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Thursday, October 05, 2006

Veggie tales

A tale of two veggies....It was the best of veggies, it was the worst of veggies.

It was the best of veggies is by ypsi~dixit. She is growing an indoor vegetable garden, that she says is her
assigned project this month for the sustainability group. I have two big tomato plants in pots, one with a wee tomato, a pot full of sprouting beans five inches tall, a windowbox full of radish sprouts, and my Bio-Dome also full of radish sprouts. Plus a pea-pot which is just starting to sprout.

These guys are sitting by my sunny south window in my office, right behind me. They amaze me. I had no idea you could defy the dictates of Nature and git things a-sproutin' in...October.
Hopefully we'll get another update when they are ripe for the pickin'.

It was the worst of veggies is by Kitchen Chick. She explores the world of eating eggplant (yucky, ick, poo!). But, after reading this description and recipe, I too might be converted into an eggplant lover. Kitchen Chick gives us hope when she writes:
I used to dislike eggplant for no other reason that as a kid I thought it was one of those foods one was supposed to dislike. Maybe I have a bad eggplant experience hiding in my past that I can't remember. That's okay - I feel no need to recover any such childhood memories of horror.
She not only got over her dislike, but enjoyed eating in in restaurants and finally cooked it for herself recently. She concludes the post with a recipe (Fried Eggplant with honey, mint and sesame seeds) and this comment:
(You know what they say: "if you don't like it deep-fried, you'll never like it at all..")
Well put!

Read Indoor Vegetable Gardening is Working...and...Freaky. by ypsi~dixit
Read Fried Eggplant with honey, mint, and sesame seeds

# posted by Tami @ 1:27 PM 0 comments links to this post

Tiger Economics

Jack Lessenberry talks about the economic impact the Tigers do (and don't) have on Detroit. He writes:
Well, the Tigers built a good team at last, and they came. They sold more than half a million more tickets than last year. Some of those fans came from Grand Rapids and Flint and Paw Paw and even Escanaba. And some stayed around and bought stuff, had dinner in Greektown or at one of the restaurants on Woodward Avenue not far from the stadium.

Was that enough to spark a major economic revival? