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You can call Calvin Trillin a humourist or a satirist, an adventurous eater, certainly a poet but don't call him a foodie. Calvin Trillin is less interested in the food people eat than in how that food connects them to one another. For decades he's been chronicling -- often with humour -- daily life in America. According to Calvin, the greatest thing to happen American cuisine was the Immigration Act of 1965. Before that, the US favoured Britons over Asians. He says "I guess the idea was that people who like bland food make good citizens...In food terms, it wasn't a good policy."
Calvin's written eighteen books -- four about food. It's an interesting undertaking for someone who never reads about food and doesn't cook most of the year. There's only one place where he does kitchen duty -- at his summer home in Nova Scotia. And two months of every year he cooks nothing fancy, visits the Innlet Cafe and Magnolia's Grill, and reads.
The 76-year-old Trillin is a long-time staff writer for New Yorker magazine. His latest book is out, it's called "Quite Enough of Calvin Trillin." The book is a collection of forty years of his best humour writing. It covers the gamut from politics to finance, from food to class warfare. But it wasn't an easy task trying to decide which essays should stay and which should go. When asked about the experience, Calvin replied: "there's an old Midwestern phrase, 'haven't had so much fun since the hogs ate little sister.'"