My Empire of Dirt

by Scott Smith

What couldn’t I do? Worried about going cold turkey on booze, I explored distilling vodka from potatoes. In a mere five days, I had been told, you can make passable hooch. I daydreamed about pond-raising tilapia, a freshwater fish that rivals the cockroach for adaptability. The options seemed tantalizingly limitless. But as I looked at the calendar, a certain urgency took over. I had only five months until harvest. I needed to quit dreaming and get crops in the ground.

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