This is What Happens When I go off on a Tangent

that articleI had been planning to post today about the myth and legend of the healthfulness of vegetable oils (I know – how much more compelling a subject could there possibly be?!? I figure if you’re reading these Food Friday posts, though, you might have some interest in understanding food/health myths, too). However, when I write about things like this, I want my points to actually have a basis in fact. I therefore began doing additional research, and I ended up going off on a fascinating, if sometimes blood-boiling tangent.

My vegetable oil research last weekend led me to a book I’m now reading that was published a few years ago, with a title I utterly love: “The Big Fat Surprise.” It’s written by Nina Teicholz, an investigative journalist whose credits include reporting for National Public Radio and writing for numerous publications including Gourmet magazine and The Economist. If you’re interested in the links between food and health, this book is a must-read, and despite the fact that she’s sifting through a virtual mountain of research and historical records, it’s written in such a way that it’s hard to put down – rare, in my experience, for non-fiction. It’s screwed up my entire sleep pattern this week, and this post is later than usual today because I spent far more time lost in reading over the past several days than in writing!

The author, who is decidedly not someone with any proverbial skin in the game of either the food or the healthcare industry, spent 9 years meticulously researching the nutrition science and research behind the “known” links between saturated fat and poor health  (cholesterol, heart disease, obesity, cancer), which was prompted by an article on trans fats her editor at Gourmet asked her to write (that article was published in June of 2004). The article was written about a year after the FDA announced that, starting in 2006, food manufacturers would be required to print information about trans fats on their labels. The book was published in 2014.

As she was researching and writing the Gourmet article, the question she was attempting to answer was “why.” Why, when research for more than 30 years had been indicating that trans fats were possibly far worse for health than saturated fats (which were the demon-children of the diet and nutrition world from the 1960s onward, and still are, according to many doctors), was further study not aggressively pursued? She was able to scratch the surface of an answer in the article, but the matter required a lot more digging –  in essence, meta-research (research on the research – especially about the methods that were followed in the various studies that were supposedly the foundation of what became incontrovertible dietary recommendations for the U.S. for several decades). It’s that meta-research which underlies The Big Fat Surprise.

I’m only about 1/3 of the way through the book as I’m writing this post, but what I’m reading certainly has my hackles up so far, as one might expect upon becoming enlightened about being lied to for most of one’s life, regarding genuinely life-altering things. I’m going to try to finish reading it before next Friday, by which point I should have enough rant-worthy material to keep us all going for quite some time.

Happy Food Friday!
NY Strip – Spicy Mustard Butter (by Jess Pryles –

Food Policy: Who Cares? (We All Should).

A while ago I came across a whitepaper that decimated a notion I’d harbored for a long time: that farm subsidies were a key enabler behind our national problem with obesity, and, therefore, many chronic, preventable health conditions. It seemed to be a logical (if factually flawed and highly simplified) flow: subsidies encourage overproduction of certain commodities, especially corn and soy, which, because they’re so abundantly over-produced, end up as meaningless livestock feed and unhealthy fillers in processed foods; processed foods, made mostly from these unhealthy ingredients, end up being significantly cheaper than healthier whole foods, encouraging over-consumption.

It turns out that the very first part of that flow – the part where subsidies encourage overproduction –presented the surprising (to me anyway) flaw in my logic. This whitepaper isn’t new – it came out in 2011. I’m sure it was widely discussed in food policy advocacy circles at the time. Sadly, from what I have seen, the policy changes advocated in the paper (which appear to be based in quite a deep and sound body of evidence) have yet to take root.

I haven’t been able to do further research (yet) into why it is that we haven’t made any significant strides on the food policy front, but I have a few hypotheses: 1) Disengagement. As I’ve surmised in prior posts, the long-term negative health impacts of poor eating habits simply aren’t particularly evident, usually until it’s too late, so most people just aren’t paying attention – they have bigger fish to fry (so to speak!) in their lives, or so they think. It’s a little like engaging with our democracy – we take it for granted until things get too painful for us, then we start writing our Congressmen. Maybe. 2) Food policy is a double-whammy. Not only is its importance not evident enough to enough people, it also does get into politics. Changing policy requires changing minds at the legislative level, a challenge for even the most fired-up consumers, especially in light of the lobbying power of 3) “Big Food.” The whitepaper makes a clear point in its third finding: “The food industry has been the main driver of commodity policy, not farmers.” The evidence shows that “the deregulation of commodity markets – not subsidies – has had a significant impact on the price of commodities. Deregulation also has provided benefits and incentives to the food industry, including processors, marketers and retailers, and is one of a number of contributing factors impacting the availability of high-calorie processed foods in the marketplace.”

