Variations on a theme of Thanksgiving, as related by the sandy loam.
Knocking off wild apples
Just as springtime brings the roadside forager to stalk the wild asparagus, fall-time conjures visions of wild apples -- the tart and teasing sugar-plums of this evocative, transitional season.
Postmodernism and the family farm
What could be more postmodern than a farm that shifts from producing produce, to producing the performance of producing produce?
The last shift at Cunningham’s
Often, a photograph reaches its true potential only in the fullness of time. These previously unseen images from a Cunningham's Drug Store of the 1950s show that neglected negatives can emerge from hibernation to find a second life that is every bit as robust as the first.
The forcing function of fire
Any public place where people can freely meet can support socialization — with the people you’ve come with, that is. What is missing is some element that allows groups to break out of their self-containment, and interact in a spontaneous, genuine, and uncontrived manner, with people they didn’t come with. On a cold evening, a shared fire pit can be a social forcing function.
The extraordinary, ordinary postcard
Despite the ongoing decline of what many disparagingly refer to as “snail mail,” there remains a segment of the population that has not yet lost touch with its unique qualities, and fears the prospect of losing this supposedly archaic medium forever.
An open letter to the National Weather Service
Dear National Weather Service: This letter concerns the weather forecast product that you issued for Ann Arbor, Michigan, on February 2, 2022.
Revenge of the wrong-side mailbox
There are two classes of rural homes: those with a mailbox on the same side of the road, and those with a mailbox on the other. As if in passive resistance to suburban sprawl, even a long-demolished farmhouse can haunt its unwanted descendants by "locking in" the side on which mail delivery occurs.
“Potatoes are not a vegetable,” my friend declared, when I listed the varieties of produce she could harvest from my vegetable garden. “I will take tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, and onions, but not potatoes.” I could have responded that the first three, being fruits, are not vegetables either.
Arduous task of pioneer was grubbing stumps
At one time, I considered growing hops. As an experiment, and to immerse myself in the property that I had recently bought, I went about installing a 1/4 acre hop yard. I was not entirely practical about this venture. I resisted the use of treated wood for the trellises, and I resisted the idea that hops should grow on strings that stretch a full 16 feet into the sky. Needless to say, some of these decisions were not optimal.