This week on R&K, José Andrés on feeding the hungry in Tijuana and Washington D.C., Jennifer Ching on being a better person in New York, and a photographer reflects on the terrorist attack in Nairobi.
This post originally appeared on January 18, 2019, in R&K’s weekly newsletter. Read the archives and subscribe to the newsletter.
It’s Groundhog Week! The U.K. government almost imploded—again—over just how much damage they want to inflict on the country when they leave the European Union, and the U.S. government is still partially shut down (day 28).
Of the many side-effects of the shutdown, the news this week was oddly fixated on the American fast-food chain smorgasbord to which President Trump, out of his own pocket, treated the Clemson Tigers football team at the White House. (The White House kitchen, like many other federal institutions, is closed.) Winner of the Twitter takes for this blessed event is Kyle Madson for his “House of Carbs” tweet, and an honorable mention goes to Andrew McKeever for this helpful diagram of the spread.
Twitter memes aside, the shutdown has unpaid federal workers struggling to get to work, to pay their mortgages, and even put food on the table. That’s why World Central Kitchen—known for feeding victims of natural disasters in Haiti, Puerto Rico, and Indonesia—has set up shop on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C. to feed hungry federal workers. In a dispatch for R&K, chef, World Central Kitchen founder, and all-around hero José Andrés talks about the organization’s work in Tijuana, where they serve 3,000 meals daily to migrants stuck in camps along the U.S.-Mexico border, their new operation in Washington, D.C.—and working with local chefs on the ground to feed people on both sides of the wall issue. As Andrés puts it, “We need shorter walls and longer tables. That’s how I’ve always felt about the world. Now more than ever.”
On The Trip podcast, Nathan Thornburgh drinks Dry January-appropriate herbal tea with Jennifer Ching. Ching, a former lawyer, is the executive director of the North Star Fund, which focuses on giving power to local grassroots communities in New York. If, like us, you want to act on half-baked New Year’s resolutions to stop just stepping past the human misery and actually help people in New York City, this is an excellent place to start.
Also this week the Kenyan capital Nairobi suffered its worst terror attack since the 2013 Westgate Mall siege when the al-Shabaab terrorist group stormed the DusitD2 Hotel compound, killing at least 21. R&K’s Cengiz Yar spoke with Nairobi-based photographer Andrew Renneisen—who covered the attack—about the local reaction, the deteriorating security situation in Nairobi, and knowing when to stop taking photographs.
Until next week. In the meantime, we, like everyone else, will be turning our empty Pringles cans into practical wine containers.