Em America, o livro que Jean Baudrillahrd escreveu em 1986 sobre as suas viagens aos EUA, a dada altura, depois de considerações elaboradíssimas sobre a verticalidade barroca de Nova Iorque ou sobre as máscaras primitivas dos seus transeuntes, diz isto:
«The number of people here who think alone, sing alone and eat and talk alone in the streets is mind-boggling. And yet they don’t add up. Quite the reverse. They subtract from each other and their resemblance to one another is uncertain. Yet there is a certain solitude like no other – that of the man preparing his meal in public on a wall, or on the hood of his car, or along a fence, alone. You see that all the time here. It is the saddest sight in the world. Sadder than destitution, sadder than the beggar is the man who eats alone in public. Nothing more contradicts the laws of man or beast, for animals always do each other the honor of sharing or disputing each other’s food. He who eats alone is dead (but not he who drinks alone. Why is this?)».