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Anthony Bourdain accepts a Peabody Award for Parts Unknown.
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Mourning a man who made words dance

Maybe that’s enlightenment enough: to know that there is no final resting place of the mind; no moment of smug clarity. Perhaps wisdom … is realizing how small I am and unwise, and how far I have yet to go.Anthony Bourdain

Bethany Hutton | Voices

Bethany Hutton | Voices

I’m trudging through emotional muck due to the loss of Anthony Bourdain. He was a friend I invited into my home through the screen and pages for many years. His wry exuberance for learning and experiencing affected me deeply. His sardonic wit and ability to spar the trite and shallow — beautifully, I might add — amazed me. 

His words were sometimes poignant, sometimes scathing, but always reflective of his brilliance in crafting an image or emotion. He made words gustatory, taming them while making them dance. 

I have to thank him many times over for taking me to places I otherwise would have never seen and introducing me to cultures I didn’t know existed, rekindling my passion to explore. I got to live vicariously through him, 48 minutes at a time. 

He was far from a model citizen, plagued by darkness I can relate to uncomfortably well. He didn’t revolutionize the food world by way of his cuisine, but he did in terms of access and celebration of differences, both in the kitchen and around the world.

He once said that he was afraid to stop moving for fear of what might happen. You stopped moving, Tony. You couldn’t outrun it. And, today, part of me has stopped moving, too. 

I’m skeptical, but I hope you found enlightenment.

You still had so far to go.

BETHANY HUTTON worships with the Memorial Road Church of Christ in Oklahoma City. 

Filed under: Anthony Bourdain Opinion People

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