Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Some of my Rick Astley Founds:
[Before Twitter killed "Rick Astley Found" as a trending topic.]
Honestly, how would be know if Rick Astley really did die? Seriously. He's been dead before. I think he's a zombie....
Rick Astley found Billy Mays in Honduras with Paris Hilton.
Rick Astley found Colonel Mustard in the Library with a candlestick.
Rick Astley found himself alone in a locked room with no way out. He waited patiently, but no help came.
Even Rick Astley Found the words coming out of Rep. Bachmann's mouth to be too crazy to believe.
I was serious when I said "how would we know if Rick Astley really died?" Srsly. When he dies people will go "I'm not clicking that!"
StarQueen Rick Astley found surfing 4chan from his Berlin hotel room! #ohyouguysaresilly
CalliopeEpic Rick Astley found a way to rick-roll Twitter. #kudos
EmileFTW Rick Astley found Waldo.
bartgrover Rick Astley found. Now who put him there, that's not where I left him? People moving my shit all the time, no wonder I can't find nothin'
LilaBlue Rick Astley found God.God chuckled and said 'Hurrah!You're good at this Hide 'n' Seek lark'.They then spent the day drinking SpecialBrew.
Sunday, June 28, 2009
Here it is, from a rough draft of Wicca uncluttered:
[Please note some formatting is missing below.]
Although not an established UEW teaching, I likewise divide the theology of Wicca into five main points, which I call PRIME:
The gods are:
I chose the word prime because the gods are the most important part of Wicca. Wicca without the gods is like a person without a brain, or a car without an engine, or a city without people: Useless, pointless and rather sad. It is possible to be an atheistic Wiccan and believe the gods are not gods, but the thought-forms of a collective human consciousness, but you still need to believe those thought-forms, whatever their source, exist, before Wicca will make sense.
So what does a “personal” god mean? This means that individuals make the connection with the gods at their own behest, not because a perceived religious leader tells them that this is what is appropriate. Your understanding of the gods should be based upon your interactions with them, and it is not anyone’s business what those interactions are. It is about you and your gods.
This personal nature works two ways. On the one hand, no one has the right (or, indeed, the ability) to dictate what one experiences with the gods, which means that it is possible to have experiences that fall outside the shared gnosis of a community about that community’s deities. On the other hand, when such personal gnosis is not verified outside of the individual (what we’ve discussed elsewhere as UPG) that knowledge is limited in its scope to affecting the personal.
To give an example, imagine that we have a Pagan named Elsie, who believes that she has had an interaction with Zeus. Elsie’s interaction shows Zeus to be a pacifistic deity who puts women first. She believes this interaction to be true, despite the fact that this goes against the body of literature about Zeus and is not the knowledge shared by other worshippers of Zeus.
Elsie has many options about what to do with this unverified information, which roughly fall into two categories: She can discard the gnosis as being something other than an interaction with Zeus (considering it, for example, a manifestation of her own beliefs, or an experience with a different deity), something that is going to depend on the type of interaction she’s experienced. She can also accept the information as unverified and personal and base her personal practices upon it. As long as she’s not trying to dictate this is the way for other people to follow Zeus, her view is between her and Zeus and he can sort it out if he so chooses.
Imaginary Elsie’s fictional experiences of the god Zeus are not the way most people report these things. The more common experience is generally that a person has an experience of the divine that transcends their own knowledge of the god or gods in question and, when investigated against the body of literature about that deity and compared with others who’ve had that experience, ends up being similar if not exactly the same.
The reason we, as Wiccans, give for this similarity, is that we believe the gods are real. That is that they exist, and are individuals with their own personalities, likes and dislikes, wants and needs. Things get a bit sticky in theology at this point because the exact nature of these real gods is a matter of debate. A debate that can never be settled.
Part of the reason the debate can never be settled is that the personal nature of our relationships with the divine mean that it’s not our business to go around sharing our ‘testimony’ of the gods. In fact, since the relationship with the gods is personal, it is no one’s business what that relationship entails, and it should be shared only in a way which honors that relationship, and that can (and should) mean that some experiences should be held close to your heart and not shared with those who’d only use your words for scorn and criticism. Comparing experiences between two followers of the same god makes sense, but using one’s experiences to sway believers in other gods or those who don’t believe in any gods is pointless.
