As we enter into a favorite time of year, with fresh sweet corn and ample tomatoes, I will share a short one from the past.

My father taught me how to pick the best ear of corn.

He told me to always look for the ones with the worm. They know what they are doing. They only go after the sweetest.

Friends have come into my life in the same way.corn with worm

Sometimes, I go looking for them. I am drawn in pretty quickly.

There is often surface damage.

There can be sadness or anger. Sometimes it is masked as humor, even sarcasm, but the essence is pure; the feelings run deep.

Once the husk is peeled back, the worm removed, it is just about perfect.

This entry was posted in Beauty, Childhood, Family, Food, Gardening, Inspiration, Nature and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

84 Responses to Produce

  1. Erika Kind says:

    That’s a beautiful metaphor, Van!

  2. Great post and so true.

  3. Silver Threading says:

    Van, this is an excellent piece of writing. I love your metaphor. And, boy oh boy! You are spot on!

  4. Reblogged this on vanbytheriver and commented:

    THIS IS A TEST. THIS IS ONLY A TEST. I follow myself just to see how the WP gurus post my stuff. This one didn’t make it onto my Reader. So, while it’s not life-critical, I wanted to reblog. WP, I’M WATCHING YOU. Van

  5. OK. Thanks for the reblog ! You pass !

  6. Angie Mc says:

    Love the metaphor! About not making Reader, I counted your categories and tags and they don’t appear to be over 15. That’s one thing that has kept me out of the Reader in the past.

  7. Angie Mc says:

    Reblogged this on Angie Mc's Reblog Love and commented:
    Terrific metaphor.

  8. Any time I experience a WP glitch, I just grumble under my breath about the demons of technology. I swear – computers are NOT inanimate objects, but super-aware beings from a parallel dimension running tests on the silly humans in the maze.

    Too much Matrix?

    Love the metaphor, BTW, Van – I gotta start looking for the worm. I’ve gotten far too many rotted cores in the past 😦

  9. What an astounding post, with so many layers, including the meta bit about reader! (Found this is my reader, FWIW.) I had never considered the worm in the corn as an indicator of sweetness. But moreover, the way you apply it to human beings… it is so apt. Thank you!

  10. I can’t wait to share this with my husband. I’ve always tossed the wormy ones back in the bin and he has never understood why. They’re easy enough to clean, he claims. Wait until I tell him we only want wormy ones from now on!

    • It has never failed me, Barbara. Cut off the bad end and enjoy ! ☺

      • I will! Next I look forward to learning how I’m supposed to cook them! The corn, not the worms.

      • I used to live next to a corn field in Michigan. Sweet corn loses so much of its sweetness within 20 minutes of picking ! One hint…don’t overcook’s best when boiled just a few minutes. After that..pure starch. The worms might be best fried…in garlic butter ??? lol

      • When I was a child, my mother (who grew up on a farm) would take me on Sunday out to a local farm and we would buy corn that had been picked only moments earlier. We would rush home to cook it before flavor would be lost. She already had a large pot simmering on the stove – she’d bring the water back to a boil while cleaning the corn, and toss the corn into the boiling water for about 5 minutes. We’d smother the corn with butter and sprinkle with salt – yum!

      • We lived for a while on the border of a cornfield in Michigan. A neighbor told us about getting the water boiling before picking the corn. Amazing sweetness that is lost just a short while after picking. 🌽

  11. Ah. Lovely. And duh (of me). How brilliant is that! I shouldn’t be squeamish about the worm.

  12. mandy says:

    That is a really great metaphor, Van. But oh, the image–when I was thinking about corn on the cob for dinner. Change of plans. 😀

  13. LaVagabonde says:

    I’ll remember that advice. 🙂

    Regarding posts not showing up in the Reader. I also follow myself to test it and just a couple of weeks ago, my posts stopped showing up, too. I also manually visit blogs I follow every few days to be sure I’m seeing everything that they post. Some blogs just disappear and mine disappears from people’s Readers, too. Sometimes they begin to show up again a while (weeks, months) later, but sometimes they never show back up, even if you unfollow and refollow.

    It’s very annoying, because you lose serious readers and you need to remind yourself to visit those who don’t show up in the Reader anymore. Sometimes the email notifications stop working, too. Those who are not aware of this problem and don’t visit the blog on their own, think that the blogger just stopped posting.

    • I have had to refollow bloggers that were lost to me recently. Sometimes, they show up on other blogger’s posts and I realize they’ve gone missing. I’ll still use the Reader, I tried going the e-mail way and it got crazy. Thanks for chiming in, Julie. You are one of those whose posts I seek out. ☺ Van

  14. writerinsoul says:

    I feel a bit like Angie about WordPress issues, presently somewhat resigned and defeated. It’s kind of like playing psychological whack-a-mole, constantly waiting for something to pop up so you can smack it down. (How’s that for a metaphor?!)

    This was an interesting post/idea as are the comments. Traditionally, I recoil at the sight of vermin in my food, so I MAY need to work on The Worm Theory (there were no farmers I had access goin childhood). So far as people, your point is well taken. The most interesting people usually haven’t had soft, bland, or cushy lives. They’ve got battle scars. (But hopefully not infestation.) In my present life, I am learning to make a distinction between those people who are are a bit dinged up and those who are damaged beyond repair. I have paid for not knowing the difference.

    • Your distinction is so critical, and takes a bit of time…I’ve had my share of mistakes as well, but lived to tell about them. WP as whack-a-mole…perfect ! ☺

  15. SilverGirl says:

    Reblogged this on Silver Girl and commented:
    I love this ❤
    SG x

  16. Jim says:

    loved the post. it reminded me of how squeamish people at the market are when they see that corn borer. I always get a good laugh our of their reactions.

  17. The V Pub says:

    I love gardening, and I love the metaphor even more. Simply beautiful.

  18. You’re father was a very wise man, and you were smart listening to him

  19. I love this post Van! So very true and great wisdom

  20. Erika Kind says:

    What a wise man! AndI love how you put it in relation to life! So true! Enjoy your favorite season, Van!

  21. A wise man, you dad! ❤
    Diana xo

  22. Your words are sharp, but the VALID message is clear. We can’t and shouldn’t lump ALL people together. We are genetically similar, but our innate intelligence expresses itself so differently among people. Just as we search for quality produce we should recognize the importance of searching for quality people.

    Dads can be pretty smart folks! 🙂

  23. Nurse Kelly says:

    And that is just a beautiful analogy. You made me crave sweet corn as well! I have a large surplus of tomatoes this year… can’t give away any more to my neighbors! Going to have to take up canning I think! 🙂

  24. I absolutely love this…it rings so true!

  25. Where’s the butter and salt and pepper shaker?

  26. Ok, I didn’t know the worm trick! That does make sense though!

  27. This is such a beautiful analogy dear Van, and I love Sweetcorn.. and have some growing 🙂 And your Dad was a wise man and I think he passed it down to you 🙂
    Love and Blessings
    Sue xxx

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