Cultivating Thought

I love how the internet can be a rabbit hole that takes you to something you never quite expected. An article on my newsfeed with a cute illustration led me to an illustrator’s website, which led me again to a project (Cultivating Thought) put together by one of my VERY favourite authors, Jonathan Safran Foer, with Chipotle Mexican Grill.

Jonathan met the CEO of Chipotle when he was writing one of his recent books, “Eating Animals.” The purpose of the book was to take a good hard look at where our food comes from and educate the choices he wanted to make for his new son, and the resulting book was very illuminating.

Jonathan noted that the restaurants had all these surfaces which could be used to give people something, rather than be filled with, say, marketing information. So he sought out authors and curated a collection of essays that have been beautifully rendered onto some of the restaurant’s single-use products, like the cups and bags. A number of fantastic artists and writers contributed, including Judd Apatow, Toni Morrison, Sarah Silverman, and Steven Pinker. Their short works range from the literary to the hilarious to the thoughtful, and are coupled with eye-catching illustrations. This is the kind of “senseless art” that makes my heart a happy place.

“It is better to learn something than not to learn something. It is better to laugh than not to laugh. It’s better to have your mind provoked than not to. Everyone agrees with this. I think it’s kind of a fundamental human value.”


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