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  • Writer's pictureJay Murray


Here's a stock image of a child enjoying the festive holiday season. Like him, and like all of you, robots excluded, I had a childhood. In fact, I had many childhoods and I look forward to sharing any number of them with you here.

One such childhood found me stranded in a cornfield in North Troy, Vermont. It was a tiny town with a store and a post office and far more holsteins than humans, nestled along a ridge of mountains on the Quebec border. Folks in North Troy spoke a guttural patois of French and Canadian, at least to my underdeveloped ears, but it was a warm, tight knit community that gathered once a year to eat maple syrup on mostly fresh snow with pickleback shots. So here I was in a cornfield, lost more than stranded, I suppose, lost among the corn and lost in thought. I had been helping my mother plan a cooking class in nearby Newport - a veritable metropolis on Lake Memphremagog with a population of more than 4,000! The rage at the time had been Nouvelle Cuisine, and curious cooks were venturing outside of their comfort zones and exploring new ideas, so I thought heck, let's make Tasty Soup v.1. I had a babysitter who would bring me to her office at IBM, and a friend whose father had some kind of really early internet access (1980?), so I would play this online Star Trek game, and I got into naming things with v's and dots. Tasty soup v.1, as you might imagine, featured late summer corn, and some fun elements you could only find in a cosmopolitan mecca such as Newport. You can find the recipe here.

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