Celebrity Chef Cliché


I’m depressed.  It is not my financial situation, which is weeds-infested as usual.  Betty Kirkpatrick’s book Mark My Words is responsible for my depression.  She doesn’t like clichés and this puts me in a spot because I write in a borrowed language, English. 

Her pocket-size book has some strong points.  She thinks ‘award winning’ is a cliché and I agree.  We are seldom told the awards that a particular play or book received.  It is a marketing ploy designed to sell whatever. 

She also feels that ‘highly acclaimed’ is very high on the cliché list.  Ditto to that!  Highly acclaimed by whom?  I live in North America.  Should something that is highly acclaimed in Europe make me jump for joy?

The big joke for me is the ‘Number One Bestseller”.   As you know, bestseller means different numbers in different countries.  Bestseller might be 2,000 books in Country A, while it is 50,000 in Country B. 

Kirkpatrick is also not big on the cliché ‘it’s for your own good.’  She has her own reasons for regarding it with suspicion.  It is not a cliché for me.  It is my mother with a big M. 

I had to eat corn on the cob for my own good.  I had to drink castor oil, for my own good.  I had to wear clean underwear, in case I faint and someone rescues me.  I had to go to school for my own good.

Am I confusing cliché with idioms?  Where are my English teachers?  Kirkpatrick does not have ‘celebrity chef’ because it was not coined then.  What is a celebrity chef?  Ma was one, because we loved her food.  She also passed down her cooking skills to us.

I am a celebrity chef.  Who says?  Me, myself,  I say I’m a celebrity chef.   I celebrate my love for food and its adventure.  What would happen if I took a cartoon of yoghurt and baked it?  Well!  Let’s just say it’s a thought.

I’m a celebrity chef because there is just one person somewhere who has tried my recipes.

Nonqaba waka Msimang is the author of Sweetness the novel.


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