In a moving ode to self-sufficiency, Connie Walsh learned how to successfully grow her own loose-leaf lettuce in order to throw it in the trash exactly two weeks later.
“I never thought of myself as having much of a green thumb, but I really pleasantly surprised myself with this project,” Connie says. “After just a few weeks I had enough growth to begin harvesting leaves, and then two weeks after that, they were wilted enough that I had to throw them away.”
And the wait seems to have been more than worth it. Connie says she’s never felt so connected to the food in her kitchen.
“We are sort of alienated from the food that nourishes us in our capitalist culture,” Connie says. “Historically, I would just buy a bag of pre-washed, pre-cut greens from the store, then they’d inevitably sit in my fridge until they went bad. With the lettuce I grew myself, I felt so proud of it, and then I was genuinely sad and ashamed when I threw it away.”
“I think it’s really healthy progress to feel this way,” Connie adds.
Though the end result was the same, Connie insists growing her own greens was a greatly rewarding experience.
“I actually did eat a couple of leaves on a burger,” she says. “And they tasted, I mean, fine I guess. I couldn’t really taste them over the burger and everything else that was on it, but still cool in a way.”
Despite her enviable accomplishment, some still dare to criticize Farmer Connie’s relationship to her harvest.
“If you go through the trouble of growing your own lettuce, shouldn’t you eat it?” says Connie’s roommate, Willa Zhang. “I mean, I don’t really care what anyone chooses to eat, but when I asked Connie if I could use some of her lettuce she said no because it was too special, so I was burned when I saw it in the garbage two weeks later.”
But true to form, Connie’s not letting the haters get her down.
“Frankly, it’s an unreasonable expectation that anyone would eat multiple servings of lettuce in a week,” Connie says. “It’s just not possible. Like, what? Am I going to make a salad? I’m not a Sweetgreen.”
“Maybe I’ll grow tomatoes next,” Connie continues. “I hate them, but they’re so pretty.”
Go, agriculture queen!