"The only time to eat diet food is while you're waiting for the steak to cook."
Those words were spoken by incomparable, irreverent Julia Child, the woman who single-handedly changed the fact of American cooking.
Now, you may be asking dear readers (and I don't fault you for asking, and I thank you for being so polite!), how does a twenty-four-year old know about Julia Child?
Right after I was in high school, the movie Julie and Julia came out. I probably wouldn't have even have gone to see it, if Meryl Streep wasn't in it. I had recently started to become obsessed with her and was devouring every new movie she was in. As I sat and watch her embody this unique, unconventional woman, I was overcome with an urge to discover who she really way.
I soon discovered that Julia Child was a titan of cooking in American with a very unconventional past. Born into a privileged family, Julia wandered through her early years with no sense of purpose. During World War II she eventually made her way into the secret service, eventually meeting her future husband, Paul Child.
When her husband was sent to France, she followed along, thinking herself to be a wife and nothing but. But, eventually, living in Paris ignited a spark inside her. She decided to take classes at Le Cordon Bleu, France's preeminent cooking school. And the rest, of course, is history. Through her groundbreaking cookbook, Mastering The Art of French Cooking, and her television series, The French Chef, she taught a new generation of cooks in America to be daring and never apologize for your mistakes.
To an odd high-schooler, Julia's story was like the Gospel to me. This woman, who fit no social norm, was able to inspire a nation with her zest for life and unique way of thinking. She thought independently and found her passion later in life in her forties.
Julia's story teaches us that, no matter our age, gender or sexuality, we can change the world through independent ideas and a strong work ethic. She helped me during a period of great uncertainty and awkwardness. I remember being so uncomfortable during my last year of high school and, when it ended, I had no plan or ambition. The summer after high school, Julie and Julia was released and I was thrown into the world of this woman, devouring biographies and television shows about her. She inspired me to throw myself into my work and find what I was good at and, by damn, I did! The awkward, antisocial person I was then is nowhere near the outgoing, intelligent person I am now. And Julia Child is one of the few people I can credit for helping me during that difficult time. Julia died a few years ago, but I still feel her presence and smile in my life.
Whenever I'm feeling blue, I go to my bookshelf and find my signed copy of Julia Child and Company, signed by Julia and her husband Paul, and I run my hand over her signature, knowing that no matter how hard things may get in life sometimes, I always have her and many other to inspire me to do great things.
Thank you Julia, now and forever.
Thank you for reading! This is going to become another featured segment in my blogs. Each week, I will profile someone I think is important in my life and, in turn, you'll learn about some wonderful people! Please drop me a comment and let me know if you enjoy it! You readers keep me going and I love hearing from you.