Trivial Diversions

Here is a very refreshing Brooklyn Scorcher IPA for after a long hike, or just on a hot day.  (It wasn’t me out of focus, it was the cam!  Or was it…)

Here’s another shot of our new pet, Bugsy.  Yes, we have a bug problem, courtesy of downstairs.  I’m learning all about Venus flytraps.  They come from the N/S Carolina subtropical wetlands, and are endangered.  Just doing my part for preservation.  Exterminate!!

Here’s my crazy ginger gone wild.  Twisted.  Soon it will take over the world.

The two volunteer tomato plants have also gone wild.  I’ve never seen such a harvest–I can barely keep up.

Here is E’s famous bakery at work: peanut butter cookies, challah dough rising, and the final product.  Outdone again!


Hey, it’s either trivial diversions, or the mishegoss we’re diverting from.  One is boring, the other is discouraging and not productive, take your pick.  Crap is universal; no one’s is extra special, and everyone has to deal with it and sort it out.  We’re no exception, believe me.  The enforced limbo, disappointed hopes, and resulting tension have taken their toll.

I’ve done my share of ranting and whining, as you know, so sometimes I like to mix it up and demonstrate that ordinary life still goes on, despite the challenges.  Plants keep growing, food gets made, beer (and people) get drunk, asteroids make passes at earth, normal everyday stuff.  We’re still spinning.  The evil trumps of the world won’t live forever.  Exterm–ahem, that is, uh, excuse me, what I meant to say… seize the small, fleeting mundane moments while you can; sometimes it’s all there is.

La Fin du Monde

Yesterday, to celebrate the end of the world as we know it, we appropriately had La Fin Du Monde.  A special rare treat.  (Kroger mix-packs are always the same price, so I try to choose all the pricey ones!)

Today dawned, so I guess we’re still around.

And just to be dark, we had this deep dark Black Butte porter, fitting on a rainy day.

Yeah, it’s one of those days.  Not much to say.  We’re high and dry, unlike the Hurricane Harvey folks, so can’t complain.

At least as long as I’m breathing and pretending to write, you’ll know somewhere in the world mundane ordinary life drones on as if nothing happened.  Which could be a good thing.  It means trump hasn’t blown us all up yet.  You can drink to that.

Late Summer Prairie Color Rush

Charleston Falls prairies, woods, and pond were fabulously ablaze with every hue of gold, yellow, purple, blue, white, with just a hint of autumn ahead.

It’s hard to describe a late summer prairie wildflower fest.  It’s like a vision or impressionist painting, with all the vivid hues and textures swirled together in the bright sun, with the contrast of the silent, mysterious forest and stream.

Not to mention Thorny Badlands.  ;D




Did you ever notice how some of the most beautiful, useful plants in nature must go through a tortuous, convoluted process to reach maturity?  Yet even in their slow, awkward, painful-looking development, there’s a certain beauty and fascination.  The process itself is where their unique character becomes evident.

Culinary ginger (Zingiber officinale) comes to mind.  A small bud on a lowly rhizome turns into a sharp needly shoot, which then produces strange angular contorted shapes, which slowly unfurl into long slender leaves.  In cultivated plants (in captivity), the flowering stems rarely produce the exotic yellow/red blooms.  But the lowly rhizome bud eventually becomes a tall, graceful tropical plant.

Many of us humans also spend years going through a serpentine, circuitous process of maturing into a healthy adult specimen.  There are many painful twists and wrong turns and dead ends along the way.  It’s a labyrinthian obstacle course.  Looking back, some of the phases may appear  downright twisted and distorted to the uninformed observer.  But these were necessary for the proper development of the healthy mature organism.

If the metaphor fits…


Waiting for Kalki*

I took one of those silly online science quizzes that purport to guess your ed level.  The questions were obviously meant for kids at elementary school level.  I absentmindedly missed a few (double negatives mix me up and other excuses), but most were ridiculously easy.  It was mostly basic stuff I remembered from back in prehistoric times.  The result claimed I was a PhD!?  Now that’s scary, or just typically bogus.  I hope it has no bearing on the state of education today.  Although looking around me here, I suspect it may be that degenerated.

If there were a comical scifi movie about these trump times, it would be “Forth to the Past”.  If someone traveled forward in time to now, instead of progress and advancement as expected, it would seem as if we had reversed and devolved backwards.  You’d think your time machine settings were malfunctioning or needed recalibrating.  Or your brain was on drugs.  And every new day brings another reversal toward more primitive, savage times.

It’s still mind-boggling to contemplate such denial of facts, reason, and reality in the 21st century, but maybe humans, like music trends, can only progress so far, then hit a brick wall of brain lapse and go spinning off into the void for a decade or so, until something or someone finally breaks through the stupor.  Unfortunately, it usually gets worse (e.g. world war) before it can get better.  Unless the next Ice Age comes first.

Not to be too pessimistic or anything.

*Kalki=Hindu destroyer of filth, foulness, darkness, and ignorance; harbinger of end times.  Any similarity to actual persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.  ;D



Higher Ground

Events are moving so alarmingly fast these days, you never know what disaster you’ll wake up to next.  All I can say is, may Texas and the Gulf states be safe, and may trump destroy himself once and for all.

In the meantime, whatever moment you’re in, try to hold on and make the most of it while you can.  Stick to the higher ground.  Love the one you’re with.

Erev cheers!  😉




Another day, another sewage backup downstairs.  This time the crazy tenant who caused it had to call it in, so she couldn’t go ballistic at E for no reason.  We just watch and wait from the safety of our window lookout.

Meanwhile, her cute little four-year-old girl ran upstairs and right into our apartment to have a look around.  No hesitation there!  She gazed in wonder at “how beautiful it is”!  (Which is ironic, because it’s pretty humble and sparse with everything in boxes, but at least it’s clean and neat.)  “You have a clock!!”   “So that’s the bed you sleep in!”  (Busted!)  “You have skeletons!”  “You have a nose earring!”  I was happy to indulge her, but nervously encouraged her back out, in case her mother came along and had a fit.  I heard the little girl exclaiming, “They even have an exercise machine!”  So far no repercussions.

It’s sad when “grownups” poison their children with hate, fear, and dysfunction, but kids are indeed resilient.  They’re so honest and matter-of-fact, without ulterior motives or preconceived ideas.  I just hope for their sake they continue to take things at face value, not twisted by their parents’ issues.  I hope we can play a tiny part in that, by modeling acceptance and stability when possible.

When the coast was clear, I mowed.  Note the second Mystery Melon.

Cows, Goats, and Udders

(Sorry, couldn’t resist.)

At Young’s Jersey Dairy to get homemade ice cream shakes, we dropped in on the goats and calves, always fun.  They’ve raised all-Jersey dairy cows (and goats) for generations, plus grains and hay to feed them, and produce their own milk, fresh and aged cheeses, ice cream, and dairy products.  They hold seasonal festivals, like the wool-gathering (shearing,spinning, weaving, etc.) event in September, featuring sheep, llamas, alpacas, cashmere goats, angora rabbits, and others.

Then we stopped at Peifer Orchards to stock up on produce.  We bought our first apples of the season!  One of their several dogs said hi.

Yes, we lead a boring, mundane (i.e. affordable) life.  I’m learning to appreciate and savor all the lowly ephemera in life, which are underrated.  Nothing like a comical smartass goat to put you in your place!