What’s with the tiny-food videos? You know — the hamster digging into a mini-lasagna, the tiny tacos laid out on a poker-chip plate. A friend of mine asked on Facebook the other day: “Someone help me understand why this is a thing. What. Is. The. Point?”
Here’s what I think:
The world has gone absolutely crazyballs. Up is down. Down is up. This election feels like a farcical nightmare from which we can’t wake up. If you go to school, to the movies, or to sit in a car for a minute, you might get shot and die. Mother Nature is throwing disasters at us with both hands like a bully in a snowball fight. There are evil clowns lurking in the woods, both figuratively and literally. Life as we know it has been flipped on its head and turned inside out.
When we’re living in a fun-house mirror version of the world we thought we’d built, it feels like we have no control over anything — or that if we did want to exert some control, it would require Herculean effort. To make big change, where would we even start? It’s distressing.
So here’s a world-inversion you can control: What if you turned everything eensy-weensy? And then you took all the prescribed steps — but in miniature — to make, say, a pie? After you put that effort in, what would you get out?
Ta-da! Even if you distort everything on a ridiculous scale — what? giant human hands operating a minuscule oven? this is nuts! — it works. You put a tiny egg into a tiny bowl of flour, add some tiny apples, and get a tiny pie. You control this wacky scenario, and you can count on the result.
Out in the crazy real world, we keep saying, “The system is broken.” In tiny-food world, all the systems work. A burrito is a burrito, even in a kitchen that could fit under a mushroom. What a strange but true comfort.
I think it’s that simple.
Or maybe it’s just that tiny pie is really cute.