A Taste of Agri(Culture)

This afternoon as we walked across campus on our way back from work, we were greeted with the usual judgmental stares. Yes, we work at the farm. Yes, we’re wearing overalls. Yes, we’re covered in mud. And yes, we’re the crazy girls who look like we’ve taken one too many trips to Tractor Supply. We may not epitomize that classic Southern Ivy style, but we’re a whole other kind of South. This is our formal invitation to unwad your Lilly Pulitzer panties and quit gawking.

The Davidson student body has so many remarkable qualities. Davidson students are intelligent, engaged, and thoughtful. One thing we’ve noticed Davidson students often lack, however, is the humility to go out and get their hands dirty. Understanding the theoretical concepts behind big-picture questions is a great start, but it’s equally important for students to engage with these issues in a more concrete way. It’s easy to vocalize your support for local food and sustainability in a classroom setting, but when it comes down to it, what really matters is picking up a shovel and getting to work.

We’ve always supported the idea of small-scale, local agriculture, but it was only after hours of hard work and severe farmer’s tans that we truly began to appreciate the labor and dedication that goes into the food we love.  So next time you see us trudging by in our work boots, withhold the judgment and get to know the farmers who grow your food.  

Remember that especially juicy watermelon in the Commons salad bar recently? We harvested all eighty of those by hand. Or maybe you enjoyed some extra tasty lettuce in your salad? That took hours of weeding and several creative pest control strategies to grow and maintain. Don’t get us wrong, we love our jobs. We’re just looking for a little more appreciation and a few less condescending looks.

When it comes down to it, we’re regular Davidson students who have come to the realization that we don’t have to choose between working with our hands and working with our minds. Physical labor and intellectual thought are not mutually exclusive. You might be surprised to know that the girls clad in flannel and Mudruckers aren’t so different from yourself. We stay up late writing papers, we indulge in Netflix binges, and our closet does not consist solely of overalls.