Sunday, September 24, 2017

We expect another hot day today so I will water what needs watering outside and do nothing else. I will wait until Wednesday when it should be a few degrees cooler. The geraniums are reviving nicely now that they have more shade. I will definitely have to change how I use them next year--keep them in pots I can move in and out of the gardens as the light changes.

Found this piece that I thought hit an intellectual bullseye. We had become very disgruntled with the offerings on our cable service for more than a decade. Our favorite channels were Scifi and the History Channel. However, gradually, from about 2007 we simply stopped watching them--and most other channels available to us. I got over the fascination over the notion of "ancient aliens" back when von Daniken wrote Chariots of the Gods. It didn't take me long to notice he had no evidence. He did have some interesting phenomena but just because you can't explain how the ancients did it doesn't mean the didn't or couldn't. We have almost given up watching TV.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

This has become a frequent story with #45's administration. Number 45 himself has run the Secret Service out of money with his frequent travel to his Florida and New Jersey golf clubs and his extended family's security needs. Frugality is something for others who don't have access to the public purse not for him or his appointees. How much longer can we afford these parasites?

Friday, September 22, 2017

Well, the autumnal equinox has arrived; welcome to fall. Our weather right now is more like August than the end of September. The last two days saw records set with temps of 92 and 94 in Chicago. We are expecting 90+ again today and for the next two days. The trees are developing their fall colors about a month early so it does look like fall. One blogger noted a day or two ago she was behind putting in her fall garden--as always because it is too hot in July and she is busy harvesting and preserving in August which is when the experts say to plant for the fall. The weather nowadays is so unpredictable your fall plants might bake or freeze before yielding anything.

According to Ronni Bennett at Time Goes By today is also Falls Prevention Day. She has some good points to make and some useful links. I have been really lucky in that regard. I have fallen twice here at home and once at work long before I retired. Though I no longer have cats which caused my first fall I am careful on the stairs where that fall took place. (In case you wondered, the cats lived out their very long cat lives still loved and cared for here. I just became more watchful of where they were and where my feet were.) We replaced the old door mat which caused my second fall after the rain made it really, really slick. The new one provides much surer footing and, again, I have become more careful about stepping out the door. In the last case I was in a rush, stubbed my foot on a curb and fell hard face first onto the sidewalk. The key there, which didn't come until after I retired, was to not rush and to not let others rush you. Any one of those could have done me serious injury and, worse, I didn't have any health insurance that would have covered those expenses. I simply couldn't afford it and none of my jobs offered it. Lesson from all that: be aware of where you are and of who and what is around you. That would have prevented all three falls.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

I wasn't going to post anything today because I have an eye doctor's appointment in a little bit. However Infidel has a good one I can't resist linking because it hits what has become a blood-pressure raising, profanity-inducing explosion of anger here: intrusive internet ads.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

I've been busy cleaning up our sewing/plant starting/storage room so haven't paid much attention to blogging or news.

I have been reading stuff but nothing to comment on. Politics is as usual--totally insane. It is hard to comment on something when, in five minutes, the situation changes. Some unnamed "high official" says the administration has agreed to some action (or whatever) that appears to change their policy/position/etc. Then some other unnamed official or, sometimes, #42 himself comes back (or tweets) that "no, no--they didn't say/mean/imply that." The fog of innuendo and uncertainty is so thick we can't see the abyss at our collective feet.

At least, by ignoring (or not wasting electronic blips) on the mess I do manage to get other things done.

Just finished reading John Michael Greer's Retro Future along with a couple of fiction re-reads simply because I get to the point where I am too tired to think and re-reading is easier than reading the first time. I am working on Ugo Bardi's Seneca Effect which fleshes out a theme he has been chewing on in his blog, Cassandra's Legacy for sometime--how complex systems (empires, societies, economies) collapse. Also, pecking at Frederick Lewis Allen's Since Yesterday having finished Only Yesterday couple of weeks ago. I had read most of both years ago for college history courses but now I can savor them. I also have two more of his books in the queue for later.

I haven't done much about the garden except think. Though the heliotrope is pretty and has a nice, though faint scent I won't repeat it next year. It is a very toxic plant and I would rather not have it in the gardens. Nor will I repeat the mosquito plant. I plan to put in lemon grass and continue planting lemon thyme and lemon balm which mosquitos and other such insects don't like much either. I was thinking about repotting the geraniums to bring inside but I consolidated the plant space upstairs under the lights so don't have the room. I will put in new ones next year. Those double yellows are really making a show now as are the petunias. The hot weather really knocked them down for a bit.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

We went out to a "World Cultures" festival in town. It was nice enough but warm enough to be exhausting. There was a time when the 85degree temperature which is near normal for mid September wouldn't have bothered me. I can't believe I just wrote "mid September." Already. The weather reports have changed--again. It says we have a good chance for rain today through Tuesday. Actually, I hope it comes because the grass looks awful. The drought monitor indicates we are in abnormally dry conditions now. Considering the weather report I think I will concentrate on watering and fertilizing my inside plants and reading.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Yesterday's fog cleared up about mid-day and we had a lovely sunny, warm afternoon. The cookies turned out very well but today, since it is supposed to be clear and warm, I should get back out into the gardens.

This is an interesting development. For decades we have shipped our waste to China where it is supposedly recycled. How much is actually recycled and how much is added to their landfills or incinerators is unknown but some reports I have read over the last few years indicate it may be much more than we would like to think. When we think about it at all since once it is out of our vicinity we tend to forget it ever existed. The Chinese government claims the ban is for environmental reasons, which it might be; although our first thought was a tit-for-tat after #45's threat to impose higher import duties on Chinese steel. Both may be true.

I have a corner of the gardens pretty well cleared. And in the process thinking about next year. The begonias are coming back strong with the yellows continuing to bloom and the pinks budding. They are happier now that the areas are under more shade. I am debating digging out the plants, potting them and putting them inside for the winter. But my space inside is even more limited than that outside so that might not be a good use of what I have. I might just pull them later and put in new plants next year but in pots I can sink into the beds so I can take them out during the months I don't have shady areas for them and put them elsewhere. I think the shepherd's hooks will be hosting vining flowers next year with only one having a hanging decoration--the wind chimes.

In another "sign of the times" the Yellow Pages won't be published after January of 2019. The Naked Capitalism article segues into a discussion of classificatory systems, their uses and limitations and how they shape our thinking. However this article in the Guardian covers the history a bit more. I am not surprised by the development. I wonder how many businesses no longer bother with ads in the Yellow Pages which, if I remember correctly, they have to pay for. Moving to the internet listings may be more economical and productive. Over the years I notice that we don't consult the print books that often any more. Often the books are left on the stoop or the mailbox rack for months until someone finally thinks to throw them in the trash. I remember feeling frustrated by the computerized card catalogs when libraries started making the switch. I always found interesting material on adjacent cards that I might miss in the computer catalog. But then I had to use not only the title card file but the author and subject files as well. I can flip from one to the other to the third without changing my location now. In every technological change something is gained while something else is lost and sometimes we don't realize how valuable the something lost is until it is lost.

Back to the future?? Sounds like a good option given that a college degree now cost more than it is really worth and will put the graduate in debt for life.