Beauty in Motion

Beauty in Motion

Gorodish explains the Zen of buttering a baguette to Jules in the 1981 film Diva


On 29 May 2018 in Washington, DC, we are having an afternoon capuccino in the Blue Duck Tavern (at the corner of NW 24th and M Streets). To the left of our table, about ten feet away, a young man in a dark blue suit is standing at a high prep table cutting a roll of butter into disks of about half-inch thickness. After every cut he dips the knife into a pitcher with cold water, then repeats the motion. There is no hurry in his action, no apparent pressure to get things done. There is only the motion of the knife, the transfer of the new butter disk to a piece of cooking paper, and the dip into the water. After he is done with the butter, he disappears for a moment, then reappears and starts cutting sourdough bread into thick slices. The same procedure, smooth movements, unhurried. Beauty in Motion.