My Many Hats

March 21, 2008

Like so many people, I wear many hats in my life.  I’ve worn many of them while posting to this blog:  parent, husband, writer, businessman, academic, political junkie, sports fan, etc.  This morning I’ve been wearing another of my hats, one that people outside of Sewanee rarely see.  

I’m the coordinator for our local food buying cooperative.  Every month, a group of us orders organic foods, bulk grains and dried goods, and other hard to find items from a place called United Natural Foods, Inc.  The order arrives by truck, and we unload our items, sort them, and make certain everyone’s order is complete.  After the other members give me their checks, they go off to their homes to put their goods away, and I go to the bank to deposit their payments so that the check I just wrote to UNFI’s truck driver won’t bounce.  That’s what I was doing today; this was delivery day.

This is a volunteer position, one that I took on long ago because Nancy and I wanted access to certain foods that we couldn’t get any other way.  Between collating the orders, communicating with my buying club members, taking care of invoicing, and handling the finances on delivery day, I put in maybe five hours or so each month.  I don’t think it comes to much more than that.

This is a small town, and most people know me for my writing, or through Nancy or the girls, or from other volunteer work I’ve done for the youth soccer league and the kid’s summer swim league.  There are a few people who now know me because of my photography, which is kind of cool.  And there are also certain people around here who think of me simply as the Co-op guy.  

I’m fine with that.  It’s just another hat. 

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4 Responses to “My Many Hats”

  1. Frank said

    I need to get on the co-op bus. I am already on the Farmers’ Market bus, but most of what I eat doesn’t necessarily remember the garden its ingredients were born in. My wife tells me that this should change, but… One doesn’t go from Wonder Bread to Meusli overnight.

    Anyway, I like the idea of my food “carpooling” up the mountain, rather than a couple dozen cars all driving to.. Nashville or Huntsville, I guess, to get a selection of Whole-food-ish type stuff.

    Maybe drop me an email, to let me know how to get my groceries driving in the carpool lane.

  2. Suzane in VT said

    When I saw United Natural Foods I nearly fell off my chair. The West Chesterfield, NH location is 10 mins from my house! Small world.

    My husband and I do use the local Brattleboro Food Coop for some things and are avid Farmer’s Market devotees during the late spring/ summer/ autumn months. (currently suffering from winter withdrawal- argh!) Just can’t get the same flavor from veggies from the supermarket or grow all the varieties in our own garden.

    Our Farmer’s Market also offers locally raised meats (lamb, beef, pork, venison), eggs, butter, wine, handicrafts, flowers (plants and cut stems) and local musicians entertaining. All are local farmers and residents. It may be small by some accounts but its a destination point for many tourists (and boy do we have tourists!).

    And then there’s all the varieties of homemade breads made by this one baker… Ah well, that’s just a whole other chapter.

  3. davidbcoe said

    Send me an email, Frank, and I’ll pass your info along to our new member coordinator.

    And Suzane, Wow! How cool is that? We have a growing local foods market here that my wife and I need to tap into more. But we love the organic stuff, and the only other way to get it would be to drive to Chattanooga every week (100 mile round trip), so we love our little food buying club.

  4. […] I’ve posted before about the many hats I wear in my life:  Author, father, husband, friend, coop-guy, photographer, swim-Dad, soccer-Dad, etc.  More recently I’ve added to the list.  I’m now the 8th grade parents’ council representative to my older daughter’s school.  And, as of November 4th, I’m a member of the Sewanee Community Council.  I have no doubt that I’ll learn a lot about the inner workings of my town — probably more than I want to know.  But it should be interesting.  And who knows where it will lead?  If Chris Matthews can run for the U.S. Senate, what’s to stop me from seeing higher office?  Maybe some day I’ll be on the Board of Education! Posted by davidbcoe Filed in General life issues, social/political issues […]

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