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The Official Fresh Produce Book Club Punch Reader

A few years ago the Creative Team at Fresh Produce started its book club. Then, there was talk from the Accounts Team about starting their book club. We also saw the beginnings of ‘The Ladies of FP’ book club. What we’re getting at is that there are/were a lot of “book clubs” at Fresh Produce. We wanted a cohesive reading group, so decided to make it really official this April with a library card — ‘The Official Fresh Produce Book Club Punch Reader‘ [see photo]. Some have already got good use out of  it. This blogpost is only kind of about that. Unlike a typical book club, we read books/authors we’ve been curious about and then come together every month or so to share our favorites.

[P:S: There are three FPBC Punch Readers available on Kiosk Thursday.]

Here’s something from Brian, Katrina, and Hanna’s library cards.

How do you usually choose books to read?
My favorite way to find a new book is to browse in stores. Once I find something I like, I become a completionist for a while, reading as much from that author or in that genre as I can. For a couple of years I did a really deep dive into books about UFO encounters and high strangeness. This year, I’ve been reading a lot of books about underground music.

When/how do you find time to read?
When it’s possible, I like to eat lunch by myself a few times a week, largely because it’s a nice time to read. I read on the elliptical machine at the gym, too, but that usually means I’m not focusing enough on either activity.

What does reading mean to you?
Any decent writing teacher will tell you that you can’t be a good writer without being a good reader. I started reading for recreation long before I became a writer, but now reading is equal parts research, homework, and fun for me.

I noticed that most of the books on your library card are related to the punk music scene/history — is there a particular reason for this?
I’m an old punk kid, and I’m in the middle of making a documentary that has to do with the Sioux Falls punk scene in the 90s, so it’s been top of mind lately. And, it’s good to see what paths are already well-trod in that world so I can hopefully avoid them.

‘Graphic Design: The New Basics’ – tell me more. What made you pick up this one? [Your logo design skills are already out of this world!] One of my goals this year is to improve my visual imagination, so I’m trying to educate myself a bit more about design. It’s all very difficult to get my head around. It feels like trying to learn a foreign language.

IN ON THE KILL TAKER

Can you tell us a little bit about this book?
This is part of the 33 1/3 series of short books about albums. In On the Kill Taker came out in the same moment as a lot of underground bands were crossing over into mainstream culture, but even though it was released independently, it far outsold some of the larger rock albums of that year. Musically, it was a pretty dramatic departure from what the band had been doing previously, which—to me—makes its success that much more exciting. It’s a phenomenal album. I wouldn’t have minded if the book about it was twice as long.

What was your main takeaway / Was there a big takeaway from this book?
For me, the takeaway from Fugazi is always pretty much the same: Your most interesting work is always going to be the work you’re most interested in making. When it comes to making something—whether that’s an album or a piece of art or a business—you don’t have to follow the rules.

Hanna Peterson

How do you usually choose books to read?
People I follow on Instagram sometimes post about different books they’re reading. If it’s something that piques my interest I will save it for later. I also get recommendations from friends and podcasts.

Is there a reason you prefer non-fiction over the other?
When I make the time to read, I want to feel like I’m being productive with my time by learning something new. I know that’s not the right mindset and I’m missing out on a lot of great stories. My goal is to read more fiction.

What does reading mean to you?
I love reading and learning about things I’ve never really considered before, it gives me a fresh perspective on life. I’m slowly reading Sidewalk Oracles and it’s all about considering the magic in everyday life. It’s really showed me the value of slowing down to recognize the things I normally overlook, which has helped me creatively too.

THE ART OF GATHERING

Can you tell us a little bit about this book?
This book is all about the importance of having purposeful and meaningful gatherings. The only people who really teach us about gatherings are the Martha Stewarts of the world and those people usually focus on the food/decor, not the people and creating meaning.

What’s been your main takeaway from this book so far?
The category of the gathering is not the purpose. “We get lulled into the false belief that knowing the category of the gathering—the board meeting, workshop, birthday party, town hall—will be instructive to designing it. But we often choose the template—and the activities and structure that go along with it—before we’re clear on our purpose.”

Katrina Lehr-McKinney

When/how do you find time to read?
I “read” via Audible most of the time so that I can actually finish books! I listen to books while exercising, gardening, walking to work, or doing housework. If I’m reading a real, physical book, I do that before bed, but my problem is that I always fall asleep a couple pages in so it takes a painfully long time to finish anything.

BICYCLE DIARIES

Can you tell us a little bit about it?
I find David Byrne’s perspective on the world fascinating and amazingly normal. This book is a travel journal of sorts, where he takes the reader with him to different cities across the world as he travels to do his music or art stuff.  His writings show us a more up-close-and-personal perspective of these communities in that his primary mode of transport is his portable bicycle.  Whether he is in an American city or Manila, the reader is along for the, um, ride.  He touches on urban planning (which I kind of geek out about), fashion and art, to the socio-economics of communities.  Overall, he, much like Anthony Bourdain, breaks down cultural barriers for all of us with his open and unassuming outlook to life.

BOOKS BY MARGARET HEFFERNAN

How did you get introduced to her writing?
I heard her TED talk on NPR, and what she had to say about working together as a team really resonated with me. It reflects much of what I feel about the culture we try to embody at Fresh Produce.

What’s the main thing you’ve enjoyed about her writing?
She has written about so many important things that seem to resonate with me. Her writings are steeped in the experience of being a female c-level professional/business leader and call out systems that just don’t work. One example are the multiple structures in place across our lifetimes that set us up to constantly compete against one another (that is what the book A Bigger Prize is about – my current read) and how competition is actually detrimental to creativity and progress.

Here’s how to use The Official Fresh Produce Book Club Punch Reader

 

If you’d like to join The Official Fresh Produce Book Club, email us at angela@pickfresh.com.