I like arugula. It’s my favorite leafy green. A few slices of tomato with balsamic dribbled over it, maybe a sprinkle of pepper, and mmm mmm good.
So why won’t John McCain leave arugula alone?
What did this plant ever do to him, beside tickle Barack Obama’s taste buds? Take this recent example of arugula bashing from McCain staffer Brian Rogers.
“Does a guy [Obama] who worries about the price of arugula and thinks regular people ‘cling’ to guns and religion in the face of economic hardship really want to have a debate about who’s in touch with regular Americans?”
Mr. Rogers, I worry about the price of arugula. What's wrong with that?
So, on behalf of arugula—not Obama—let me do a little pro bono PR work for the brow beaten plant. This isn't about politics; this is about my favorite leafy green getting a bum rap.
Arugula is no elitist; it is a survivor. Although native to Mediterranean areas, the plant is more akin to hard scrabble, pull yourself up by the bootstraps American ideals than almost any other vegetable—potato included.
After more than two thousand years of cultivation, arugula remains a difficult plant to domesticate. That’s right brother, don’t tread on me. But if you do tread on me—often the case with arugula since it grows on dry disturbed ground—there’s little need to worry because this plant is tough.
Also, the average person can easily grow arugula in a backyard garden making it the people’s green plant. However, getting it to seed, and therefore domesticate, is tricky; that means arugula is a plant of the people, but no socialist. It is an individualist.
So to hell with iceberg lettuce. Given all arugula's American traits, it might as well be red, white and blue. In fact, I propose we rename arugula “Patriot Leaves.”