Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Britney Spears

I can promise you that never, in my wildest dreams, did I expect to have the above as the title of a blog post. Today has made me feel otherwise.

Today Scott, Evie and I gave a presentation at a UU church regarding local eating and our August experiment. I thought the presentation went well, there are always things I wish we would have said but overall it was good. We got quite a few positive responses and lots of interest. Then we had two people who were mad.

One person was mad because we used the phrase "terminator seed" and she misunderstood us and though we were against all hybrid plants. "Terminator seeds" is a term coined by Monsanto and it is a seed that produces sterile plants thus making it necessary for farmers to by new seeds each season. We used it in a sentence talking about commodity crops and that to find out where your local vegetables come from, talk to your local farmer. That one was just a miscommunication that I hope gets straightened out in her head someday and she will say "Oh! I feel so badly for being so mean to that nice Lynch family!"

The other person thought that the idea of eating locally, especially within a strict radius was "isolationist." And "what about all the good ethnic restaurants?" she asked. Did we ever say not to eat food from other cultures? Did we ever say not to go to ethnic restaurants? One of my favorite places in town is a Laotian place that buys produce from where you ask? Our biggest Farmers Market. She had a lot of stuff to say and boy did she want to pick a fight. In hindsight I am not sure I can really identify what her issue was but she certainly made us feel awkward at the time. She went on and on about how "she didn't want to come to a meeting with such a horrible topic" but she thought she should just to make her voice heard. Okay, I hear you lady and I am not going to retain anything because I don't get it! I will admit to pulling a "mama bear" on her and ending the conversation. Scott says this is my ability to make a point, end a conversation of defend a family member in a way that is superficially polite but would provoke the need for stitches if anyone tried to cross me.

So, Britney Spears? I really like anonymity. I really like doing my good in the world with no one watching. This local eating stuff has really brought us into the spotlight and I am glad (very, very glad) that it has got people talking. It also makes us vulnerable to confrontation. I don't mind changing my mind when I see a new perspective or make a mistake--that is how we learn and grow. I lose so much steam when I have to hit up against people who want to put us down but who don't have anything constructive to contribute. I can see how celebrity could be exhausting. If I were constantly bombarded by negative press or even press that just wasn't true, I might shave my head and bash cars with an umbrella.

Let's all just do our good in the world and be nice to each other, please?


Eluciq said...

Hugs to the Mama Bear!

boy oh boy...and here you thought you were just going to share your experience...yikes!

denise said...

Yikes. It is hard. I encounter that a little moderating a few boards and organizing some events and stuff...people are just angry or confrontational without anything behind it. Maybe they are just angry at everything. Which is sad. But it makes you realize why things never change. People fear it. Ah well.

Nana said...

I thoroughly enjoy your blog and try to get over here at least every other week or more. I have truly enjoyed your blog on eating locally and how you did it, and I have found Washington State has a cornucopia of local foods!! We are very blessed!! We also have every imaginable ethnic restaurant in the world in Seattle and its neighboring towns, and they all get their food from the freshest local markets around here. It is too bad she didn't realize what she said and unfortunately ignorance shouldn't be an excuse but it is definitely here and not truly listening to your message. How sad!!!

Jessica said...

What an interesting post. Unlike you, I often think I am going to have a blog post titled Britnet Spears because I think that she is so symbolic of so many things in our current American culture.

I am so sorry for you having to have those confrontations. It is yucky. Having become something of a local unschooling advocate (and resident liberal) I can feel where you are coming from.

Good for you to share your experience.
~Jessica (nee Lynch, actually, which gives me a giggle every time I come here!)