In 1961, as a high school sophomore, I went out for my Yonkers, New York Roosevelt High School cross country team. Cross country requires running as fast as you can over vast distances. Running fall cross country was an unofficial prerequisite for making winter’s basketball team — the ultimate goal to which I aspired.
Weeks into intra-squad competition, I was consistently coming in second to last. Not happy with this result, I found it acceptable. However, as the weeks ground on, the fellow I was consistently besting started to close the gap between us. Faced with the pride-shattering prospect of finishing dead last, I quit.
I just wasn’t built to run cross country. I was built to cook.
Illustration by my friend Pascal Lemaitre from At Home by Steve Poses: A Caterer’s Guide to Cooking & Entertaining.
Next up: A Greenmarket Lunch At Home with Pascal, Manou & Maelle
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