When I was eleven, I pondered the purpose of existence after reading a story in a sixth grade reading textbook featuring talking food. As I recall, it took place in a fridge and involved a gang of rancid food angry about being shoved to the back and never eaten, who subsequently (I think) took out their rage on the good, non-spoiled food by kidnapping someone, possibly a female dairy product, who was then rescued.
The details of the story are a little fuzzy, much like the mold on some of the illustrated edible villains, but I do remember that as an eleven-year-old, it got me to contemplate this deep, philosophical question: does food want to be eaten?
Like, seriously, who would want to eat personified food?
My past experience with stories would lean toward the answer “no.” After all, in Beauty and the Beast, the furniture wants to turn back into humans, in 101 Dalmatians, the puppies don’t want to be made into a fur coat, and in Toy Story, the toys are trying to escape being thrown away and forgotten. People, animals, and personified inanimate objects all seemed to have the goal of escaping destruction. Why should food be any different? The story was wrong. The happiest foods should be the ones that have defied the odds by surviving their expiration dates, living long (and green) lives in the dark recesses of fridges and cabinets.
Except…that’s not why food was made. (more…)
I meant to write about my view of gender roles and leadership today. Not for the blog, because it would be long, and probably boring. Just for myself, to sort out my scattered thoughts and interpretations and come to neat and tidy conclusions.
Then I started writing, and I found thoughts and interpretations, sure…key passages on women in the church, sermons on how to interpret them from both sides, definitions of “complementarian” and “egalitarian.” I did find my position on this issue.
But mostly, I found stories. Here are a few of them.
Amy is eleven, and her sixth grade teacher has just concluded a social experiment disguised as a unit on Ancient Greece. Sparta was full of athletes who dominated the mock Olympics, Megara was made up of quiet, shy girls who did great on the art projects but not the presentation, and Athens was represented by overachievers who spent most of their time trying to boss each other around. And her group, Corinth? Well, Amy isn’t sure what they had in common, but they surprised everyone by winning the competition.
Does the fact that this was Field Day and my team was yellow excuse those hideous shorts? No, no it doesn’t. Sorry for hurting your eyes.
After parent-teacher conferences, her mom comes back with the report that Amy’s teacher had formed her group by putting the two oldest boys in the class with several girls who she thought were more the following, passive type. She wanted to give the boys encouragement to be leaders. “Except I didn’t count on one thing,” her teacher said. “Amy. She was clearly the group’s leader, and she knew it…but every other person in the group thought they were all leading together.” (more…)