Category Archives: News flash!

Long grass leads to long sentence

“Makes a long time man feel bad,” says the song (sung brilliantly by Ian and Sylvia), referring to jail time.

If this is true, residents in Canton, Ohio who don’t mow their lawns will be feeling bad. Just last spring, the city council approved 30 days’ jail time for home owners who don’t meet the city mowing ordinance. We saw it first in September’s Harper’s Index, (not yet available online) but you can also read the original article in Canton’s local paper, The Repository. And then there’s the AP version, available on YouTube:

Bloggers all over the place have been having a ball with this. —– EXTENDED BODY: —– EXCERPT: —– KEYWORDS: —– COMMENT: AUTHOR: inadveinadvertentfarmer EMAIL: IP: URL: DATE: 11/04/2008 09:28:13 AM What in the name of a free country is happening? They would lock me up and throw away the key if they saw my grass. —– COMMENT: AUTHOR: alan EMAIL: IP: URL: DATE: 11/04/2008 12:51:51 PM Good thing we are south of Canton! Don’t know how many years I’d be in jail if they saw my lawn. It looks especially nice when the goats are doing most of the mowing, not just long, randomly long. It’s kind of the Chaos theory of lawn care, and I’m sure they would (or will) lock me up for it. —– COMMENT: AUTHOR: Philip EMAIL: IP: URL: DATE: 11/04/2008 03:04:34 PM Time to rip out the lawn! —– COMMENT: AUTHOR: Yolanda Elizabet EMAIL: IP: URL: DATE: 11/04/2008 03:22:07 PM What is it with Americans and their lawns? Are they completely off their birk? —– COMMENT: AUTHOR: themanicgardener EMAIL: IP: URL: DATE: 11/05/2008 12:09:54 PM Well, inadvertentfarmer, then I hope they can’t see it. Alan–Ah, but they’re coming your way! (Spooky music…) PhilipYes. Yolanda, they’re all wishing they could live in western Europe where grass makes sense, I guess. It’s nuts. –Kate —– COMMENT: AUTHOR: Blackswampgirl Kim EMAIL: IP: URL: DATE: 11/05/2008 09:18:20 PM I am laughing… because Yolanda Elizabet is asking if we Americans are off our rockers, being so nuts about our lawns. And my neighbors here think that I am crazy, replacing my “lawn” with ornamental grasses and other plants. The American obsession with putting-green lawns is horrendous enough already without LAWS passed to regulate and almost require that obsessions, IMHO. Ugh. —– COMMENT: AUTHOR: alan EMAIL: IP: URL: DATE: 11/06/2008 06:11:39 PM You’ll have to check out my latest lawn mower. Grass powered like the rest. She really likes the lawn. Perhaps I can get it in shape before the lawn police get me. —– COMMENT: AUTHOR: emma t EMAIL: IP: URL: DATE: 11/07/2008 04:11:57 PM OMG! OMG!! OMG!!! Land of the Free!!!!!!!!! —– COMMENT: AUTHOR: themanicgardener EMAIL: IP: URL: DATE: 11/07/2008 05:40:14 PM Kim–I know. The laws should go the other way. Alan–Someone in a town near us got slapped for his grass-powered lawn-mower. Go figure. Emma–Yeah, yeah (in a strong New York accent, that is: Yeeah, yeeah–) –Kate —– COMMENT: AUTHOR: Muddy Mary EMAIL: IP: URL: DATE: 11/11/2008 08:05:43 PM I rather liked the dandelions and fronds of grass seeds. —– ——– AUTHOR: themanicgardner TITLE: Monday Muse: “To a Leaf Falling in Winter” STATUS: Publish ALLOW COMMENTS: 1 CONVERT BREAKS: wysiwyg ALLOW PINGS: 1 BASENAME: monday-muse-to-a-leaf-falling-in-winter CATEGORY: Poetry DATE: 11/03/2008 12:20:00 AM —– BODY:

Some of you will recognize this as the poem Garrison Keillor read for the Writer's Almanac yesterday morning. I don't like how Keillor reads, but this struck me nonetheless.

To a Leaf Falling in Winter

by W. S. Merwin

At sundown when a day's words
have gathered at the feet of the trees
lining up in silence
to enter the long corridors
of the roots into which they
pass one by one thinking
that they remember the place
as they feel themselves climbing
away from their only sound
while they are being forgotten
by their bright circumstances
they rise through all of the rings
listening again
afterward as they
listened once and they come
to where the leaves used to live
during their lives but have gone now
and they too take the next step
beyond the reach of meaning

"To a Leaf Falling in Winter" by W.S. Merwin from Present Company. © Copper Canyon Press, 2007.

And you thought YOU were putting on weight–

Okay, all you pumpkin growers, with your little gourds weighing in at ten, twenty, even thirty pounds, that's nothing. Get a load of this–but be careful, because it'll crush you if you're not. Apparently these babies can put on forty (that's 40) pounds per day (that's every day).


Image from NPR.

That, folks, is a pumpkin, grown by one Steve Connolly of Warren, R.I., briefly the record-holder world's heaviest pumpkin, at  1568 pounds, until a previously undiscovered crack disqualified him. As a member of the Southern New England Giant Pumpkin Growers, it sounds like he's found his niche, but is it big enough for him and that pumpkin?

Go to the NPR page, and you can see a whole row of monster pumpkins awaiting the weigh-off, and listen to clips including information about exploding pumpkins. I greet this "information" with some skepticism, having been taken in by NPR's story about exploding maple-sugar trees a couple of years ago. Of course, that story did run on April 1st…. And yeah, I do know that "gullible" isn't in the dictionary.

Sympathy to Canadians–

Pitcher plant & grass 2

Warning–flagrantly liberal, heavily biased, anti-Bush sentiments expressed below. Not to mention anit-Harper ones. 

Unbelievably, Stephen Harper, leader of Canada's Conservative party and widely satirized as a virtual clone of Dubbya, appears to have been returned to power in the Canadian election Tuesday. (Yes, I know it was predicted, but that doesn't make it believable.)

The clone idea has at least given rise to some fine humor. While driving in Newfoundland a month ago, I turned on the radio and heard something pretty close to the following. It'll make more sense to U.S. readers if they know that Canadian Thanksgiving occurs the second Monday in October.

Interviewer: Of course, the Americans celebrate Thanksgiving near the end of November. Mr. Harper, can you tell us when Canadian Thanksgiving is?

“Harper”: Canada has its own Thanksgiving?

Oh, I did laugh.

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