Friday, September 28, 2007

Candian Vacation

I have been in Canada, and thus the bloggerly absence. I will return soon to lovely New England, and to the Northampton-New York axis which could be improved only by being Canadian.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Clothesline Nation

Tis a simple thread forbidden it seems,
In agreements protecting American dreams.
How dare the contrarian try to dry clothes,
On a line in his yard, near a neighbor's nose?

Does the bra offend? Or the working man's shirt?
The flapping sheet, or the scanty skirt?
"Haven't you a dryer?," some neighbors cry,
"You agreed that your undies would NOT touch our eyes!"

" I answer, dear friend, citing one greater Trust,
To tame mine, and my country's great lust.
For Victory Gardens won one Great War,
Victory Clotheslines may settle the present day's score."

What could say more in our time of surge
In our hour of oil, in our Month of Dirge?
Than a simple thread, strung from every tree
Eschewing rich oil, ever so free.

To Osama Bin Laden I wave my pants.
I wave my bra at all pious rants.
Free-waving clothes on a sunny day,

Bespeak independence, the old-fashioned way.

The modest clotheslines, a simple thread,
Saves the planet, raises neighborly dread --
Until we join hands, agree and stand tall,
With clothesline'd fencepost, balcony, and wall.

My neighbor's new clothesline on North Prospect Street has raised Amherst's Clothesline Quotient to new heights. Vermont has challenged the legality of association bans on clotheslines -- great idea!

Clotheslines -- great for political action, comic commentary, or just drying clothes.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Taioba Times

Tobacco this is not. Taioba (tie-OH-bah) is an edible Brazilian vegetable that looks like a houseplant with large elephant ear leaves. This plant is one of the 2007 crop at the UMass Agricultural Extension Farm on River Road in South Deerfield.

My cooking instructions: treat it exactly as you would spinach. Sautee with onions and garlic, use it in an omelet, mix it into a lasagna. I describe its taste as "buttery spinach. " If you are near Wilson Farms, Lexington, MA this coming Saturday, you can try it. On second thought, stop by the farm in South Deerfield and see if there are any samples!