Verby Pick-Up Duck: "fritter"
Apple fritters. Corn fritters. Turkish zucchini fritters. When we think of the word "fritter", some of us only think of edible nouns.
I, of course, think of my mother. "Don't fritter away your time. Don't fritter your money away." Fritter. A slow, almost imperceptible wasting of things of value. A little spent here, a little spent there.
I remember a season of credit card frittering. Fresh out of college, I ran up a healthy credit card bill, somewhere around $1000.00. I felt free and a bit powerful. But one day, as I paid the minimum and a $40 finance charge, it occurred to me that I'd foreited the cost of a new tailored shirt. Just for the privilege of owning a few things before I could afford to pay for them. I was frittering my money away. Not long after, I changed my policy: buy on credit only what can be paid in full when the bill comes.
This past year, I've been considering another form of financial frittering. A book here, a book there. A pint of out-of-season strawberries. Eating at a restaurant when there's perfectly good food sitting in the fridge. Twenty dollars here. Six dollars there. Forty dollars in fritters (or maybe pancakes).
These are small bits of money that could impact a life, or two, or ten abroad...rescue for a girl, to a safehouse; AIDS medicine for an ailing child; a micro-loan to a widow who might otherwise be forced to sell a child to make ends meet. (One of the best books I've read on the subject of how a little bit of money can go a long way is Harvest of Hope: Stories of Life-Changing Gifts.)
Fritter. Maybe there's nothing particularly wrong with this funny little verb. But this year I'm hoping to trade it in for a few awesome nouns... contentment, provision, health, safety, life.
Turkish Zucchini Fritter & Chickpea Salad Photo by L.L. Barkat.
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Seedlings history of Verby Pickup Duck