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Monday, August 27, 2012

OK Corn and other basic things I have screwed up

I was watching "Beloved" the other day, remember that one? I loved that movie, although it was a box office flop. It's based on the brilliant book by Toni Morrison. I recommend it highly. Anyway, in one part of the movie Oprah offers to "fry a little corn" for the character played by Danny Glover. And I thought "mmmmm, corn", instead of focusing on the subtlety of the performances and all that other stuff that intelligent people do.

As a child, my parents always insisted that I was smart. They would tell me so all the time. They would point out stupid things I would do and say "is that something a smart little girl should do?" No. Pretty sure not.

But here's something I don't have the heart to tell either of my parents: I'm dumb. Oh sure, I have a fairly decent vocabulary and I have a degree and all that shit, but I'm the worst kind of dumb: I'm the kind of dumb broad that thinks she's a smart broad. To wit: OK Corn.

If you are from BC, and you have spent any time driving through our broad province, you will have undoubtedly see many home-made, spray-painted signs that advertise "OK CORN" for sale on the side of the road. I've seen these signs all my life. And it took me until I was 22 years old to figure out that the "OK" stood for Okanagan, which boasts some of the most beautiful and delicious produce in the world. No. I thought it meant exactly what it said: Ok corn. And every single time for roughly 18 years I would mumble to myself "why would someone stop for Ok corn? Where is the excellent corn? The delicious corn?". I would shake my head.

The day it hit me I was driving with my boyfriend back to Vancouver from a vacation in Kelowna. And as befits someone that stupid, I hung my head in shame for about an hour.

That's not all that screws me up. You know this sign?

Me too. And I thought it was a giant N, with a curlicue on the front of it. For years. This is particularly shameful as both my dad and grandfather worked for the Canadian National Railroad.


I thought this was either a) a piece of abstract art, or b) a W. It never occurred to me that this was a B until I was EASILY in my 30s. I still read this as the "ay". The "b" has just never really entered into it for me.

So you see, I am dumb. I'm pretty much okay with it. I'm comfortable now with the fact that my initial interpretation of signage is EXACTLY THE OPPOSITE of How Things Work.

Anyway, corn:

Fried corn

4 cobs of corn, peeled and kernels cut off
extra virgin olive oil, to taste
juice from 1/2 lemon
1 tsp chile powder
1 pinch smoked paprika
lime and microgreens for garnish

Grill corn kernels in oil over medium heat until just tender, about 5-7 minutes. Add lemon juice and chile, stir together and transfer to bowl. Top with microgreens, paprika and a squeeze of lime. Serve hot.

Fortunately being able to taste good food doesn't require brain cells.


  1. OMG awesome!!!! I just realized that was a cursive B now! I thought it was a 1640's version of B.
    Also I thought BC Burger was for British Columbia. I mean in Alberta we call it bacon cheddar, I just thought the province took it on.
    And don't get me started on Goethe

  2. Another Canadianism...old/fort cheddar. Where is this place called Old Fort? Their cheese seems to be everywhere!

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