Remember, we believe the gods exist and can and do interact with mankind. This means that if someone is not a follower of a given god it is probably because that god has no interest in having that person follow him/her. Put simply, if any given god wanted any given person to follow him/her, that god has the ability to provide that person with the necessary experiences required for that person to become his/her follower. If a person does not follow a god, that is between the god and that person, and it’s not our business or obligation to change this. At the risk of sounding like I’m bashing a particular religion, let me make this clear: Gods that actually exist do not need people to sell them to other people. Gods that need people to sell them to other people either do not exist (and therefore can’t interact with people) or exist but are not interested in having worshipers (and therefore don’t interact with people).
A third possibility, that such gods exist but are not very nice, is possible, but there is no need to discuss gods that aren’t worth worshiping in a book about Wicca.
If we assume that the gods are real and that they interact with people, it becomes obvious that people don’t all have the same experiences. There are a few different ways to understand this, and one sort of cheap way is to assume that the reason interactions with the gods differ is because they are all created at the human level. This does not explain the very real fact that people on different continents, with different backgrounds, will describe the exact same interactions with the same deity, but it does work for those trapped in a monotheistic mindset that says all gods are one.
It is easier to assume the gods are multiple in number and themselves individuals, just as we are. The Hermetic Axiom ‘As Above, So Below,’ appears in Wicca frequently for a reason. We believe that the universe manifests in repeating patterns: Subatomic particles behave in ways that can be understood by observing planets in a solar system, and the gods behave in ways that can be understood by observing mankind. We are discrete individuals, a part of a mass of humanity with distinct minds and separate goals, organized into groups but capable of acting alone…and so are the gods.
I’ve discussed how the belief that all gods are one big god doesn’t really fit into Wicca properly (and the Abrahamic source material behind this belief) in other places, so I will leave it at that, because I think everyone can arrive at an understanding of the problems with that view based on nothing more than the idea that the gods are personal and proselytization is pointless. You’re all adult enough to work that out for yourself, and you can read it ad nauseum in Wicca 333 if you’re still concerned about it.
The last part of PRIME, like the Ethic of Attunement, explains why we do ritual: The gods are experiential. We do rituals and make attempts at attunement because we can experience communion with the divine. We can interact with the gods, via Mystery and other ritual, and doing so has benefits for us. It is no one else’s business when we do, and no one can force it upon us, but we can have those experiences.
Friday, June 26, 2009
Note the position of the Rede and Return as the *foundation,* the legs upon which the whole thing stands, and the position of attunement as the ultimate "up" corresponding to the head and the heavens.
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Sunday, June 21, 2009
In which I talk about how I don't have a father....grumble. Also. Today's my mom's birthday, and I don't want to talk to her, either.
Saturday, June 20, 2009
This rite is at least partially UPG, and the prayers and meditations I underwent to create it involved a deity not exactly in fashion with Modern Iran or ancient Persia. It should be used as a scaffold to construct one's own rite where possible.
This rite involves a number of techniques decent Wiccans should already know how to do, such as forming and releasing a cone of power. For those trying this for the first time, I suggest imagining one is filling the space above oneself with energy like filling a water balloon with water, and at the crucial moment try to imagine the feeling of this energy rushing out. It's a good start.
I further recommend performing this rite so that the moment of release of the energy coincides with the moment of Solstice in Iran: Sunday, June 21, 2009 at 10:16 AM in Tehran. (That's 1:46am June 21st in New York, or 05:46:00 GMT.) If you cannot do it then, I recommend doing it at "Solar Noon" on other days.
Begin by constructing a dual-purpose ritual area. It should include a temple rite/circle that prepares the way for interaction with the divine (your average Wiccan ritual erecting the temple/circle rite should suffice) and a temple rite/circle that will contain energy. If you're using The Circle, Cubed as your basis for your temple rite I recommend The Compass Rose, the Land-Sea-Sky or the basic Pentagram rite. If you're using All One Wicca, any of the temple rites should suffice, although I'd recommend the basic circle in the first section, using the visualizations, etc. (Obviously that won't work if you're not already through the visualizations.)
Once you've completed the temple ritual, you want to place a large container (cauldron, bowl, etc.) of water at the center of your space. Into the water place a rose (or a drop of rose otto (attar of roses), rose water, rose petals, etc.) and a piece of gold jewelry. You can return the gold jewelry to normal use afterwards, it's being used here for the principle of sympathy only.) Visualize (or attune, choose the language as you see fit) the water to the concepts of preciousness, purity, innocence. Notice how the gold sparkles in the water, how the roses smell. Make the water represent goodness in the world.
