Thursday, December 20, 2012

Process Process Process

I put together some dough last night that would not rise. Did I introduce the yeast to too-hot water or was this another co-op failure, moldy veggies, sour milk, inactive yeast? Strange that the bit of sugar I added to the water to start off the yeast just wasn't digested...the dark heavy bread ( just a thin baguette so no real harm done) was sweet with that sugar.

I couldn't help but remembering poor Lucy's experience with Crohn's this year where her gut got more and more constricted with self-inflammation until ultimately it closed off. Finally she threw up three days of food and we were admitted to the Brigham for the surgery we knew was inevitable (her brother Ben had had the same condition several years ago with the same outcome). Process and cycle...

In a like fashion I teach my students the weirdly abstract concept of cellular respiration, (something they hate learning) which ironically occurs in every living cell in their bodies...The citric acid cycle. the flow of electrons, the terminal electron acceptor, oxygen, and the dire consequences that occur when the cells are deprived of oxygen (pyruvate poisoning, stoppage of ATP production, death).

So with these less than cheery ideas (though the emotions are cheery!) we enter the winter solstice. But with recollections of our amazing readings for last summer's NEH travel seminar, among them Ramson Lonetawama's distinctly Hopi take on seasons and cycles...

So it's not too off base or off-putting I hope to refer to it "all" as a cycle, a series of additions and enzymatically mediated breakdowns, a sequence of repeats and breaks, a sort of time's circle, a gentle or not-so-gentle eddy that we are all swimming around in.

As a mycologist-ecologist-artist-parent it all seems to make sense.

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