Date of Interview: August 23, 2016
Name: Meredith Scherer
Location: Chicago, IL
How often do you bathe or shower?
Not often enough… Sometimes I’ll shower when I don’t swim in Lake
Michigan. Usually I swim in Lake Michigan after work so I don’t feel
the need to shower when I get home.
What are you passionate about?
I’m really passionate about sustainable agriculture and making good
food accessible to people everywhere, especially in large cities like
here in Chicago. I think that produce, a lot of times travels sooooo
far that it loses its nutritional value. For example, when you pick
things fresh, the vegetables have natural omega 3s that dissipate
within 48 hours so really, you get the best nutrition from plants when
you eat them in the first 48 hours. And with all of the science coming
out now with nutrition health and avoiding big pharmaceutical
companies and food as medicine, it’s more and more important that
people get their food from fresh places and I don’t want local food to
be something where only rich white people can afford it. It needs to
be something everyone can afford and we need to figure out systems to
take the unused space in our cities and use them as growing power to
feed people and have healthier life styles.
Do you think the way you were brought up impacted this awareness and passion?
Oh yeah, absolutely. My grandparents were farmers on my mom’s side and
my mom had a vegetable garden while we were growing up so you know,
one of the things I learned early on is the taste difference between
the store bought tomato and the tomato that you grow at home. And it’s
really incredible to see that and that also translates to things like
a carrot. When was the last time you picked a carrot and ate it versus
ate one out of a plastic bag. Cuz I bet you the one you just picked is
going to taste better.
What are you most afraid of for yourself?
I really hate to say this… But I am a Capricorn and I know that I
work a lot and am concerned about money… But I’m afraid that I won’t
make enough money to feed myself or put a roof over my head sometimes.
And that’s always been a really real fear for me for pretty much all
of my adult life. Like, I wish that wasn’t my biggest fear ::laughs::.
I think there’s way more things to be afraid of than something as
silly as money but it’s really real to go hungry and it’s really real
to get kidney stones from eating only beans and rice. And then have to
deal with medical bills. I live a pretty unique lifestyle that doesn’t
always provide me with the most money. Yeah, that’s my biggest fear.
What’s your biggest fear for the world?
Honestly I’ve been thinking a lot about the internet and our google
searches and our Facebook feeds and how everything is optimizing to
give us what we want to see. Instead of what we don’t want to see. And
I think in some ways, that’s true. I don’t want to see people
defending cops who shoot people of color in the street and so I’m
guilty of unfriending some people on Facebook but I think our google
searches, Google wants us to be satisfied with what we search for. And
I think that’s pushing us all into a really big internet and knowledge
bubble that we might not be able to break free of. I want people to be
able to persue information that might put them a little bit out of
their comfort zone. Obviously I don’t want it to trigger anything, but
I think that’s a different circumstance and I want to specifically say
that we need to look at information and facts that put us outside of
our comfort zones. And kind of bring us to another section of our
thought processes of our humanity.
What is your love language?
Ooooo. I think my love language is actually German. It’s weird because
I went to Germany during a time in my life where I didn’t have a lot
of confidence and I had to explore this new foreign place with a
different culture by myself and learn the language and do a lot of
things for myself and that was really empowering. And I think of
German as a different section of my brain actually. Like, I think
differently when I think in German than I think in English. And I
think that all of those positive things that happened in my life
around the time I went to Germany caused kind of a euphoric sensation
when I speak German with people, because I feel like I’m really
Is traveling important to you?
Yeah, traveling is really important to me, I actually just signed a
lease and that really freaked me out. Cause it means I have a
commitment to be in one place for a full year. But I really like my
job, so I guess that works out. But… I think that staying in one
place or even just one neighborhood in a city can kind of get you
stuck in your own bubble or own world and traveling is a really great
way to go out and reconnect with the world and reconnect with people
in a way that you probably wouldn’t at home.