Colored pencil and gouache diamond flower pendant rendering by Joana Miranda
Colored Pencil and Gouache Diamond Flower "Lace" Pendant Rendering by Joana Miranda

My husband and I have been watching the Next Food Network Star TV show each Sunday night this summer.  (If you don’t know what it’s about, check out the contestant’s profiles and the description of the past weeks’ challenges here.)  For fun, we’ve drawn up a list of who we think will be the final winner and have created an order for each week’s eliminations.  Last week we were right; this week, the five remaining contestants threw us for a loop, and contestant Brad got eliminated when we had predicted that one of the other contestants would go.

Coming into today’s show, the five contestants were almost equally strong, so it was hard to figure out which one would be eliminated.  Most interesting, in my mind, is how the ever magnetic Aarti is showing signs of flagging confidence when she has proven herself week after week to be a standout as both a chef and a TV personality.  Perhaps, though, what makes her so appealing on camera, is also what could bring her down.  In addition to her remarkable culinary skills, she’s obviously got lots of smarts and a mature sense of her own personal strengths and weaknesses.  In her case, the ability to look inward might prove to be her downfall since she seems to self-talk herself into a hole at times.

I’m no stranger to the self-talk demons myself and I am a card-holding member at times to the Smart = Stuck club.  I suspect that with even more maturity, I (and people like Aarti) would learn the following….

Growth begins when we start to accept our own weakness.

(Jean Vanier)


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