Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Know Your Okra, Know Your Farmer

The recent situation where a Georgia gardener was raided by state police because they thought his okra was marijuana got me to thinking about what might happen if similar conclusions were made about our farm.  I fully realize that not everyone can tell one plant from every other, but I guess I would expect those who were intent on enforcing laws with respect to marijuana, or any other specific plant, would be well versed in identifying that plant.

On the flip side, I'm willing to cut anyone a break who is just trying to do their job as well as they are able.  But, I'm hopeful that they, and others who do this sort of work, will spend a little training time on plant identification now.


Rob: Hello?

Official Sounding Person Yes, hello. My name is *name changed to protect the guilty* . I am with the United States Department of *name also changed because we want to - it's fun*. Are you a representative for the farm known as the Genuine Faux Farm and do you realize that the name of your farm indicates that you can't possibly be real?

Rob: Um. What?

OSP I'll take that as confirmation. Sir, we have a complaint regarding the export of katydids and broccoli without proper licensing. We also understand that you have been evading customs with flights of turkeys and an occasional watermelon.

Rob: What were the turkeys doing carrying a watermelon?

OSP That's classified information, though I can tell you that it was delicious.

Rob Which?

OSP That's classified.

Rob I still don't understand the statement about the turkeys and the watermelon. How would turkeys actually carry a watermelon? Or were they hiding IN the watermelon? And how do you know they were MY turkeys?

OSP So, you do not deny that you have turkeys on your farm.

Rob Well, I had turkeys on the farm.

OSP So, you admit that the turkeys are no longer on your farm.

Rob Well, some of them are... kind of.

OSP Sir, you are being evasive, we are now assuming that you are hostile. We will be sending representatives to your farm.

****knock knock****

Rob Whoa. That was fast.

***opens door to see two persons with dark suits, sunglasses, earwigs and large Elvis wigs. One has a cell phone up to his ear.***

OSP Sir, we have tried to be polite, but I'm afraid we're going to need to search your farm.

Rob I'm right here. You don't need to talk into the phone anymore.

OSP Oh. Yeah. Right.

Rob I'm still not sure what you are looking for? Do you want to see turkeys?

OSP Among other things.

Rob Fine.

***Rob walks to a building, opens the door and points to a large chest freezer***

Rob The turkeys are in there.

OSP In the freezer? That's inhumane!

Rob Um. Well, they're dead.

OSP I suppose so, it must be very cold in there. What would cause you to put them in there?

Rob Well, they'd get pretty stinky if we didn't.  They are for sale, do you want one?

OSP I'll have to talk to my partner about that.

Rob Fine. What else do you need from me.

OSP What are those plants over there in the field? That's not marijuana is it?!?

Rob No. That's okra.

OSP Well, how about those, are those marijuana?

Rob No, those are cabbages.

OSP Well, surely that over there is!

Rob That's a tree.

OSP Ah, so it is. Well, we want you to know that we're keeping an eye on you.

***Don't let this happen to you!  Learn to identify plants and your local farmers that grow them for you!***

Brought to you by an anonymous farmer...Know Your Farmer.  Know Your Food.

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