â€śWhy all this commotion about corn?â€ť a friend asked earlier this week. â€śItâ€™s just a commonplace kind of farming isnâ€™t it?â€ť
Not really. The life of modern man is touched hundreds of times a day and vitally shaped by corn and its derivatives. Whenever we read a magazine, walk on a rug, sink into a mattress, mail a letter, enjoy a steak, a pork chop or fried chicken, drink a beer, a soft drink or whiskey, eat bread or candy, light a match or take an aspirin, we rely on corn products.
In Mexico maiz â€” corn â€” has long been worshiped as a god. The shape and patterns of corn kernels traditionally were used in architecture, sculpture, ceramics, sacred implements and domestic decoration.
This influence continues as a fervent undercurrent of Mexican rural life. And though urban Mexico may no longer worship corn as a god, or accurately fathom its significance (though many of this nationâ€™s holidays are modified corn festivals), the influence of the grain on the life of man everywhere is more pervasive than the average person is able to calculate.