Context.

Let’s make this clear:

Stadium food is, by and large, utterly horrible stuff.

Yeah, yeah, we’re the city with Wrigley and Soldier Field and Chicago Hot Dogs are legendary and that those brats and Polish sah-sages taste so good by the third quarter. I know. But it doesn’t mean that the food you so happily enjoy at a game is actually good. Robbed of its context–alcohol, entertainment, tens of thousands of screaming fans–a stadium dog is a sad little thing, with its sometimes-soggy, sometimes-rock-hard bun and its squishy tube o’ meat. Same goes for, say, your mom’s really greasy enchilada casserole that’s always so delicious when you visit her but turns out, well, greasy when you make it yourself. It’s not that you can’t cook it; it’s that you learned it was good in a particular set of circumstances and, robbed of those circumstances, it just doesn’t measure up.

I’m sure this rule of context only applies to very specific foods, but it’s interesting to consider how psychology and geography can play into how much you enjoy what you’re eating. I mean, I wolfed down a couple hot dogs at the Bears/Chiefs game (we will not discuss the Cowboys debacle; it never happened) and at the time they were pretty much the best things ever. Imagine if I got the same dogs on my plate at a fancy restaurant–hell, even at some hot dog dive–I’d have an entirely different reaction.

This is promising, really. It means I’ll never attempt some horribly unhealthy State Fair food on my own, because when you’re in your kitchen a deep fried twinkie is just gross.

-Jim is torn between being excited about his car and hyperventilating until he owns this

  • http://www.foodonthefood.com Tammy

    Are you sure about that? I’m standing here, Twinkie poised over hot oil, hoping you’re wrong.

  • http://ljob685.blogspot.com/ John O’Brien

    I always loved your mom’s enchilada casserole.

  • http://ljob685.blogspot.com/ John O’Brien

    post script: I just got back from the store with this http://www.bungie.net/Projects/Halo3/default.aspx

  • http://alosha7777.blogspot.com melissa

    laughing at tammy’s comment. :P I think geography can have a lot to do with it, yeah. so did you pick up halo 3? I just ordered the legendary edition. *peeing pants with excitement*

  • http://sloshed.hyperkinetic.org/ Marleigh

    On the whole I agree with you, but I had some of the best kettle corn ever at the season opener USC game.

    I don’t really care to discuss the C—— disaster either, but I did a little dance of joy after Lovie’s press conference yesterday. Take that, Grossman and your terrible decision-making!

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