I remember a poem by James Tate about a man who walks into a field and eats raw rutabagas–I think that’s right, though this may not be exactly what Tate wrote and I could look it up but I’m not going to and anyway no one really cares. Maybe it was turnips. The point is that there’s in each of us a desperate poverty of imagination and a terrible hunger also and we’re not likely to solve the problems with our current tools. So much for poets. They suggest what ails us. Poets are not generally problem solvers. Kurt Vonnegut Jr. used to say that if you’re looking for the smartest people in any given university you should avoid the English department and head over to Physics.
But I suspect they eat turnips over there as well.
So I’m sitting on the couch in my tattered bathrobe and the planet is dying and the politicians are talking about cancel culture. They think wearing a mask during the pandemic is a cultural issue and by god they have the right to spread the virus and nothing is more important than defending Mr Potato Head. I’d prefer it if they said: “raw rutabagas for everyone!”
This would be better for the nation in many ways. The rutabaga contains the following: Calcium: 60mg (6% of the recommended dietary allowance for adults) Iron: 0.6mg (8% of the RDA for adult men; 3% for women) Magnesium: 28mg (7% of the RDA for men; 9% for women) Phosphorus: 74mg (11% of the RDA for adults)
Potassium: 427mg (13% of the RDA for men; 16% for women)
Zinc: 0.3mg (3% of the RDA for men; 4% for women).
You see? You won’t get rickets if you eat rutabagas. But all you’re going to hear about is how the liberal elites are trying to cancel your superstition and hatred.
One more thing about the rutabaga. It contains phytonutrients, including lutein and zeaxanthin. These antioxidants are important for eye health, and consuming enough of them may help prevent cataracts and macular degeneration, two eye diseases related to aging.
I think unhappy centrist Republicans should start the Rutabaga Party.