OTF: On Hospitality

Probably all of the posts that you’ll see from me on this blog will have something to do with cooking food, making a home, or hosting people. It’s because I’m more or less a 50-year old domestic goddess trapped in a scrawny Asian body. Just call me China Garten. If you got that joke, we would probably be fast friends. And no, that isn’t the misspelled name of a Chinese restaurant.

Beyond all of the hosting how-to’s and household hard skills (sidebar: I love alliteration), there are a lot of intangibles that make someone a hospitable person. Let’s take Ina Garten (pun completed) as an example.

The less skinny, white, and photogenic version of China Garten. (   img src   )

The less skinny, white, and photogenic version of China Garten. (img src)

In case you’re not familiar with Ina’s work, she is famous for cooking bougie food in the Hamptons for her husband and their friends. Her show, The Barefoot Contessais a staple on the Food Network. When I was in high school, I used to watch a lot of Food Network to teach myself how to cook for my friends, because cooking seemed like an impressive hobby to have that no normal high school student cares about. My love affair with impressiveness started early.

Also, hospitality. Because that’s what I was supposed to write about. Uh... here are three things that Ina does that make her a hospitable person:

  1. She makes space for marginalized people.
    She has a different group of outrageously gay people over at her mansion on every episode of her show. True statement. And while it might sound like I’m just being facetious, I legitimately think this is a key trait of hospitable people. The new kid, the ostracized, the loner - true hosts go out of their way to make space for those people, because they’ve been in their shoes.


  2. She is really generous.
    Meaning, she is rich as hell and buys sticks of butter made from the milk of cows who feast on caviar. And then uses 4 of them to make a salad for her gay friends. Generosity looks different depending on how much money you make, so feel free to adjust as necessary.


Sorry, I could only think of two things. Let’s talk about Guy Fieri instead.

In case you had any doubts that he is a tool.    (   img src   )

In case you had any doubts that he is a tool. (img src)

Here are three things that Guy does that make him a tool:

  1. He is the worst.