Kale is evil

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Forever a culprit of modern society’s overbearing influence to be thin, I’ve been on some form of low-carb diet since college.  I eat normally for a while, then end up loading up on sugar, regret how that makes me look and feel, and end up eating nothing but protein shakes and salami until my pants fit.  I’m not saying this is a responsible way to live.  It’s just the pattern that has emerged. One day my son was like “why do you like salads so much” and my response was “it’s complicated.”  I don’t want to give my children body image issues by saying “I eat greens not for my health but so I can fit into that tight Michael Kors dress.”

But today, I had enough.  I’m so tired of eating grilled vegetables (no carrots or corn! Low glycemic index!) that I just craved things.  Strawberries, blueberries, YOGURT.  So I dusted off my Vitamix and determined that my body would, in fact, survive the sugar impact of a fruit smoothie with honey.  Also, I remembered that I had a bunch of almost-rotten kale in the refrigerator.

I buy kale from time to time when I go the grocery store in the morning, fueled with coffee and optimism, when I think “I’ll make kale chips! My children will love it! I’ll whip up some creamed kale with hatch chilies sprinkled with cheese!”  It sounds legitimate at the time, but you must realize I’m drugged on morning happiness and espresso. When the caffeine high recedes I’m like Oh crap. What do I do with all this kale. No one in my family eats it. No one likes it.  I get blank stares from my kids followed by “why aren’t we having broccoli” and “what are we having for dessert.”

So I dig this wilted kale from my crisper and decide it will be barely recognizable in my smoothie, the one I’m having with no protein powder, filled with things like DAIRY and FRUIT and ALL THE FORBIDDEN THINGS.  I stuff a big wad of this lettuce-like substance in the blender with wild abandon. Because I have this imaginary world that exists, promoted in part by Whole Foods, that says my body is very unhappy with cheese and hummus, and yet fresh salads and things like beets and heirloom tomatoes cause my inner organs to moan with joy. The blood will flow better!  The heart will beat longer!  The brain cells will fire faster! And when you eat cheeseburgers all your inner organs are depressed as hell and want to just die.

I know this is dumb.  I blame Jessica Alba.

So I drink this smoothie filled with three-day old kale, and realize that something keeps sticking in my teeth similar to the texture of homemade paper.  I’m concurrently picking out seeds with one hand and bits of green paperkale in the other.  I am not sure if my body is all jazzed up about this.  My mouth actually whispered “what happened to you eating eggs. I liked the eggs you cook with butter.”

“Whatever, mouth,” I say. “Butter is for losers. It was my brain’s turn, and it choose this strangely viscous papery smoothed-together fruit concoction made with Greek yogurt, because the yogurt from Israel was taken.”

But who are we kidding. Yes the honey and strawberries are nice, but at what cost?  I think the moral of this story is to not eat kale.  Just walk past it in the grocery store.  Do not believe your fake energetic morning voice that says you will roast it with oil and seasoning. Do not think if you put it in your blender it will mesh into the almond milk and become unnoticeable.

Let my story be a lesson to you.  Walk away from kale.

 

photo

(three w’s).flickr.com/photos/tinfoilraccoon/5910366614/in/photolist-a1hb5E-815uNr-dAXyw1-aeUsDw-aeRDy8-6cc627-7EufLq-98rcKd-dRGQCU-64CMzp-9TqBuL-9TnMQa-HDbXiW-abtfiS-abqpFK-9TqByA-t91BZ-bobDuF-9kq5SQ-dY35wb-qRijsM-dBPSQ2-4nJToB-4socRe-6c7XmD-64CMtR-4TYPzS-pq53Z9-5he8LA-94D5kj-7dgW6j-bwQS2z-HDbXAQ-pT8AQF-5s93dr-bXmiHX-jwxxUw-divNzL-caH13m-oRehK5-4V31Wo-oTSSgx-bP3jQ-8YjgNR-hAJcDa-8YnjKw-8YnjtJ-9BiswQ-bwNPT6-7RDaFD

Weeds among us

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I was struck today as I sat on my front porch about the number of weeds that proliferated my front yard, mixed in and amongst the grass, swaying in the humid air. I was also thinking of the number of people I know on social media, outspoken and outraged, furious at our country’s politics and certain social issues.

And it reminded me of a story in the Bible about weeds, a parable that Jesus painstakingly explained to the rather dense and bumbling disciples. I am like the twelve in the fact that I’m always wondering, questioning, failing, not understanding. I also drink wine and like a good footbath, so I’m just exactly like these people except I bathe more. But when God is with me, sitting next to me, whispering in my ear that he is never far, I still tremble at times about things I cannot control. I turn and ask, dimwitted and weak, for answers.

But the parable is simple. A man sowed good seed in his field, but an evil one scattered seeds of weeds in among the wheat. When the wheat sprouted, the weeds appeared. The owner’s servants were appalled, first questioning the owner. “Did you not sow good seed in your field?” they asked. I like how their first instinct was to blame the master. Are you a stupid idiot, planting weeds in your field? Were you on facebook when you planted the damn seeds and weren’t paying any attention? The bible didn’t say that part. That’s my own addition.

