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Community dinner

Last night I went to a community meal hosted by some folks in Brooklyn, something I've been wanting to check out for some time.  From their site:

We are a small group of people who do a lot of other things in New York, like decorate subways and throw parties in the streets. At Grub we're just offering dinner. Whether you are active in other collectives, your neighborhood, your backyard garden, or just new to town, we invite you to our table. To get a little squishy, we are looking for practical ways to build community. We are particularly inspired by weekly dinners served at squats in Amsterdam and Berlin, where you can get a cheap, tasty meal and catch up with friends in a cozy room. We like parties as much as anyone, but we think there should be places to talk without a pounding sound system. 

Some of the other listings I've seen for the event mention that 99% of what they serve is freegan, collected from dumpsters behind supermarkets and other sources.  I liked the community idea and the freegan idea but felt way too shy to go by myself.  One of my faithful readers, Julia The Wounded Chef, who is newly mad about cooking and sustainibility, generously offered to accompany me.  Thus began a series of firsts and a bike ride on a beautiful Sunday evening.

I wasn't sure what to expect.  I had a general idea who might be involved, but hadn't met any of them myself.  I went to one of the aforementioned dinners in Berlin, as part of a magical wine-fueled evening that ended on the Night Bus, one of the most hilarious European inventions.  That seemed less intimidating somehow -- more Left Bank and less gutter-punk -- even while my Berlin friend was telling me about it.  I guess I've been to enough Critical Mass and Time's Up events to be afraid of having my faux-freeganism to be taken to task by someone who hasn't had a job or apartment in several years.  I took the copy of Newman's Own Guide to a Good Life (thanks Student Doctor Green!) out of my backpack and replaced it with a Brooklyn-produced art magazine, lest my bag fall open mid-dinner and I lose all of my cred.

freegan%20dinner.jpgTurns out I needn't be worried: these people were friendly and fun, mostly talking about food and aparments and other non-militant topics while we looked out over the BQE from the roof garden.  My vegetarian dinner, pictured here, was terrific - salad and cooked greens and zucchini flowers and frittata and bread and "weird pasta" and chocolate-beet cake.  One of the girls who helped prepare it said that the food had come from someone's garden (the flowers), a CSA share (bought for this purpose?), behind a grocery store nearby, as well as some leftovers from a local Food Not Bombs group.  As I mentioned in my previous post, I paid $5 but probably could have gotten away with contributing nothing; their sign mentioned that the organizers had spent $36 on the meal, which served approximately 40 or 50.  I noticed only two unwashed khaki-and-black-clad guys with big packs, who bolted right after the food.  Everyone else looked like most of the other people I've encountered in Brooklyn - maybe even less bike-ey and more art-y and garden-y.  As we were leaving, the hosts begged us to take from this pile of vegetables - they had too much and were going to compost whatever didn't get grabbed.  I walked away with a bunch of sunflower sprouts and a head of lettuce.  Thanks, Grub!  


Posted on Monday, July 7, 2008 at 08:32PM by Registered CommenterMegan Metcalf in | Comments1 Comment

Reader Comments (1)

Grub is still held twice a month. Check out http://www.myspace.com/anewworldinourhearts for up to date information or email inourhearts@gmail.com with questions and to join our event announcement list!

September 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterIn Our Hearts

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