You Gonna Eat That??

Holy CARP!! It’s SPRING OUTSIDE!!! And I have many, many garden chores waiting for me. Not to mention sending out a seed order before planting time (I told you not to mention that!!). My role as a caretaker likely will limit the garden to be a bit different this year. Previous growing seasons found me planting a little bit of almost everything: garlic, Swiss, chard, delicata squash, hubbard squash, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, very old ancestor of kale, pole beans, beets, pak choi, parsnips, popcorn, cucumbers, peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, potatoes, okra, rosemary, thyme, oregano, mint, asparagus, rhubarb, parsley… sunflowers, nasturtiums, zinnias, marigolds, catnip.

Oh and we have an asparagus patch and a patch of rhubarb (or ROObob as Grandma Loftus called it).

I was rattling all this (well, much of this) off to a friend a while back. Then he tickled my funny bone by asking, “Do you eat everything you grow?” “Well,” I replied with a smirk, “we give some of it away.” I couldn’t help smiling a bit more as I visualized myself eating ALL of the produce in one big snarfing session (what can I say, I get amused easily). “No,” he wondered, “I mean do you eat all the kinds of vegetables you grow?” “Well sure!” I responded with a grin. By this time my warped mind silently kicked into silliness overdrive with possible responses:

“Well, we like to plant all kinds of weird, disgusting foods so we can watch them mature and them mow them down with the tractor.”


“No, I just like busting my hiney to grow food so I can make some kick-butt compost with it!!”

Or maybe…

“Whadda you nuts?? Vegetables are disgusting!!”

Seriously though, yes we do indeed eat what we grow; and I’ve gotten better at planning the garden according to what my Beautiful Girlfriend and I both like to eat. That’s not very difficult since we both pretty much like any vegetable put in front of us. She’s very tolerant when I plant different things for the fun of it. Ground cherries are one example of a home run with my Honey Pie, she really loves those things. Well OK, I like them a lot too!!

A byproduct of living the first 3 years of marriage in the south was that both of us are smitten by greens. Kale, wild cabbage (the heirloom kale ancestor), Swiss chard, and beet greens are some of our favorites. We eat them steamed as a side vegetable; mixed into a stir fry; or added to an egg “scramble” (sauteed mushrooms, onions and other veggies cooked into scrambled eggs with a little shredded cheese on top).

In case any of you are wondering, yes, we did consider ourselves vegetarians early in our marriage. We ate eggs and dairy products, but no meat. Why? Health reasons of course, but our belief system was evolving too. We didn’t like the idea of killing so we could eat; but then we watched shows like Wild America and Nature. Those programs illustrated the fact that all animals, large and small, are part of a diverse tapestry of beings that will either eat or be eaten. Kind of flushed the killing stuff in the toilet for me… and besides, to paraphrase a bumper sticker, if our Creator didn’t intend for us to eat animals, they should never have been made of meat!! I did my share of hunting when I was a kid, but would rather not do that anymore. I am grateful for those who kill the animals for me so I can eat their delicious meat molecules.

And no, Jeffrey Dahmer did NOT speak from the grave to have me say that!!

To this day we still eat a lot of veggies, and we really don’t eat very much red meat at all… our animal protein comes mostly from dead fish and dead birds like turkey or chicken. So if it’s a vegetable, yes we are probably “gonna eat that.” We still eat meatless meals occasionally, and we have not suffered from a lack of protein. We learned years ago that when cooked together, of beans and rice (for example) provide the necessary amino acids our bodies need to make complete proteins. Could we be OK with being vegan? Probably.

Do we wanna? Ummm… no.

Ahh… Springtime. We will soon be seeing stuff just like this, right??