The paper is very much worth the read if you’re even remotely interested in addressing public health issues and the cost of healthcare. If you don’t have the time for the full 13 pages of content, there’s also this issue brief that distills it all down to 3 pages.

The impact of blaming subsidies also tends to demonize farmers, which I suspect most of us don’t want to do. There’s been a definite resurgence of small, local farms in various places around the country in the past decade, but it’s incredibly difficult for them to make a consistent living from growing things we can actually eat (as opposed to mass production of the commodity crops noted above), and it’s especially difficult for them to price their products at levels that lower-income households (who are disproportionately impacted by those pesky preventable chronic diseases) can justify spending. What if there were a way we could incentivize farmers to go back to growing actual food, in places that are relatively local to most of us, and make real, fresh, healthy food accessible and affordable to everyone?? The paper concludes with a short list of recommendations for policy solutions:

  • Engaging in the long-term campaign to reform commodity policies;
  • Increasing consumption of fruits and vegetables, whole grains and other healthy foods;
  • Expanding the supply of healthy foods by helping farmers diversify their production and supply local and regional markets with healthy food;
  • Building the infrastructure needed to better link farmers and consumers and aid in the delivery of healthy foods.

We can keep burying our heads in the sand and ignoring this problem, arguing over “healthcare reform” that’s focused only on treating symptoms, or we can focus on things that will make us, our children, and our grandchildren truly healthier.

There are many organizations out there who are doing this work at national, state, and local levels, and they are always delighted to have extra voices and resources to help. The two who collaborated on the whitepaper, Food and Water Watch ( and The Public Health Institute ( are great places to start, but nearly every state and major city also have food policy organizations addressing things at more local levels if you’re so inclined. (There’s a wonderful one in the Hartford, CT area for which I served as a board member for 6 years, Hartford Food System ( Their work and the work of their counterparts around the country will make you smile. Check them out.

Happy Food Friday!

Jackson Farmers Market_Natalie Maynor
Photo of Farmers Market, Jackson Mississippi by Natalie Maynor

Surviving Kitchen Warfare on the Homefront

There is seemingly no end to the things that can tax a marriage if you let them, and in my household, for a long time, food, especially “what to have for dinner” was another version of shoes left in the middle of the hallway (or, pick your spousal pet-peeve: dried toothpaste in the sink, hair in the shower drain, dirty dishes languishing mere centimeters from the dishwasher; snoring – ohmygod would you JUST. STOP. long enough for me to fall asleep?!?). Allow me first, though, to lay down some baseline facts:

1) My husband is an amazingly talented and funny person, one of whose stated goals in life 30 years ago was to become his own version of “Mr. Mom;”

2) In addition to being talented and funny, he also has ADHD. If you know or love anyone with ADHD, you know, and may live with the characteristics of distractibility, lack of organizational/”executive management” brain functions (a.k.a, “filters”), and hyper-focus that are typically included, out of the box, at no extra charge, with the ADHD mind;

3) He is wildly self-critical. His inner voice is an ambitious, rampaging jerk – often unsatisfied with ravaging only *his* psyche, and requiring additional fuel from others as well, namely, yours truly;

4) I was more than happy to accommodate my husband’s Mr. Mom goal, and for the most part, it worked out pretty well. Except, for a long time, around the kitchen.

Actually, it was fine for a while. And by “a while,” I mean several years. When the boys were young, I barely remember meals, to be honest. There were some periods when I worked from home and I must have done more of the regular cooking; I always tended to do the weekend cooking, which, many times, morphed into weeknight dinners. We held steadfastly to the notion that we were NOT going to become one of those families whose kids’ dietary range consisted of pizza, chicken nuggets, mac & cheese, tater tots and ketchup.

I really enjoy cooking – the process sometimes feels a little bit magical – like alchemy – and it consumes me in the happiest way. Usually what I cook turns out well (though heaven knows I’ve had my share of fails, like the time I inadvertently mixed too much lemon juice into a marinade for sole and ended up with a dish I look back upon as “Ceviche Involuntaria,” which, not recognizing what chemical process had taken place, I then put in the oven anyway. Giant yuck). I can easily while away a full day in the kitchen indulging my inner Mark Bittman, whether just because, or for a planned get-together. There’s usually way too much, so if it turns out well, these days I text the neighbors and throw an impromptu party around the bounty. (I love my neighbors, and they’re brilliant guinea pigs to my culinary experiments). However, many times we end up getting tired of having repurposed Sunday dinner leftovers and food gets thrown away, which bothers me.

