A car waiting in a long line outside the window of a Starbucks in Nashville.
We picked our way across western & middle Tennessee today. I took some pics. I’ll share next time I have some down time. For now, let me just say you can rest assured that JESUS is doing well in this part of the country.
I’ll ask Miss M. to communicate her thoughts to me throughout the day.
What I miss when they are gone is the almost constant contact and the quiet times in the truck when you check off conversation starting point and reject them all in turn. There are some false starts. But the point is, you’re/I’m going away tomorrow. What do you want to talk about?
We talked a lot about dogs and cats and cooking and baking and gardening and landscaping and vegetables and animals. And nutrition and kids. And family members.
We did some planting.
[LANGUAGE ALERT IF YOU CLICK TO CONTINUE]
Miss M. REALLY enjoyed the planting. She said, about half way through planting, that she thought “planting” meant digging a hole and watering something in, and that she, “really hadn’t signed on for all of this f-ing %^&*.” We got it done. We employed almost every tool we have here– tiller to antique hoe– and we planted over 20 peppers and almost 3 doz. tomatoes. And we cultivated the peas, garlic, and shallots. She asked if we should go back and water everything again. I lied and said, “No,” because she had really worked hard for a City Mouse, and we really should have watered again.
And then it rained.
And it’s forecast to be not so hot. Daughter C.’s prayers were answered. She’s not going to have to pay attention to the garden for a few days. She’ll just need to deal with the dogs.
And then we will be in Cincinnati.
And we pray that Suzy will be alive when we return.
Day After Tomorrow we drop Miss M. off at MEM and pick our way east. We’ll pause & overnight in Nashville, thanks to the hospitality of Friends. We will get up in the morning and turn left. And then, Poof! We’ll be in Cincinnati.
By then, Miss M. will have been home in NC for some time. And Daughter C. will be here with Rocky and Missy and Snaps.
If you are inclined to pray, I’d recommend praying for Daughter C. Odds are that Miss M.’s flights will go well, as will our travels. (Still, if you want, say a little prayer for us… .) Daughter C. is going to have her hands full.
Eleven ingredients (not including those in the made-from-scratch vinaigrette dressing)
4 varieties of lettuce (oak leaf, butter crunch, some French red leaf, & some German sort)
Celery leaves & flowers
2 varieties of radishes (China rose & …?)
Yellow granex onion (an official Vidalia onion)
Erika Johnson at Hot Air has a post concerning “food deserts” (so-called). Quoting from Bloomberg, Johnson reports that several large chain grocery stores have reneged on their commitment to opening “more than 1,000 stores selling fresh fruit and vegetables in underserved urban neighborhoods.”
Johnson says, “This is yet another example of nanny-state bureaucrats ignoring the laws of supply and demand and attacking the symptoms instead of the disease.” Agreed. She notes a NYT’s report of a study dispelling the correlation between food deserts and obesity. She then goes on to say,
Secondly, if there really aren’t many healthy foods to be found in these areas, it’s only because there isn’t a market for them. For whatever reason, people in these areas do not want to buy fresh-caught scallops and broccoli sprouts. The likeliest over-arching explanation is indeed low-income levels — having the time and money to plan, shop for, and cooknicehealthfulmeals is a luxury that comes with prosperity — but spending taxpayer money to merely improve access to these communities’ foods isn’t going to change that.
I agree with her with respect to the market and government intrusion. But I take issue with her bold assertion. I believe it contains all of the correct words– they are just incorrectly ordered/connected.
This morning Miss M. and I were out on the patio enjoying the morning. Miss M. looked at the tiller that was on the patio and said, “What’s that?” Miss M. doesn’t know very much about County Life.
I replied, “A tiller.”
Later in the morning, Miss M. moved the tiller.
It was a hoot & a holler.
Miss M. thinks we should move the rocks Rocky, the Junk Yard Dog, dug up out of the front bed. Remember that?
Later in the morning, A. Leland came out and we all smoked cigarettes and drank coffee and yacked. … A. Leland read us a little story. And then he went to Starkvegas.
