Last Wednesday marked a very momentous occasion in our house: We had our annual volunteer shift for my CSA share. CSA being the very utopian and nice-in-theory thing where you pay money up front and get produce, eggs, flowers, sometimes meat and cheese, from local farms. And like all utopian enterprises, there’s an obligatory volunteer shift.
I ended up actually enjoying my shift last year, if for no other reason than it let me pretend for those few dozen trips carrying pallets of root vegetables that I was actually part of something, like I was some sort of adorably ineffective farmhand who kept her complaints to herself and smiled for the shareholders.
This year, all the vegetable-abiding jobs were taken when we got there so I got to be the person who checks you in when you walk through the door. This means I had access to the List, and pretty much no work to do, so I spent a lot of time analyzing it.
Here is what I learned:
- there are unfortunately NO famous people that belong to my CSA.
- Only 14 people out of 80 signed up for the CSA by themselves. Google tells me this is a mere 5.7%! Now, a number of the CSA “couples” could be friends, but even accounting for that, there were a shocking (vomitous?) number of couples on this list.
- people named Erin or Aaron forget they have a name they have to spell out, even when they are checking in under the name of a friend or partner of a different gender.
- I panic when someone named Aaron or Erin tells me their name.
- This only happened a few times but it was memorable, okay?
- When I told my fiancé (yes I’m one of the awful CSA couples) that everyone was basically a couple at our CSA he was like, “That makes sense, since it’s so expensive. Who could afford it by themselves?”
- It’s true, it is about $1,000 up front if you go every week. We did every other week, so it was $500. Still, a lot of money to plunk down for hypothetical vegetables.
- Hypothetical vegetables you have to volunteer for!
- It was just two hours, and I just stood there counting names and judging people. It was fine.
- 5+ people straight up rejected the fennel. They were like, “No way, not this week.” It seems we have a fennel education problem in this country that needs to be addressed. Just add citrus (lemon juice when it’s raw, orange juice when it’s sautéed).
- I figured it was all couples in the CSA because it is one of those things that SEEMS like a “cute” / idyllic thing to do when you just move in with someone and are trying to be some idealized version of yourself. Plus you can blame the other person when all the arugula goes bad.
- 12 people did not show up to pick up their food, but everything left over was sent to a soup kitchen in Ikea bags, which is nice.
- The other half of my CSA couple and I went out to dinner afterwards and lugged our bags of produce into this tiny, adorable restaurant with us. My other half did not approve of this decision, arguing that we at that very moment had bags of bags of food, literally in our arms. Too bad, I wanted Balinese deviled eggs.
- We still haven’t eaten the arugula. Its final days are upon us.