The most difficult lesson to learn at Mezzacello has been that the systems IN the house are far less forgiving than the systems outside. Adjusting our worldview to “reduce waste” also requires that we DO SOMETHING with that waste. Coffee cans are so very useful in an urban farm kitchen. They hold leftover food for the animals, manure for spreading, Utica acid occasionally. I try not to use them in the house because that opaque lid makes it out of sight and out of mind. And I think I might have forgotten and thought this was coffee. No. It was not coffee.

[/media-credit] Remember the movie “Se7en”? What’s in the box?

The wonderful thing about life is that it is magically, annoyingly, and sometimes dangerously automatic. Ecologies thrive in on and with each other. We live in a world that is largely antiseptic. And that’s fine (and hygienic) but it also leads to a great amount of Ignorance and waste. Waste is the enemy here at Mezzacello. But waste has many pathways; you can throw useful things out or you can hold things and time and entropy kick in. Both of those are waste. The balance is key. o e needs better systems in a kitchen where humans live, and more discipline.

So what’s in the coffee can? Trauma. I was holding back duck eggs that needed washing and I forgot about them. Those coffee lids are tight sealing and they hold sulphur molecules in very well so you smell nothing. So now I have to find a way to recapture the protein and calcium so it can be reused. I have a pressure cooker. I dumped this trauma in there and I’ll destroy the mold, bacteria, and sulphur with heat and pressure. Then I will recycle the atoms and molecules for the gardens. #LessonLearned PS Rick is very unhappy with me for sharing g. But it’s Important to acknowledge, learn from and share failure. It makes us all better.


  • Great post! I loved the suspense-and the reveal did not disappoint:)
    I keep all kinds of jars, canisters and boxes and they often sit in the basement waiting to be used.

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