Sarah joined our team as a driver in the late spring of this year, get to know her more here!
How did you arrive at Lovin’ Spoonfuls?
I was educated as an anthropologist, and I’ve always been deeply interested in the material circumstances of life cross-culturally; how people live and what they make of it. For me, this interest directly translates to improving the material circumstances of life for as many people as possible. I have always wanted to make my life about creating the kind of lives fit for humans to live. This motivation has taken me through various sorts of work, from health delivery research to political organizing. When a friend who works for one of our beneficiaries let me know that LS was hiring for a driver, I was delighted to have the chance to work directly to improve folks’ material realities by rescuing and delivering fresh food.
Describe a typical work day. How does your job differ from the average truck driver?
There is no typical day with Lovin Spoonfuls! That’s one of the most exciting parts of this work. I have my regular collections with our vendors, but I often get the chance to collect and distribute even more food on the fly, from, say, a food pantry distribution that has more food than they can distribute. I never know what kind of interesting people I’ll meet or what sort of food I’ll get to collect! We’re well coordinated, but the spontaneity and go-get-it attitude makes the work all the more fun.
What’s the strangest/most exotic food item you’ve picked up from a vendor?
Definitely Daikon and Vegan Chicken Salad. Enough said!
What are some of your favorite tunes/radio stations that you listen to on the road?
I never miss Democracy Now on 90.3, a hard hitting news program that comes on at noon every day and usually has interviews with fascinating people out organizing and making the world better.
The rest of the time, I alternate Nina Simone and Fleetwood Mac.
Do your friends and family consider you a good cook? Any signature recipes?
I guess you’d have to ask them! I make an excellent vegan blueberry pie (it won a competition!). I think I know about two dozen ways to serve bell peppers.
What would we find in your refrigerator right now?
Bell peppers, asparagus, spinach and maple flavored cream top yogurt are always in my fridge. I usually have some homemade ranch on hand, too. You can take me out of the Plains, but you can’t take the Plains out of me!
What’s your favorite childhood food memory?
I have so many great memories of my mom teaching me to cook. She taught me how to fry green tomatoes, okra and jalepeños before I could do long division. What I revisit most often is how to make biscuits and pie crust without measuring, very convenient!
Has this job made you more aware of your own consumption habits? Have you made any significant changes as a result?
I like to think that I was always pretty cognizant of the amount of waste produced by our food systems. One of the most shocking things I’ve learned so far is how much work food distribution is – and how far we still have to go.
What’s your favorite place/restaurant/neighborhood in Boston?
My favorite restaurants are so close to our parking spot in Somerville, and I feel quite fortunate whenever I remember that. I love everything at Pujabi Dhabi, the BBQ Seitan sandwich at Clover, and getting sticky fingers from the Njera bread at Fasika. South of the Charles, my vote is always for My Thai Vegan Café in Chinatown.
My favorite neighborhoods are Jamaica Plain, Boston, and Central Square, Cambridge. In the summer I trek out to Revere Beach almost three times a week (say what you will, the first public beach in America is grand!)
What is your motto?
My motto: Educate, agitate, organize!
A few affirmations that I keep close to my heart are (1) do whatever you can, as well as you can, and (2) if you want to be free, then you’ve got to be brave.
Who are your heroes?
Most of my real life heroes don’t have Wikipedia pages. I try to surround myself with people I admire.
Angela Davis, Paul Farmer, Victoria Woodhull, Toni Morrison and Ella Baker are some famous folks whose work and stories have inspired me.