Facing the general direction of Iran, lift a large candle or bundle of burning herbs above the water. Let the fire reflect off of the water, then in the direction of Iran, call out...
"Anahita, Anahita, Anahita, Precious lady of the waters, Queen of rivers, Mother of Rain, your people are bleeding for freedom.
[As you say this, you should be building energy in the way you know best.]
"Anahita, Anahita, Anahita, clothed in gold, I (insert your name(s) and titles), call to you to awaken and notice their sacrifice. Quench the land's thirst for blood and sacrifice. Quench the hatred, Quench the violence."
"Let this fire represent the anger and the pain, the hatred and the desire of the rulers to force the people to their will not the will of the people."
"Let this water represent your purity of thought and the never ending flow of justice, which can be dammed but never stopped forever."
[Plunge the fire into the water. and release the energy as you do so.]
"Take of my energy and goodwill that those in pain be soothed, that the land drenched in blood be drenched in a gentle rain of peace and the will of the people. Hear my call when others dare not reach out and intercede on the behalf of all men and women of goodwill, who resent abuses of power and the hubris of some in leadership.
I humbly beg, in the name of all humankind, that you intercede in the name of justice."
[Pour the water into the earth.]
"Let this water fill the need for blood. May the earth drink deep that no more blood need be spilled this day!"
Deconstruct (take down) the temple/circle rite as appropriate for the one you used.
Friday, June 19, 2009
Not re-electing our state senators is not enough.
It is time for a unicameral state legislature. It is time to throw the senate out altogether and replace it with a state legislature that can pass bills on its own… It is time for a special election, where *every* member of the assembly and senate is up for election to one body- the state assembly.
The problem is that in order to get a unicameral legislature it needs to get on the ballot, and that means passing the very senators who will find themselves out of a job…
So, we need a Constitutional Convention.
May the gods help me, I agree with a crazy wackjob conservative on this…although not for the same whys.
We need a Constitutional Convention to place before the voters the opportunity to select a unicameral legislature…
The New York State Senate has had no problem putting State workers out of work: Let’s return the favor.
A Constitutional Convention to rewrite our State Constitution to have a single body. Think of the money we’ll save.
Thursday, June 18, 2009
Because the Riverside neighborhood in which it sits is a borderline neighborhood, with moderate crime that is mostly quality of life stuff, there are a number of broken windows, which have been covered with security grating. Water Damage inside appears to be minimal.
Most of the damage to this building is a result of sitting empty only 2 blocks away from one of the city's largest High Schools.... It's currently a place where kids go to hang out in the back and smoke pot....it is a blight on its neighborhood....a neighborhood which is trying to find itself.
Riverside Academy has *a lot* of parking and potential parking around it. As it has not been closed for that long the original staff parking has not been repurposed, and a vacant lot where one house has been torn down and a house in need of tearing down beside it sit next to the Academy's lot, allowing abundant cheap, free parking to be something the city could offer with this building....
And did I mention the building is 2 blocks from the Niagara Street Entrance to the 190? Easy on and easy off. How about the fact that you can enter the building's existing parking lot from both highly-traveled Ontario Street and highly-traveled Tonawanda Street? Or that the 30 bus stops in front of it? Or that the 5 is a block away? Or that the academy is near historic Riverside park, Harry's and a number of businesses that, while not exactly thriving (they are in Buffalo, after all) are surviving, and deserve our support?
Now, imagine this. You walk into a gorgeous Carnagie-era school, with stonework and the original water fountains and bathrooms... only instead of classrooms, the building is full of small boutique stores offering local goods and services.
You step into what was once a classroom... the desks are gone, replaced by tables exhibiting organic produce and local dairy products (Oh Jim, may we please have Mom and Pop's back?). The specials are written on the blackboard... Across the hall, you get your hair-cut at a rent-a chair salon, or maybe a "clinic" salon run by one of the nearby beauty schools. Upstairs, an artist shows off his latest creation in a small gallery. In the cafeteria, a rent-a-table farmer's market is open all-year round, and is right off of the highway for those people in Amherst and Williamsville who find Clinton-Bailey too far, and the Broadway market too scary.
One classroom holds the new offices of the Riverside Review and the local neighborhood association, another a food pantry.... The building supports the neighborhood instead of draining it.
