Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Dog Days of Summer at the Farmer's Market

Summer. Among other things that means Farmer's Market here in River City.  The Farmer's Market has really caught on here.  Which is good.  Really.  Supporting local producers of great product is critical to the viability of the local agricultural community.  Take care of these people and you will always have a good source of good potatoes, beets, flowers, etc.   And the community has done a great job of making sure there is a great location for the producers to come sell the bounty of their harvests.  The facility is beautiful and fairly functional.  Mostly.

Unfortunately, getting decent produce is now somewhat of a competitive sport.  Here are a few tips and bitches about the whole situation. Okay.  One tip.  Three bitches.

First.  Timing.  If you want the good stuff, you better get yourself down there early.  Now that the whole world knows what heirloom tomatoes are, if you want some, you better have a few in your bag before 8 AM or you are gonna be looking at some slim pickings.

Second.  Bikes.  Yes, it is a good idea to ride one's bike with a basket full of re-usable grocery sacks down to the Market to purchase organic, locally-grown produce.  Here's a tip, though, lock your damned bike up somewhere.  Is it really necessary to push your bike through the Market, which is notoriously packed with lookie-loos and the chronically indecisive?  You are blocking traffic and really bending my tines.

Third.  People with dogs.  Look, I love dogs.  I own a dog.  I do NOT bring my lovable, friendly, well-behaved dog to the Farmer's Market.  Is it really necessary that you bring yours?  I really don't want the guilt of stepping on your tea cup Yorkie while trying to get to the decent cucumbers.  Leave the damned dog at home.

Fourth.  Non-food items.  Look, I want some decent golden beets and maybe a loaf of something from the German guy.  If I wanted a hand-made bracelet, I'd probably think Sidewalk Arts or swap meet.  Get to gardening or go home.