I’ve re-branded. Probably never should have gone with “Chard Is My Vegetable” in the first place. But ever since I was young and foolish, I’d imagined an autobiography with that name. And, since the blog was the nearest to an autobiography that would ever be penned, “Chard Is My Vegetable” it was, to sate those long-held desires.
But, beyond the fact that you didn’t know the story behind the name, there was no coherence to it: what did it speak to the content of the blog? What did it encapsulate? The answer: it didn’t speak to the content, didn’t encapsulate my personal brand.
So, now this blog is “Chin Up, We’re All Gods” (the first name that came to my mind, trust your instincts.) The new title captures more of the positive, empowering vibe of what I care to write; suggestive of the creative capabilities of all creatures, the ability to create new understandings and perspectives and stories for the world around us. But that is only a fraction of the story behind the name; the rest of the story will come another time, when I can reach more people.
But as a parting gift to “Chard Is My Vegetable,” the figure of many a fantasy on sleepless summer nights, I will leave you all with the story behind the unorthodox name:
I hate chard. I despise chard. I vomit upon eating chard. Chard is my vegetable.
You see, in my family, each of us is allowed a “vegetable,” a vegetable that under no circumstance are we forced to eat. This proved a life-saver growing up, amnesty from “three more bites” of despair. And, since I literally vomited upon eating chard when I was four, chard was the choice.
Of course, as a sneaky little brat, I tried to game the system. Tried to switch between chard and spinach as the situation demanded. And my parents were forgiving maybe twice, enough to leave for spinach and return to chard the one time. And then they put their foot down: one or the other, which will it be, which is your “vegetable?”
And the answer was chard.
I still don’t eat the stuff. Can barely even remember what it tastes like since I refuse to eat it all these years later. I tell people it tastes exactly as it’s named: like charred spinach, burnt with a hint of grit and stringiness. But I could have imagined the whole flavor profile during my lifelong hatred of it, the bitter taste an implanted memory.
The truth is, the title “Chard Is My Vegetable” rang true all those years ago because, in my mind, it represented my first battle against things around me: a declaration of tastes, a stand against things I didn’t like. And in my cynical adolescence, what better title for an autobiography than my beginnings as a cynic?
But no more. I have fought the good fight against cynicism, and while I will never either ever win outright or cede the battle (am, in fact, perfectly content with a draw, which ties in with the new title), I have reached a new state in my life, above pure cynicism.
And I like the view. So out goes that title. It was given its due, because it did help fashion the man writing this post now, but it is time to shelve it next to the other mementos of my past–e.g. my Micro Machines, my prog rock collection, and that utterly horrible first idea for a novel. So apologies for any confusion, and enjoy the future I have in store for this blog.
Among which, I guarantee here and now, will be to eat chard with dinner and tell you how it goes.
I don’t have high hopes. Goddamn chard…