Tuesday, 4 July 2017

appellation d'origine contrôlée or blessed are the cheesemakers

Though I will be the first to admit that I am a woefully inadequate copy-editor and do a poor job proof-reading my own material, this apparent typo on the recently unveiled war memorial in Columbia City, Indiana seems mute testimony to sloppiness and the need for a second set of eyes for those situations where a squiggly underscore isn’t there to help.
But I say apparent because perhaps there’s an outside chance that the engraver is making a statement. Protections for regional—sometimes very, very specific locations, artisanal produce and delicacies are quite different than raging nationalism, but that difference is nonetheless by degrees and not in kind, I suppose. It’s still a dichotomy among vintners, cheese mongers and other specialists that creates an in- and an out-group that holds that there’s something imparted by the land and habitat where the food or drink is sourced. Is it placist and a sign of insecurity to believe so and to believe that those coming from elsewhere are somehow impure and of lesser quality? What do you think? I don’t believe that was the message, but most wars that anyone has prosecuted seem to be justified around the same narrative (land sometimes substituted with blood) and I wouldn’t be surprised if America didn’t enter into a trade war that informs future monuments—but not for those on the losing side.