Dear Rachael Ray

by Matt Fox

Dear Rachael Ray (exalted Emmy-winning 30-minute meal food celebrity),

           I never knew that the train to Yumsville required local stops at Heartache and Pain. I loved you when you were just that adorable upstate New Yorker, who for some reason spoke like a Mid-Westerner, plugging away at my affections in 30-minutes or less.
           I remember the first time we met; you were making chicken salad sammies. Upon presentation of the dish you lovingly—albeit a little over-enthusiastically—inquired, “How yum-o is that??!” I blushed and agreed that it was very yum-o. We had so much in common from the beginning.
           But old habits die hard, Rachael Ray. “Delish’”? “E.V.O.O.”? The other day I heard you refer to some liquidy concoction as a “stoup.” I don’t know what that is, but it angers and confuses me. I can’t commit myself to someone who can’t commit to completing full words. At first it was cute, but it has started to make you look simp’. You’re better than that, Rachael Ray. Aren’t you?
           The spending sprees make me nervous and embarrassed, Rachael Ray. Daily $40 binges add up fast. And you never tip well. No one leaves $1.37 for a $12.00 sit-down meal. You’re making us look bad when you do that. And just because some star-dazed waitress can’t see behind that cheeky smile, don’t think that the same goes for me. I won’t tolerate a 10% gratuity on love.
           Fame is a well-greased baking sheet, and I fear it’s putting our love in jeopardy of going from a golden-brown to a smoldering mess. As if you were getting too big for me—too big for us—you now have a talk-show, four separate shows on the food network, a magazine, and I’m pretty sure I saw advertisements for Rachael Ray intimate wear. Actually, I’m cool with that last one. But being Oprah’s token white friend won’t earn you street credibility, or my respect.
           Like your recipes, we can’t start from scratch. We can only hope to make the best of what ingredients we have. I know these words sound harsh, but I do want to make things work. I know that deep down, you feel the same way.
           I anticipate your response, along with responses to the 142 previously mailed and presently un-acknowledged letters.

Matt Fox

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