As the years rolled by I kept cooking, and experimenting, sometimes working my own version of an old Food TV (now Food Network, of course) show where a chef would come into someone’s house and whip up a meal with just what they had in their fridge and pantry. But that wasn’t happening regularly, and it left my poor ADHD husband with the task of figuring out most of the weekday meals. The good news: the range of dinners we ultimately settled into didn’t consist of pizza, chicken nuggets, mac & cheese, tater tots, and ketchup. The bad news: the repertoire instead included grilled cheese (often accompanied by Campbell’s Tomato Soup), hot dogs and beans, pierogis with caramelized onions, mac & cheese and pizza. And steamed broccoli. There was lots of steamed broccoli, though for one of the boys, gag-inducingly, it was dipped in ketchup (no joke). It had become a routine of convenience and speed over variety and health, and it made me crazy.

For whatever reason, but I’m going to blame my husband’s inner voice introduced in item 3 above, at the times when I *would* be contentedly creating away in the kitchen, he’d blow in like a dark thundercloud over my picnic, insinuating an annoyed weariness on *my* experience: “Doesn’t it bother you to be in the kitchen all day?” (Translation: “it bothers me when you’re in the kitchen all day,” or, “I have no desire to be in the kitchen for longer than 10 minutes, so how can you possibly enjoy it? Here, let me ruin it for you.”)

He also took to questioning essentially everything I created, from selection to preparation techniques, and no matter how many times I pleaded with him to just let me be me and have my joy; no matter how many times I turned out something good, he found a way to criticize it (though he never saw it that way – for him, it was just benign observations, unencumbered by any “I’ve learned from experience that I probably shouldn’t do this” filters). He would then fail to understand how or why this could possibly upset me, despite my repeated explanations that his criticism *really* pushed my buttons. To be honest, he probably never tuned all the way in to my “explanations,” partly because of his distractibility, and partly because they were usually screamed angrily at him, often while I happened to be gripping my chef’s knife.

It made my blood boil, and no matter how I rationalized that I shouldn’t let it get to me, I felt like I put my heart and soul into my cooking, and he was stomping on it. Plus, he rarely made any effort himself, and worst of all, his questioning would often occur in front of the boys (no filters!!), predisposing them to turn up their noses at whatever the meal might be, rather than encouraging the adventurousness we’d imagined early-on.

After a while, every time he came at me with his “thundercloud offense,” I would testily remind him that cooking was supposed to be part of the Mr. Mom job description, and yet here I was, picking up his slack (yeah – I can be mean), and all he could do was criticize. I had tons of cookbooks; I subscribed (or had subscribed) to and retained virtually hundreds of issues of a few different cooking magazines; then there was the internet. He could read, and I had seen him follow recipes successfully. So he’d try: he would attempt to put together plans for the week, though ironically, as much as he could breezily cut down my meal choices, he agonized over making decisions about what to put on the menu himself; at one point I even found and signed up for a service that would send weekly menus and shopping lists. He’d stick with something for maybe a few weeks at a time, only to fall victim to the thundercloud offense, turned on himself.

If you’re wondering how this story could possibly conclude in anything short of divorce, you’d be justified; but take heart, oh lovers of happy endings: there was a solution, and we’ve been enjoying it for well over a year and a half now. Back in the summer of 2017, without telling him what I was doing, I subscribed to a meal service (think Blue Apron, though that was NOT the specific provider). It was a gamble, and I knew I’d take heat for it, but I’d found one that I was really excited about. A chef with global culinary experience; 18 meal selections to choose from each week; organic and/or seasonal and locally sourced ingredients wherever possible, including everything needed except oil, salt & pepper (and equipment); minimal packaging that was nearly 100% recycled/recyclable. A day before the first box showed up, I casually mentioned it. Naturally, Captain Thundercloud thought it was a stupid idea, but then we cooked the first meal. Together. Then the second, and the third. He was enjoying it. The boys were enjoying it.

