I had to go to the grocery store yesterday to pick up meat for our dog, and to purchase those things that we don’t produce around here. But, as time goes on, I notice that I am skipping whole aisles. No need to buy eggs, cookies, much of the produce, bread, and so forth anymore. I still have not made my own cheese. Our green peppers and cucumbers aren’t ripe yet. Mushrooms are pretty impossible, even though they pop up by themselves in the garden. It feels like I’d need a degree in botany to figure out which mushrooms are poisonous and which are edible. So, I buy them. After the collapse, I’ll either learn, trust somebody else to know, or give them up.
But, now I can plan my meals around what is available in the garden, and then fill in the blanks from the store. Yesterday I spent about $60 on food for the two of us and our dog. Here’s what we’ll be eating this week:
- A salad made with an orange and avocado on a bed of musclun lettuce with almonds and citrus dressing; served with some pork loin stuffed with garlic.
- Homemade egg rolls stuffed with shrimp, plus egg, cabbage and scallions from the garden; served with snow peas (also from the garden).
- White bean dip and salsa on crisped pita bread with a salad.
- Steamed kale from the garden with butter and vinegar; served with red snapper
- Creamed Swiss chard and mushrooms served over crepes (or noodles) with a yogurt/ fruit cup
- Tuna and pasta salad with coleslaw from the garden. We’ve grown a sort of leaf cabbage from
- Cheese enchiladas with a plate of tomatoes and scallions on the side. I just got a tortilla press in the mail that I am anxious to try. We’ll see how much better homemade tortillas taste.
In addition, I also have tofu, yogurt, cottage cheese and fruit for breakfast and lunches – and ice cream, two for one sale. I’m making homemade bagels, too, so I bought cream cheese.
Not bad for sixty bucks, I’d say. And, most of it is organic.
Gads! I feel like a post-collapse Martha Stewart! Don’t worry – I won’t advise washing your toilet with home-grown rose petals.
Now, admittedly, all this takes time to prepare. Especially if you are starting with a rototiller…. But, what a project to accomplish together! Whatever your family configuration – single friends; mom, dad, and the kids; older collective, whatever, this is a project that will help to bond those who participate into a “family.” And, you need not be a gourmet cook. Even if you just put these natural ingredients in a blender with some water and ate them raw, it would still sustain life. Beyond that, it is just a matter of talent and practice.
Think of the navel-watching, self-absorbed, integrity-challenged yuppie (scum) on Seinfeld. If they had to pull together to produce meals like this, they’d either have to get over their issues or they would starve to death.
Ras has a terrific post on her blogsite, My Flight From the Grid, entitled “Is Localvorism Anti-Feminist?” It’s very good question. And, I agree with her. It is not.
Learning and practicing how to produce one’s own food and cook from scratch could be the difference between being happy and well, or being miserable, sick, or even dead, when the shit hits the fan and the trucks stop rolling in with food from California, Guatemala, and points South.
Not only that, but anybody who thinks being a wage slave locked into the daily commute and the compulsory day care center hassle is some form of “liberation” is nuts. Buying fast food, eating out of a bag, driving endless miles, shopping for those imported slave-made clothing and products, and credit card debt, only serves THE MAN (even if she is a woman nowadays).
I remember vividly the days when no matter what a woman did, it was discounted and devalued. That was sick and wrong. But now, the “feminist”movement has morphed into women as well as men living to serve the corporations, the pharmaceutical industry, and the military. That is not liberation. That is a pimp job.
The damage it that has been done to society is obvious when you look around and see the fragmented families, gangs, dangerous neighborhoods, greed, alienation, sickness, and injury to the planet that has occurred in the last 30 years or so. We should have known something perverse was happening when Gloria Steinham started to date Henry Kissinger. Come to think of it, Kissinger advised Nixon, too, when he went to
Localization is powerful. It is healing. It requires equality between men and women, and mutual respect. It requires that everyone do what they can, not based on what sex they are, but what their talents and abilities are. In our home, murph can’t cook much. But, he can do the dishes. And, I am worthless at fixing a water pump, but I can water the garden. We each do what we can.
Now, that things are tough and getting tougher, maybe we’ll learn to value each other more than our jobs. We’ll learn to value the gift of the top soil, and not pave it over to make a mall. We’ll learn to respect our children or grandchildren and what they can contribute, not just feel compelled to haul them around and buy them stuff. We’ll learn the value of keeping our word and our commitments. You can’t bullshit the garden. If the seeds don’t get sown, or the plants don’t get watered, or the animals don’t get fed, or the firewood is not chopped, everybody will be in a world of hurt. Those not able to be in integrity will not last long in a relationship or a community.
Well, I am not saying that everything is going to fall happily into place and we can all hold hands and sing “Kumbaya.” But, take it step-by-step. Localization is a great step and a great responsibility – and it is empowering. It will give healthy structure to the confusion and chaos ahead. I believe that the rewards will be real clear real soon.
Now, to get that meal on the table…