Saturday, March 31, 2012

Good morning to you all on this last day of the warmest March in (I think) 60 years.  We did get a bit of sun yesterday afternoon but it is cloudy now.  I don't have anything much planned today in the gardens.  I still need to cut a couple the milk jugs to start some more lettuce, radishes, spinach and, maybe, beets.  Thankfully, right now, I don't have anything I absolutely have to do now.  That will come later.  Next week, during the warmer and sunnier days, I want to finish reconditioning the last of the big tubs and start on the 5 gal buckets.  The tomatoes, pyrethrum, tansy, marigolds, and peppers are growing nicely inside.  I am a bit worried about the rosemary--it isn't looking very happy.  I moved it to a more protected spot.  It was on the fence with the mint, lemon balm and lavender.  But we had high winds with cold rain over the last couple of days.  I will see if it recovers and, if not, I will try another seedling.  As I told Kay a few days ago, plants have little minds of their own and may keel over for no reason you can discern.  Gardening is an art not a science and all you can do is try, try, and try again.  And even if you seem to have found the magic formula things may change.  For most of my life I couldn't get African violets to grow at all.  It seemed they died as soon as I touched them.  Then for about fifteen years while I lived in
Missouri and just after I moved back to Indiana, the violets flourished.  But just as quickly the magic touch vanished.  At least as far as violets are concerned.  Don't ask me what changed--I con't know.

Well, the FDA did its usual--refused to ban BPA because they claimed they didn't have enough evidence of harm.  Disappointing but hardly unexpected.  We have a wide spread notion--one that even I fall victim to though I know better--that agencies like the FDA are there to protect the health and welfare of the citizenry.  All government agencies, whatever they say, are largely concerned with protecting the corporations' bottom lines and will do so unless something truly egregious happens.  And by egregious you can read 'kills a lot of people outright.'  Take a look at how the various state governors and the Federal officials are rallying around 'pink slime' 'finely textured lean beef.'

Welcome blogger at Ngo Family Farm.  Glad you stopped by.  I didn't know that canning lids have BPA.  Damn!!  I decided to check it out a bit and found this post at Treehugger.  I like their suggestion of the Weck all glass jars but those are a bit pricey.  We decided that one of our rules is to get our fruits and veggies in glass where possible.  At least that will limit the BPA exposure.  We already refuse to buy much canned because of the salt content and the unpronounceable preservatives.  We will be using the glass ball jars and lids but that at least cuts the exposure to the lids alone.  As with so much in our lives it is more practical to limit rather than eliminate.

We were somewhat amused by a news story this morning.  Evidently a European health study has linked alcohol consumption and breast cancer.  Evidently as little as one drink a day increases a woman's risk. Why were we amused you ask?  Earlier in the week another study claimed that one drink a day will protect women from heart disease.  So to protect against heart disease women can have a beer or glass of wine each day but then they will have an increased risk of breast cancer.  Which do you fear the most--breast cancer or heart disease?

I have followed stories of odd thefts over the last few years.  What do I mean by 'odd'?  Well, copper phone and electrical wire, air conditioning units, plumbing pipes and other items from buildings (including siding), metal urns and decorations on graves, and so on.  Since the meltdown of 2008 these stories I have read these stories on a more frequent basis.  It is one of the things that I think shows the lie of mainstream media and political figures that the economy is in recovery mode.  This morning I found this one--thieves stealing the tailgates off pick-up trucks.

I noticed that several of the economic reporters were practically orgasmic over the increase in consumer spending in February.  I have learned to take so many such joyous pronouncements with a ton of salt.  All too often the cheerful numbers hide other not so happy facts.  I saw one article this morning which noted that the increased spending came along with reduced savings and increased debt.  This article also cites increased prices which would naturally increase consumer spending without yielding any increase in actual goods purchased--and which may hide an actual decrease.  And the Fed keeps telling us that inflation is low!!

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