Scuse me. While nibbling on my yoga mat for lunch, something went down the wrong way. It’s my latest diet strategy. Eat only the inedible and you’re bound to lose weight.
I couldn’t believe my ears when I heard a TV anchor man announce that several national chain restaurants would begin removing a substance from their breads – the very same one that is a building block of yoga mats and rubber boots. I haven’t been so distressed since my daddy told me that hot dogs contained ground horse’s hooves. That may have contributed to my decision to go meatless later in life, but that’s a story for another day.
Back to the rubberizing of our food. Apparently someone let it slip that the chemical used in the production of sneaker soles and gym mats is used in our food to extend the shelf life and consistency of items such as baked goods and boxed noodles. Who knows, one day soon we may be eating the shelf itself but our teeth will need to evolve some more.
The same news story added the cheerful note that some of the apples sold in our supermarkets are as old as 14 months! Since they typically languish in my vegetable crisper for another six to eight weeks, that same apple could qualify for Medicare before I do.
No wonder I never cared for fruits and vegetables. Not only did they not taste good to me, but they were used as punishment. “Missy, you cannot go outside and play until you finish your limp slimy okra which tastes like you’re eating your own liver.” Well, my mother didn’t add that last phrase. I did.
Alas, late last year a doctor recommended that I adopt a plant based diet to fight a nasty strain of CanSer. (I misspell it just to piss it off.) I had no choice but to get the meat out of my life and learn to love vegetables and fruits. After three months on the program, my doctor glanced at the results of a blood panel and remarked “This looks great. What are you doing?”
For one, I’ve bought into the idea of buying locally grown organic food whenever possible. I’ve become friendly with a local farmer who supplies our community with organic produce, eggs and condiments. He often runs late arriving at the Mid-week Market because he’s still in the field picking his choice produce. You cannot imagine the difference in taste in a cauliflower of questionable age and heritage and one which was growing merrily under the sun that very morning.
This time of the year, the pickins’ are slim for Farmer Sam, but it won’t be long before he begins delivering boxes of his bountiful harvest each week to the lucky folks who have been able to join his CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). Each week we receive a big ole box (share) of whatever is maturing in his garden that very day He’s like a summer time Santa bringing you a box of surprises each week, and you become an iron chef trying to figure out what to do with sometimes exotic and unfamiliar produce.
If I had more than two hours of sunshine in my garden each day, I would become a farmer myself. For now I’m relegated to growing herbs and garlic in a tiny spot near my back door. Unfortunately my bulldog takes great pride in treating the sprouts with a daily stream of liquid nitrogen (if you get my drift). They look lush and healthy but I won’t be using the herbs until I can figure out how to keep him out of that vege patch.
Oh, by the way, USA Today is reporting that that rubber stuff lurking in many breads is called azodicarbonamide. It’s probably not a good idea to eat something you can’t spell but what do I know? I was a kid of the 50s who road her bike cozying up to the exhaust pipe of the fog truck spewing DDT.