Miss M. and I also went to Vegas. We did some errands. We went to the Co-Op and bought some s&*^#– 400 pounds of s&*^# to be exact (10 bags)– I got a malt, we saw went to Daughter C’s office and met some folk, had a beer then supper, went home and found ourselves yacking across the picnic table.
Miss M. was dressed very nicely.
She really thought she was going to have to help load that 400 pounds of cow manure into the truck in her nice clothes. She’d have done it. But I would have paid.
As it stands, those boys were all too willing to load that manure into the truck.
They do it for me, too. But they just don’t seem all that urgent about it.
Still. Mommy +1!
It is a good-natured competition, I hope we all believe. Why else would A. Leland be here? And why else would we have put our thinking caps on to get Miss M. here now? Competition.
Who’s the funniest? Who knows the most about Zombie Land? Or Hume?
Arthur, Caroline, Margaret & Ruddy (A’s dog) are still yacking away at the Picnic Table on the Patio under a clear Southern Sky filled with Springtime bugs.
Elsewhere– and I’m just culling from my top sites, I’ve only recently arrived home from MEM where I fetched Miss. M.– people who thought they could be Free if only they could reach the US embassy are not doing so well. And faceless Julia is living a sad, boring life.
Both links to PJMedia. As I said, I only recently arrived home.
Missy & I had a bit of regular time. With or without Rocky sleepovers, we try to let her/them hang out in the Den for a while, and unwind, before Lights Out. It’s working pretty well.
I am unwinding, too. Driving to MEM is not that big a deal, but it’s a deal.
I highly recommend using straw as a mulch in the vegetable garden. Straw
modulates soil temperature
decomposes, adding organic matter to the veggie plot
inhibits weed growth
allows for walking through a wet garden
keeps fruit such as melon and squash “cleaner”
This is #2 Bermuda grass– what’s available in my area. It goes for $7-8/bale.
That’s about 1/3 of a bale that got blowed away.
And the thing that really ticks me off is that the wind storm didn’t carry with it much rain here. If it had rained a good inch or two, I would have done a cost/benefit analysis and convinced myself I was in the black. But no. Tomorrow I’ll have to rake up that slightly wet straw and put it back where it belongs.
Oh well. It’s not like I have anything else to do tomorrow.
On our way to Oxford, Mississippi yesterday, I noticed corn coming up in gardens and fields. YIKES! I have so much to do– company’s coming– and the Clowns think it’s time to go for a run in the pasture.
I still can’t get over that remark from one of our employees. She characterized us– the citizens of the Hospitality State— as “disgusting and shameful.” She’s entitled (isn’t everyone) to her opinion, but I think it’s ill-mannered to talk this way about your employers.
I was disappointed that there were so many weeds (not pictured) in the flower beds at TSUN.
As I mentioned, we traveled today to That School Up North (TSUN), located in Oxford, Mississippi (not to be confused with the real Oxford). I didn’t purposefully go looking for evidence to the contrary– that we are not disgusting & shameful– but after reviewing the photos I took, that’s what I found. We are neither disgusting nor shameful. (I think there are some grammatical issues in what she said, but it was a Twitter post.)
Granted, TSUN & Oxford are… how to say this?… different from the rest of Mississippi so we shouldn’t be too quick to generalize, but still, that’s what I found.
B&N serves Starbuck coffee. I don’t care for Starbucks coffee. But it’s hardly disgusting. I will say the student body at TSUN used to dress better than they do these days. I guess it’s a sign of the times that they look remarkably like State students.
Walk this way.
Zoom in. It says, “[T]he heartwood is resistant to deterioration.”
There should be no shame in growing old. That’s a normative claim.
There’s a bench beneath the tree.
I could be wrong about this, but I don’t think it’s shameful to be loyal to rebellious cause, is it?
Especially when you have a Creed.
Class of 2005
Disgusting and shameful– to Believe in Respect, Fairness, Civility, Integrity, Honesty, Freedom, Stewardship.
