Thursday, December 8, 2016

Writing, like many things in life, is a process that takes time, dedication and skill. Throughout the semester my writing abilities, and consequently the quality of my blog, has evolved. Creating a strong first and last sentence for my posts is my constant struggle after working so hard to write works that flow smoothly. The way I would seamlessly connect my blogs and try to tell a story became my greatest concern when I designed the order of works for my project. My first blog post lays out a very general and literary base, involving two key terms-audience and genre. In this post, I outlined the importance of their relationship in writing. I choose fundamental groundwork as the introduction for my project because it explains how the genre and audience always must be addressed in all works. My second blog post is one of my personal narratives, which expresses my feelings and provides my experiences as evidence for my argument. In my third writing, I build a bridge between food, observations, and enviroment. Descriptions, imagery and film directions transport my reader in my fourth post into the realm of cooking shows. Finally, my favorite, the last blog post compares and contrasts my grandmother’s and my own perspective surrounding food. The post is completed with this final sentence, “The comparison of our perspectives toward food mirrors this clash of our generations and gives so much meaning to the evolution of women’s role in society.”
I chose these particular blogs because I believe they exemplified moving themes and I enjoyed writing them the most. However, they were far from perfect as they had some errors that needed revising. Revising has always been an arduous task for me. With time it has gotten easier, but I still struggle with some aspects of it. I credit much of my growth in the editing sphere to in class activities, such as peer review. The feedback from my classmates taught me to be a more efficient writer, who is aware of their flaws and limitations and acts to eradicate them. One of the most common writing issues found throughout my posts was being too vague, using pronouns such as “it”, in descriptions.  For example, in my Ethnography post I wrote the last sentence too generally and being biased began my sentence saying: “Cox Hall proves to be one of the best culinary choices for Emory students…” In order to correct this, I changed the beginning of the sentence to “Emory first year students” as most of my first-hand accounts came from them.
My primary problem when revising and editing is that I always look at my work from the same perspective, finding it hard to approach it from another angle. This class has helped me view my writing objectively, allowing greater room for improvement. This objective eye has forced me to face my greatest writing flaw- grammar. My common mistakes span all regions of the English language rulebook-Verb tenses, sentence fragments and punctuation errors. For example, in this sentence: “Thanks for tuning in we’ll see you next week on Chef Chu’s Culinary Adventure.”, I missed the comma after “in” something I realized when revising my writing. The instruction from this class has heightened my sensitivity to grammar flaws, so that I as a writer may better with time.

How does food relate to your experience of gender and or religion? (Revision)
Since an early age, I remember my grandmother working arduously in the kitchen to have everything ready for the arrival of my grandfather. My grandmother would spend countless hours slaving away over a hot stove cooking the food for her family, making sure it was made freshly with quality ingredients and delicate techniques. Her food was by far the best I have ever had; my grandmother had mastered Spanish cuisine to a whole other level after so many years of cooking. These skills were the result of generations of instruction from mother to daughter to sometimes even granddaughter. 
I recall her teaching me how to make “torrejas”, which are the equivalent to American French toast. This famous dessert is made with a special bread dipped in an egg, cinnamon and sugar mixture, then fried until the perfect crunchiness, and soaked overnight in a thick sugary syrup. We would even make the dough from scratch. She always stressed the importance of cooking, primarily when finding a husband, as she would remind me that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.
I love cooking, but thinking that I would do it solely for the purpose of serving someone else disgusted me. My grandmother's goal in life for me was to get married and have kids. I, on the other hand, have always wanted to be a doctor. Science has always sparked my curiosity, but I also have a passion for cooking. Learning the art of food from her was such a privilege, even though our views toward food were entirely different. For her, it was an obligation, a job. For me, it was a hobby, a learning experience.
Our view of food is an analogy of our distinct experiences and generations. She grew up in a society in which women’s role was to be a homemaker, where their rights were limited and their central goal was to breed children. I have grown up in a society where woman have almost equal rights to men and are completely self-sufficient. The comparison of our perspectives toward food mirrors this clash of our generations and gives so much meaning to the evolution of women’s role in society.  Who would have thought that plate of “torrejas” could convey such history and be seen from such different perspectives?

Voiceover Revision
On today’s show, Chef Chu will make a traditional Chinese meal for his family. He will use traditional techniques and methods to make it as authentic as possible.  He begins by grabbing a fresh catfish, removing its scales, and opening its belly. He fillets the fish, drenches it in flour, and fries it. When dealing with the sharp knives he puts his skills to the test, always remembering to be careful and cautious. He uses a thousand-year-old technique for frying which guarantees the crispiness of the fish without making it too greasy. He then moves on to tackling the squid, slicing the rubbery mollusk down the middle and then chopping it in thin slices. He sets it aside and moves on to the vegetables. He dices red-hot chili peppers, always remembering to remove the veins and seeds.  
Then, Chef Chu approaches the succulent pork belly seared to perfection, just golden brown, but still juicy and tender. He cuts it consistently, ensuring that each bite contains the right ratio of meat to fat. He then goes back to cutting vegetables, thinly slicing some white radishes. He cooks the boneless short ribs by searing them, and then cooling them, and slicing them. 
Next, he goes out to his backyard searching for a fresh chicken. Chef Chu carefully chooses one, grasping it harshly by the neck. With this, he prepares a savory meat and vegetable dish with a tasty sauce served with cabbage. The spotlight comes back to the fresh chicken, as Chef Chu cracks its bones and prepares to steam it. Finally, the pork-filled dumplings emerge. Using a seasoned ground pork meat and thin dough, he carefully wraps them and steams them until they are a perfect consistency; not too gummy or thick, just soft and delicious. With this, we finish a traditional Chinese meal prepared by Chef Chu. Thanks for tuning in, we’ll see you next week on Chef Chu’s Culinary Adventure.