Wednesday, May 16, 2007

more to life than meat

i talk about meat an offal lot. i really love meat. i want to raise it, kill it, butcher it, cook it and eat it. i want to be a part of the cycle of life. don't get me wrong, i'm not hating on the veggies. i spent the morning in the garden, planting tomato starts that have been flowering on my windowsill. i trying making like a bee and using a q-tip to pollinate the flowers, which may or may have not worked. between third and fourth grade, i spent summer in oklahoma "pollinating" my mom's vegetable garden, catching crawdads and playing with my pet catfish. seriously, i made my mom buy me a live catfish at the farmer's market. he lived in a kiddie pool with some bluegills i caught (mom used to take me fishing, too). i would dig night crawlers out of the compost pile to feed them, and taught the bluegills to jump out of the water for worms. i would put on "fish shows" at the family barbecues. (when i came back from camp, they had unlearned that particular skill.) i also caught tadpoles and kept them in the pool which my mom promptly pickled and jarred. good on sticky rice, she said, but i digress.

butter lettuce from our garden was the only lettuce other than iceberg i had ever tasted. i couldn't understand why they were so different, and why we couldn't have butter lettuce all the time. the thought of lettuce made of butter really appealed to me, but it's still my favorite lettuce (and on my menu right now). i haven't been to my garden in two weeks and it's out of control. favas and orca beans (my term, i think they're technically called calypso beans), radishes, spring onions, beets and huge heads of lettuce. the micro greens have turned to macro greens, due to neglect. and i planted the tomatoes, although it seems a little early. i'm really excited about the Mexican Midget tomato plant. i imagine it sprouting fat, juicy little luchadores. i guess my thought process hasn't changed much from lettuce made of butter...
i also planted Black Krim tomatoes. they make me think of a Yugoslavian woman in a babushka, picking tomatoes as dark as the black sea. and Beaver Dam peppers? just plain funny.
i've harvested beets, pounds and pounds of kale, snail-laden leeks and one beautiful head of cauliflower. i wish i had some chickens or quail. i wish i was a farmer.

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