And, since the yuppies and foodies are coming here, maybe they'll stop at the Dollar store, the Drug Store, the supermarket, the public library and the restaurants that are around already.
Dear city of Buffalo- You do this and *I PROMISE* that I will open up a metaphysical/organic/pagan bookstore in the building, with my somewhat successful small press contacts and extensive other contacts to draw at least 30 people a day to the building....and those in the Pagan community who know Labgrrl by her other nom de plume will tell you I'm a recluse, so I'm promising a LOT.
(Oh, and unlike other high-minded ideas from the suburbs about saving the urbanites from themselves, I live in this neighborhood.... 3 blocks away.)
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
In my ongoing desire to watch every schlock movie I loved as a child, I spent a good part of tonight watching the 1964 British Schlock piece "Witchcraft," which clearly used bits from Gardner's media appearances to supplement the ceremonial magic, British Diabolism and Satanic Panic its very silly storyline is based upon.
I couldn't help but laugh as I imagined Ms. Curott watching a movie where the "bad witches" are said to practice the "old religion" and practice at the grand sabbats of "candlemas, roodmas (which they give as May Eve), beltane ("at Midsummer"), and "Halloween-the night the Witches make their sacrifices" Where the symbol of the "Witches' Pact with the devil" is a sealing octogram based on one of the Solomanic Pentacles and a guy stabs what looks like a pencil through the head of something covered in a cloth which then squirms *after death.*
Of course, we also get the blond tied to the altar and the poor, dear other blond who is trapped into the Witch cult, because her old Saxon family is witches, and granny who is pushed down the stairs by a witch from beyond the grave and has fallen and she can't get up...
Yvette Rees is a scary undead witch zombie lady:All the while, you wish these people'd been able to watch Poltergeist... NEVER MOVE THE GRAVESTONES BUT NOT THE BODIES!
Also, remember that all British Little Old Ladies know the truth about bad witches and can be counted on to help in the end...but how did they get this knowledge....hmmm? And what's so special in the old lady's chamber, hmm?
Part Scooby-Doo, part Satan's School for girls and all schlock, Witchcraft totally gets two green warty thumbs up... and anyone who disagrees with me is going to find their poppet "A devil doll!" in my cauldron....
Monday, June 15, 2009
The directions below are reprinted because the link above keeps being farked because of demand.
Internets, Politics, Technology on 06/15/2009 05:13 pm by AustinTags: Iran, Proxy, squid, windows
If you’re using Windows, it’s pretty straight forward to setup a proxy and help give access to those in Iran who are being censored. If you’re running Redhat/CentOS, please use the linux instructions.
1) Download Squid for Windows
2) Extract that zip archive, and move the “squid” folder to the root of your drive (probably C:\).
3) After moving the squid folder, open “C:\squid\etc\squid.conf” in your favorite text editor (not Word).
4) Configure the DNS name servers on the line that says “dns_nameservers” to point at your ISPs DNS servers.
5) Now the fun part, locking access down the just the Iranian IP blocks.
Inside the text editor search (Control-W) for the line “http_access deny all” and change it to “http_access allow all”. This will make your proxy open and accessible to the world. If you would like to limit your proxy to Iranian IP blocks, you want to change “http_access deny all” to read “http_access allow TRUSTED” add a line (BEFORE the http_access line to setup an access control list [ACL]). This ACL line that defines TRUSTED should read:
acl TRUSTED src 184.108.40.206/17 220.127.116.11/19 18.104.22.168/19 22.214.171.124/17 126.96.36.199/18 188.8.131.52/18 184.108.40.206/19 220.127.116.11/19 18.104.22.168/20 22.214.171.124/15 126.96.36.199/20 188.8.131.52/20 184.108.40.206/20 220.127.116.11/19 18.104.22.168/19 22.214.171.124/19 126.96.36.199/17 188.8.131.52/19 184.108.40.206/21 220.127.116.11/18 18.104.22.168/20 22.214.171.124/20 126.96.36.199/20 188.8.131.52/20 184.108.40.206/16 220.127.116.11/20 18.104.22.168/20 22.214.171.124/20 126.96.36.199/17 188.8.131.52/20 184.108.40.206/20 220.127.116.11/20 18.104.22.168/20 22.214.171.124/20 126.96.36.199/20 188.8.131.52/20 184.108.40.206/18 220.127.116.11/19 18.104.22.168/18 22.214.171.124/18 126.96.36.199/18 188.8.131.52/18 184.108.40.206/18 220.127.116.11/17 18.104.22.168/16 22.214.171.124/18 126.96.36.199/19 188.8.131.52/16 184.108.40.206/19 220.127.116.11/19 18.104.22.168/18 22.214.171.124/17 126.96.36.199/20 188.8.131.52/18 184.108.40.206/15 220.127.116.11/19 18.104.22.168/19 22.214.171.124/23 126.96.36.199/24 188.8.131.52/24 184.108.40.206/24 220.127.116.11/24 18.104.22.168/24 22.214.171.124/21 126.96.36.199/18 188.8.131.52/20 184.108.40.206/20 220.127.116.11/19 18.104.22.168/16 22.214.171.124/21 126.96.36.199/18 188.8.131.52/20 184.108.40.206/20 220.127.116.11/20 18.104.22.168/19 22.214.171.124/15 126.96.36.199/17 188.8.131.52/21 184.108.40.206/18 220.127.116.11/16 18.104.22.168/18 22.214.171.124/18 126.96.36.199/18 188.8.131.52/18 184.108.40.206/21 220.127.116.11/21 18.104.22.168/16 22.214.171.124/21 126.96.36.199/19 188.8.131.52/19 184.108.40.206/17 220.127.116.11/15 18.104.22.168/23 22.214.171.124/16 126.96.36.199/19 188.8.131.52/19 184.108.40.206/19 220.127.116.11/19 18.104.22.168/19 22.214.171.124/19 126.96.36.199/19 188.8.131.52/19 184.108.40.206/19 220.127.116.11/18 18.104.22.168/18 22.214.171.124/18 126.96.36.199/19 188.8.131.52/19 184.108.40.206/20 220.127.116.11/20 18.104.22.168/20 22.214.171.124/20 126.96.36.199/20 188.8.131.52/20 184.108.40.206/20 220.127.116.11/19 18.104.22.168/20 22.214.171.124/15
6) Setup “visible_hostname” (normally just the public IP address).
7) Turn off logging by adding these two lines:
7) Setup the Squid cache by issuing the following command: “c:\squid\sbin\squid -D –z” (No quotes).
Setup Squid to run as a service by issuing the following command: “c:\squid\sbin\squid –i”
Please don’t run this on a machine that you’re worried about or is used for production sites; and take basic security precautions, ie: moving ftp off the default port, using a firewall package, etc.
Once your server is up and running please DM @austinheap and let me know! I will no longer posting proxies on the public list. If you set one up, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to contribute to the private one or e-mail me if your an Iranian that needs access!
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
To Whom it May Concern, 11 June 2009
Our son, [LabLad] is suffering from seasonal allergies, not a virus. It is imperative that he be allowed to take the lab practical in his science class, as this is the last day he can take it. As a professional scientist, with a background in Biology, including epidemiology, I understand that lay people do not have a firm grounding in these things and may be confused, but a very mild fever, runny nose, red eyes and ruddy cheeks without muscle aches and gastro-intestinal problems while the pollen count for both tree and grass pollen is listed as HIGH is not a sign of influenza.
If this is a problem for you, please allow him to take the test and then come home, as I am sure his science teacher can tell the difference as well and is not afraid of contracting H1N1 from a child exhibiting classical allergy symptoms.
A guard at the holocaust museum! Since "guard at the holocaust museum" was not an item, I'm leaving the poll open... who will the right wingnuts murder next? (After the guard and Dr. Tiller!)
(I am unaware if the noble guard murdered today was a person of color or a gay youth, but obviously he was murdered for not letting this creep complete his terrorist mission....not his color or sexual orientation.)
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
2. Toys. When I get bored, I get stressed, and stress leads to migraines. Since discovering I now have no tolerance for stress, I've discovered I can get a lot of relief with stupid squeezy things, much to my surprise.... http://www.officeplayground.com/
3. Baked goods. When our local wegmans stopped selling big scones, my cream tea fix had to come from the scone mixes at http://www.kingarthurflour.com/ and what a fix it is. We've tried over 12 flavors, and we've liked them all. Plus their brownies, including sugar free and organics, are FANTASTIC. Be careful...it's easy to drop $200 here in an INSTANT.
