Bring Back Home Economics

I’m 53 and still do not know how to live.

Adeline Dimond
Published in
12 min readJun 10, 2024


The Afternoon Meal (La Merienda), Luis Meléndez, ca 1772 | Metropolitan Museum of Art, Open Access Program

I’m throwing out too much food. You are too. I’m essentially a functioning human being (low-frequency functional, but still), so I know I can’t be the only one.

This makes me feel bad, because what type of idiot in massive credit card debt wastes food? Worse, it feels like an insult to the abundance of the world, the abundance of America, the abundance of modernity. My grandmother never used the “but there are starving children in Africa” trope to get me to finish my plate, but she did look at me sadly when I wouldn’t finish my breakfast and say “during the war we could only dream of French toast.” This didn’t land when I was five, but somehow it’s haunting me now.

Now, I’m in a cycle of wasting food and then lying in bed berating myself about it, trying to come up solutions. I never can, because no one taught me how to live.

I watched my mother cook dinner every night, but never joined to her to learn how, and she never invited me. I watched my grandmother dip slices of bread in an egg mixture — and somehow decided that she had invented French toast — but aside from making cookies with me once in awhile, she taught me nothing.