Wednesday, July 23, 2008

random notes

I have a few things on my brain
The YMCA has got to be one of the best places in the world to write. Don't ask me why. It's busy, crowded (especially in the summer when there's all kinds of camps going on) and not particularly quiet. But on Wednesday afternoons when E goes to Fun Factory, I can turn out some of the best stuff. An added bonus; The cafeteria (not run by a corporation, but by a nice lady and her daughter) will serve me my food and beverages in washable dishes instead of plastic and styrofoam. I should be working out on Wednesday afternoons, but in the summer I'd rather hike, and I do resistance work at home.

Resolved:I will not read the Toronto Sun while at Tim Horton's drinking my coffee. Or any other time. My blood pressure goes up when I look at the cover. But it's like the playboy magazines that my uncle used to stash in his outhouse - I can't not look. First I read an article about how the Ontario OPP commissioner threatened native activist Shawn Brant during a 2007 blockade. We know this now because a publication ban on evidence in his trial has finally been lifted - the OPP wiretapped his phones, and the calls were recorded. Then I read an opinion piece which branded Brant, and Omar Khadr as terrorists - both of them. And the columnist who wrote the opinion used every bigoted, biased word he could think of in the telling of his story.
For those of you who don't know, Khadr has been held at Guantanamo since 2002. He was captured at the age of 15. But for some reason, in spite of the fact that he was brainwashed and indoctrinated, he is not a child soldier. Another column in the same paper noted that Khadr should be grateful to the US government for providing him with three square meals a day, which he would not have gotten at home.
Can you see why my blood started boiling by the time I got to page 16? And then I closed it and put it back on the shelf, never to be held between my hands again. I'll read the Auto Trader in a bored moment before I pick up that rag again.

There was an amazing thunderstorm last night. I love storms. This one was particularly awesome, with the clouds building and darkening in the northwest for a long time before it broke. There were a few rumbles of thunder, and then the dog and I went out for a walk. We walked very quickly, and made it to the cemetery just at that magic moment when the wind suddenly starts to pick up. Just a bit, and then stronger. You know at that point that the rain will start any minute, but it's impossible to go in, not when the clouds are rolling and the thunder is rumbling in the air. When the drops started to fall we ran home and watched the storm from the front porch. I discovered yesterday that I can run. I haven't tried to run since I was in ninth grade.

The storm was heavy and quick, with rain and hail pounding the streets and my garden. Branches came down, and for only the second time in my life, I was strongly inclined to go to the basement. I would not be surprised to hear that a tornado touched down somewhere last night.

Today my sunflowers are intact, but all sitting at crazy angles. I've been accused of trying to grow a meadow in my front yard. I'd say that's fair. There is a cherry tree somewhere between the flowers, but it's too small to see.

I took my first beans out of the garden today. My garden is a princely 6 feet by 8 feet, which is literally all the room I have. We have a very small yard. I'd like a farm, someplace where I can actually grow enough to feed my family. But I still have three kinds of basil! And enough tomatoes to feed the neighbourhood.

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