Unspoken Rules of Farmers Markets

Look for produce with the stems, leaves, and tops still on. It’ll last longer.
Walking waffle, breakfast crepe: It’s an either/or.
When possible, go specialty. Apples from the apple stand. Greens from the greens booth.
The line for Mathoo’s Eggrolls in Fishers doesn’t lie.
If you shuck it, you buy it.
Get your meat, eggs, and Nicole-Taylor’s pasta first. They go fast.
Yes, Tulip Tree Creamery’s little tub of cultured butter is worth $8.
The fruit vendor has heard that “nice pear” joke before.
Some people will never wake up at 7 a.m. on Saturday, and those people will never score any of Wild Alaska’s salmon at the Broad Ripple market.
Take some cash.
The smiling folks from Schacht Farm can charm you into buying a free-range turkey.
The answer: Because avocados and lemons don’t grow in Indiana.

A graduate of IU’s Master of Fine Arts program in creative writing, Terry Kirts hails from a town in Illinois so small it didn’t have a restaurant until he was in the 8th grade. Since 2000, he’s more than made up for the dearth of eateries in his childhood, logging hundreds of meals as the dining critic for WHERE Indianapolis, Indianapolis Woman, and NUVO before joining Indianapolis Monthly as a contributing editor in 2007. A senior lecturer in creative writing at IUPUI, Terry has published his poetry and creative nonfiction in a number of literary journals and anthologies, including Gastronomica, Alimentum, and Home Again: Essays and Memoirs from Indiana, and he’s the author of the poetry collection To the Refrigerator Gods, published by Seven Kitchens Press in 2011.