What's Your "Food Porn" Name?

Staff Writer
Why have a porn name when you can have a food porn name?
teamfortress.tv
If your neighbor's name was Jessie and your favorite food is moussaka, your food porn name is Jessie Moussaka.

Someone named "Jimmy Rigatoni" just followed me on Twitter. This brought to a friend's mind the idea that since we know of "porn names," perhaps there ought to be a genre of "food porn names." I ran with it.

In regular porn, the idea is if you are “appearing,” you don’t want to use your real name. The basic formula for coming up with a nom du porn, something that sounds both appropriately  exaggerated  and yet carries a soupçon of the personal, is to take your middle name as your first name and the name of the street you grew up on as your last name. In my case: Drew Charlemagne.

Now, I have not appeared in porn porn. Never used the name Drew Charlemagne for anything. But I have appeared in food porn. This is what happens when you write about food for awhile and things happen like great chefs come to your home and cook for you. Videos are made. Stories are told. Tweets are tweeted.

I started thinking of a formula for food porn names. Since food porn is, as porn porn is, a blanket term, it can refer to close up shots of delicious-looking food, lascivious prose descriptions of perfect meals, and a general, unrelenting narrative via social media, magazine articles and blog posts about the sheer wonderfulness of ones own food-focused life and its attendant savory adventures. It is both intimate and ridiculous. It touches childhood, neighborhood, class … and grub. The name must reference all this but, as with porn porn names, the formula must be simple, befitting the fleeting nature of the experiences chronicled.

And thus, here is my suggested formula for arriving at one’s food porn name:  It's the first name of your next-door neighbor on the street you grew up on and the last name of your favorite food.

In my case, it might be "Jessie Moussaka." I imagine his avatar. Jessie Moussaka is stocky, strong, his hair the color of a nice béchamel, chest tan as browned beef. He wrestles. He eats. He eats moussaka. He orders it whenever possible. He posts photos of every moussaka at every diner. He travels to Greece seeking the source of the original moussaka. And thus, here is my suggested formula for arriving at one’s food porn name: It's the first name of your next-door neighbor on the street you grew up on and the last name of your favorite food.

The more I write about this, the more I like it. Shall I make moussaka my project? While I ponder this, let me note that an especially good thing about food porn names is, you can change it anytime, or take on additional ones — a “Divergent” approach. You need not commit permanently to one “faction.”  Thus, some days my favorite food is congee (Chinese rice porridge.) Another neighbor I knew only as Mr. Harris. So in this case: "Mr. Harris Congee." I can see this character, too. He could be in an episode of “Good Eats.” He would be a talking bowl of congee with a pair of pince-nez spectacles floating on top of the preserved egg. "Thank you Mister Harris Congee," Alton Brown would say.

I also like Cheeseburgers and had a childhood crush on a neighbor girl: Perhaps I could ask a significant other to occasionally become the food porn Goddess: Danielle Cheeseburger. Her head is made of beef, bread and cheese, but underneath, she's all woman.

Mitchell Matzoball? Paul Creme Brulee?

What is your food porn name? Do you have a better formula for determining it? 

Comment below or ping me at my current non-food-porn twitter name: @allensalkin.

Allen Salkin is the author of From Scratch: Inside the Food Network, an uncensored tell-all history of the business and personalities behind the cable channel you either love or wish was a lot better than it is. 

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