Thursday, June 10, 2010

rad & rad

Radical! Treviso radicchio and amethyst radishes. The former from Dirty Girl and the latter from the stand to their left at the Ferry Building whose name I forget. This is like the WV equivalent of one of those S.F. Chronicle front page photos of fog over the Golden Gate Bridge or some guy rollerblading with sport sunglasses on. Nothing really important's happening and the space could really be devoted to something more urgent and illuminating, but hey, we had the nice photo and decided to run it, just for the hell of it.

Speaking of radical, though, have you ever wondered about the origins of the word now most commonly associated either with a wild departure from the status quo or with southern California dude sports and the thumbs-up sign?

The OED tells us that radical, as an adjective, means, in the first sense of the word:

Of, belonging to, or from a root or roots; fundamental to or inherent in the natural processes of life, vital; spec. designating the humour or moisture once thought to be present in all living organisms as a necessary condition of their vitality; usually in radical heat, radical humidity, radical humour, radical moisture, radical sap. Now hist.

Perhaps none of these meanings are altogether unrelated, though. The further we depart from the origins of things, the less radical, less vibrant they--and we--become. Wildness dissipates and softens, the radish withers, and the radicchio wilts the farther they get from their soiled root beds.


Dudeman Strothers said...


Leif Hedendal said...

farm is called 'Everything Under The Sun'

kale daikon said...

oh, thanks! I'm glad you knew that. Here is a link to their description, though I don't remember too many sundried products...