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Anthony Bourdain Notes & Quotes

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“The more places I see and experience, the bigger I realize the world to be. The more I become aware of, the more I realize how relatively little I know of it, how many places I have still to go, how much more there is to learn. Maybe that’s enlightenment enough — to know that there is no final resting place of the mind, no moment of smug clarity. Perhaps wisdom, at least for me, means realizing how small I am, and unwise, and how far I have yet to go.”

— CNN: Anthony Bourdain In His Own Words: A Life Exploring The Unknown

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“I used to believe that the human race as a whole was basically a few steps above wolves. I have since come to believe — after many meals with many different people in many, many different places — that though there is no shortage of people who would do us harm, we are essentially good. That the world is, in fact, filled with mostly good and decent people who are simply doing the best they can. Everybody, it turns out, is proud of their food (when they have it). They enjoy sharing it with others (if they can). They love their children. They like a good joke. Sitting at the table has allowed me a privileged perspective and access that others, looking principally for ‘the story,’ do not, I believe, always get. People, wherever they live, are not statistics. They are not abstractions… I’m not saying that sitting down with people and sharing a plate is the answer to world peace. Not by a long shot. But it can’t hurt.”

— CNN: Anthony Bourdain In His Own Words: A Life Exploring The Unknown

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“There is a price to be paid when your dreams come true.”

— CNN: Anthony Bourdain In His Own Words: A Life Exploring The Unknown

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“Throughout his life, Bourdain was a controversial figure who never seemed totally comfortable with the fame that accompanied his rapid rise to stardom. As a result, he led somewhat of a conflicted life; having been known to both praise and decry celebrity chefs; slamming parenthood then having a child of his own; and even adapting a healthier lifestyle while outwardly promoting what appeared to be the exact opposite on his shows.”

— The Double Life Of Anthony Bourdain

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“Bourdain adapted a cleaner, healthier lifestyle in his later years, but for most of his adult life, he was an unashamed and unrepentant smoker and drinker. In his 2000 tell-all memoir Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly, Bourdain explicitly wrote about his prior drug use, including a major heroin addiction picked up in the kitchens of 1970s New York. ‘Hardly a decision was made without drugs,’ he wrote. ‘Cannabis, methaqualone, cocaine, LSD, psilocybin mushrooms soaked in honey and used to sweeten tea, secobarbital, tuinal, amphetamine, codeine and, increasingly, heroin, which we’d send a Spanish-speaking busboy over to Alphabet City to get.’

“Bourdain considers himself lucky to have kicked heroin in the 1980s; he knows many people who weren’t so fortunate. In addition to getting clean, Bourdain is no longer the drinker he used to be, and he quit smoking in 2007 after the birth of his daughter.”

— The Double Life Of Anthony Bourdain

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“Bourdain also dished out some very harsh criticism of vegetarians, comparing them to terrorists. In a 1999 piece for The New Yorker, Bourdain wrote, ‘Serious cooks regard these members of the dining public — and their Hezbollah-like splinter faction, the vegans — as enemies of everything that’s good and decent in the human spirit. To live life without veal or chicken stock, fish cheeks, sausages, cheese, or organ meats is treasonous.’

“Time (and age) significantly softened that view. In 2010, he told Mother Jones, ‘I admire vegetarians who refuse to eat nothing but vegetables in their homes, but I also admire those who put aside those principles or those preferences when they travel. Just to be a good guest.’ “

— The Double Life Of Anthony Bourdain

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“Bourdain had a way with words, both the poetic and the profane. As he admitted in an interview with the Daily Mail, ‘I had a reputation for being cynical and foul-mouthed and a bit of a p***k.’ He’s been equally blunt about ditching his edgier life when his first child, daughter Ariane, debuted in 2007. ‘The second she was born, the Ramones T-shirts, vestigial leather jackets, that s**t was in the garbage. It’s gone,’ he said. ‘It’s undignified at my age.’ “

— The Double Life Of Anthony Bourdain

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“Bourdain seemed like a wildly successful, brash, know-it-all adventurer, but this famous foodie wasn’t born with a silver spoon. In fact, Bourdain didn’t achieve financial stability until his memoir, Kitchen Confidential, found its audience. As he told Biography, ‘At the age of 44, I was standing in kitchens, not knowing what it was like to go to sleep without being in mortal terror. I was in horrible, endless, irrevocable debt. I had no health insurance. I didn’t pay my taxes. I couldn’t pay my rent. It was a nightmare…’ “

— The Double Life Of Anthony Bourdain

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“Your body is not a temple, it’s an amusement park. Enjoy the ride.”

— Anthony Bourdain

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Other Important Articles:

• Anthony Bourdain Was ‘Exhausted’ In His Final Months
• ‘Tony Was a Symphony’: Friends and Fans Remember Anthony Bourdain

• Anthony Bourdain’s Estranged Wife And The Mother Of His Child Breaks Her Silence
• CNN: Anthony Bourdain In His Own Words: A Life Exploring The Unknown
• Anthony Bourdain And The Dangerous Myth of ‘Having It All’
• The Double Life Of Anthony Bourdain
• Anthony Bourdain Did Not Have Drugs Or Alcohol In His System When He Died
• Can We Talk About Alcoholism And Anthony Bourdain?

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Helpful Resources:

Why Am I So Depressed?
• Near-Death Experiences & Suicide

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