Saturday, July 31, 2010
Friday, July 30, 2010
Thursday, July 29, 2010
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Sunday, July 25, 2010
Ever hear of Ambrose Bierce? Long dead (disappeared, actually), he wrote of war from the soldier's sensibility. He had grit. He had wit as well.
A friend announced to the world that "The Devil's Dictionary" was her new favorite book. No other details were given, including author. I happened to stumble across his name while reading DW's lefty organ while on the can (easy target). The one and the same as ABove. Project Gutenberg has it has a free download.
I purchased a copy at the bookstore last week as a present to DW. She likes things defined. She, in turn, left it where a good deal of reading gets done, albeit in spurts. I'm making my way through the As.
ABORIGINIES, n. Persons of little worth found cumbering the soil of a newly discovered country. They soon cease to cumber; they fertilize.
"My accountability, bear in mind,"
Said the Grand Vizier: "Yes, yes,"
Said the Shah: "I do — 'tis the only kind
Of ability you possess."
Said a man to a crapulent youth: "I thought
You a total abstainer, my son."
"So I am, so I am," said the scrapgrace caught —
"But not, sir, a bigoted one."
To men a man is but a mind. Who cares
What face he carries or what form he wears?
But woman's body is the woman. O,
Stay thou, my sweetheart, and do never go,
But heed the warning words the sage hath said:
A woman absent is a woman dead.
Spring beckons! All things to the call respond;
The trees are leaving and cashiers abscond.
When in the course of human events it becomes necessary for people to abridge their king, a decent respect for the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
By Abracadabra we signify
An infinite number of things.
'Tis the answer to What? and How? and Why?
And Whence? and Whither? — a word whereby
The Truth (with the comfort it brings)
Is open to all who grope in night,
Crying for Wisdom's holy light.
Whether the word is a verb or a noun
Is knowledge beyond my reach.
I only know that 'tis handed down.
From sage to sage,
From age to age —
An immortal part of speech!
Of an ancient man the tale is told
That he lived to be ten centuries old,
In a cave on a mountain side.
(True, he finally died.)
The fame of his wisdom filled the land,
For his head was bald, and you'll understand
His beard was long and white
And his eyes uncommonly bright.
Philosophers gathered from far and near
To sit at his feat and hear and hear,
Though he never was heard
To utter a word
But "Abracadabra, abracadab,
Abraca, abrac, abra, ab!"
'Twas all he had,
'Twas all they wanted to hear, and each
Made copious notes of the mystical speech,
Which they published next —
A trickle of text
In the meadow of commentary.
Mighty big books were these,
In a number, as leaves of trees;
In learning, remarkably — very!
As I said,
And the books of the sages have perished,
But his wisdom is sacredly cherished.
In Abracadabra it solemnly rings,
Like an ancient bell that forever swings.
O, I love to hear
That word make clear
Humanity's General Sense of Things.
Friday, July 23, 2010
"I saw a few apples with scab on them one day. The next day when I went out to check again, I saw more and wondered how I could have missed these apples the day before. The next day I cried all day. We sprayed twice and still got scab. I just want to bulldoze the whole orchard."
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
"Of course," says DW, and continues with "I do it. And I've always wondered why you don't have ads on your blog."
"Because with the number of readers, it would indeed be mere pennies."
I am not going to spend a lot of time thinking about this, and if I do decide to put ads on my site, I'm not going to spend any time justifying it. However, let it be known that I will henceforth take the couple extra seconds to click through on my friends' sites.
Monday, July 19, 2010
Addendum: Perhaps it's too late for this, the bulk of visitors having moved on. Thought of while writing, but forgotten for some reason: Tansy, like Scotch Broom, is toxic to livestock, In that we don't have any such four-legged grazers, my efforts are more symbolic.
Sunday, July 18, 2010
A small orange car coming toward me pulled off the road about a quarter mile away. A woman got out from the driver's side, opened the back seat door, grabbed a camera and went running to the edge of the field and started taking pictures. She turned back toward the car, said something, turned back toward the flowers, and then ran alongside the field, deeper onto the farmer's property.
I finished photographing those fields and planned on heading further east when I happened to watch a truck go up a side road north. I saw more color and followed. As I parked, another car came from the opposite direction, stopped, and a hand with a camera popped out of the passenger side window.
Again capturing the panoramas and angles I could from the road, I headed back to the main road. Next to the first fields, two young women had a camera mounted on a tripod. One set the timer and rushed back to hug her friend, a field of pinks as their backdrop.
Saturday, July 17, 2010
Because of the relatively mild weather, and no salt on the roads during the winter, we have more than our fair share of vintage rides. Every summer it is not hard to find two or three car shows of a weekend. My biker of a cigar store proprietor told me about this one. And when he told me who was involved, I knew I had to go.
Friday, July 16, 2010
There on the outskirts of town every summer along the road with not enough shoulder to pull over safely, and since I'm too lazy to park in the gas station lot and walk a bit, or too set to a schedule that I don't have time, I coast through the stoplight slow enough to snap a picture, miss second gear while turning the camera off and wonder what the truck behind me must think as I cross the white line, grind a gear, catch it, and resume a suitable speed. Something like that.
Thursday, July 15, 2010
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
I grew up with it; she didn’t. And while I recognize a certain gravity to the decision to end the life of an animal on the farm, I don’t experience sadness for livestock and varmints. In fact, for the latter what I experience is more a contempt. (The feral or dumped cats become the latter when there is more than one on the loose for they have a devastating effect on the bird populations. Last year we had fifteen California Quail foraging on our property. This year we have two. I have seen at least two other cats that neighbors do not claim.) DW experiences a degree of grief for all but the nastiest of pests.
Sunday, July 11, 2010
Amongst these were two fourteen year old daredevils.