The first time I ever saw someone make jam I was horrified. It was a terribly hot day and my jam-making friend, a woman who’d never seemed insane before that day, was boiling great vats of raspberry and sugar at a rate so furious you could barely see the stove for all the steam. Hot fruit was splattered everywhere: walls, floor, stove, people. The kitchen was an inferno of sticky, sweet goo. Hot, sticky fruit hurts. So does the boiling water she used to seal the jars. Jam making looked about as safe as climbing into an active volcano, and about as senseless.