Wednesday, January 13, 2010


Last night was my grandma's birthday, so we had a family dinner at a local restaurant (with the absolute best soup-and-salad bar in the area). Li'l Sis and I both left chocolate on the table, uneaten, and she got chided for it (I think they have all given up on trying to impact my eating habits. Yay.) The thing is, though...chocolate is not sacred. No food is.

When I make a dress, I buy a length of fabric, and inevitably, I throw a bunch in the garbage--the scraps. Am I wasting them? Of course not. Those pieces of fabric would get in the way of creating a well-fitting, flattering garment.

When an artist sculpts something out of clay, there's scraping, trimming, and tossing. Is that waste? No, if the artist were forced to incorporate every bit of clay from the block, we'd have an ugly masterpiece, indeed.

Haircuts, woodworking, scrapbooking, even a little child's artwork--all of it involves tossing the extraneous material. Why should a meal be any different? If the aim of eating a meal is physical and emotional satisfaction, and giving energy to the body, then there are times-many times for some-when that means leaving food on the plate. The broccoli is bitter, the chocolate is too sweet or not tasty enough, the stomach is simply not asking for quite that much food...I would really like to see 'wasted' food seen in the same light as tossing the fabric scraps, trimming the clay away and sanding the wood, rather than the all-too-common moral imperative to clean one's plate. Not to mention the fact that if you aren't hungry and you eat the food just to get it's still wasted, only you still have to deal with it.


MJ said...

I agree that if you eat food that you don't need and won't enjoy, it is just as wasted as if you threw it in the garbage -- maybe moreso, because it could make you feel sick. However, I'm big on NOT wasting resources, be it food or fabric or paper or gas. Why take more food than you want? Why drive a big car if a small car will do? Why print a 700-page report if you can read it on-line? And why not take leftovers home for later? Yum!

Jenny-Fair said...

I usually take leftovers home (unless they just aren't worth the paper bag, lol) but I am not opposed to throwing something out or letting a child leave something on their plate. It just food.