Sunday, February 28, 2010

Dining Alone

Recently, at Bella Bella, I noticed a thirty-something woman having dinner alone. Normally I feel pity for people eating alone, but not this time. She seemed really at ease. She looked like she'd just gotten off work and just wanted to enjoy a nice meal alone. Throughout my entire meal, I just couldn't stop thinking about the concept of eating alone.

Why is it that we avoid eating alone at all costs- but only if we're in public? The answer is obvious; Society looks down upon it. It's not the fact that we're consuming food alone, but the fact that we're dining alone. Just Google "dining alone." You'll find books, articles, even entire websites dedicated to "the dreaded eating alone experience" (Yes, that's a direct quote).

I eat alone all the time at my apartment. Actually, I really prefer eating alone, but I wouldn't dare go to a restaurant and dine alone. I've only done it a few times on campus and in airports, and I ate as fast as possible and felt self-conscious the entire time.

So my question to you is this. How do you personally feel about eating/dining alone? And how do you feel when you see someone else doing it?


  1. In the same way that food can be good for communion and fellowship, I feel as if food can be a positive experience eaten alone. A sort of meditative experience especially if you are preparing the food yourself. I suppose many people are just not accustomed to the idea of eating alone because many people grow up eating with family (even if it is in separate rooms) or friends.

    Good post.

  2. Thanks, John.

    I agree with you on the fact that eating alone can be a really positive experience. I know I personally pay more attention to what I'm eating and really appreciate the different flavors if I'm not distracted by people or conversation.