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New York Daily Photo: Horn of Plenty
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Thursday, 22 November 2007

Horn of Plenty

Apart from the traveling, I find Thanksgiving to be a comforting time of year - very comfy as far as eating is concerned. It is a time of year where family, friends and food come to the foreground and other responsibilities can be pushed aside. Thanksgiving Day is still rather non-commercial, with the emphasis on thanks and giving. This is a nice respite from the over-the-top commercialization that has affected virtually everything. It also is the day where overeating is not only allowed but encouraged and expected. An old Saturday Night Live skit comes to mind where wives were virtually force feeding their husbands (who could eat no more) in their plush upholstered chairs on Thanksgiving day. And then there is the famous scene in Monty Python's the Meaning of Life where the enormous Mr. Creosote is persuaded to eat one last wafer-thin after-dinner mint, whereupon he literally explodes.
The photo shows the scene at Dean and Delucca, the gourmet emporium in SOHO, the evening before Thanksgiving. There was a time when places like this inspired awe and wonder with residents and visitors. This food mecca has been a destination for many. But we are all a little jaded now, given places like the ubiquitous national chain Whole Foods and exposure to a myriad of goods and services via various media and the Internet. The kind of things these iconic NYC gourmet shops were renowned for have become much more available outside the city. For most, America has become the horn of plenty ...

Note about the Horn of Plenty or Cornucopia: There are many variations on the telling of this Greek myth. In one telling, Zeus was raised by Amalthea on the milk of a goat. In return, Zeus presented her with the horn of the goat which had the magical power to be filled with whatever the holder desired. The modern cornucopia is now a wicker basket with the shape of a goat's horn.


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