I love a good sailing cliché.
That all makes me sound like a lovely, caring person in the buisness of giving; The Florence Nightingale of the wave-riding, gimballed-oven, galley collective. But trust me, there is massive selfishness lurking behind every proffered dish. Compare it to being the one at the party who chooses the music (never me). The folk who are so sure and confident that their taste and knowledge of music will be enjoyed by everybody else without the fear of ridcule, that their Ipod holds the key to the nights ambiance and above all, so that they can listen to what they want to listen to. Thats like me and cooking. If I really fancey Italian meatballs and spaghetti then thats what I cook and thats what everybody else eats. The trick is making them all think that that is exactly what they would have cooked themselves if they'd had the choice.
Reading your audience well in the given situation is a strong asset to cooking for the same people twice a day or indeed if you happen to be DJ'ing for a large group of expectant party-goers ready to unleash some moves. And when the praise comes your way, tummies are being rubbed, lips licked, depending on the skill of the dancers; or if you're the cook and folk are full and happy, possibly a little satisfied belch being stiffled under a napkin, you can sit back and feel pretty good about yourself. Not only have you just enjoyed the meal of your dreams for that day, you made everybody else feel just the same.
So, on reflection maybe the buisness of cooking is only a little bit selfish. Maybe it's also about sharing your love of food with 9 other people and enjoying the added bonus of being paid to do it.
On a clasic wooden yacht about to pop through the Straights of Gibralta, out of the Med and into Atlantic stuff.
Now lets all pray together for a nice little South Westerly please...