Sunday, May 15, 2011

There is no turning back

I overhead a conversation about organics, which got me thinking about esoterics. You know when you start to head down a certain path of knowledge or study and you are moving along this path not realizing how far you are going. And then one day you overhear a conversation that has to do with the little world you joined, and you find yourself chiming in and then blathering on while others stare blankly.

The conversation was something like: If you want to buy organic food, but do not want to spend so much, you can save money by buying organic foods that "matter." The logic was that fruits like the banana do not have to be organic because you peel it and therefore do not ingest any pesticides. This led to a wider discussion about the woes of buying raspberries that cost $7 per pint. This conversation took place in March, by the way.

So I sat there, marveling first at the fact that no one seemed to get that organics is about more than just the pesticides that you may or may not ingest. And second that no one seemed conscious of seasons and fruit.

I have brought seasonality up before, in conversation. As a response I heard about the wonders of shipping, global trade, and living in the US. Yes, but ... other 1st world countries still do the seasonality thing. And raspberries out of season taste like crap. Furthermore, raspberries from the supermarket taste like crap. But people vigorously defend their food choices. If you have ever been a vegetarian, as I was for 5+ years, you surely know how people will defend their choice to eat meat, and they will defend it with gusto.
So this time I did not take part in the food conversation because I realized that I am on a, perhaps esoteric, path of knowledge about food. I guess that I have already walked a long way down it such that I can't see the fork in the road where I turned anymore. Instead of taking part I thought about how Josh and I went to a very popular steakhouse in Seattle and the waiter was so happy to announce that they serve "corn-fed beef." But ... cows eat grass. Do you know what happens to them and therefore all the medicine and crap you have to pump them full of when you feed them what they don't eat? Not to mention the corn that they are eating is GMO and covered with pesticides? What would the server have said to that diatribe?

There are several sayings associated with knowledge and the lack thereof. Knowledge is power. Ignorance is bliss. A little bit of knowledge can be a dangerous thing. Then there is that whole biblical metaphor. And I certainly do not claim to be a purist. I buy conventional foods; I ate a steak from a corn-fed steer at the aforementioned restaurant. What am I saying, then? I don't really know. Perhaps just that the difference is in the guilt because of the knowledge of sin, or what I am coming to define as a food sin.

This would be blathering on, I think.

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