Foodie Film Festival: The Awesome Awesomeness of #FBZfest 2010

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As we wait for the awesome Project FoodBuzz videos to finally begin voting, my Foodie Film Festival continues. This time with a quick re-cap on the FoodBuzz Festival held in San Francisco this past weekend. As far as this festival goes I am two-for-two, having attended last year (the first year) and then again this year. You can watch the video at the bottom. But first I have a few thoughts.

I want to be clear; it’s called a festival for good reason. Because it is a celebration of food and our food community as much as it is anything. Which makes it really special compared to so many of the food blogger conferences where lectures and demonstrations seem to rule the day. Still, it’s a hard event to describe. I have a lot of complicated emotions when it comes to blogs and bloggers. So the adjectives I choose must be very precise in my description of the entire weekend.

Because I was asked to help lead a breakout session at the festival designed to get us thinking about the words we choose. They can easily become editorial crutches, ironically crippling the very message we hope to convey. Even the best words can become a bit tired when used excessively. For some time now, I have been uncomfortably aware the deteriorating meaning, diminished clout, and discarded authority of the word awesome. But strangely it’s the first word that came to mind when I sat down to discuss the festival and my experience of it. Was I relying on a flaccid literary shortcut?

San FranciscoI am sure you know what I mean. But is understanding my point, really the point? You see I recently overheard a clerk at a bakery describe a cupcake as ‘awesome’. I did a double take. Now I like cupcakes. But are they really awe-inspiring? Sure, they can be delicious, tasty, plain old inspiring even– especially if you are a cook. But a cupcake cannot stop you in your tracks in astoundment. I have never seen anyone fall onto their knees in awe upon the chance encounter with even the most excellent of cupcakes. At least not a sane or rational person.

But I digress. What I am trying to figure is out is this: Is awesome a bad word? Or could it be that its meaning has merely become muddled? You see there are moments in our lives that are indeed awesome. Now I am not a parent. But I can imagine being awed by birth. Do you see my point?

The simple truth– without too much editorial flourish, is this. The real power of the FoodBuzz Festival comes from the community of food bloggers who attend. It’s the strength of the community I am trying so hard to chronicle. I know I tend toward exaggeration and excess sometimes. I can also be sappy and sentimental. I can’t help these things. It’s in my DNA. But honestly, it’s the people I meet at these events that make my blog and all the work I put into it so well worth it.

Still, despite my mushy heart, sometimes I think people find me prickly and hard to know. The FoodBuzz Festival is my chance to step outside myself and get to know the very folks I hope to touch with Sippity Sup.

Because, as a blogger, it’s natural to simply surround ourselves with the words and photos we find easy or comfortable. And as we sit alone and peck out what’s in our bellies (and yes, our hearts too) it’s possible to become insulated. Detached even. So when an event brings us together– women, men, gay, or straight. All creeds and colors; religions too. Those of us from the big cities, the suburbs and the ‘sticks’. America, Canada and beyond. And when that event makes me feel the way I feel now… well to me that’s just plain awesome. And I mean it in the purest sense of the word.

The music in this video is royalty free and came from incomptech.com

SERIOUS FUN FOOD

Greg Henry

Sippity Sup