Thursday 1 January 2015

The Lesser Beings

I have a friend that is very cautious when it comes to germs. I suppose I could say that she is much smarter that I am when it comes to ingesting living organisms. On the flip side, I don’t worry about that kind of thing at all.

Years ago, I was getting ready for work, filling a thermos with tea to wet my whistle before going out to deliver. That was before my bladder and I disagreed on how long it should take before needing to be emptied. The tea filled the thermos and an earwig came floating to the top. I just picked it out and washed it down the drain, putting the top on my thermos. Unfortunately, Louise witnessed me tossing the earwig and couldn’t believe that I didn’t dump the tea and wash out the thermos. I was a little pressed for time, well, that’s what I told her. The truth is that I didn’t think it was a very big issue, the earwig had been washed in near boiling tea and really, how dirty could an earwig get?
I will often cut the mould off of cheese; my theory is that the mould is on the outside anyways. Well, unless it is one of those cheeses that have mould all the way through it. I’d toss that shit out, but I know people who spend a lot of money on it. Crazy buggers! Some mould is good for you I suppose. Not the stuff on meat or bread I don’t think. Well, isn’t bread mould the basis for penicillin? Maybe…
When I was a teenager, I skipped school and found myself across the street from St. Lawrence Market in downtown Toronto. There was a used jeans store there which had all sorts of styles that you couldn’t get anywhere else at discount prices. I asked the sales girl where the jeans came from and she told me the USA. At the time they could claim donated jeans off of their taxes for the full retail value they paid for them, so they would wear the pants for a year and then give them to a charity who would in turn sell it to this company for export I suppose.
I walked over to the Market and just inside the door were about twenty hog’s heads sitting on a table watching me. The number of flies that were buzzing and crawling around the heads was unbelievable. It was at that moment when I realized that there was no way our food could in any way be considered sterile. I was on a wheat farm once and watched as the big machines cut and processed the wheat in one procedure. Part of that procedure didn’t include separating the grasshoppers, butterflies and mice that were pulled into the machine and processed right along with the wheat. There is an acceptable amount of bug parts that the CFIA allows in our food.
I had a friend who worked at a bakery many years ago. Industrial bread dough is more liquid than the dough that you or I can make, so that it can be pumped through pipes. One night a pipe broke and there was dough ankle deep on the floor of the warehouse, along with cigarette butts, dust, bits of paper and probably mouse droppings. They just scooped the dough up and put it back in the hoppers to resume the journey to the ovens. My buddy told me that I should avoid sandwiches made with his bakeries bread for a few days.

I should be more concerned with how my food is made and processed, but I don’t think I could handle all of that extra worry. The way I figure it, my species is at the top of the food chain and we are meant to eat all of the lesser beings.

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