Food Rant
A Happy Ending

Once upon a time, the world was standardized and human life was all about production. Adaptation was always our most impressive super power. We could adapt to anything. Our food dripped in fossil fuels, from the transportation of it to the spraying of pesticides and fertilizers on it. Our food was poisoning us with processed dependency—cheez whiz, cool whip, ring dings, ding dongs, pop tarts, hot dogs, lunchables, double-wide deep fried corn syrup burgers. The poisons almost-but-didn’t-quite kill us, and we adapted. We didn’t die because as the military industrial food complex poisoned us, the military industrial medical complex saved us. Well, actually, it prolonged our suffering so we died as slowly as possible. Open heart surgery, insulin pumps, gastric bypasses, ventilators. We were hooked on machines.

We drove, ate, talked in our cars. We sat in front of computers, walked attached to ipods, text messaged each other incessantly on cell phones. Machines were making us in their images. We sat in our cars, alone in traffic jams, like we sat in front of computers, alone in cyberspace. Surrounded by everybody else, but in solitary confinement, all our senses smothered under wires and cable, microwaves, satellites, concrete and plastics and metals. We adapted to breathing and drinking the plastics and metals. We were plugged in to them all the time—we said we were Connected.

And we struggled—depression, addiction, panic attacks, suicides. And doctors medicated. And we became more like machines. We were flesh and blood components, interfacing in a closed playpen. We were being programmed. Processed.

The history of this nation is that the rich slaveholders who opened the country for business used people as machinery, and even after slavery was eliminated, the descendants of these rich white men continued to think of the masses of people as machines. Now, in the final stage of industrial capitalism, it’s all about efficiency. We can always be more efficient but we can never be efficient enough

Fast forward to the inevitable future, where the masters of the market come up with a great marketing thought—Food can be more efficient if people drink the oil directly. And so we did. And we got used to the strangeness of it. It made us sick at first, but they invented more drugs and procedures to get us to survive, and in the end, we adapted.

And that’s how it happened that we became machines that run on fossil fuels. Instead of producing unsustainable technology, we became unsustainable technology. But, you know, the very best part about unsustainable things is, they can’t last. And one day, after millions of bombs and bullets found their targets in oil-rich countries, and the owners of this country had stolen as much oil as they could, we ran out of fossil fuels. We just ran out.

And when it’s over, it’s over and there was no more oil anywhere, and the only thing left for us to do was to plug into the original, indomitable source of all life, the sun. And so we did that. We adapted. And that’s how we became solar powered machines. Solar powered entities, like plants and trees are. We adapted and we learned to photosynthesize and a lot of time passed.

And when we finally returned to our senses, and to our bodies, they were green and leafy, and we could think along the entire length of them, like trees, like birds, and we were incapable of fear. No more reason, logic, or pressure to meet artificial deadlines—there were only life-lines. Had no fingers to push the buttons, no eyes to stare into the screens. Only masses of us, rising to the sunshine and swaying to the breezes. We were plants, making oxygen, feeding all the life that had come back in our human absence.

And all the conquered spaces broke back down, taking every trace of human isolation and alienation with them. And the buildings and pavement and highways were eaten by roots and mushrooms, lichens and rust. And green vines wrapped around all the spaces and beautiful colors burst into flowers. And the wild earth returned, exploding only with  life. And we were, once again, a piece of that unified whole. And that’s how the world became a garden again.

back to list