I’m now home, recovering from a weekend at Wilderness Festival, where I performed as part of the Odditorium tent. We put on a great range of talks, including the eating habits of politicians, body-builders in bondage, Kraftwerk, BDSM relationships with the Archers and Bob Flanagan.
I gave two talks, one on Allen Ginsberg’s poem Howl, and the other on the history of the Vindaloo, an extended version of one I gave at the Catalyst Club earlier this year.
The best part about speaking in front of an audience is the Q&A afterwards. I had some good recommendations for a curry-house in Twickenham, as well as two in Nottingham, Adnan’s and 4550 Miles from Delhi. I’ll check those out soon. I forgot the name of the Eating out in Delhi blog. Someone asked about the rise of competitive chilli and curry eating. I reckon there is an interesting line of research here – how chilli competitions relate to the traditional eating contests.
A good thing about giving talks is practising gives you chance to reflect upon the material. I realised this weekend how much of the British Curry’s development is down to people trying to eat familiar food when travelling. Something to think about further.
Other than the talks, it was a weekend of good weather, relaxing and cocktails. Thanks to David, Andrew, Ernest Magazine and the team for inviting me to speak and looking after everyone. Last year I walked away with the clicker but this year I behaved myself.
Some material from the talk has been published in an article in the new issue of Ernest magazine, which I will talk about as soon as I get a copy. Meantime, a recording of my talk at Wilderness last year is in episode 31 of the Odditorium Podcast: The Internet Will Destroy Us.