Chicken Roll

THE SPECTACLE IS NOT a sandwich, but a social relation mediated by sandwiches, or so Guy Debord didn’t say. A long week of ridiculous thinkpieces and social media wank, begun by shameless controversialist and charlatan Bernard Salt, just reinforces the prime role of foodstuff-as-ideology.

Can a generation currently locked out of any prospect of accumulating wealth find its way back through Protestant self-denial and brown bag lunches? Can expenditure of disposable income on fripperies—-like avocadoes—-squander that same generation’s chances at austere, Jay Gouldian, rags-to-riches self-advancement? I don’t know or care, though of course, as champagne socialist, I fall by temperament on the side of ‘it’s probably about capitalism tending to concentrate assets, power, and productive institutions in the hands of a powerful class, ay’.

I’m just fascinated by the tendency of people arguing about the centrality of real estate to the our economic ill-well-being to use food metaphor, and even deploy arguments based on literal physical consumption. Most recently it’s avocado on toast, but before that it was takeaway coffees (thanks, serial terrible opinion-haver Stephen Koukoulas), and Jamie Oliver has created his own cottage industry half-blaming the poverty of the poor on their terrible diets. Victorian temperance moralists blamed liquor for slums. Even indifference to class is signified by the slur of latte-sipping. Maybe, just maybe, there’s more to our society than what we as individuals or as stereotypes of generation/class allow to pass our digestive tracts, but that acknowledgement would ruin a publishing industry and the heritage trope.

To establish a moral basis for the economic status quo on the consumption preferences of people having shit time of it isn’t just fun, it’s tradition. Let them eat brioche!


  • Cold roast chicken (leftover)
  • Bread rolls
  • Lettuce
  • Butter
  • Mustard
  • Plastic bag or brown paper bag



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