4. Groceries. When I lived in SE Pennsylvania, most of my neighbors did not believe me when we told them that Wegmans was our local grocery store, the same place you'd go to get a quick gallon of milk and bread....not just for 20 kinds of olives....
5. Coffee. Until I was forced to cancel my membership because they *constantly* screwed up, I was living on arborday coffee. I still recommend it, as a one-shot deal, but I'm wary of joining the club again until they get their ordering issues fixed. Since I'm home now, I'm living on one-shot coffee made in a Keurig brewer. It's awesome. I get coffee from Green Mountain which has all the flavors I love except for this one.
6. Trees. It's hard to live without trees. I got some of mine from http://www.arborday.org and several from http://www.ediblelandscaping.com/ I also like to look at the trees at http://www.tytyga.com/ and maybe because it has models all over it.
7. My berry bushes. Most of my currants, raspberries and gooseberries are from http://noursefarms.com/ fricking yum.
8. My non-berry, non-tree plants. From http://rareseeds.com/ and occasionally http://www.burpee.com/ with gardening supplies from http://www.gardeners.com/ and http://www.gardensalive.com.
9. MEAT. Either frozen and tasty from http://www.grasslandbeef.com/ and http://www.northstarbison.com/ or in portable and healthy and ready to go from http://www.tankabar.com/.
10. Friends. From UEW, real life, or Twitter.
...and my wife, Phoenix aka Roadmarks, and our son, LabLad.
Mistake #1. Buying vegetable plants instead of seeds.
An exotic tomato plant can cost $20. If you're like me, you want about 10 cherry tomato plants and 10 other tomato plants to feed your family and have enough to give neighbors and put up for the year. Let's assume you've found a good deal on tomato plants- 4/$10. Assuming you're willing to put up with the limited selection of varieties offered locally, you're looking at $50 just for tomatoes. This year, I spent about $350 on a light cart, surge protector with timer, small fans, extra bulbs, reusable seed starting kits, peat pots, extra soil, fertilizer and other stuff for staring seeds. At the end of the season, with the light cart put away, I'm down about $30 in fertilizer and soil, and all the other stuff can be reused. (although I purchased two different types of seed starter kits, and will probably purchase two new ones next year- I was *very* hard on them, reusing them 5 times already.) I purchased about $15 worth of seeds for EXOTIC tomatoes and peppers, plus received free seeds from friends, and now have about 30 tomato plants growing, ranging in color from Black Truffle (a deep purple) to White Wax (a nearly true white) as well as red, white and yellow cherry tomatoes in a deck planter and yellow and dark brown-green peppers. I also started zucchini, corn, squash and pumpkins from seed... Next year, with saved seeds, refreshed soil and new seed starter cells (which I don't need, but do want) I'm looking at less than $10 in tomato and pepper seeds....making the seeds+soil still $10 cheaper than the crappy on-sale tomatoes.
Mistake #2: Not buying a soil testing kit.
One of my neighbors down the street has the formula for the "perfect lawn." She mixes sand and lime with grass seed, and covers bald spots with it. It's worked perfectly everywhere but here... So, she keeps trying, assuming the birds are carrying the seeds away.
We essentially have the same dirt... so what is she doing wrong?
My soil has a pH of 8.5. In some places, this goes up to 9. In others it goes down to about 7.8. Lime *raises* the pH of the soil...she'd essentially trying to grow grass in baking soda...no wonder it does so poorly!
Worse yet, my soil is claypan-like in the example shown to the left. It looks lush and lovely, but during periods of drought it becomes cracked, dry and all around gross, like in this image to the right. It consists of approximately 5 inches (1 in some places) of top soil and 10 inches of clay, which prevents drainage in the spring, and can turn into essentially brick if not kept moist in the summer. (we live in a moist area, and we sprinkle, so it works out.) Like most clay soils, it is high in lots of good minerals for growing things, like calcium, phosphorus and magnesium. Like most clay soils, however, it has no nitrogen, and is a very high pH.... it's "alkaline as hell."
Do you want to know what else my neighbor is doing wrong? Do you know what you get when you combine alkaline soil with lime and sand?
You get CEMENT. Oops. [Click pics to see original sources for these pics.]
Mistake #3. Failure to Identify the local weeds.
Another idiot neighbor has a weed in her yard that she mows down weekly. This only seems to piss it off. A third neighbor says that he tills all the weeds at the beginning of the year...but some of them keep coming back... A forth says she'll *never* use a weed killer.
