Sunday, November 7, 2010

Of Hills of Beans

So, something interesting about living in Utah or Idaho where there are large Mormon populations is that we are big believers in having a food storage. In fact, for decades our prophet(s) have encouraged us to obtain a years supply of food. That means, whenever a good sale on any sort of food item occurs, LDS people typically buy large amounts to stock up. The grocers in Utah and Idaho know this, so they have boxes and cases of the item conveniently stacked up so people can just grab an entire box/case of whatever. Also, they usually have the canning supplies in a very visable location as well. Of course, Mormons often get teased for this propensity to "hoard" food. I hold no hard feelings for the teasing though. I suppose this practice would seem a little odd to those not of our faith. I wish more people would do it though. Why is it that we have so many different types of insurance--health, car, renters, homeowners, etc.--but people don't have food insurance?! What if you lose your job and have no money? All the time I hear stories of LDS folks (Mormons) to whom that has happened and who have had to live off their food storage, and boy were they grateful they had it! What if a drought occurs and food prices skyrocket? We already know that the price of commodities is on the rise. Wouldn't we be grateful if we had a bunch of the basics stored, so our food bill doesn't become astronomical?! What if there is some sort of oil crisis (which very well could happen!) and the trucking industry is affected? I don't think it would take that much for something like that to actually happen. We saw food prices go way up a couple years ago when diesel prices were getting out of control. Another thing, and this has haunted me. A couple years ago I read an article online quoting this Dad, who was so angry at the government because after a natural disaster that occurred in his hometown, the only thing he had in the fridge for his hungry kid was a coke. Can you believe it? This guy expected and felt entitled to help from the government in providing food for his kid because he had neglected to even have a few extra groceries on hand to prepare for something like that. Wouldn't we feel like loser parents if we had nothing to give our kids to eat in this kind of situation because of our own negligence in this area? What if there comes a point where the government can't provide for people's needs in a situation like this? Frankly, I have little trust in our current government as it is! I am certainly not going to depend on them to take care of my every need in a disaster situation!

This leads me to some amusing conversations I had the other day at the grocery store here in California. People are kind of shocked when I ask for large amounts of a sale item. Here is just one example of a conversation I had the other day. They had a great sale on pinto beans at the health food market so I thought I would go get a bag.

Me to a grocery clerk in the bulk isle: Do you happen sell these beans by the bag?
Him (slightly doubtful): Um, yes, we do, I think. You want an entire bag?
Me: Yeah. What are they, 25 lbs., 50?
Him (slightly incredulous): Yeah, they are 50 lbs. You want an entire bag?
Me: Sure, that would be great.

after checking out...
Teenage bag clerk: "Wow! That is a lot of beans! How much did that cost you?
Me: About 16 bucks.
Him: Wow! That is a lot of beans! What are you going to do with all them?
Me: Ummm...probably eat them.
Him: Wow! That is a lot of beans!

Yup! And it will feed my family a lot of meals for just pennies per serving!


Amanda said...

I get the SAME comments all the time from store clerks...

What are you going to do with all that yeast?

Um, make bread.

You make bread with yeast?

Yes, thats what bread is made from, and flour and sugar, salt, butter and water.

Really, wow!You must make alot of bread?

Just as much as you probably buy but I just happen to make mine homemade.

Really, Ive never had homemade bread before. Is that what all the sugar and flour is for?

Um yes, its for baking.

You bake too?

Yes, all the time.

Wow, how do you have time for that?

I dont know, I guess I make the time because I love my family and want to take care of them.

Oh, well, I dont have time to bake. I work too much.

And thats where I shut up, smile and keep walking. Because I guess creating a home for my family and rearing my children with no help isn't work.
Have a great day, I say, with a smile.

What has happened to our world? People dont even know where bread comes from. And whats even funnier, Ive always been a stocker upper on food, but even more so since I had kids. And Im not even mormon! Its just old fashioned common sense. Next time you are over, Ill show you my pantry. Its heavenly!
:) Mandy

Toshi said...

hahaha... a lot of beans, huh!? Well, we know what we are doing, I think.