At the Trough; How the Ladies Got So Big

August 17th, 2015 by elaine

I was having a coffee in a cafe that also provides food, sandwiches, salads, gorgeous mile-high cakes, and perhaps some hot dishes as well.  I don’t frequent the place.  I was there waiting for a friend to join me just for sociability.  He had already had his lunch and I had not.  So along with my coffee I ordered a kinda fancy chicken salad “wrap” (fancy, with curry).  I sat by the window facing the door so I would see my friend as soon as he entered.

The place was on one corner of a very busy intersection.  A McDonalds was on the opposite corner.  And from that corner I watched a very short and very very wide lady cross the street toward my side.  I couldn’t take my eyes off her. She had white hair, was wearing huge blue jeans, and I couldn’t guess her age – perhaps ’70s, possibly vigorous ’80s.  Around her middle she wore a black bag, a “fanny-pack”, and so I wondered if she was working, and what she did for work.  Ticket taker on the bus?  Wrong era.  I was keeping my mind open when she disappeared around the corner, and a few minutes later, another very short lady with white hair, also very very wide appeared in totally different clothing.  It couldn’t be the same person, no way she could have changed her clothes so quickly and where?  This lady actually entered the cafe briefly and then left.

And there again, across the street, was the other one, the one with the very very wide jeans.  She was definitely working McDonalds, but how or what I couldn’t say.

I drank my coffee and nibbled at half my “wrap”, not sure I liked the taste, and wrapped the other half and put it in my bag.  And before my friend arrived I thought about the fact that in the last few days, right here in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, I had seen an unusually high number of very huge people.  I was used to seeing them in the States, but never before had I seen so many so frequently in this particular country.  And so I thought, somewhat bitterly, So they say, Canada is always a few years behind the U.S.A.

And I thought about it, and like a jigsaw puzzle, really, it sounds trite but that’s how it happened, all the little pieces fell into place.

People don’t plant the seeds.                                                   They don’t till the soil.                                                     Fertilize it.                                                                                         Water it.                                  They don’t have to weed their plot of land.

Never mind wait for their crop to be ready to harvest .

They don’t have to pack it or preserve it or eat just enough of it                                  so not to worry about whether they will have enough to last                                                                                                            until the next crop is


All they have to do is get into their vehicle and drive to the SUPER market and push a huge cart down one aisle and up another throwing delicious looking packages into that cart, taking note of sales and special deals on multiples.They don’t have to worry about paying for any of it.They just whip out the card and worry about paying the bill in small chunks.Then they drive home and open some packages and watch tv and get all the news or watch a cooking show that makes it look so easy,they might try it sometime.But right now there’s still some left in the package and, still hungry -  it sure tastes good – they polish it off.And so on.

Human beings are animals and certain among them, like certain other animals, will eat as much food as is put before them.  That is natural. That is not gluttony, it is what humans will do when given the opportunity.  And Big Farma knows how to satisfy the urge humans have to do that.  And Big Advertising knows how to take the photos that will go on the packages or on the poster or wherever products are sold.

In the ’30s, the years of the Great Depression and the drought in the West, there was not much food                                                                                                                                                                                                        around.       There were no SUPER markets, not many cars                                      people walked to do their shopping if they didn’t have a horse and wagon                                       and they couldn’t carry on foot what they pack into the trunks of their big cars today. They didn’t have big fridges or freezers to accommodate the easy muchness.  (Hmmmnnn, just an “n” away from munchiness!) They couldn’t pick up a phone and order a pizza or a fancy meal.

The culture changed gradually.  Don’t look for blame.  All the pieces of the puzzle fit into the big picture.  Just like now – all the devices that rule our lives, and especially the monster corporations that own them, will accommodate our wishes to be pleasured by food, or what passes for food in the wide aisles of the SUPER markets.  Or on the street along the way, from one cafe to another, one gourmet restaurant to another, one chain feeding trough or another.

Or buy locally, find a farmer or a fisherman/woman, find a cook or be one.  Own your taste buds, never rent them out!

Enjoy your meals!

©Elaine A. Zimbel 2015

Posted in Eighty and then some..., Health Care, Letters to the corporation, Uncategorized

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