Editor’s Notebook

#MeToo musings & a feast

By Greta Belanger deJong

The #MeToo phenomenon has sparked a lot of intimate conversations around the country.

Women of all ages are sharing stories with their friends—stories they may have never told anyone before:  about incidents large and small. A common thread is humiliation. Shame. No wonder no one had been talking about this stuff.

I’ve lived an unscathed life, by all accounts. At age 11, in line for the high dive at my community pool, I was apparently dawdling, for a cocky teen boy behind me said, “Hey, little girl with the big boobs, move!” Crass words from a rude boy. An incident of bad manners more than sex. Yet, I felt the sting of humiliation from that comment for years. That tiny incident is my reminder of just how shamed and dirty many women must feel when boundaries have been breached in serious ways.

What can be said of the president and Sen. Hatch and so many others who sneer at the women who are gathering their courage to speak up? It’s enough to make one hope for reincarnation: Maybe next life they’ll get some experience, and feel differenly. I don’t know that there’s much hope for them this time around.

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My favorite event of the year is coming up: Slow Food Utah’s Feast of Five Senses, on Sunday, October 21. Slow Food Utah is a chapter of the national group, which is affiliated with the international movement championing “good, clean, fair food for all.”

The Feast of Five Senses is the all-volunteer board’s main event,  which has raised in the neighborhood of $90,000 over the past 10 years to fund their mini-grants, ranging from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars, that go to local foodcentric projects: supplies and equipment to school and community gardens and individuals for beekeeping, fruit harvesting, seed-saving, mushroom- growing, nutrition education,  grow tunnels, cold frames, orchard improvements and even heirloom ducks.

The evening is gracious and rather decadent in a good way with a topnotch silent auction, remarkable alcoholic beverages, and the best, locally sourced food you will find and eat in one place in Utah, prepared by chefs who specialize in this sort of thing: Philip Grubisa (Beltex Meats), Michael Richey (Fireside on Regent), Jen Gilroy (Meditrina) and Daniel Cantu (Twin Suns Cafe), to name just a four of the 13 providers. Each chef introduces his or her own course. You sit with people you may or may not know, but the feeling of conviviality is high, and you leave with more friends than you came with.

After years of appreciating this feast, I’m now honored to be a  member of the Slow Food Utah board, and am seeing from the inside what goes into making this event happen. Board President Gwen Crist and chef wrangler Jude Rubadue are the formidable  forces that drive this show.

It’s a moveable Feast, and this year it’s at the Masonic Temple on East South Temple. The evening is $150 ($125 without alcohol). You get to take home great memories, plus the knowledge that good things will happen with your dollars. Buy your tickets online at https://conta.cc/2OkbtMa.

I hope to see you there!

Greta Belanger deJong is the founder, editor and publisher of CATALYST.

This article was originally published on October 9, 2018.