Meat and Moonshine

A vegetarian turned butcher and a man’s quest for a nice jug of moonshine. Other than overt tones of bravado and menace, it might be difficult to connect the two ideas.

In the first, a story of a man who, after being a vegetarian all of his adult life, converted to the church of meat. In short, Berlin Reed started working at a butcher shop and decided if he was going to be cutting and cooking meat, he might as well eat it. Falling in love with the taste of flesh, like any normal person would, Reed wanted to see a movement away from factory farms towards a more sustainable form of raising, caring for and killing animals. A noble enterprise. He has a blog that isn’t interesting, though hopeful that will change. Or maybe he just devotes more time to practicing his beliefs than preaching them, which would be refreshing. Some jackasses spend all their time “blogging” about issues and not acting. Especially those ginger bastards. Anyway.

The other story is about Max Watman, a journalist who goes about exploring the underground culture of moonshine. I haven’t read the book, it doesn’t come out until Feb. 16 and my DeLorean is in the shop. But from the reviews I’ve read and the interview with Good, seems like Watman is preaching an intoxicated form of localism and self-reliance. The person who makes her own liquor knows what goes into it, if not the exact proof. And the individual distiller doesn’t have to rely on distant companies with ridiculous advertising campaigns for a drink of the good stuff. On top of that, the booze doesn’t have to be transported by semi-trucks across the country.

Reed and Watman are two personas in vanguard of regionalism. A refreshing break from the Gordon Gekko idolizing, globalization preaching yuppies. Both want to reign the desire to export work and import goods, a dangerous, ugly practice. By making or buying the things we consume local, we are tied to the welfare of our neighbors and neighborhood. It’s a lot hard to dump chemicals in the river when you have to drink from it too.

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