Mar 24, 2009


I've been delinquent in my blogging.

Oh, I've had ideas, even had one that promised to turn into a political rant. Some stranger came along and left a politically-charged comment on a photo of mine on Flickr which I deleted because it was childish, annoying, not very well thought out and had NOTHING to do with a hot air balloon passing in front of the sun. What bugs the crap out of me is that I let it bother me most of the morning.

See, I'm the sort of person who will argue a thing in his head until I've worked myself into a stomach-churning ulcer-making tower of righteous anger. Problem being, I don't voice any of those well-thought out arguments. I just carry them around for a while then putting them into the well-worn wooden filing cabinet that sits in the reading room at the top of my skull, there to sit until I die and my card catalog is strewn to the winds.

I'm becoming a little bit of a localvore. I heard that term a few days ago and I laughed. At it, not with it. What is with the media/public's desire to turn everything into a cute catch-phrase? Anyway, I'm producing and eating my own food. Well, a tiny portion of it, but more so than some. I had a steak, baked potato and salad last night for supper, and the lettuce came from my garden. First lettuce I ever grew, and it was lovely. The onions are coming along nicely, so I'm sure at some point not only will I be eating my own onions I'll be passing many around, too. At least to the friends who are willing to approach me.

The broccoli are shaping up nicely, and if it ever stays dry for a few days in a row I'll be out there in my little patch tilling and preparing for cucumbers and squash. tomatoes and snap beans and beets and zucchini. I'm ready. More than ready. In my Book of Good Things To Do, 'kneeling in the dirt, planting' ranks right up there with motorcycle riding, cuddling during a rainstorm, and how women smell.

The local farmer that manages all the fields around my house is throwing me off this year. Usually he doesn't plant until Good Friday, and he puts in cotton. Miles and miles of cotton. This year he's gone over to the BioFuel side and has planted corn. Corn in every field, as far as the eye can see. It's already four to six inches tall, an almost eerie bright green. I'm going to miss the multicoloured flowers on the cotton plants, and those dark green, pointed leaves. I'm especially going to miss the smell of warm cotton in the sun, and the smells of harvest time.

My azaleas are blooming like mad. On mornings when the light is low it shines through the masses of flowers and beams colored light into certain rooms in the house--soft warm pink, and an ivory white, and a red the colour of a new wine.

I miss my camera. I put my bigger lens in the shop a while back to repair some tiny scratches that occurred during the motorcycle accident in October, I think. I kept thinking it was tiny particles of dirt or grit on the lens and I cleaned and cleaned every surface until I finally realised that they were always in the same spots. I've been forced to rely on my much smaller lens, the one that came with my camera, and I've realised how spoiled I've become.

Now that my larger lens is due home tomorrow my smaller lens crapped out on me. The gross focus ring stopped turning, then it simply refused to do anything. I was forced to go out this weekend on three balloon flights armed with nothing but Mrs. I's little Sony point-and-shoot. Talk about humbling. I guess I needed to learn to appreciate what I have more, by having it taken away from me for a while.

Don't get me wrong, it takes nice pictures, it's just not meant for someone who has gotten used to having control over things like shutter speeds and aperture settings. Oh, and it's also not meant for someone who is used to having the shutter operate the moment the shutter release button is pushed. This little thing likes to think a while before taking the photo, likes to measure the relative humidity and ponder deep thoughts before operating the shutter. Between a few nice shots of the balloon and a train or two I also got a number of shots of the truck's window frame, parking lots, and blurry photos of what seem to be wet Impressionist paintings.

A big part of my problem is also being tired, so with that I'm going to post this for you, my few loyal readers remaining and get some rest.


Gordo said...

Eating your own food is a wonderful thing. My father has had a massive garden, inside the city, since I was about 5. Corn, potatoes, broccoli, tomatoes, cucumbers, amongst many others. Unfortunately, I didn't inherit his discipline and every garden I've tried to grow has run riot. So, I just raid his. :-)

Encouraging the world to turn a staple food crop into fuel has to be one of Bush's worst crimes. Sure it's a decent biofuel, but corn ethanol's gains are wiped out by the emissions of production and growth.

Enjoy the lens when you get it back. I know the tantrum-inducing frustration that is interminable shutter-lag.

Jean said...

Always a good read that reflects your inner thoughts and your life.

meno said...

I argue with myself too. Then i always win, and lose.

Does the world really need more corn? I wonder.

Nancy Dancehall said...

Your onions are growing in my garden right now, for the second season. So I guess I'm a localvore, with Louisiana imports. *s*

I LOVE the photos of the balloon eclipses, BTW.

And this post.

Vulgar Wizard said...

I'm tired, too.

Mickelodeon said...

OMG. I wish I could have a garden. But I can't, so I will live vicariously through you. Re arguing with yourself - guilty. *raises hand* I shudder to think what someone would think if they heard me arguing with myself the way I do.

I also argue with magazines. While I stand in front of the rack, searching in vain for one that doesn't exist, but should.

Todd said...

I envy your obvious skills in the localvore arena. I can generally be accused of genocide when attempting to make things grow out of the dirt *heavy sigh*.

Your description of your personal filing system for well developed thoughts is so vivid. I'm consistantly impressed with your fertile thoughts!!

Ahh, the bane of my prior photographic existence. The point-and-shoot-lag. I have many a shot of the child with his back turned, the animal waling away, the party smiles that were now smirks or frowns. I feel your pain....

Irrelephant said...

Gordo, it's good to have my camera back in working order. There's a house wren who has made her nest in an empty flower pot RIGHT behind where I park my lawn tractor, and she has the angriest little face when I park. *lol* As for the garden, I'm spinning prayer wheels in the vain hopes that the past week of flooding hasn't simply killed everything outright.

Thank you, Jean. I often wonder about the 'marketability' of posts like...well, like most of my stuff. *wink*

meno, as together as you seem to be I find that strangely discomforting. *grin* Corn? I don't know. I mean, just a few years ago we were paying farmers to have their crops fail. Intentionally. I watched it happen around here. Now corn. Next? Hell if I know.

You're a global localvore, Nancy! *lol* That'll be the next new big thing: getting seedlings and seeds and starters from other localvores who are nowhere near you, thereby letting you keep your table global and your impact minimal. Heh. I'm a green pioneer.

VW, you feelin' better now? I saw some of your photos--skeet shooting in the back yard? LOVE the ones with the expended shells caught flying just out of the breech. NICE stuff.

Mix, I think you beat me on that one. *lol* I've never argued with a magazine, tho I have... er... well, never mind about that. And you know you could always go ultra small--get a gallon pot and put strawberries in it, or a single bell pepper plant. Heck, you could decorate your patio/balcony with gallon clay pots and have a whole garden right there!

Todd, it's taken being raised by a confirmed gardener and a mother who raised flowers for me to learn ANY sort of skill, but like anything, once you've got it down it's still tough as hell. *lol*

Glad you like the image--I didn't expand on it, but it goes on for quite a ways, as most of my ideas do. To the point of annoyance, perhaps. *lol*