Are You a Foochebag?

That would be MISTER Foochebag to you.

Tip of the toque to Lisa Petty for turning me on to this link, which led me to this link, that led me to this psycho foodie highly caffeinated twitter- holic who allegedly “invented” the term foochebag. Until I found this link to Brandon Smith, an  intern for ABC 7 Chicago’s food reporter, Steve Dolinsky. (Hi, Steve!)

Foochebag: “foodies who are categorized by “attention-seeking, elitism, and superficiality.” Basically, arrogant food bloggers and Twitter users.

Wow, it’s a new day. Are you a foochebag? I guess I am because I know Steve Dolinsky! You are if you are the “mayor” of any restaurant in Dallas. Step forward and let thyself be known.

Update: Mister Foochebag claims he learned the term from Michael Nagrant.

Phaedra from Houston lays claim to coining the term foochebag.

Update: Phaedra in Houston is claiming the rights. I am a douche canoe for calling her a psycho foodie.

23 comments on “Are You a Foochebag?

  1. when dealing with any passionate subject (food is certainly one), people fall into one of two categories.

    category 1 – people who are truly passionate about the subject, maybe even knowledgeable about it…because it gives them pleasure. It’s about the fulfillment it gives them.

    category 2 – people for whom the subject gives them a sense of power and elevated status, providing them the platform to be the narcissistic __bag they choose to be making up for a esteem issues or whatever else drives people to feel good making others feel inferior.

    food, music, tech, sports…there are ___bags in every forum that discusses these topics.

    for every person who can sit in rapt silence listening to their favorite band’s favorite album for the 100th time, there is another who will talk OVER a great song to tell you that the version he heard live in 2003 is better.

    when eating/listening/watching, ask yourself…would your pleasure be decreased if you weren’t allowed to tell anyone about it?

    twitter et al has exacerbated a silly quality in us humans, the one that tends to value the review over the experience, the camera phone pic over the memory, etc.

  2. Jon, I guess where you and I will have to differ is that you seem to see the review or conversation as a self-indulgent hanger-on, where as I see it as a separate but equal joy. No less valid, no less important.

    The power of sharing an experience can certainly rival that of having the experience. That certainly doesn’t make the sharer narcissistic. A desire to share and inter-relate has been around much longer than Twitter et al, or even computer for that matter.

  3. “Psycho foodie” is an interesting way to describe someone whom you’ve never met. I suppose @sensestorm should be honored that the Senior Editor of your publication took time out of her busy day to toss off a poorly-researched throw-away piece just to insult her.

  4. JonfromTJs description of a foochebag is spot-on, much more than the description given in the post. As soon as I heard the term foochebag (which was this morning; already worked it into a conversation, thank you!) I thought of some of the people I know, some of the bloggers I read, and so forth who are total foochebags. These are the people who belittle the dining choices, likes/dislikes, opinions etc. of anyone else just to see their name in print.

  5. Nancy Nichols

    You were classy enough to publicly send a sincere apology. Refreshing and encouraging.

    Cheers!

  6. Pingback: “Foochebag” Has Wings: A Timeline « Houston Food Adventures!

  7. So would a foochebag extend to someone who writes about Dallas’ substandard food scene after only living here for a few months? Or someone who disrupts others in a dining room to make a point of getting the names of cheeses? Hmmmm.

    “category 2 – people for whom the subject gives them a sense of power and elevated status, providing them the platform to be the narcissistic __bag they choose to be making up for a esteem issues or whatever else drives people to feel good making others feel inferior.”

  8. I think it is the perfect term for certain folks who openly and frequently declare that only tacos or trendier ethnic cuisines, if made for less than $5.00 per entree, are worthwhile, and anything else which is more costly is elitist Dallas crap, pushed by the evil white editors of D magazine and its blog. And who, when called on it, divert, distract, and criticize other and unrelated matters rather than admit their myopia. They are smart, but not very wise or mature. They are elitist in their smug, countercultural rejection of all things fancy, new, or costly. The Dallas foochebags.

  9. @Name Not in Print: transparent and unfair dig at Leslie Brenner and her recent hilarious account of trying to get the Mercury staff to identify 6 cheeses on a plate. (The best they could initially do is tell her it was “fromage.”) If you think that makes her a foochebag, you’ve missed the point — restaurant patrons should be able to get answers to simple questions like “what is this cheese” without getting in trouble with the chef. You just don’t like her. That’s different.

  10. Agreed with Kris. There’s a big difference between foodies, who use knowledge of food to inspire passion, and foochebags, who use it as a bludgeon.

    While the results can be rocky, Leslie is acting in service of her readers. If her behavior is atypical, well, that’s because she IS atypical. She’s working!

    I might be willing to put myself in the chef’s hands and let the $18 cheese plate take me wherever my taste buds will go. But I’m not getting paid to report on that cheese plate, and I have no journalistic standard I must submit to. Much ado about nothing, I guess, since the anti-LB opinion is actually in the minority on this one.

  11. If Leslie is a foochebag, we need more of them in this town. When she keeps waiters and chefs honest, we the readers benefit.

  12. @ Love this term !

    I hear what you’re saying, but when i read this yesterday, i kind of pictured someone who fawns over a half decent restaurant with exorbitant prices and pretentious ambiance.

    The five dollar lunch is a hallowed goal that makes your own city, and traveling in another city, fun and interesting — a quick plate of tacos at sobrosa’s on maple, tortilla espanol at a truckstop in Spain, or a cardboard carton of great sushi at a Tokyo train station.

    I’m in Buenos Aires right now and within ten minutes (walking) outside my hotel are about a hundred places with great food, great wine, linen tablecloths and — this is key — professional waiters. And while the prices can be a touch more than $5, i haven’t spent more than $30 on a meal since I got here (exorbitant tip included). Fun, foodie, and different from Dallas.

  13. @Gipson-

    “where you and I will have to differ is that you seem to see the review or conversation as a self-indulgent hanger-on, where as I see it as a separate but equal joy. No less valid, no less important.”

    -well written, and i agree with you. i’m commenting on sidedish, clearly i love talking about food!

    “The power of sharing an experience can certainly rival that of having the experience. That certainly doesn’t make the sharer narcissistic. A desire to share and inter-relate has been around much longer than Twitter et al, or even computer for that matter.”

    again i agree. my point was to give MY defintion of a foochbag, which we can all agree is a negative subset of foodies. and in my mind, they are the ones that see food as a mechanism to be a dbag. they wouldn’t value the meal equally with the review. or sharing a meal with friends. by my definition, they value eating at the hottest restaurant because its HOT and telling people they ate there over enjoying the meal. They would prioritize belittling their fellow eaters over sharing the joy with them.

  14. @jon

    Thanks for responding. I certainly have to agree with you there. I always enjoy reading what you have to say, and I appreciate that someone in the biz is willing let his opinion known. There’s never any question that you know your stuff.