  7. I think you secretly fancy Jamie, as for me, I have my eye on the gardener!!!

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  8. I idea of a man being able to cook me a meal is a bit of a turn on but Jamie? NOOOOOO WAY

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  9. He's not very sexy is he!
    J
    x

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  10. The seduction of food cooked by celebrities is choking out the true chefs of the world.They lie in the splattered, dog-eared pages of an heirloom cookbook.Perhaps passed down from Gramma, found at a used bookstore or a bootsale these are the recipes that have stood the test of time.So turn off that TV grab yourself an old cookbook and read.If enough of us do this there will be no audience for all these gourmet guys or buyers for there endorsed products! Susan

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  11. Just had to chime in here, Lynn. You know hubby and I run a cookshop... I roll my eyes each time one of our sales reps comes in with a new brochure showing the latest celebrity "endorsed" products. The products really do make me gag. Some end up being "flash-in-the-pan" products made cheaply, which only end up being discontinued and marked down when the celebrity chef's status dwindles. But I do covet Jamie's huge stone mortar & pestle (we carry them at the shop, but I have no counterspace at home for one). I stopped watching Jamie several years ago, and didn't realize he had a new series out.

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  12. I have a huge stone P&M I bought in Woolworth's butI can't use it as it's just too heavy ....
    I didn't think JO would be big in America - God that's depressing!

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  13. As Susan has suggested, start collecting old cookery books - I can't get enough of them

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  14. Oh goodness yes, JO was very big on our "FoodTV" network. We all loved him at first, in the days when he first started out, was getting married, had his first child, etc. But then the candle waned. Now Gordon Ramsay is CONSTANTLY on! With his own cookware and china to boot (made by Royal Doulton I believe).

    In regards to old cookbooks, hubby and I have collected oodles, thanks in the greatest part to our grandmothers who were both avid collectors. Many of my grandmother's favorite recipes were taken from old newspapers (unfortunately for me they are written in Lithuanian)!

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  15. Well all I can say is that my boys like Jamie, his cooking, shows and books and anyone who inspires a 13, 15 & 17 year old boy to try his hand in the kitchen is okay with me.

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  16. I never gave it any thought that JO could be a role model for men/boys - so that's very interesting point. You can tell I'm childless can't you?

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  17. ack - just cannot watch him - he makes me feel slightly sick.......

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  18. Well Gigi,I watch JO last night and must admit that I quite enjoyed it! Did you notice that he's all grown up now and has stopped saying pucker - everything is delish now!
    Al x

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  19. Al, I didn't watch it last night - I have taken a vow;-)

    Hello Tracy:)He doesn't make me feel sick but I wouldn't want to kiss him! Do you think he smells of chips?

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  20. Anonymous10:34 PM

    I'll give you the school dinners and the delinquents....but that hat and the upward inflection..ggrrrr. The neighbour.

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  21. Did you see the promos for it before? Jamie apparently pulling up fresh carrots from a garden, which were miraculously straight, perfect and completely free of earth? You couldn't make it up...(and I am having problems with Country Living too, glad it's not just me..)

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  22. I do think he is jumping on the bandwagon yet again, I wonder how knowledgeable he really is about gardening, although you cannot fault his cooking, not that I would have wanted a deep fried bee on my plate! It just goes to show that money can't buy you a good looking head gardener either!

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