It's been years since I've last seen a dandelion, that little cheerful yellow flower that is apparently the bane of suburban lawn owners. And I have to wonder why?
What makes this flower such a bane? They come up, bloom, feed a bunch of bees, seed and then … go away? I don't know really. Growing up, my granddad would rip the suckers right out of the lawn and when that didn't work, pour gallons of caustic chemicals in the vain attempt to rid the lawn of the things even as the neighborhood kids would pluck the fuzzy cotton-headed dandelions and blow hard to send the seeds floating down the street.
I remember asking Bunny a few weeks ago what makes a weed a “weed,” and she answered, “any unwanted plant.” Okay, fair enough. But considering that the “weeds” we get in our yard have these needle-sharp burrs that are a literal pain to remove, I think I'd rather have dandelions in the lawn. At least they don't jam painfully into your fingers, drawing blood.
I guess the shop owners figured this would keep the women occupied as the men shopped. Or something like that.
So I'm enjoying a lovely beverage at Hunters & Gatherers when I notice something odd on the label:
“Pardon my asking,” I said to the proprietor, “but I thought all soda was gluten free.”
“I would think so too,” said the proprietor. “Perhaps for sweetening? Like stevia?”
“No,” I said. “It's usually corn they use for sweetening.”
“Oh,” said the proprietor, who was doing a search on the Intarwebs, “sodas might be bottled in a shared facility.”
“Okay, that makes sense.”
“And if gluten is less than 20 parts-per-million, it's considered ‘gluten-free.’”
“How about that?”
“Well, the more you know …