After 2 or 3 weeks, he was hooked, to the point where he was actually telling people about it, unprovoked. We cooked together, each of us at our own station flanking the stove – divvying up the prep (which was typically fairly minimal). Was it more expensive than it would have been to buy the ingredients for the same meals? Yes. However, we had a variety and healthiness to our meals that had been missing for a very long time. And I was no longer guiltily throwing away heaps of uneaten leftovers and bags of slimy, decomposing produce that we had no choice but to buy in quantities much greater than what was really needed. The meals often yielded a bit of leftover, but just enough for lunch for a day or two. My refrigerator was Konmari’d – staying cleaner, less cluttered, and gloriously free of the mystery aroma of rotting oh-god-what-was-that, and I was spending less on food than I ever had. (One element: we now hardly ever felt like we had to go out for dinner to compensate for the fact that we weren’t moved to eat what was in the fridge, or to come up with something to make).

Our days of kitchen warfare were over, freeing up precious time to argue over more pressing things, like shoes left in the middle of the hallway.

crossed knives

Food as Medicine (and Health Care Cost Control), Part II

Why is it that we can so easily recognize the importance of understanding and structuring policy regarding the dangerous addictive properties of opioids, but we have such a hard time recognizing the importance of understanding and structuring policy regarding food, which, in many cases, plays along the same addictive pathways in the brain?

There are numerous studies showing that certain foods (sugar, for example), can be at least as addictive, if not more so, than cocaine or heroin, activating the same receptors in our brains as the drugs. (This article is a great read, and provides links to a few such studies if you’re so inclined. There’s also this study regarding highly processed foods and “food addiction”). Some studies suggest that the impact of sugar on those receptors could be even *stronger* than the impact of cocaine.

We’re enraged to the point of proverbial torches and pitchforks at the pharmaceutical companies who produced and marketed opioids literally to death. (According to the latest figures – January 2019 – from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, approximately 130 people die from opioid overdoses each day – over 47,000 per year).

Yet, with the clear links between poor diet and chronic preventable disease (mentioned in my Food Friday blog last week) and related deaths, which number approximately 1.4 *million* annually in the US (I had to go to a few different sources on the CDC website to compile this number, but roughly, it’s comprised of 600,000 deaths per year each from heart disease and cancer; 140,000 from stroke, and 80,000 from diabetes), up to 40% of which are preventable (much higher, actually, for Type 2 diabetes), where’s the outrage? Where are the lawsuits?? What are we thinking???

I find it fascinating how we humans (especially we freedom-loving Americans) rationalize things like this, and how outraged many people become at the suggestion of policy (such as consumption-based taxes) that can begin to shape longer-term, truly beneficial changes in our food and beverage habits. We cling to them like a tattered blankie from childhood, assigning all sorts of mythic autonomy to our “rights” about our choices for what we eat and drink, and, in the process, choose a clear path to disease, premature death, and billions and billions of dollars in healthcare spending that are truly avoidable. We *all* then pay the price in higher costs of “delivery” and upward-spiraling insurance premiums. And then we punish the providers by continuing to squeeze them to deliver an ever-increasing volume and quality of services at lower and lower cost. It really pisses me off.

As it stands, in 2017, $3.5 *trillion* was spent on healthcare in the U.S., representing 17.9% of GDP. In 1970, in inflation-adjusted dollars, we spent $400 billion, which represented 6.9% of that year’s GDP. The rate of healthcare spending has been increasing at a considerably steeper rate since the late 1990s, and even though it’s slowed down somewhat in the past couple of years (as of the date of the latest Peterson-Kaiser Health System Tracker), the links between preventable chronic disease, death, and dietary choices remain.

We need to get more aware of what’s influencing our “decisions” (our own brains’ pleasure receptors gone wild; willful and active ignorance by food manufacturers as they continue to produce and heavily market products with addictive ingredients – remember the tobacco industry 40 and 50 years ago? Yeah, that. But with your FOOD.) We need to stop acting like petulant children, stamping our feet and declaring in effect, “it’s my body and I’ll eat what I want to.” We need grow up and instead, plant our feet firmly in the soil of true self-worth (as opposed to misguided notions of self-determination masquerading as “choices” we think we want to make) and start taking seriously our own roles in our individual and collective health.

Rant over. Happy (Food) Friday!

Food as Medicine (and Health Care Cost Control), Part I

Call me (still) crazy, but back about 10 years ago when people were fighting like cats and dogs over the  Affordable Care Act and political liberals and conservatives largely fell into nice, neat lines on either “side” of the debate, I, who consider myself to be largely a social liberal and a fiscal moderate, was trying to invent a completely different line whenever the issue came up in conversation. That line invoked my deep and pretty much unrelenting conviction that when you’re dealing with any significant, systemic issue, you do yourself (and any impacted constituents – in the case of healthcare, that’s more or less all of us who aren’t super-wealthy) a huge disservice by only addressing symptoms. Rather, analysis of, and solutions for, the root cause(s) of an issue are the path to a longer-term, more effective answer.

