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Essay

Organic Twinkie

By August 2, 2013 One Comment
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Heads up… the 80 year old man in me is breaking out this morning. He doesn’t come around too often, but every now and again he shows up, rants, and then disappears again. He usually shows up looking and sounding like Jerry Seinfeld, or maybe Don Rickles, cracking jokes and making pointed remarks. I’ll try my best to control him, but you know how it is, I can’t control him, I can only hope to contain him.

I’ve noticed lately that non-processed, locally grown, food is a really big deal. Such a big deal that everyone feels the need to tell everyone about it. “Hi, I don’t think we’ve met, I’m Jason.” “Good to meet you. I have a raised garden, a dairy and a beef cow that grazes in my backyard, and I never let my kids eat anything with sugar.” At this point I usually try and slip their kid an m&m or some skittles. I’m all for eating healthy, and I’m all for supporting local farmers and businesses, but it seems this food thing has gotten out of hand. Is there no place for processed food? A warm bowl of kraft macaroni and cheese with little hot dog slices mixed in, or little debbie snack cakes? How about a Twinkie? Just once I’d love to someone post on facebook, “My kids are shoving multiple Twinkies in their mouth. Such happiness!”

And what’s with all the beer snobs? It’s like beer has become the new status symbol of hipster cool. Trying to select a beer off of a beer menu is exhausting, especially if you’re with a beer snob. By the time you listen to him or her go off about the different types of beer, where they are all brewed, and how they brew their own beer in their garage, it’s time to go – party’s over. Remember those Miller commercials, with the guy in the white t-shirt cooking stuff in a house that looked like it belonged to your grandparents? I don’t care if its a postmodern reappropriation or simulacra… it makes me smile.  

So go ahead, eat your free range chickens and your organic carrots. Plant a garden and brew your own beer. Just remember to be kind to the neanderthals, say “hi” to us every once in a while, maybe even throw us some scraps. Who knows… we just might give you a Twinkie.

Jason Lief

Dr. Jason Lief teaches courses in Christian education and youth ministry. A Northwestern College graduate, he served as the chaplain for Pella (Iowa) Christian High School while earning a master’s degree in theology from Wheaton College Graduate School. He also completed a doctorate in practical theology from Luther Seminary. He previously taught theology and youth ministry at Dordt College for 10 years. Dr. Lief is the author of “Poetic Youth Ministry: Loving Young People by Learning to Let Them Go” and "Christianity and Heavy Metal as Impure Sacred Within the Secular West: Transgressing the Sacred.”

One Comment

  • Merkles says:

    But…but….can you be a professor and still say those things?!?!?! Or do they take away your union card or something?

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