I make fun of TSUN a lot. But it’s a good school.
I see these old trucks at State, too. As a tax payer, I appreciate them. I don’t think they are disgusting at all. I think we should be proud that the folks at out public institutions are keeping up our equipment.
Zoom in on the center to see The Flag.
Who is in charge?
This one cracked me up. If you rely on Braille to navigate the world, and you are looking for Room 022, you are screwed. Unless you bump into someone and ask where Room 022 is.
As are Mr. Big Food, Daughter C., neighbor Ken, D.C. and his Piglet coworkers, Christine at the Dollar General, Bro Mike and his congregants, Nancy at the US Post Office, Jesse & Mary at the welding shop, all of the folk who will come out to the Farm for the Event this weekend, and let’s not forget our friends at That School Up North (where we will be later today).
On her Facebook page, Voting Section supervisory civil rights analyst Stephanie Celandine Gyamfi says about the people of Mississippi:
“Disgusting and shameful. Hey, that should replace the state motto: ‘Mississippi: Disgusting and Shameful’. . . forget the Magnolia State motto.”
We’ve We’re tired. We worked all weekend. I had the tiller out. I’m fixin’ to plant some okra. Mr. Big Food did some hard cuttin’. We’re having company. Or so I hear.
A. Leland is to Suzy’s left.
We’re not in touch with Christopher and Lindsey anymore. But the rest check in from time to time. Max & Diana are married. Kat & Ton are married. Kyle– bless his heart– is getting married. Mr. Big Food & I are married. Sam is in a committed relationship with a wonderful young woman and a cartoon dog. Aaron needs to meet Bruno.
Editing funny video of funny dogs barking while funny dogs are in the room.
They bark at themselves barking. It’s metabarking!
I should sew some valances for the windows in this room. I like naked windows, but I think the room would feel cozier to guests if there were valances. Unlike sheers– which would be my first option– valances wouldn’t obstruct the dogs’ view.
The second installment of Bob Owens’ series is up over at PJMedia. This one focuses on taking a non-shooting beginners class to learn basic gun safety and so on. He then goes on to extoll the many virtues of the .22 caliber long gun and handgun.
If your eventual goal is to obtain a concealed carry permit or to obtain a handgun for personal protection or sport, the course of action I’d suggest is to first look at a handgun chambered in .22 Long Rifle (.22 LR). The .22 LR is an inexpensive, low recoil, and relatively quiet cartridge that allows shooters of every skill level to focus on the fundamental skills of shooting without being distracted by the kick or noise of larger-caliber weapons. I’d advise trying out both revolvers and semi-automatic pistols to decide which appeals to you, which feels more comfortable in your hand, and which has controls that you can manipulate.
At this point, you may notice a very loud wailing and gnashing of teeth around you. In all likelihood, that is the multitude of handgun shooters crying out in anguish at the mention of “.22 LR” in any proximity to a discussion of concealed carry and defensive handguns. Their complaints are not without merit — the conventional wisdom is that the smallest acceptable cartridge for self-defense is a .380 ACP in a pistol or a .38 Special in a revolver. I’m not disagreeing with that sentiment at all.
I’m suggesting you’ll learn faster, and often without imparting many bad habits you have to overcome later, if you learn your fundamentals with a .22 handgun. It’s all about the fundamentals.
I completely agree about the class and the .22. I didn’t like the fact that we had to take the class in order to get our carry permits in Ohio, but I was glad we took the class. Both .22 guns and ammunition are significantly less expensive that other calibers. If you are learning by shooting a lot of rounds, why waste money?
It’s a beautiful day. I wonder if Mr. Big Food would like to do some shooting?
That, Dear Readers, is an example of a logical fallacy known as the “Anecdotal Fallacy”:
You used a personal experience or an isolated example instead of a sound argument or compelling evidence.
It’s often much easier for people to believe someone’s testimony as opposed to understanding complex data and variation across a continuum. Quantitative scientific measures are almost always more accurate than personal perceptions and experiences, but our inclination is to believe that which is tangible to us, and/or the word of someone we trust over a more ‘abstract’ statistical reality.
