There is a scene in one of the Suzanne Collins's trilogy The Hunger Games that really fascinated and repulsed me and today a television show reminded me of it...
In the scene, Katniss Everdeen is in the corrupt Capital preparing for her appearance on the nationally televised gladiatorial competition. She attends a party where people she has come to like, members of her "team," reveal just how removed they are from the reality of life outside the Capital. One of them makes a remark that horrifies Katniss. She learns that party-goers take a pill that acts as an emetic so that they can eat their fill of wonderful gourmet foods, take the pill, vomit it all up, and continue eating. Thinking of the near-starvation she and all her family and friends experienced in District 12, Katniss is disgusted and horrified.
I felt this way tonight when I stumbled across Man v. Food on The Travel Channel. It was set in Baltimore, so I thought I'd watch it a while, Charm City being my hometown and all. The host (Adam Richman) apparently travels throughout the country eating to excess at restaurants that have "food challenges" (like, eat this gallon of ice cream in ten minutes and you don't have to pay for it). Tonight's episode featured a restaurant in North East, Maryland that challenges customers to eat something like five different cuts of beef (totally 74 ounces) with a pound of side dishes in one hour. So this entire show was about watching this guy eat four and half pounds of meat in an hour. It was truly disgusting.
In a world where people are starving, why the hell do we have even ONE restaurant that has this stupid publicity stunt of eating until you are sick, let alone enough of them to sustain four seasons of idiotic television. It is simply the glorification of gluttony. I'll never watch it again.