Our local invasive weed is Japanese Knotweed. It spreads when the roots or stems are disturbed and chopped into little pieces. I, another person who said she'd *never* use chemicals on her lawn, manage mine by injection of round-up and archaeological-type digging, removing every bit of plant matter over a quarter of an inch long from the soil.... and my knotweed is getting to be a little less problematic every year. If I'd followed the advice to mow or till it I would've made my problems WORSE.
Mistake #4. Too many annuals.
This year my garden will produce strawberries, raspberries, apples, mulberries, gooseberries, blackberries, wineberries and currants that I did not plant this year. It has already produced rhubarb, and will have peaches, plums and apricots in the future.... The answer? Dwarf fruit trees and perrenial bushes. No work...lots of food. Plus, I get the exotics, like gooseberries, which I can't buy in a store. I also have arctic kiwis (too young to bear) and grapes to look forward to in the future.
Mistake #5. Putting plants out too early or starting them from seed too early.
I'd lecture on this, but I do it every year....so I'd be a hypocrite.
Sunday, June 7, 2009
Saturday, June 6, 2009
So, I got up and opened up my netflix and watched The Passion of Joan of Arc with the attached "Voices of Light" soundtrack.
It was amazing. I'd seen the film before in an adulterated cut, and I found I could not get around the whole silent movie thing, it didn't hold my attention at all.
About 10 minutes into this Joan, however, I literally ceased to see it as a silent movie, and it became to me like a living painting.... it was like watching one of those great old Germanic naturalist paintings move....the beauty was so intense, and the ugliness...and there is a lot of it...was SO ugly.Of course, the movie lead to a discussion with the spouse about Gallia, a Genii Loci of France, and one of those minor deities generally seen with Diana. Somehow, I can accept the idea of Gallia going "of course I'm an angel of your god, dear, now put on men's clothes and pick up a sword!" far easier than I can accept the existence of an Abrahamic god... I can also see Gallia giving up in disgust at the end and letting Joan get the Martyrdom she wants.
If, as I learned when I was a child in Catholic school, the dead hear our thoughts about them and the saints keep an eye on us, I hope she still hasn't learned English, or I hurt some feelings last night...
I'm not that worried about it, though.
Religious ecstasy is what it is. Whether it's the far seer striking your heart with an arrow of truth or part of a deranged mind, it doesn't matter.
Friday, June 5, 2009
Thursday, June 4, 2009
I've been saying a particularly virulent strain was running around here. I was sick for a month and change earlier this year, and my son was sick for something like 3 weeks.
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
Local Antirights people buffalo Labgrrl to go to Buffalo Pride to stop the buffalo of Buffalo...also, I like buffalo in Buffalo,..
I *hate* Pride. I hate St. Patrick's Day, crowded bars, carnivals once the people show up and the beach on Labor day. I can deal with malls at Christmas because while they are still loud, smelly and too bright they tend to not also be too hot and involve more walking than my knee puts up with...and I can go outside into the cold and find quiet.
However, since the local fundies decided my 16-year marriage is a THREAT to their beliefs, probably because their beliefs are tiny and their god is fake (a real god, or strong beliefs, would not need to hide behind hateful rhetoric) and had the audacity to protest my equal rights (while, I might add, many of them were not white men and therefore expect equal rights for THEMSELVES while they'll deny it of others)I now feel I *have* to go to Pride, if for no other reason than to be a body that they can count amongst the people who've been pushed around by these alleged Christians (Certainly none of the Christians I know personally act like this!) JUST TOO FAR.
They can bite me...hard.
So, off to Pride I will have to go, because these people are asses. And so help me gods if I see my extra-gay ex-boss there I will personally put a hurt on the next person who abuses me for my spouse.
While I'm at Pride, I'm going to need to pack some food that I can eat, that doesn't SUCK and will keep me from falling over, and that means ordering some wonderful and delicious Tanka bars...
As I said when I last posted about bison, the price of the better red meat needs to come down. I can't afford to spend 1/3 of my income at US Wellness meats, Northstar Bison and TankaBar.com
Monday, June 1, 2009
I've been so tired lately that using what little energy I have to make as many meals as possible is something I *must* do...
This will be dinner tomorrow, and three recycled and recyclable alumnium pans of it will go into the freezer for next time I'm too tired to move.
The other thing I make like this is pot pie...but we've eaten all the pies and meals in the freezer... OH NOES!