Thursday, May 1, 2008

Join the Revolution

My students have often called me a hippie, though I think true hippies would scoff at that label. My husband uses the term when my unconventional behavior befuddles him. My sister flings around the 'h' word when she's embarrassed to be seen with me. And yet even though I know 'hippie' might not be entirely appropriate for me, I am honored to be ranked among pretty radical people.

So what would ever prompt someone to label me as such? It probably starts with my birkenstocks and that long, white flowy skirt I live in come summertime (clothing), Ben Harper and Bob Marley obsession (great music), patchouli scent (so not mainstream), save-the-planet attitude (gotta have a cause), and perhaps my green thumb (yay to local and organic)? Though the issues of the 70s were different from today, the fact remains that to question what the majority takes for granted, and to espouse countercultural values, still evokes the term. There are worse names to be called...

All that said, I am excited to embark on a new growing season journey. I've been really considering the use of space, land, and resources in our culture, and what has jumped out at me is the enormous waste on perfectly manicured lawns. Check out Cascadia's food not lawns website. Also, I really wanted to have read Food, Not Lawns by HC Flores by now, but all my time is consumed with reading about, learning about, and talking about Italy. Still, tomorrow, I hope to plant my spinach, kale, salad greens, carrots, and many medicinal and culinary herbs. Once the seedlings from my local nursery are big enough, I plan to plant to buy some tomato, eggplant, pepper, and squash plants. It's work, yes. But what is life about? Bringing my food from my backyard to my table is one of the most appealing concepts I've ever considered. More on the meaning of life to follow, but for now, please check out a Homegrown Revolution - a Youtube short about how one family has fought the system and grows at least 50% of their produce in their yard.

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