Well, I was only able to track down one Farmers Market today, mostly as a result of a late evening that began with a glow-in-the dark miniature golf tournament at Hawk Hollow with the Healthy Young Professionals of Ingham Regional Healthcare Foundation. That, by the way, was a blast, although their hors d’oeuvres were about as anti-vegetarian as you can get (i.e. giant balls of meat, otherwise known as a meatball).
Back to the task at hand, today’s market was the South Lansing Community Farmers Market, which is located at Benjamin Davis Park. It was a little market, with only about ten tents of vendors. Most were produce, but there were some honey peddlers, woodworkers and musicians. I didn’t spend a whole lot of time here, mostly because there wasn’t much variety to satisfy my ADD window shopping. I saw only a few items that interested me:
- A box of peaches (QTY – 6, $3.00)
- A watermelon (weight unknown, Amish, $2.00)
- A box of Thai peppers (QTY – many, $1.00)
- A box of bitter melons (QTY – 3, $1.00)
- Total price = $7.00
These prices don’t seem to be too outlandish, but I didn’t ask the hard questions, like where their farms were located. Coming out of this market, however, was something that concerned me much more than the prices, location or quality of the produce:
Plastic? Seriously? Ok, so I know I’m a greenhorn and that I should be bringing my own canvas bags, but cut me a break. I had no idea they were going to bag everything in plastic.
I’m going to step back from this for a minute. What I am saying right now is completely hypocritical, and I will freely admit as much. I prefer plastic when I go to the grocery store, but an ounce of that preference is attributed to reusing the bags to clean up after my dog. Only an ounce, however, as the rest is just plain laziness. I should be bringing canvas bags there as well.
I suppose I imagined that something like a Farmers Market would be more concerned about being environmentally friendly. I didn’t see any thing else that contradicted this reasoning except for the plastic bags, which were carried by all the patrons. I purchased from three different vendors and all three bagged the items in plastic. This is upsetting and it’s interesting that it’s upsetting me. I do not recycle. In fact, the last two times that I tried to recycle was to return my empty pop (yes, soda pop) cans, and when I went to load them in my car I found that they had been stolen from my garage. Stolen! I guess that’s my punishment for not being a better recycler.
What interests me the most is that this venture into vism is beginning to affect my perspective on other things. Am I turning into a tree-huggin’ hippy? As groovy as that as is, I don’t think so, but it’s unearthing the idea that some of the reasons that I turned to vism are affected by other facets of my daily American living. For example, what good is preserving animals from the slaughter if you’re just going to kill them by polluting their environment? This is a slippery slope. I’ve always been interested in energy conversation and alternative energy sources (solar, wind, water and occasionally attempting to design my own perpetual motion machine… I dabble) but I love driving my Dodge Ram. Love it. We recently purchased a Ford Fusion, which cuts down our consumption and emissions, but the driving force (no pun intended) for the purchase was selfish–to save money on gas.
In summary, this change in perspective by adopting vism is making me look at the rest of the world and my lifestyle a little differently. If I have to give up my truck, however, I’ll have to write a new bitter blog: The Bitter Pedestrian? The Bitter Busrider? Escape of the Bitter Bald Lansing Man? I don’t know how the last one applies, but it’s catchy.
Anyway, I’ll have a bit more on Farmers Markets tomorrow as I head to the East Lansing Farmers Market. I’m also interested to see what kind of grub I can pick up tonight at the Lions’ Game. Go Lions!