Mashed Authenticity

Lumps. Like ’em or hate ’em?

I love potatoes with lumps…. plenty of cream and plenty of butter. The real deal.

Growing up during the Sputnik era space-race, ‘Tang’ bested real orange juice…boasting a day’s vitamin C and absolutely no floaties. Velveeta melted better than cheese. Kraft Mac ‘n’ Cheese beat all. Doctors declared baby formula superior to breast milk. Mashed potatoes were sold in a box as dry flakes. We whipped them up speedily… adding hot water, margarine and milk. No peeling, chopping or boiling. Very little mess. And no lumps.

When I knit, I miss-stitch. Then I re-do or adjust on the fly. Over long-term wear and tear, skilled hands mend injury… and record such a history in warp and woof. Innovative alteration authenticates. Personal choices of pattern and material, plus other individualizations, ensure originality. Wear and tear on high quality craftsmanship increases value–both sentimental worth and real-world appraisal.

Which goes back to my point. Real potatoes… Why try SO hard to turn regular old taters into some sort of whipped, fluffed… perfection? Too much ease and uniformity betray cheapness.

A million widgets–all exactly the same–replace easily. If they break, you toss ’em. Only 999,999 left! Our tastebuds long for things singular and personal…. the lumps. So let’s boldly marry human creativity with our all-too-fallible skill.

Then perhaps we find beauty in the lumps. And touch authenticity… 

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