Day 491, July 21, 2021
Ode to Sweet Corn
Today's soundtrack: The Bill Frisell Trio, 7/3/21
The pandemic has traversed a full cycle and it is sweet corn season again. I walked down to the farm stand at the end of my street and picked up a half dozen ears and threw some on the grill tonight with our turkey burgers, zucchini, and red peppers.
Sweet corn is like the first kiss of summer, that late night coming together in high school over the front bench seat of a Buick. It is the stirring of emotions and feelings in your body that you didn't know existed before then. It is like the time you flung yourself off a rope swing dangling over a rock ledge that dropped into a river. How on first glance there was doubt and uncertainty, but upon release, that brief glorious moment of flailing, perhaps something akin to what millionaires feel when they fly for a moment into space on a rocket ship. Sweet corn is like after dancing in a crowded sweaty bar or concert hall, when it is all over and the lights come up and you realize that you have just experienced something magical.
One of the things that makes sweet corn so wonderful is its absence for ten or so months of the year. It is a fragile vegetable. Left too long on the counter, or farm stand, it loses its sweetness. I imagine it is hard to transport within that timeframe. The same reasons it is so attractive to me, also make it attractive to any number of bugs and worms. So one is left longing for, and relishing its absence or presence.
To be honest, I very nearly forgot about my love of sweet corn. It had been so long and its return had been such a distant date that it had completely slipped my mind. I think there are some people who feel the seasons in their bones, they know when the blueberries are ripe before the birds do. Perhaps, one day I will be like that, but for now, I rely on the sandwich board sign by the side of the road that reads, Tomatoes, Sweet Corn, Onions, New Potatoes.
As it turns out, I have missed sweet corn as much as I have missed seeing all of you, as much as I have missed traveling and visiting new cities, trying new restaurants, sleeping in lush hotel beds.
Take care and be well,