Aley Chubeza #80 – August 15th-17th 2011, Tu Be’Av

All We Need is Love?

More Musings on Protests, Needs and Happiness

What are the things we need? With animals and plants, it’s much simpler. Instincts and needs dictate behavior, adaptation, specialization and development. But with us human beings, things are much more complex.

So what do we really need? Love?Nourishment?Offspring?A home?Security?Health? Hope? And how do we acquire all of above? Via inner perception, self-acceptance, and a great deal of meditation and peace of mind? Or is it by hard work, material and intellectual acquisitions, success and financial security?

The social protests that are still ongoing and vocal make me very happy, for I see that people still harbor hope, good will, and faith in our ability to influence and change—and our right to do so. During my years in California, I was struck by the powerful difference between the American sense that opportunities abound, as opposed to the pervading Israeli sense of “it’s impossible.”  I established Chubeza a few short months after my return to Israel, and I think that if I’d waited much longer I’d have lost my stamina. Perhaps hesitation and cynicism would have overcome me and I’d have given up the idea and the dream. But now, suddenly I feel that the airis filled with the sense that change is possible, that we want to change, and that we will change.

What formthe actual change will take is an altogether different question, no less important. There are those who demand political change, others a change in the government’s economic policy, priorities or budget allocation. But other voices I hear around me are calling for our own change of values. Among these voices, one of my favorite beautiful, authentic voices belongs to LiatTaub. Liat is one of the pioneers of Bustania, a lovely community garden between the Jerusalem neighborhoods of KiryatHaYovel and KiryatMenachem. She was also one of the founders of the KiryatMenachem food co-op.  In recent years, she moved north and initiated two projects to promote local Galil-grown food, “tafrit mekomi” (local menu). And here’s what she wrote me:

The eating person Eats And eats And eats Three meals a day At least He eats And when he closes his mouth And doesn’t eat What will he do? Pay rent Or a mortgage Pay an electric bill And city taxes And the phone bill And a parking ticket Or income tax Or pay back a loan For his motorbike For his trip For his daughter’s ballet lessons And then when he finishes paying What will he do? Search his pocket for a penny Add it to a dime Hop over to the pharmacy And buy a pill That will stop the aching Of his head and belly Or he will go out to pick Nettles And lash himself Or prepare soup As a sign that he’s had enough Of the loan And the rent And the parking tickets And all the rest A tent on the boulevard? What’s wrong with the boulevard? A longing or a desire Or just a latching onto The latest vogue

The eating person Eats And eats And eats And would like to spit out one helping To clear his mouthful He’s full and not full And perhaps the person Will ask a different question That has no answer And he won’t give up till he finds A better answer And when he does He maynot wish to return To the flat To the motorbike To the ballet class He may want to look for something That won’t cause his head or belly to ache

The eating person Will remain the eating person For he has no choice But he will choose to be The eating and choosing person And the chooser within the person Will elect to choose Without ballots Without reality TV shows Without a wide screen Without millennium And even without a cell phone To live well Really well The eating person Who reads Will ask What is the meaning of The expression “to live well” And he’d best choose to ask A difficult question With no answer Without giving up till he finds A better answer

At Chubeza, one of our answers for the good life is the edamame, the green soy we’ve been sending you over the past few weeks. Maybe I’ll succeed in writing about it before its season ends. But in the meantime, check out this past Newsletter. You’ll find simple directions for preparation and more complex recipe suggestions. Bon appetite!

Wishing you all a week of good thoughts and deeds. May summer continue to be kind to us! Alon, Bat Ami and the Chubeza team


What’s in This Week’s Boxes?

Monday: edamame (green soy) or cowpea (lubia) ,yard-long beans or okra,  lemon verbena (Louisa), eggplant , butternut squash, tomatoes, cucumbers, corn, sweet red peppers, beets,  lettuce

In the large box, in addition: potatoes, pumpkin, leeks

Wednesday: butternut squash, okra or yard long beans, cucumbers, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, corn, cherry tomatoes, eggplants, cilantro, red bell peppers

In the large box, in addition: pumpkin, leeks, red beets

And there’s more! You can add to your basket a wide, delectable range of additional products from fine small producers of these organic products: granola and cookies, flour, sprouts, goat dairies, fruits, honey, crackers, probiotic foods and sesame butter too! You can learn more about each producer on the Chubeza website. The attached order form includes a detailed listing of the products and their cost. Fill it out, and send it back to us soon.