In this case, the “symptom” was (is) the skyrocketing costs of healthcare (duh!), which, per the main focus of the ACA, would be addressed by a turning of the regulatory screws, mostly on providers and payers. My point (then, and still) was that we already knew at the time, and we have an even greater body of evidence now, that there are a few *significant* drivers behind healthcare costs in this country. One of those drivers is spending on chronic preventable diseases (which also impacts some of the other major levers of spending, including “service price and intensity,” a significant proportion of which is driven by increasing costs of pharmaceuticals and acute interventions to *treat* the chronic preventable diseases).

My essential argument is this: we’ll *never* rein in the costs of healthcare if all we focus on is the cost of delivery of healthcare. We need to get serious (as serious as a heart attack, maybe?) about making the deeper changes we need to make as individuals, a country, and as a culture that will influence our collective health. And I’ll be the first to admit that diet isn’t the only issue, but it’s my soapbox, and I’ll focus on food if I want to, because it’s a big one.

Here are some sobering statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (a.k.a. the CDC – though this language is quoted from “The Nutrition Source” on the website of Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health):

  • Chronic diseases are the leading causes of death and disability.
  • 70% of annual deaths are due to chronic diseases.
  • These *preventable* (emphasis added) conditions not only compromise quality of life, they add to rising health care costs—*75% of our health care dollars are devoted to treat these diseases* (emphasis added, again).
  • Among adults ages 20 to 74, diabetes remains the leading cause of kidney failure, blindness, and non-traumatic lower-extremity amputations.

“Chronic diseases —*including heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and cancer* (emphasis added)— account for some of the most common health problems in the United States . . . yet many of these chronic diseases are preventable, as they’re linked to poor diet and lifestyle choices including tobacco use, excessive alcohol consumption, and inadequate physical activity.” Let me repeat: 75% of our health care dollars are devoted to treat these diseases.

This isn’t simply about making changes to our diets, though. There’s an entire undercurrent (more like a riptide) of culture that needs to evolve as well, and I’ll be talking more about that in future entries, but allow me close this post with one simple example, as this particular policy is certain to whip up controversy wherever it’s proposed: a tax on beverages with added sugar. People invariably FREAK. OUT. over this (though I think it’s a freak-out that in large part is manufactured by political action/interest groups representing beverage manufacturers, whose “ads” on the horror of the idea are intended to sow discontent). But this is what I mean when I talk about the riptide of culture, and I’ll come back to that next time.

Cheers for now, and happy (Food) Friday!

Sustainable Kitchens?

When I left my corporate job last year, in addition to knowing I needed the time and flexibility to take care of my parents, my one big desire was to launch a business that focused on helping healthcare institutions make the shift in their foodservice operations toward more local sourcing and healthier and more “sustainable” back-to-scratch food preparation (more on the rather loaded word “sustainable” later).

Life, though, has a way of telling you when your focus needs to be somewhere other than where you think you want it, and with everything else I’ve had on my plate (haha) in the past few months, I have to admit that I haven’t been able to spend as much time on pursuing that big desire as I had imagined I would. This makes me feel more than a little sheepish, considering it’s nearly all I talked about for weeks in the advent of, and after I left my job, and I had a bunch of people cheerleading for me. I hope I haven’t lost everyone yet. . .

I did set several goals for myself to attain around this before the end of March, though, and this week I’ve been able to re-focus on them and do a few things to get me back on track. Next week, there will be more. In the same way I committed to myself to getting the first draft of my book completed (done), and getting this blog going (done, if messy), and completing an advanced 13-week investing course (almost done), and getting my parents’ former house cleaned out and sold (done), and getting my grandmother’s house through probate she passed away in October), cleaned out and sold (almost done – closing should be in the next 2 weeks), I can now commit to getting back on the path with this.

