c is for cat

Rules for Anchorites

Letters from Proxima Thule

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I went through a period in my teens where guilt covered every single transaction in my life. (Not coincidentally, this period corresponded with my time in the Young Communist League, making copies for the revolution and listening to what the REAL leftists- read: men- had to say.) I decided to make all my clothing from scratch because I was concerned about labor issues. Then I worried about where my fabric was coming from, and when I began to wonder how southeastern Arizona could possibly provide me with the materials and the knowledge to make my own fabrics, I gave up on the project.

My point is: striving to be 100% local is admirable, but, outside verdant Middle America (and bits of the coasts), it is mostly a pipe dream. I cannot be a locavore and pretend that absolves me of all food sins, because I live in the middle of a desert that, when populated by actual, not inspired by Whole Foods, locavores, supported a substantially smaller population on a subsistence diet. And that was when there was still water out here. Sure, I can buy grass-fed beef, but I'm vegan, and as the daughter, granddaughter, and great-granddaughter of ranchers out here, I know that's not truly sustainable either.

Anyway- hear hear, and I concur, and, until we acknowledge that locally sourced is not a panacea for our food, labor, etc., needs, I will continue to roll my eyes when told that spending the equivalent of two months' rent on a coat constitutes A New Sustainable Economy.

The coasts really are pretty verdant and amazing, though up here it's too cold to get what Californians can year-round.

I remember being shocked in New Mexico, because I'd gotten used to how fresh things are in restaurants in Maine. But of course those fat tomatoes have to be trucked in. I wish more articles on eating local year round talked about pickling, preserving, tactics for getting through a winter the way people used to, if you're serious about the year-round thing. Or what people did eat in the desert. If we're being local, let's BE LOCAL and understand something about our environment.

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