Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Vol. CLIV, Issue 5
Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Letter from the Editor: Circuit Issue 9

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Photo by Halley McCormick

One of my earliest childhood memories is of stealing raw dough that my mother had left to rise on our kitchen table to make bánh bao (Vietnamese pork steamed buns). I remember pinching off three small pieces and running to hide under my parents’ bed in the room next door to quickly gobble down my dough without getting caught, and then quickly worrying that the yeast in the dough would force my stomach to explode. I no longer like the taste of raw dough, nor do I worry that eating raw dough will result in anything more than a tummy ache, but stolen moments of times like these are what I look back on most fondly.

Maybe it’s just that my mom is a really good cook (and I mean really good, not to brag or anything…), but many of my childhood memories are intertwined with moments at the kitchen table –– reluctantly helping my mom to shuck green beans before heading out to play with my next-door neighbor or slurping down a large bowl of pho (Vietnamese noodle soup) after a morning of Sunday school and church. I admit that I don’t always prioritize cooking and eating when I feel like I’m running around like a chicken with its head cut off. I love to cook dinners for friends and family during holidays and in the summer when it seems that I have infinite amounts of time, but I largely survive on fried eggs, ramen bowls and frozen vegetables during the school year. That being said, I love that despite my choices and thoughts on food, I can always seem to connect with others simply by talking about food.

From those who tout themselves as Bon Appétit connoisseurs of the ice cream machine to those who live off-campus and heat up a microwave dinner from LeanCuisine to the politics majors passionate about food justice, many Whitman students hold deep feelings toward food, and we, the staff of The Pioneer, are no different. Aleida Fernandez writes about the tradition of Tommy’s Dutch Lunch, Walla Walla’s famous diner that originally opened in the 1930s (page 7), Evelyn Levine discusses off-campus dining (page 33) and Isabel Mills reflects on holiday food traditions (page 12). Of course, no food issue is complete without a display of food photos. Catie Bergman documents the bread-making process at the Walla Walla Bread Company (page 27), and Marra Clay captures the warmth and ambiance of the Colville Street Patisserie (page 20).

Of course, special thanks for this issue goes to the Associated Students of Whitman College (ASWC) for their financial support, our faculty advisor Professor of History Julie Charlip, and alumna Megan Salzman Medica ’81 and her husband John Medica, whose generous donation has helped jump start The Circuit.

This issue is a reflection of our thoughts and feelings about food. Our hope is that not only will you pick up this issue to read about how we feel about food and gaze at the photos that have captured beautiful moments in time, but also to use this issue as a chance to connect and discuss with other Whitman students on this very wide and varied topic. So, sit back and relax with a warm cup of tea in hand as you peruse through these pages.

With warmth and love,

Shelly Le
Editor-in-Chief
[email protected]

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