Story is here.
Bien Cordialement, Wild-Yeast
Would you look at that!
I talked to Ben at the WSJ about TFL and Tartine bread last week. I'm not sure that quote was exactly what I said, but I did definitely mention that I tried to design TFL so that it was comfortable for both male and female bakers. At the time I started it most of the other baking sites were designed for perceived "female tastes" with lots of white and pink and yellow and macro-blurred photos of cupcakes and such. I picked earth tones here because I thought more closely matched what you get in an artisan bakery where the dominant colors come from crust, grains, and 50 lb. brown paper bags of ingredients. Earth tones are gender neutral, too.
We also talked about the obsessive aspect of some bread bakers, many of whom (like me) seem to have day jobs in the software industry. So I definitely may have said some of us "geek out." That said, I think we've got both guys and ladies who geek out on it.
Quantcast says we (TFL visitors) are 63% female, 37% male. How they figure that out, I have no idea.
TFL geek out and lose perspective
Looking around I found a nice YouTube video on the Tartine Bakery here.
I captured this frame of Chad working in the bakery from the video:
Central Milling Company flour!...,Reminds me I've got to make a flour run...,
I find tha to be an interesting figure, and as Floyd wonders, how did they figured that out? But More to the point:
Most bread baking books, or at least the ones we spend most of the time discussing on TFL, have been authored by men. This is not to take away from the Glezers(et al), but clearly this site revolves more around Reinhardt, Hammelman, Lahey, Robertson, etc. For no other reason than these are the standards.
I am not really trying to make a point here regarding gender v. bread baking. Simply pointing out the fact that if there is so sharp a contrast in site visitation and authoritative authorship, well then that is interesting.
brother, seconded by his uncle, so maybe there is something to the fact that the books are mostly male written. I only started baking bread, when I found the no knead books, and realized I could use my kitchen aid (a present after over 30 years of marriage) but maybe its women who are more disposed to talk about bread making,and ask questions (men don't ask for directions or a lot of them don't) and I suspect its still a traditional breakdown on the fact that women bake bread at home, and men work in bakeries, don't think that will hold true anymore, but it may still be hanging on for a generation yet.
The definitions of "geek" in wikipedia are all over the place (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geek).
As a word geek who lives with an open source software geekette and spends a lot of time with people who self-identify as geeks, I would offer the following definition: "a person who obsessively seeks complete (especially technical) expertise in a particular field; e.g., a bread geek."
I would proudly wear a (preferably flour-stained) t-shirt that says "TFL: Bread Geeks Make Better Loavers".