I just thought I was involving -- and amusing -- my son while we made dinner. Joel Salatin wrote in a recent issue of Flavor magazine that we need to keep our kids in the kitchen if we want to have any hope for the future of agriculture, for future farmers who will seriously care about food and the land it comes from instead of retreating to video game alternate realities where it doesn't matter what you blow up or who gets killed.
So if I made a sweet potato and squash bus with carrot headlights (a la the Saxton Freymann and Joost Elffers Fast Food books), I thought, my son might get stick around to try to "help" me and feel more invested in dinner.
Without skipping a beat, he said, "Lobster!"
Going to Maine helps appreciate food, too, I guess.
I was going for a standard vehicle, but I love that my son sees things I miss. He notices representations where I don't, and, on the flip side, he notices new details it never occurred to me he'd see, like the new 2010 county sticker on my dashboard within seconds of the first time we got in the car after I'd removed the old one.