Saturday, August 29, 2020

Eat the Peach, Pitch the Stone, but Save the Ball Mason Jar - Hoosier Evolution

Eat the Peach, Pitch the Stone, but Save the Ball Mason Jar - Hoosier Evolution

Would you like to throw a stone at me?

Here, take all that’s left of my peach.

Blood-red, deep:

Heaven knows how it came to pass.

Somebody’s pound of flesh rendered up.

Wrinkled with secrets

And hard with the intention to keep them.

Why, from silvery peach-bloom,

From that shallow-silvery wine-glass on a short stem

This rolling, dropping, heavy globule?

I am thinking, of course, of the peach before I ate it.

Peach - DH Lawrence

I live in peach country, northwest Indiana and southwest Michigan, and revel in the lucious fruit all summer long.  The Peach is the Ava Gardner of fruit and it would damage a love-sick heart like Frank Sinatra's with its tantalyzing flesh, alluring syrup and beguiling aroma.  I can get huge, juicy and fragrant Michigan peaches from the weekly Farmer's Market located at 8th Street & Washington every Saturday.  These are tree ripened beauties for $.99 a pound, or $15 a bushel.  The way I go through peaches between July and September the bushel would make sense, but I was never a thrifty gent.  The peach appeals to the wastrel, the prodigal and the easily allured.

I would tear my Covid-19 Mask off, in front of Dr. Fauci and a squad of underfed, snarling Karens wearing I had Twenty Abortions T-Shirts, if offered a lush sun-rise colored Michigan peach and gnaw on it to the stone and wipe my chins with the PPI intended to arrest Covid dropplets.

I get allured.

I devour peaches from July, until the supply runs dry and go fresh peach abstinent until next summer.  I will eat canned and jarred peaches, which is like kissing a homely cousin, and dream of the return of Amish Peach Pies, Cabo’s Peach Smoothies, Peaches and Cream for breakfast and Fresh Peach Chutneys.

I am a lousy baker, but a pretty fair cook and peaches make a wonderful addition to pork and chicken dishes. My peach pies are unworthy of the fruit itself.  A cobbler?  Maybe.  A Pie, or cake?  Not a chance in hell.  Peaches make great sauces and jellies and living in this Hoosier Heaven I am surrounded by Mason Jars.

I have put up peaches, but not for a few years.  They never seem to live long enough to get par-boiled, peeled and sliced for the Bell Mason Jar.

The Ball Mason jar was born in Buffalo New York, but moved to Muncie, Indiana, in 1889.  The glass blown to make the iconic green tinted glass jars came from the sands of now vanished Hoosier Slide right here in Michigan City,Indiana.  The Hoosier Slide was over 200 feet at its peak and dominated the lakeshore, until the sands sent by the rail-car load to Ball in Muncie erased the dune from the shorescape 100 years ago. Ubi Sunt? 

Well, many of those jars, bottles, ashtrays and glassy geegaws returned to the Lake and now are returning to the shore as indigenous jewelry which is sold by  Michigan City Dunebillies in the many high-end Yuppie Shoppes for Fine People of Illinois (FIPS) on Franklin Street and near Lighthouse Mall.

Lake Michigan Beach Glass is formed by the undulating waves and time from glass bottles tossed into the Lake by idiots for generations.  These are beautiful local artifacts that smart locals sell to the Fine People of Illinois for up $65 per collection. God beat all of us to recycling. When an idiot tossed his Old Dutch Root Beer Bottle, a Drewerys, a Green River, or an empty Ball Mason Jar into the foamy lquid of Lake Michigan, God began setting Nature to its task.  “ LO, make some Beach Glass for generations upon generation, while a I Smote this Yamhead’s ass!”

And it came to pass!

So, a few decades ago some Yamhead walking along the Lighthouse wall polished off a pint of peaches and tosses his Ball Mason jar into the mighty waves of Lake Michigan and then force and matter come together to make beautiful beach glass.

The great-grand daughters of the said Yamhead take the South Shore Line from their hipster homestead in Streeterville on the Mag Mile, in order to play at the Blue Chip Casino and win a hundo-a piece on the slots.  They take their boodle to Franklin Street and buy beach glass that originated when the grand-Yamhead was too lazy to take his Ball Mason Jar home or find a proper recpticle,

The girls spend the last twenty on a bushel of Peaches at the Farmer's Market at 8th & Franklin.  Then, they heft the heavy fruit aboard the South Shore Lines for the long trek back to Streeterville.

Peaches, to glass, to beach glass.  Eat the Peach. Toss the stone.  Save the Mason Jar.

Science, kids! Everyone loves science.

I love peaches and Mason jars.