We are in the middle of a fruit and vegetable battle of the wits my household. I kid you not. My mom loves to shop – any kind of shopping will do – I do not, and I especially don’t like to grocery shop. She on the other hand would love to go into the grocery store seven days a week if she could, but in her current circumstances she can’t. So, she angles for the next best thing, sending me into the grocery store for her, because we desperately need something.
Now, she and I very much differ in our definition of what ‘needs’ are. One of the most apparent ways we differ in this department is in how much food we buy at the grocery store, and in particular how many fruits and veggies end up in our cart. I err on the side of of less is more, and she errs on the side of you can’t ever have enough.
You can see where this might cause issues.
Now when you have a difference of opinion about how much, let’s say red Jello you need there’s not too much of a consequence, just a whole lot of stacks of Jello in your cupboard. The same can be said about any other boxed or canned foods. Not so with fruits and veggies, when they go bad, they go really bad, as in they’re growing so much penicillin you could make a really good living if you opened your own pharmacy, should you choose to, let’s say, synthesis antibiotics from it.
Very few things make me go around the bend – admittedly lately that list is growing longer than I would like, but I like to believe that I was the way I used to be, let me have my ostrich moment -. But, if there’s one thing that will take me around the bend with a full out of tune chorus of, ‘She’ll be coming round the mountain when she comes’ is to see things go bad so frequently that they not only cross the border of wastefulness, but pole vault far to the other side of that line then get up and sprint so that in a second flat all you see is a little bit of dust in the distance.
In general my mom doesn’t see this line at all. She loves to eat and buy fruits and veggies. Her rule is you have to have least three vegetables at dinner, two in a pinch, and enough to use any old time you want to in sandwiches, in salads or just on their own. The problem is she seems to think that we are a family the size of a battalion instead of just three, two of whom don’t really care about food all that much – I’ll let you decide who those two are. – I can’t tell you how many tomatoes, zucchini, squash, mushrooms, cherries, strawberries and more have died shrunken furry deaths as they waited to be used in my house. As I see them collapsed in on themselves trying to avoid my fingertips smooshing into them as I toss them in the trash, I can’t help but think I’ll be sent to the store to replace them post haste.
As I tie up the trash bag with the remnants of the produce section we brought home, I can’t help but think I’m losing the battle of minimalism vs. excess. Then I remember that at least I don’t go to the grocery store every day of the week, and think I may be gaining ground after all.