It’s been a while since I tortured this space with thoughts of Rachael Ray. When she was bitten by a dog while defending her beloved Isaboo, I shrugged. When she had the current first lady on her show to talk about eating green beans and how the president can’t seem to remember Valentine’s Day, I yawned. However, when VH1’s Best Week Ever pointed me to a brilliant series of Rachael Ray $40 A Day mash-ups, I decided I needed to break my Ray Ray silence.

Michelle Collins, a blogger at Best Week Ever, describes her feelings for the Mistress of Yummo’s cheap eats show thusly:

Why would I want to spend 30 minutes watching some troll slowly savor an $8 meal, only to leave without tipping the waiter? It was a half hour show of a girl eating! … Even more annoying is that after each MMM, she would geisha girl her hand up to her mouth like ‘Oh, I hope no food is coming out!’

The thing is—as annoying as the Katie Couric of the Food Network is—I can’t help but point out that practically every Food Network personality does the same thing. Well, practically every female personality. Sandra Lee does it and often adds a disturbing little dance that stalks my dreams and haunts my waking hours; Giada does it (though I have a feeling she doesn’t swallow); Paula Deen does it and somehow infuses her “mmms” with a dusting of her Southern twang; and Ina Garten does it and usually spikes hers with that annoying “eh-heh-heh-heh” laugh of hers.

But the men don’t really do it. Alton Brown ends his segments by forking his food in and telling us they are “good eats”; Bobby Flay sits around with friends, who tell him how awesome he is; and Emeril is so bammed out, he can’t even eat his own food—he just passes it out to his guests.

I guess it’s that the women are expected to have sex with their culinary creations while the men are just expected to eat them.

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