It’s been a fairly disappointing season of “Top Chef” this year, thanks in part to the contract that the show signed with the state of Texas which requires that the show make everything Texas-themed in exchange for filming there. But I continue to watch because it is consistently the most well-cast cooking show on television, the food challenges are usually interesting, and because Padma Lakshmi is the hottest reality show host on television. I’m only human.
However, according to a diner at one of the tapings for an episode of “Top Chef,” Lakshmi doesn’t like to be looked at or talked to by we mere humans.
We were also given some basic directions:
Don’t look directly into the camera
Don’t look directly at Padma
Don’t talk to Padma.
And what was the scene like when Padma entered?
She finally walked in. Actually, I should say she floated in on clouds in her cream-colored blouse and shorts combo with sky-high espadrille wedges. Were those pantyhose on her legs in this searing heat? Nope, must have been her naturally glowing skin. She towered over the rest of her judge companions: Tom, Emeril, Kat Cora and Dana Cowin.
You could tell from Padma’s expression that she was not adapting well to the Texas summer. She looked like she might melt as her assistants touched up her makeup and cooled her neck down with wet rags. But as soon as the cameras went on, her scowl disappeared. (She’s clearly done this before.)
Look: What do you expect? Padma is not paid to hang with the flunkies. She floats in, looks pretty for the camera, takes a few bites, turns away from the camera, spits them out, and goes back to her life of insufferable affluence. She and Gwyneth Paltrow probably hang out, get high on the raspberry farts of Saudi oilmen, and have pillow fights in actual clouds, deigning on occasion to grace the masses with their presence, allowing us to gaze upon them briefly, but never directly. The stares of the middle-class blemish their skin. She was once married to a Pulitzer prize winning author who had a Fatwa placed on him, damnit. Why should she have to suffer the gazes of plebes?
Of course, it won’t stop me from watching. I could look at her peripherally all g*ddamn day.