Let It Grow Organic Gardens

And I resumed the struggle. -Vladimir

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

I Just Want The Whole World To Be More Like a Bag of Tortillas

I've been a bit down lately, due mostly to a series of recent events that suggests to me that the world is swirling down the ol' crapper.
I do not know what has become of my usual cheerful self. I've felt nothing but doom and gloom recently. I've kind of felt like reaching up and pulling the cord that makes the little bell go dingy dingy, and getting off the bus. Only, there's no getting off this bus. It's the only one we have.
The Forest Service has a plan afoot to sell off outlieing parcels of land. Like, the one up the hill from my place, and the one across the creek that you see when you stand next to the barn. The National Forest always seemed timeless to me - like its always been there and it always will be there. But no, it's going to be a subdivision. Oak Tree and Brown Bear Lane, they'll call it, after they cut down all the oak trees and kill all the brown bears.
Then I learned of a law that will require me to put a microchip embedded dog collar on all of my chickens. All of them. Even the black one that roosts up in the pine tree. The one we can't ever catch. She'll be forcing us to break the law. I'm going to end up in Gauntanamo Bay with Marines threatening me with unnatural sex acts, all because we can't ever catch the black chicken. The other ones, we can catch them when they go into the coop at night. But the black one. She'll be the ruin of us all.
I face daily frustration caused by the medical/insurance complex, and I'm not even going to start in on that. Rest assured that (for the hundredth time) I think I have it resolved and will have good news tomorrow.
My collarbone aches most of the time, and there's very little around here that I can actually do. I can think up all kinds of things to do, but, I can't really do them.
I recieve phone calls from homeless waifs needing assistance. I know I have no business offering assistance to homeless waifs, but, nonetheless, I always end up taking in homeless waifs and will probably do the same for this one. I never learn.
The last straw in this little camel-back pile-up happened the Sunday afternoon before last. I had I* for the day, a cold snowy day with nothing to do but play inside. I* decided he wanted to fingerpaint, and since it is my opinion that there's no such thing as too much fingerpainting, we decided to go at it.
I spread newspaper all over the floor, across the couch, up the walls, over the cats, and on the kitchen counters. Then, and only then, did I open the paints and put some construction paper on the floor. We were having a good ol' time, putting a dab of blue here, and a pinky of red there. A smear of yellow offset with a purple handprint. A bit of brown on the edge, with a stripe of pink. Then one of the newspaper articles caught my eye. It was the story of a soldier who had a leg amputated in Iraq. It was a complete story: his mid-west hometown football days, his enlistment, his injury, his surgery. His next surgery. His next surgery. Thay gave his complete story, with a very clear underlieing message: this same thing is happening to hundreds more. Right now. They're lieing in hospital beds right now, without legs and arms and hands and eyes. I broke down and starting crying right there.
That's the world. With their wars and their chicken collars and their forest destruction and their maimed young soldiers. You can't get away from them. You can't even fingerpaint without being reminded of their war. You can't relax with a child on a snow day without their war being in your face.
I've been walking around numb and depressed ever since. I try to cheer myself up, but it feels phony and forced. I had to take a few minutes this morning and try to think up some stuff that's made me happy, lately. The strawberries and the spinach fit the bill.
I didn't think the October spinach had made it. I seeded it and then went to Texas and got back and it hadn't come up. Win some, lose some. But it's up now, and is the most delightful and cheerful shade of green you've ever seen. The soil around it is getting close to Spring soil - that post-Groundhog Day / pre-Equinox soil, where it changes from tight winter soil that holds everything in and changes to spring soil that lets go and expands. All of the fields are starting to feel that way. You walk across them and they don't go squoosh squoosh like winter soil, they're starting to go bounce bounce like spring soil. The strawberries feel more cheerful, too. They look exactly like they looked a month ago, it's just that they feel more cheerful. More of that post-Groundhog day expansiveness, that look up to the sky and the sun sort of thing, rather than that hunker down and draw into ourselves cold soil thing. Strawberries and spinach cheer me up.
But the thing that has cheered me up the most, lately, has been a bag of tortillas I bought at Ingles. Like, this flimsy plastic bag that you tear the top off then there's this zip lock thing there that never works. It has a Mexican flag as part of its logo. But it's not a real Mexican flag, with the eagle trying to kill the little snake. No, it's a cheerful Mexican flag. The eagle/snake motif has been replaced with a few bunches of wheat stalks.
Right there, in the middle of the flag - some food that someone grew. That's what I want my flag to be.
I've finally found something to feel proud of, and it's on a bag of tortillas I bought at Ingles. There amid the fields of white and green and red, which stand for, like, white Catholic piety and red martyr's blood and some other stuff, are stalks of wheat. Harvested and ready to eat.
Go halfway around the world and kill people, if you want to. I'll be in my front yard, saluting a bag of tortillas I bought at Ingles.


  • At February 22, 2006 12:09 AM, Blogger spiral said…

    May I have a chip?

  • At February 23, 2006 8:40 AM, Blogger amy said…

    i broke down over that story, too.

    hmm, chips, eh? i hear they go well with scotch.

  • At February 23, 2006 9:48 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I never would've guessed your state of mind talking to you on the phone last night!

    A smidgen of good news: NC is backing off its heavy pro-NAIS stance, and is now saying that it'll be voluntary in this state. Just don't, under any circumstances, fill out any surveys or questionaires for the NCDA or the USDA! They're using voluntary participation to show that farmers actually support this filthy thing.

    Let's do supper! I miss being neighbors---no more dropping in for an impromptu dinner and a visit. We oughta have an "old neighbor" party---get you and Julie and Isiah and Kim and Ben and their younguns to come over. Just like the old days. Sigh.

  • At February 24, 2006 11:05 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    i talked to hope last night she said luke was going to call you. pretty crazy they aren't coming back to ashville. please call me about those dates. lets hang. mb

  • At February 27, 2006 6:26 PM, Blogger Katie said…

    I just wanted to say I could relate - to the feelings of wanting the world to be different - not the growing beauties because my yard is still buried in snow.

    Here's too hoping all of us make the world a better place out of moments of despair.


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