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Monthly Archives: July 2011

The miracle of rain

Four days ago, .4 inch of rain fell. The day after that, there was another .4 inch. That was enough rain to greatly revive the garden. Tomatoes ripened on the vine that otherwise would have rotted on the vine. The corn freshened. The pumpkins and melons resumed their growth. There may even be more peppers […]

Book review: Sovereign's Son

Don’t judge the book by its cheesy cover! In the old model of publishing that is now dying, it’s tragic to think about how many books never got published. Deserving authors simply couldn’t get the attention of agents and publishers. They weren’t deemed worth the financial risk. In the old model, only so many books […]

2011 garden, R.I.P.

Pumpkin vines in 99-degree heat I haven’t posted lately because I’ve constantly been in a foul and angry mood. I’m afraid my mood is not going to get any better until it rains and the weather turns cooler. And of course it’s not just me made miserable by the weather. This heat wave is affecting […]

Downton Abbey

This is the best BBC mini-series to come along in years — amazing cast, including Maggie Smith, lavish budget, great scripts. It was shown on British television last year and is now available on DVD, and from Netflix. A second season is in production for broadcast this fall. It’s set in Yorkshire starting in 1912. […]

My new dog substitute?

I’m not ashamed to say that all that overgrowth is in my front yard. I was reading near the upstairs window with Lily curled up beside me when I saw that Lily had her eye on something out the window. She has stopped growling at the fox now. She just watches it, alert. Clearly the […]

Climate change, under our noses

Temperature data for Greensboro, NC, June 2011 If the American people were rational, rather than cracked up on right-wing propaganda, they would suspect that the same people who are lying to them about climate change also are lying to them about other things. But there is something about right-wing minds that makes it easy to […]

Baby pumpkin

There’s something magical about pumpkins. I’ve never grown pumpkins before, but I’ve wanted to for years. I thought they might be hard to grow, and they’re said to be heavy feeders. But the vines from my two pumpkin plants are now the biggest, most vigorous plants in the garden. Last week’s rain helped the garden […]

The abbey organ has been upgraded

Rodgers Cambridge 730, made in 1992 For a long time, I’ve known just what sort of organ I really want. It needed to be a Rodgers, because Rodgers has such a sterling reputation. I’m talking about electronic organs, of course. There’s no way I could afford a wind instrument. I wanted a Rodgers made after […]

Jefferson the foodie

Monticello Salon magazine has a nice article about how Jefferson was America’s first foodie. I sure would like to know what the sources are for all this information about Jefferson. My guess is that it’s scattered throughout Jefferson’s letters and diaries. I’ve read two biographies of Jefferson in the last year, and though there are […]