I was thrilled to learn yesterday, the 2019 James Beard Awards nominees were announced, and among them: Geraldine DeRuiter’s I Made the Pizza Cinnamon Rolls from Mario Batali’s Sexual Misconduct Apology Letter post on her site, Everwhereist, has been named as one of three nominees for Best Personal Essay, Long Form.
So first of all, here’s to an independent writer and publisher getting her name up there along with writers from the NY Times and the Atlantic! It’s so well-deserved.
If you may recall the backstory, restauranteur, celebrity chef, and food TV mainstay Mario Batali stepped down after 8 allegations of sexual misconduct, only to write what may be the world’s strangest #metoo apology letter.
It ended a mea culpa with…a recipe for cinnamon rolls.
Unlike most writers who simply mocked him, Geraldine went ahead and made those cinnamon rolls, photographed them, then blogged about them (as bloggers do), yielding the most spectacularly funny, poignant, rage-filled, soul-crushing rant about womanhood, workplace discrimination, social media harassment and misogyny.
It’s so so good.
Even if the cinnamon rolls turned out like crap.
Batali’s another drop in the bucket. He’s not the first, he certainly won’t be the last (he already isn’t). The misogyny runs so deep that the calls now come from inside our heads. We blame ourselves. We hate ourselves. We wonder if our skirts are too short, if our bodies are too noticeable. If we’re asking for too much, or not enough. We don’t trust ourselves, even when we should.
We try to follow a half-written recipe and think it’s our fault when it doesn’t work.
In any case, just go read the piece.
Note that it’s decidedly NSFW. Though these days, even workplaces are not always safe for work.
And should Geraldine not win (which would be a travesty), maybe she’s already won: Just this month, Batali sold off all his restaurants and quietly stepped away.
Photo © Geraldine DuRuiter, Everywhereist