Le Whaf (2/2)

This week, I was particularly amused, bewildered, and even alarmed at a new idea that Mr. Knight introduced us to: Le Whaf. The whole concept of inhaling food to me seems unnatural and absurd. Inhuman, even? I should probably start by explaining what Le Whaf is: basically, it’s a machine that vaporizes food and produces a smoke-like substance that you breathe in and some people have found it acceptable to call it a decent excuse for food. According to some articles I came across, in 10 minutes of “whaffing”, one consumes only 200 calories, so I guess that if you happen to weigh 650 pounds and are addicted to lemon tart, you can start reducing your caloric intake by breathing your food instead of actually eating it. This “Le Whaf” machine does have an interesting scientific side to it though. It creates your food vapor of choice through some kind of fancy microscopic crystals that vibrate rapidly when the machine is on, creating ultrasound waves. As these waves travel through the essence of fried shrimp or chocolate or cherry or whatever it is you happen to be consuming, they create areas of alternating high and low pressures, which agitate the liquid into bubbling and eventually becoming tiny droplets that emerge as vapor from the opening. And while this is all very high tech and fancy, I really just don’t see the point. I personally think that a big part of food is actually eating it. I don’t believe that “Le Whaf” can even be called food. When I go to a restaurant and get a bowl of chowder or a salad or a sandwich or a piece of cake, I think a big part of the experience is feeling the texture of the food and therefore getting a better understanding of what it is. In some of my previous posts, I said that the cultural aspect of food, sitting and chatting with family and friends and pondering the history of where your food came from is an important part of my “food philosophy”, and I would like to think that food, in its most natural state (read: solid) should remain the way it is, at least to preserve my culture, if nothing else. It’s kind of scary if you imagine it: instead of sharing a conversation over a meal, people will chat between puffs of chicken stew smoke, bewildered at how people once actually ate solid matter and called it a decent excuse for food…

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One Response to Le Whaf (2/2)

  1. Mr. Sturdy Knight says:

    A nice summation of the issue, William. You make an interesting point; when I want to converse over a meal, I can put my fork down and begin speaking with the confident knowledge that my chicken stew will still be there in five minutes when I have made my point. But what if my meal were a puff of vapor in a glass? I would be caught in a terrible bind, forced to choose between getting my chicken-y fix and unleashing my dazzling wit, knowing the moment for one or the other would soon be past. By its ephemeral nature, Le Whaf damages the leisure of mealtime, a loss that I hadn’t even considered until you brought it up. Well put, indeed.

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