Social media has turned us all into an oxymoron; we have slipped into a stupor of laziness while also being far more active than one might think. The act of Instagramming your food has become a spectator sport; each profile a different competitor in the game, vying for the title of “Most Tantalising Image”. On the side lines are the spectators scrolling through their feed and supporting the foodie they think will win, every ‘like’ a cheer and every ‘follow’ a roar.
Unfortunately, some sports are broadcast much more than others, and the Insta-Food Olympics is no exception. Through my extensive research (and by research, I mean mindlessly scrolling through my Instagram feed on the bus) I have come to the realisation that there a couple of different breeds of Insta-foodies that you may come across.
On the bottom of the Insta-Food Olympics ladder lives the most palatable of food-snappers, the Casual Foodie. Casual Foodies have this great quality that doesn’t seem to resonate with everyone in our oversharing society: restraint. Spamming their followers is something you’ll never catch a Casual Foodie doing, pictures of their meals only crop up about every third post. You won’t find them taking 20 minutes to find the perfect angle because they value the food in front of them more than the likes they’ll get for posting it. The only reason a Casual Foodie will be sharing a picture of their meal is because it’s been two weeks without posting something and their friends are getting worried that they may have disappeared.
Next on the ladder lives the Amateur Food Blogger. This special breed of foodie usually picks a type of food, whether that be a specific cuisine, dish or snack, and makes it their mission to try every single variation of it that resides in their local area. Their captions are full of restaurant reviews that no one can be bothered to read and cringeworthy hashtags like ‘nomnom’ and ‘foodgasm’.
Residing at the top of the Insta-Food Olympics ladder are none other than the Next Level Foodies. They eat, sleep and breathe cuisine and are always on the lookout for a new fad dish to photograph. This breed of foodie is the true athlete of the Instagram scene with every meal being a new training session. Their hand-eye coordination is tested as they precariously balance on the chair they were sitting on, just to get that classic bird’s eye view perspective. Like all great athletes, they never neglect their cardio; typing out the millions of hashtags that litter their captions is a finger workout of epic proportions.
What some of these Instagram foodies fail to understand is that there are only so many ways you can take a photo of food before it looks like every other one that has preceded it. I have lost count of how many pictures of plates that have passed before my eyes or the amount of rainbow desserts in front of aesthetically pleasing backgrounds that take up my news feed.
Nobody can deny the fact that finally sinking your teeth into a meal you’ve waited so long for is an out of body experience so satisfying it can shake you to your very core. Why do we insist on torturing ourselves for longer than we have to because we are too busy deciding which filter to put on our photo?
This piece was written for KJB121: Feature Writing, a unit in my Journalism degree at QUT. Featured image credit: notdesign (Flickr)