Meanwhile, though, let me catch you up to where I *am.* Once I left my job, I dove into research around hospitals and healthcare systems and healthier, more “sustainable,” more local food initiatives. I was beyond excited when I came across a chef named Justin Johnson, based in Wisconsin, who first, had been someone named in one of dozens of case studies I’d read, having transformed the foodservice operations of a hospital in Wisconsin. Then, after he had that hospital’s revamped program up and running successfully, he decided to take what he’d developed there, and build a company around it, with a repeatable “toolkit” that could be applied to any foodservice operation. He called it Sustainable|Kitchens (which I’m going to abbreviate as “SK”). Their model provides the structure to first fully assess a current operation, then, based upon the findings of that assessment, create, and if desired, assist the organization in successfully implementing, a plan to shift the operation to one that sources locally; migrate preparation approaches to “back-to-scratch;” and, in so doing, create a more sustainable operation. (SK, by the way, isn’t just focused on healthcare – they can do what they do for any institution with a foodservice operation).

Now for a word on “sustainability,” the definition of which, for many, focuses on activities that consume less than their output provides back to the environment. Before I connected with Justin, I was one of probably millions of people (maybe you’re one of them, too) who just assumed that making “sustainability”-related changes in operations would be more expensive to organizations who chose to do it than what they’d been doing before. I had been steeling myself for the case that would have to be made to convince organizations that, in spite of this, it was worth it to take the plunge anyway: that the health benefits to patients and staff, the opportunities to engage the community, the great P.R. possibilities, would balance and mitigate any increase in cost. Plus, as one administrator I spoke with during my research told me, it would just feel good, because “it’s the right thing to do.”

To Justin, though, the word “sustainable” *must* include a financial element as well (to be fair, I’m sure he’s not the only one). In other words, making this kind of change has to have positive financial impact, or it will always be in the crosshairs of future “cost-cutting” initiatives, which are a constant concern for healthcare (and most other organizations). Mind? Blown. I mean, duh – of course, as a person who worked for the better part of my corporate career helping clients do things that made them more cost-effective, this made perfect sense, but I hadn’t heard much of it in the world of sustainable food practices.

What Justin and SK had developed was sound. It was proven with multiple organizations over several years, and it was, above all, exciting. I changed my plan, scrapping the idea of creating something on my own, and offered to help him and SK expand their reach here in the Northeast. And for the next month, barring any unforeseen crises, that is going to be my primary focus.

Get a peek here into how SK’s magic works, and see if you think it’s as exciting as I do. If you do, I’d love to hear from you!

Bon appetit!!

A “Food Friday” Foundation

There’s a lot of passion in me for food, and not just because I love to eat, and to cook (especially when I can share what I’ve created with people I care about – ask my neighbors!). For a very ironic reason I won’t go into here, about 15 years ago or so, something happened that started me thinking more consciously about food and its connection to health.

Over the years, spurred by that experience, I’ve read a lot of books: The China Study; many, if not most, by Michael Pollan; and a host of others, from those that address the issues that arise in the body, and even in our DNA, when we eat poorly (i.e. processed foods, refined oils, and sugar), to books about the microbiome. I pay attention to (and read with a critical eye) studies and any articles I see that get into the links between food and health and I am beyond convinced that, just as your car would break down if you continued to give it the wrong kind of fuel, our bodies do just the same. The devil is in defining “the right fuel,” which I don’t actually think is the same for everyone, beyond certain broad guidelines, but the old saying really is undeniable as far as I’m concerned: you are what you eat.

Somewhere along the way, I also became very interested in the impacts of global food production on the climate, and became pretty well convinced that what we eat, and how it’s produced, is one of the biggest things we can focus on and actively consider in our daily choices to if we want to make a positive impact when it comes to climate change.

While I’m at it, climate change. I’m not sure how anyone at this point can deny it’s happening, though I can muster more patience for those who may disagree over what’s causing it. To me, however, regardless of what may or may not be causing it, I fail to understand why we wouldn’t, as a society, want to tackle it as if we CAN do something about it. It could be the economic catalyst that the combustion engine was for the 20th century if we’d just embrace it. We’d come out healthier as a result, with cleaner air, healthier bodies, no reason for continued damage to lands and waters from fossil fuel exploration and production, and lower carbon emissions, which, come on now, certainly wouldn’t hurt. And anyone, anywhere, could hop on the bandwagon and ride (or drive!) it down the highway of a new economy.

I just read a story last night about someone doing something really cool with food production. I found it so inspiring and full of entrepreneurial, yet altruistic spirit, that I have to share it. Forgive the little Microsoft “commercial” in the middle of it – it’s a great example of someone who started as “local” as you can get, but has taken what he learned and is converting it to benefit thousands around the world. Enjoy!

Cheers for now — Marcia