I keep reading about how newspapers have fallen on hard times. How they are desperately trying to appeal to readers. How they are trying to keep up with the plethora of "apps" and other ways of getting news and information.
Well, I've got some news for you, Times and Post. I may no longer be one of your younger readers and I'm indifferent to IPads, IPhones and "apps". But I'm computer savvy none the less. And you have totally dropped the ball in your food department.
Somewhere in my house I have a folder full of newspaper cuttings from your food sections. Open any of the Man's books on food and similar clipping tumble out. Lots of terrific recipes that I gleaned over the years, some of which are now standards in my house.
But with the exception of Martha Rose Shulman's "Recipes For Health", I haven't clipped a recipe--or printed one out from your on-line versions in years.
Because it's become more and more obvious that while you want to attract more readers, you have in mind young, hip types and/or rich folk. There's nothing for people like me. People who like to cook REAL FOOD for REAL PEOPLE on a REAL BUDGET.
I can't afford the gourmet, free range designer lamb you were kvelling about last week. Regular leg of lamb at Wegmans is $7-8 per pound and I can't afford that, never mind $13 a pound. Do you realize that you are talking about probably $100 for a leg of lamb? That could buy my family most of our groceries for a WEEK!
I like ethnic cooking and do lots of it. But when you come up with an ingredient only available at certain selected farmer's markets in the hinterlands, who are you aiming that article at? Not folks like me, certainly.
And don't get me started on idiots like Mark Bittman, whose "Minimalist" recipes tend to be more complicated than special occasion meals I cook, and who preaches about healthy cooking and going green but has no idea of the realities of working families who don't have access to or funds for Whole Foods, Balduccis and green markets.
I want Pierre Franey. Yeah, I know he's gone, but surely there's someone with the spark of the "60 Minute Gourmet" out there--or perhaps you could run his old columns. I want someone like the "Desperation Dinners" ladies, or even Rachel Ray--she'd be a lot easier to tolerate on paper than she is honking on the Food Channel.
I want someone writing columns about making quick, tasty, healthy food that doesn't cost a fortune. You keep talking about the obesity epidemic, about the crisis among kids in school, but your newspapers don't reflect that on Wednesdays.
I may not be one of your chosen young, hip, audience. But there's lots of folks like me still out there, and we're the ones who actually pay for your print newspapers.
But we've also got the Internet-even those of us without I-anythings. And we're getting our recipes out there.
Not from your newspapers.
So put your money where our mouths are, or stop whining about your falling revenue.
The Library Lady