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Are You a Life-Snacker?
Well, here's a fresh take: In this LA Review of Books essay, Jane Hu discusses the role of hunger in Girls. Hu writes, "Eating is, after all, about as universal as it gets...hunger, in all its manifestations, drives Girls." Significantly, Hu points out, the girls in Girls tend to snack. They consume not grownup meals but cupcakes in the bathtub, Gatorade after sex, Luna Bars and SmartWaters. Hu writes, "Snacks are by definition inessential, unstructured, and irregular: you never know when the next one might come. The snack does not offer satisfaction or closure; in fact, it demands a more responsible future that might justify the present indulgence."
Hey, I love a cupcake in the bathtub as much as anyone, but I hate that weird emptiness you get when a snack has taken the edge off of hunger enough to keep you from eating some food that would actually sustain you -- and Hu's essay has awakened me to the symbolic nature of this sort of snacking. If food is meant to be the fuel that helps our bodies and brains develop, if well-balanced meals at the dinner table are markers of adulthood and family, then snacks are evidence of a reluctance to grow up. What about you, in your own life? Are you snacking, rather than fueling your life with an entire meal -- either in terms of food, or in some larger, metaphorical sense?
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