An Evening with Anthony Bourdain - The Guts and Glory Tour

This weekend, MJ and I hung out with traveler extraordinaire Anthony Bourdain, when he made his way through Orlando as part of his Guts and Glory tour. Of course, "hung out" is a bit of an exaggeration; I wasn't willing to shell out the extra money for VIP tickets and apparently his PR people weren't impressed by my numerous emails proclaiming "I'm a travel blogger, so how about letting me meet Tony?" My last resort option for getting to meet Mr. No Reservations/The Layover/Parts Unknown was sending him about 28 Tweets in the week leading up to the show, but sadly, those too went ignored resigning me to the fact that the closest I'd get to my man-crush was the fifth row of a packed Hard Rock Live.

Anthony Bourdain on Tour

We've watched Tony on TV for years and read all of his books, but even as a couple his biggest fans we still had no clue what to expect from this show. Was he really just going to get up and talk for two hours about food and travel? As awesome as that sounded to yours truly, I doubted if a nationwide tour could be crafted around the notion, much less sell out night after night. What I knew for a fact, however, was that whatever the premise of the show, we were about to get hit with an overabundance of four letter words.

The under won in a landslide - nevermind 9 seconds, he didn't make it 9 words.

As it turned out, two hours of Anthony Bourdain telling stories and calling out one celebrity chef after another was exactly the plot of the Guts and Glory tour. And Act 1, Scene 1 was a doozie - The Case Against Paula Deen.

Anthony Bourdain vs Paula Deen

Deep fried lasagna? The Lady's Brunch Burger, complete with bacon and two glazed donuts for a bun? There's not a southern grandma alive that's making this $hit.

And that's about how it went for the next two hours. One arrogant, condescending, and F-Bomb laced tirade after another. It was typical Tony, and it was great. When it was all over, the night had supplied so many "Bourdain-isms" I couldn't possibly remember them all, but here were a few of the best (My apologies in advance for the language)...

The biggest secret to making great television? Lots and lots of alcohol.

All you need is box of store bought pasta, a can of crushed tomatoes, a little garlic and basil, and you too can cook like an Italian grandmother. That $hit served up at Olive Garden is a lot of things, but it ain't Italian. For that matter, do Olives even grow in a Garden?

What do you think a sheep herder in Waziristan thinks of Man vs Food? Here's a portly American fellow, cramming down more animal protein in 20 minutes than this guy will eat in 2 years, and he's not even enjoying it.

In Russia, even the grandmothers can drink you under the table. Right before they toss you over their shoulder, carry you out of the bar, and drive you home. 

When my child was born, the thumb ring came off, ear ring came out, and the leather jacket went straight in the garbage. All sibilance of cool was immediately lost. Which makes me wonder about Guy Fieri. I mean, he and I are about the same age and both with kids. But would you look at this guy? How does Guy Fieri de-douche?

It was a typical Tuesday night dinner for the Bourdains. My wife, daughter, and I went to dinner with Eric Ripert in Paris... Geez I'm such an @$$ hole.

The #1 rule I have always lived by in my travels - be it Borneo or Belgium - is to always be a good guest.

Seriously, vegetarians. Get the $#&@ over it. 

Anthony Bourdain vs Paula Deen
Yes, that's Paula Deen licking the stomach of Dinner: Impossible host Robert Irvine.

In the end, if you've read any of Bourdains's books or watched any of his shows, well, then you've basically already seen the Guts and Glory tour. There were numerous portions that were ripped straight out of the pages of Medium Raw, and several famous clips from his shows are the launching point for most of his stories. Even his good buddy Zamir makes an appearance on the screen, to the delight of almost everyone in the crowd.

So yes, buying a ticket to the Guts and Glory tour was more or less like sitting down to a two-hour marathon of No Reservations. But given how many Sunday afternoons I've wasted doing just that, paying to see my man-crush perform it live was worth every penny.

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