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Posts Tagged ‘local food’

I love my job(s).

a. Farmers Market Second Liutenant (Real title still in limbo)

b. Mountain Meadows Farm- tomater sorter, CSA organizer, veggie planter, apple analyzer and anything else Shannon may deem important

c. La Costa- tender of the bar and server of zee cuisine

d. Market Gnome

I’m guessing the positive words relating to careers are rarely uttered by my fellow countryman these days, especially by the sprightly 20-somethings who are still searching for the best beer deals in town, something financially and socially beneficial but with less long-term gratification than being happy with your career choice. Reaching the point of satisfaction required hours and years of self-exploration and refinement, not forgetting the unnecessary mentionables–physics, engineering calculus, and volunteering in the sterilized white-washed depressing Jackson-Madison County Hospital. I mean really, could you imagine me as Dr. Pettigrew…boring, I prefer Kimberly.

Ive always had a hard time making concrete decisions, so the fact that I’ve settled into a job genre is surprising to me…but I guess since I do work a trio of jobs that’s not exactly choosing one thing . What is your favorite food/color/song/movie? Impossible! What would you like to major in? Impossible to pick one field of study and consider it a complete education. Im really not complicated, I just will never fit my dreams into a tiny nutshell. My current non-rotting in an office between the hours of 9 to 5 job(s) combine the following: education, outreach, nutrition, physical labor, conferences, philanthropy, multi-media, food, farmers, wine and people. Im able to shape and influence the direction that Knoxville takes in regards to the local food system in the next few years and decades. What more could a gal want? (besides the obvious money to make this all happen)

My job is malleable, and this enables me to fluidly grow with the needs and wants of the community. Charlotte, market mama and friend, and I can generally be found with a cup of Counter culture coffee at Old City Java or perched up at the Farmers’ Market Info booth or more recently swingin on her porch, talking about our dreams to bring local food to all and to educate the public about what’s around them–lesser known veggies and fruits (heirloom tomatoes, fennel, herbs), preservation (canning, drying), cooking, nutrition,etc. Charlotte got the wheels turning by introducing the use of food stamps at farmers’ markets in TN. Her ability to turn visions into realities is the main reason I decided to axe my grad school dreams and give my soul to local food. I have dreams of community kitchens, cooking classes, mobile markets, food sheds, and community gardens. These things will happen here and I will be a part of them. It tugs my heart and makes my eyes slightly misty and my throat a bit lumpy to think of all the possibilities–how far we have come, how daunting a task these things are to accomplish, but how fortunate I am that Knoxville is ready to stop being stagnate.  Knoxville isn’t so different from other places that linger somewhere between a big town and small city. We’ve got a blend of SUV-drivin, strip-mall suburbia to a riveting pedestrian friendly downtown. But what we do have is the people and support to make this happen. We may not be as financially stable as Nashville or Chattanooga, but damn our lack of money is made up with willpower and determination. Here we come world.

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