A weekend media whirlwind by Alice Waters was capped off by her big appearance on 60 Minutes last night (for those of you missed it, see the full 12-minute video after the jump).
It was vintage Alice Waters: dreamy, loopy, charismatic, adamant, at times infuriating, at times inspiring. For those familiar with Alice and Slow Food, the segment might have been a bit of snooze, but it was, in many ways, her introduction to America. The piece, headed by Lesley Stahl, included her suggestions for the White House, the Slow Food Nation fest in San Francisco, a cameo by the prettiest mayor in America, the Edible Schoolyard program, and of course, the accusations of elitism and self-righteousness.
Perhaps most frustratingly, some vital questions surrounding the entire Slow Food movement went unanswered, particularly those involving costs and practicality. In what could have been a great opportunity to showcase how America can afford to eat organic (in a recession), Waters simply asserted "we can't not afford it" and cooked an egg ... in her roaring kitchen fireplace. The most memorable quote, however, was the following Watersism:
"We make decisions every day about we we're going to eat. And some people want to buy Nikes, two pairs. And other people want to eat Bronx grapes and nourish themselves."But, as Gawker point outs, Waters may seem loopy and elitist, but it doesn't mean she's wrong:
"No sooner had Stahl finished asking 'Is she kidding??' than the New York Times reported that six percent of retail pork in a recent test carried a deadly staph infection, MRSA, that kills 18,000 Americans each year...Now there's an exciting new pig strain of MRSA, which seems to be jumping to humans. This is one of the many reasons Waters is pushing people to buy antibiotic-free meats and other farmers-market-type goods regardless of the economic climate. She's apparently just too polite to say so."
And here's the full video: