This story is a post from a recent blog.
I suppose the purpose of political conventions, at least in part, is to remind us that we need to have hope that our future will be better in some way. The messiness is in the details.
On August 14th, I had the opportunity to meet with Congressman John Tierney regarding improvements in the food stamp program (now called the snap program). I was tickled pink to be in an actual lawmaker's office helping to make new legislation. It was totally awesome.
Now we all know that there are two things you never want to watch being made: sausages and legislation. But seriouly, how hard can this be? We see a problem, we find an agreeable solution, we make a new law. Ba-da-bing, ba-da-boom. Just like that.
The first thing Rep. Tierney told me is that Paul Ryan wants to eliminate the food stamp program. He later told me that the Republicans re-districted Dennis Kucinich right out of office. He was planning to fight for the labeling of genetically modified foods, something that 93% of Americans want done. Who knows what will happen now.
Nearly everybody (in particular parents of small children) wants a safe and healthy food supply and would like the government to step in when there is a toxin in our food. However, people get overwhelmed when faced with 70,000 items in the supermarket that have elaborate and sometimes confusing labels.
About 6 months ago I was discussing a dream I had to someday open a green store that contained both food and nonfood items. It could be a place for people to go to purchase items that were organic and sustainable without having to read labels or wonder what all those claims on the label really mean.
Some time later, I was asleep and actually had a dream about my dream. I was told that a small commercial building was available as a rental. While crossing the street to see this building, I almost got hit by a car (significance unknown).
As I entered the building, I was met by oak floors, walls, and ceiling. The place was empty except for some shelves and a wooden table in the center of the room. The picture reminded me of an old general store in Vermont. I rode my wheelchair to the rear of that room and turned a sharp corner to the right. There was another oak room with wooden shelves and a table. I rode to the rear and turned another corner to the right… there was yet another room identical to the first two rooms. Then the dream ended.
Where was I? Oh yes. It occurred to me while I was watching the Olympics this summer that people tune in to see others doing whatever it takes to be a champion because it’s inspiring to watch. They have a dream and they're pursuing it. Are there thousands who work very hard and don’t make it to the Olympics? Sure there are. But the point is this: it reminds us that making our lives better is always possible.
This is the case with our eating habits and our overall health. We have to continue to think that we can make significant improvements in our eating habits, exercise, and stress levels and make them quickly. There are so many people with great ideas to make this happen and to help others who don’t believe that they can do it themselves. We can drastically reduce heart disease, obesity, diabetes, and cancer by just wanting it badly enough.
If we care about ourselves and others, we should perhaps vote for people who care about themselves and others. In one of those people is Congressman John Tierney.
As for today's recipe, I decided to go with something that has zucchini in it. It is partly my job to tell people what they can do with their zucchini, as it is in season and quite inexpensive.
Chick-y corn Fritters
Add to food processor:
2 small zucchini, cut up
½ teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons parsley
2 fresh basil leaves
3 shavings ginger
½ cup chickpeas
¼ cup orange juice
Process until blended. Place in a large bowl and squeeze out excess liquid. ADD:
1 teaspoon cornstarch
½ to 1 cup flour: add until you can roughly mold a ball with a large spoon.
Drop spoonfuls of batter into hot vegetable oil. Fry 2 minutes, then transfer to a paper towel. Flatten with a spatula.
Fry 1 more minute. Serve with honey mustard sauce (or other dipping sauce).
Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce
½ cup honey
¼ cup mustard
1 Tablespoon mayo
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
Mix and serve.
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