And Now, A Few Words About Rick Nichols

If you’ve been following Foobooz since way back in the day, you may be aware of our long-running infatuation with Inquirer food writer Rick Nichols. (Okay, my infatuation — Arthur is innocent here). While we ran with it on the site as a joke, the sentiment was real. Rick Nichols is just an amazing food writer — and an amazing writer, period. And now he’s moving on.

I started reading Rick Nichols’ columns at the beginning of my career in this strange field; I wasn’t on staff, had no journalism background, and no mentor or any sort of Yoda. There weren’t even any food blogs back then! And there I was, terrified most of the time, blindly searching around for guidance, for clues on how not to screw up, for writers to look up to and emulate; for all of those things, you couldn’t do better than to look to Rick Nichols.

Of course, I’m a weirdo, so I decided that I never actually wanted to meet Rick Nichols.

Mostly, I was afraid that he wasn’t going to be the marvelous person I had imagined in my head. Life is full of disappointments and I wasn’t in the market for another.* So I managed to not meet Rick until last year. And trust me, it took some doing: in this town (and especially in the food writing community) it’s harder not to meet people than it is to meet them.

Guess what? Rick is EVEN BETTER in person than he is on the page. He’s smart, funny, a walking food encyclopedia and quite salty for someone who has grandchildren. There are rumors he’s a pretty talented mechanical bull rider. I’m sure going to miss reading his columns and seeing him around town. And I’m grateful for his example, his ear, and his totally wicked sense of humor.

Rick Nichols: Bon Voyage [Insider]

*Note to aspiring writers: this is a really stupid way of thinking — you should try reaching out to people you admire. You never know.