Wow, this past week has left us all pretty breathless.

Need to turn it all off and play a little but you’re still stuck at home?

Try a little laughter. It's been clinically proven to be good medicine. In a recent article in The New York Times, Dr. Michael Miller, a cardiologist at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore, recommended “one belly laugh a day” because “humor is not just a distraction from the grim reality of the crisis. It’s a winning strategy to stay healthy in the face of it. ...Having a good sense of humor is an excellent way to relieve stress and anxiety and bring back a sense of normalcy during these turbulent times.”

Mary Laskin, a nurse case-manager at Kaiser Permanente in San Diego, goes a step further with her chronic pain patients. She teaches laughter exercises and “suggests that her patients treat humor as a discipline — like physical exercise — that they set aside time for on a daily basis.”

Perhaps lunch time?

Bill and Claire Wurtzel have created a way to inspire whimsy and fun every day, just using the lunch on our plates.

Yes, it’s time to play with our food!  And no, this isn’t kindergarten macaroni art. And it’s not wasteful either. 

It’s a collection of Meshuggah Food Faces, edible artwork for a crazy world brought together in a new book from Behrman House. Who knew chopped liver, horseradish, and gefilte fish could have such rich emotional lives? 

So when the world has you feeling like stressed salad or Dr. Flankenstein, you can find a few Blintz Buddies and check in with Flaky Aunt Flo. But through it all, Lettuce Romaine Friends.

And unlike a visit to the art museum (which most of us can’t do right now anyway) there’s no need to stop with simply looking—you can make your own food faces. The Wurtzels provide a few basic lessons in using apples to express the ‘core’ of your being.

Bill is an artist and jazz musician began making food art to amuse his wife, Claire, when they were first married in 1961. Claire is an educator and former professor at Bank Street College of Education. She is now co-director of Hidden Sparks. Together Bill and Claire conduct workshops using his food art to make it fun for children and families to learn about nutrition.

And now they are using their talents to help us laugh a little in the meshuggah world we’re in right now.

So go ahead, have some fun with your food. It’ll do you good.


Meshuggah Food Faces

by Bill and Claire Wurtzel

978-168115-066-6; Hardcover 64 pages, full color, 7 1/4" x 7 1/4"

Now Available for pre-order on Amazon.

Available at beginning October 15. Quantity discounts available for schools and synagogue communities that need a good laugh.



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