So the New Yorker is apparently printing personal essays written by Lena Dunham, because an HBO show was just not enough Lena Dunham for all of us to be exposed to. Lena Dunham to the media establishment is like broccoli was to your grandma when you were a kid. She’d be like, “Here, have some more broccoli,” and you’d be like, “No thanks grandma, I’ve had enough.” So Lena Dunham is human broccoli, basically.
With that said, the magazine published a Dunham personal essay a few weeks ago that I didn’t read for the same reason I passed on broccoli at Thanksgiving: it was something I just didn’t want to consume. But last night my Twitter feed was blew up over an excerpt from said essay in which Dunham launches an unprovoked attack on paella, so I was forced to take a bite of broccoli, so to speak.
“I’ve always found paella kind of pretentious, a food that wants to be everything and is therefore nothing. Much like the mid-nineties trend of wearing a skirt over pants, it seems the height of indecision. But everyone regards the pan of tiny squids and clamshells and fatty sausage as if it were a great work of art.”
Well isn’t that just precious. Paella is a Spanish peasant food that dates back to the 18th century, at least, and is DELICIOUS. There’s good reason Anthony Bourdain beefed with Mark Bittman when Bittman suggested to his readers that they cook paella in an aluminum pot.
Well, he claims to know everything. And I think that the most fundamental aspect, the most beloved aspect of paella, is the crispy, crunchy stuff on the outside, or that outer layer. It seems disrespectful to a great dish to tell people in a presumably authoritative way, “this is acceptable,” when you’re basically removing the best thing about it right off.
If Spain were to declare war on America over this, I wouldn’t blame them one bit. Hell, Bourdain and I may defect to Spain and fight for the other side for this cause.
Before she sparks further international incidents, Lena Dunham must be stopped.