When the owner indicated it was done unto him, the servants offered to pull them up. But the owner was insistent against it. “No,” he answered. “because while you are pulling the weeds, you may uproot the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters; First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned, then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.” Matthew 13:24-30

I find this parable interesting, especially with so many people expressing righteous indignation about so many things, discussing their version of family values or the Christian way, dabbing their napkins at their own dirty faces and tisk-tisking everyone. There is so much opinion about what is right and wrong, to the extent that we not only believe our own positions, but we are personally offended if our views are not shared, re-tweeted, applauded, and encouraged. Everyone needs a stage these days, clucking and trumping themselves up. You saw what I did right there, didn’t you? Anywho.

The list is long. Attend church, pray at night, do the right thing, rebuke evil, refrain from cussing, don’t do drugs, brush your teeth, move your ass, show up on time, say thank you, eat your vegetables, support women’s rights, love everyone, hate those who do not, be funny and forgiving, unless the people are morons and then be sarcastic and disparaging, love puppies. The list changes, bullets deleted and others added, and this list is highly dependent upon your background, race, income limits, and location. I’m sure if I think about it long enough I have a list, although it’s on recycled paper embossed in neutral tones, which would be very pinterest-worthy. Because that kind of thing is important to our eternal souls. #bestlistever

This checklist we have made defines what is good and acceptable, good seeds that we are taught by our leaders or parents or upbringing. But people all have their own boxes, and it’s hard to keep track what’s on the list.  Although I’m fairly certain most lists involve the virtues of coffee. Ours in particular, however, we have deemed good after much thought and supplication, and thus we feel very powerful about sharing it, encouraging others to follow it, and pointing out how wrong people are if they disagree.

Is this not what we want to do with voters we don’t agree with, people who do evil things, terrorists, racists, small-minded people, and weeds? We want to root them out, pluck them up, unfriend them, clean out the flowerbeds. If only people could just be reasonable. If only they could just do all the things on the list like we do.

But my dear friends. The friends who are so loving and supportive, reading my words and being so kind to me in all sorts of trials, friends who call me and put up with me and tell me it’s okay that I’m controlling and like linen so much and host extravagant dinner parties and have poor hearing. Hear me on this.

It’s not our job.

What Jesus is saying is that there will always be evil, weeds, distractions, sin, people who will not agree, lives that somehow proliferate but bear no fruit, Kardashians (I’m sorry Kim darling you’re so fun). And yet we are to live amongst all the noise, the hard, the negative. We must rise up our heads higher, and keep putting our roots down deeper, and realize that someday the weeds and the wheat will be separated by hands more powerful and more discerning than we can ever be. We are not to play God, for we are not equipped for this task. We trust the angels to know our hearts, and to protect us from harm. That is our comfort. Truly, in God we trust.

So let us all grow together, being kind to one another. Even our enemies amongst us. We are provided a sun above to light our face, a field of moist earth upon which our feet rest and allows us to flourish. Let’s not look around and cast judgment or try to make circles around our hearts so that we are safe. We are never safe. Living in a world of temptations means we have to find the inner strength to survive.

And survive we will. Tall and strong and hearty, like wheat stalks rustling in the harvest breeze. Yes, there are racists and haters amongst us. Protect yourself, but it’s not your job to round them up and eliminate them. It’s your job to grow tall, produce fruit, trust God, and thrive.

Also it’s your job to bathe. Because hello. I am standing right here next to you and we all share the same air.

 

photo:

(three w’s).flickr.com/photos/mackenzieblack/4828730498/in/photolist-8mGvm7-icBVx-59oUSv-9JC57C-8jaWxL-59oaHG-fcYhum-6CmVzM-8mGvEY-uTzoMR-8iwFFd-6nTtpP-59t9tW-ozy5tu-8mDoWK-6d1eyL-5U3VUi-afJj72-6BRkpA-5j1Rr6-6BRnm7-8mGuFj-8mDoHP-8mDoBV-ozyPQi-oRLFYk-ozy22Q-oS1sJN-fuvnt4-oRLufv-fuv2LH-ozyBCJ-fuvjEM-axHQBb-fuKhab-fuvivP-fuKnEE-fuKvPY-bgGgeM-8mGv33-fuKDiU-bgGhsD-4txQnS-oS3cWR-6mXPdA-2ZLbUb-4sbxiD-8mDooH-GVmSWp-4StEZ

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If I could go back, what would I change? Would I go back to the time when the nurse stuck her hand inside of me, feeling my cervix, with full knowledge that infection would spread and my gut would nearly rot and I’d turn my head to the left toward that little green plastic chair? […]

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Texas highways are bursting with the signs of Spring. There are fields awash with bluebonnets, poking their brilliant blue heads among the leaves as if a grand welcome to a big a country fair. There are daisies and Indian Paintbrush and other wildflowers that only old people know the names of. And I’m okay with […]

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Odd and Curious Thoughts of the week

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