31 August 2009

Fresh and Soul

What does fresh have to do with soul?
The American Heritage dictionary of the English Language defines soul as,
The animating and vital principal in human beings, credited with the faculties of thought, action, and emotion, and often conceived as an immaterial entity.
By the same source, among multiple definitions fresh is defined as, Recently made, produced, or harvested, and as Having just arrived.
How does fresh have soul? Fresh has soul if fresh is imbued with human touch, the faculties of thought, action, and emotion. Human touch.
I sum this up with an old notion and word. It's a word that's but a cultural remnant from an earlier time. A word like a Biblical metaphor now on the field's fringe. A word absent from all contemporary use. A word smothered by contemporary ideas of science, efficiency, production, volume, and storage. A word imbued with man's loving and caring touch. The word is husbandry.
The act or practice of cultivating crops and breeding and raising livestock; agriculture.
Husbandry is practiced by a husbandman, one whose occupation is farmer. My maternal grandfather was a farmer. One might just as well say yeoman, a man who cultivated his own land.

Fresh
cannot have soul if fresh is planted by machine, tended by machine, harvested by machine, processed by machine, sorted by machine into containers where it's stored, maintained, and/or treated by machine until ready for and transported by machine to a market, all for the purpose of maximizing profit for a corporation's shareholders.
I once heard a CNBC talking-head business person say profit is amoral. Really. If one purchases fresh from big-agra's means of production does that mean that what you eat is amoral. I'd guess the consumer doesn't think of it that way. Big-agra might.

07 August 2009

Random 2

I'm from Connecticut. My mother's birth family, Savage, lived in CT since 1649 and some still do. The Savage clan had a farm in Berlin. My father's family, Collins, had lived in CT since the late 19th century. They were railroaders. Some were active in local CT politics. His Uncle was a Mayor of the City of Hartford. His brother, James F. Collins ran for Congress but lost; my father financed his campaign.

Every summer our household moved from West Hartford to Madison, CT. for the season. We lived a 5-minute walk from a private beach on Long Island Sound. I lived my summers at the beach, on or in the water. Fresh seafood and farm food were part of daily life.

My family moved to Dayton, OH in 1959 when I was 8. We continued to summer in  Madison. My parents returned to Hartford in 1965 after I'd been sent to school.

Before 1965 my social, cultural, class, and educational frames of reference were in CT. My Mother, her birth family and generations of her relatives, my brother and my Father are buried in the Wilcox Memorial Cemetery, in Berlin, CT. It's maintained by the Connecticut State Historical Society.

Pothole ~ A Story of Failure

Once upon a time, on a Monday, a man was walking down a road. All of a sudden, out of nowhere, he found himself at the bottom of a big, dark place. It was scary! After several hours, he figured out that he had fallen into a very large pothole. He wasn't able to get out on his own--actually it required a lot of help to get out, but eventually he did get out. It was awful.
The very next day--Tuesday, the man was walking down the road and fell into the pothole again. This time he immediately recognized where he was, but he still couldn't get out. He needed help again.
Wednesday, when the man fell in the pothole for the 3rd time, he remembered how to get out, and--with much hard work--was able to get out on his own. Whew!
On Thursday, the man was walking down the street again. As he approached the pothole, he remembered his previous falls. He even saw the pothole when he got close... but unfortunately he fell in anyway. But he knew the way out pretty well this time, and got out quickly.
On Friday, the man saw the pothole from a good distance away. He felt so proud of himself for spotting it, and while it took a lot of effort, he did manage to walk around it safely, and didn't fall in for the first time in a long time! Hurrah!
On Saturday, the man took a different road.