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Astronauts, OCD and the Contaminated Kitchen with Ian Puleston-Davies
Episode 122nd July 2021 • This Food Thing • Jemma Richards
00:00:00 00:57:42

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Ian Puleston-Davies was an anxious boy who dreamt of being an astronaut. Not to see the moon or world from space, but so he could eat NASA’S packs of powdered food worry free. 

At home, gravy splashed on plates turned the food to ‘goo and stick.’ Tiptoeing over manure into Auntie Margaret’s farmhouse kitchen, where food was thrown about, had Ian shaking and twitching in his own private bedlam.

For Ian, the kitchen is a nuclear reactor: a place of contamination. Sell by dates glow neon and mean poison. He longs to cook from his cookery book collection but preparing food is impossible for him. Eating out is worse. Much worse. But he manages to eat. Once the rituals are complete and he’s, finally, sat down. 

Find out how Ian manages his lifelong struggle with OCD and how it hijacks his relationship with food in this funny, poignant episode with actor, writer and director Ian Puleston Davies. 


  • [02.40] - What’s difficult about food?
  • [07.01] - Anxious seven year old
  • [11.50] - Relationship between me, food and my condition.
  • [24.36] - Ritual in restaurants
  • [37.35] - It’s a miracle Ian eats at all


Instagram: ipd_ian


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