October 14, 2012

Everything is Connected

I'm inaugurating a new regular feature today, Everything is Connected, named in honor of the late Barry Commoner's four laws of ecology.
  1. Everything is connected to everything else. 
  2. Everything must go somewhere. 
  3. Nature knows best. 
  4. There is no such thing as a free lunch.  

The Los Angeles Times reports today that the effects of severe drought in the Midwest this summer are causing restaurants to cut back on the size of their servings, increase prices, and reduce staff. Customers are complaining about smaller portions, lower quality cuts of meat, and fewer specials.

Smokin' Jonny's BBQ in Gardena, California, raised the price of corn on the cob from $1.50 to $3.00 and then dropped it from the menu entirely because the quality of the corn wasn't good enough. Ribs are only on the menu on weekends because that's when people are willing to splurge for what's become a luxury meal.

"Economists say even bigger hikes are ahead as the poor U.S. harvest ripples through the food chain," the Times reports.

Chase Edmondson, an actor interviewed by the Times, said he sometimes orders kids' meals to combat menu shock. "It's kind of ridiculous when you're getting a hamburger for $12," he said.

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