Example: Jason said that that was all cool and everything, but his grandfather smoked, like, 30 cigarettes a day and lived until 97 – so don’t believe everything you read about meta analyses of methodologically sound studies showing proven causal relationships.
In this case, however, I have been to a Romanian farm and I do know. It has nothing whatsoever to do with The Children’s safety.
In the last few days, the general blogosphere has become aware of the Department of Labor’s attempts to prohibit kids from working on farms– including (and especially) family farms. I recently posted about it here. Over a month ago I posted some thoughts on the 80+ pages of DOL regulations. Those posts had a bunch of crappy old stuff about tool/farm safety, etc. (The most recent post has links to my posts and other relevant sources.)
I am happy to report that the new regulations– which would have prohibited kids under the age of 16 from using a power screw driver– have been scuttled. I’m sure you’ve seen mention of the decision already, but if not, read about it at The Hill or PJMedia. (Shoot. I had some blogger probs and the links didn’t transfer.)
“The decision to withdraw this rule – including provisions to define the ‘parental exemption’ – was made in response to thousands of comments expressing concerns about the effect of the proposed rules on small family-owned farms,” Labor said in a statement. “To be clear, this regulation will not be pursued for the duration of the Obama administration.”
While not targeting kids under 16 who work in “agricultural vocations,” the Labor Department said it would be setting up an “educational program” regarding kids on farms.
From The Hill:
“[T]he Departments of Labor and Agriculture will work with rural stakeholders — such as the American Farm Bureau Federation, the National Farmers Union, the Future Farmers of America, and 4-H to develop an educational program to reduce accidents to young workers and promote safer agricultural working practices,” the Labor Department said.
As someone once said, “Are you serious?”
It has nothing to do with safety. These organizations already have safety education programs. I know this. They are advertised in the newspaper. Seriously, it’s not as if parents and other adults in farming communities want kids to get hurt.
I am not alone in hypothesizing that it is about family farms vs. corporate “farms.” [insert missing link] Nor am I alone in noticing the eery, although more subtle (maybe?), similarities to totalitarian takeovers.
“The People’s Palace” in Bucharest, the world’s largest civilian building (Image from Wikipedia)
Mr. Big Food and I once traveled to Bucharest, and while there, were invited to celebrate a National Holiday at a farm outside of the city. I think we were celebrating Ceaușescu’s death. (Wow. Good thing this isn’t a political bog. This guy was one nasty guy. I’m glad to be an American, where at least I know I’m free.) This was November, 2005, I think. The farm was again privately owned, by our hosts, but it had been a collective farm, after it was a private farm somewhere before 1949 or so.* Our hostess took me– in the dark– to the top of the Guard Tower, where men with guns used to pick off starving Romanians who wandered onto the farm to steal fruit. As I recall, the farm had some nice old orchards.
We had a lovely meal. Perhaps the best meal I’ve ever had in my life. Very elegant, too. There was no central heat, and only something that resembled running water. But there was roe (poor man’s caviar) and cheese and soup and fish and a main dish and desert– all provided by the farm– with each course paired with a homemade beverage. The Romanian version of palinka is divine. It was a working farm. Everything was served in china or silver or some crappy old heirloom piece of pottery. It was elegant in the scientific sense of elegance.
We were in the company of a small company of Romanians. They were our hosts. I wasn’t about to ask how the sterling had survived.
So, if you want to control the world, make it impossible to have an elegant dinner on a farm outside of Bucharest, Romania in 2005.
Don’t let kids use cordless screwdrivers.
How hard is that?
* I need to add this. We are acquainted with a few bona fide Romanians. I’ve wanted to write a bit about the Romanian farm experience for a while, and so I’ve occasionally picked up an encyclopedia or run a few bing searches on things related to Romania and Bucharest and Ceaușescu. The history as told by our acquaintances does not cohere well with what’s in the public domain.