This spring, I will be returning* to my beloved old stomping ground, Virginia Tech, but in an entirely new way. I’m working on a project around food equity and access.
We will be using storytelling techniques to help students get better at exploring how they can make visible the invisible structures that surround us in our food systems.
Sometimes this work leaves me lost in thought, staring out my window as I ponder the problem, the opportunity.
Food has long been my greatest pleasure, and my greatest vice. A few years ago, I went on a silent meditation retreat in effort to restore balance and right relationship with my body around food. Alas, a few days cannot undo decades of cultural indoctrination, nor generations of inherited grief before that. Still, it was a helpful reset at the time.
But this? This project is leading me out of my personal narrative and into a much broader, community-based and global perspective than just what goes on in my own kitchen.
Honestly, I don’t think most of us are completely aware of how precarious our food situation can be, and how closely it’s tied to the health of our economy, our mental health, climate change, and so many other important things.
As I prepare for this project, I invite you to talk to me. Over the next few months, on my social media, I will be hosting “Food Fridays.” I will ask questions such as…
- What’s one of your favorite food memories?
- What’s your guilty pleasure food?
- What’s a food that makes you feel really good in your body when you eat it?
- Who is someone you really trust that you think could help fix our food systems?
- What do you think of when you hear the words ‘food systems’?
If you’re not on the socials, please feel free to write back here. I’d love to hear your stories, your thoughts, your diatribes, your poems, and your loosely strung together anecdotes.
I hope you have a delicious, nutritious day, wherever you are!
*Yes, yes, I know. It remains to be seen whether “returning” this spring means I will actually physically journey to Virginia, or if it will be a completely virtual residency. Waiting and watching…