As we near the end of the first iteration of Soup and Bread I thought I’d post a few thoughts on some questions that have popped up over the last few months.
1. Why is Soup and Bread ending? It’s so awesome!
Soup and Bread is ending next week (April 1) because it’s (allegedly) spring now and it’s time to get our heads out of the soup bowls and into the garden. Or something. To everything there is a season, right? I think it’s healthy to change things up a bit, otherwise we’ll just loll around in a soup-sodden rut for the next year. But, don’t freak out: we will probably be back next winter and may well do something different, in the same vein, this summer. It’s in committee. If you have any ideas feel free to post them here.
2. How do I get to make soup?
Ask me. I will then guide you through our four-part application and vetting process.
No, seriously. Just ask.
3. Can I just show up with soup some night?
We’d rather you didn’t. Space is limited, as is the capacity of our poor electrical system. Plus, if you just show up unannounced how are we going to promote your upcoming soup night and make you a star?
4. Can I just show up with bread, or cookies?
5. You should have music or something. Can my band play at Soup and Bread?
This one’s tricky. Several people have proposed adding value to the Soup and Bread experience through the inclusion of a band, or a talk with a writer, or a comedy performance, or a panel discussion. But while I’m touched that everyone’s thinking about an enhanced S&B, and I don’t want to sound unappreciative, I feel pretty strongly that the whole point of Soup and Bread is to provide a casual, low-key opportunity for socializing over a little good food. There’s a very minimal commitment involved — you can come for five minutes or three hours, and give 50 cents or a fin — and I very much want to keep it that way. Adding a band or some such feels a bit like mission creep.
But thank you very, very much for asking!
6. Where does the money go?
The money goes to the Greater Chicago Food Depository, which distributes food to soup kitchens and food pantries across the metro area. Or, in their words:
“The Greater Chicago Food Depository, Chicago’s food bank, is a nonprofit food distribution and training center providing food for hungry people while striving to end hunger in our community. The Food Depository distributes donated and purchased food through a network of 600 food pantries, soup kitchens and shelters to 500,000 adults and children every year. Last year, the Food Depository distributed more than 46 million pounds of nonperishable food and fresh produce, dairy products and meat, the equivalent of more than 95,000 meals every day.“
7. Are you, like, a soup kitchen?
No. We are a bar. A very small bar. We have neither the physical capacity nor the social service skills to usefully directly help the city’s (growing) population of people in need of a decent meal. What we’re trying to do is raise money to help those who do have the skills and facilities. They are legion, and we salute them.
8. How can I get the recipe for that amazing [_______] soup?
Right here at Soup and Bread! And keep your eyes peeled for a Soup and Bread cookbook this fall. Assuming I can, you know, get my shit together.
Along those lines, a note to all you soup cooks who have not sent me a recipe: My philosophy is not to nag, but if you don’t send me the recipe, you won’t be in the cookbook! And, boy, then will you feel left out.
Seriously, I want everyone’s contribution to be recognized. So, act now! There is still time to get yourself on the permanent record.
OK, that’s all. Thanks for reading. See you tomorrow for the penultimate Soup and Bread of 2009.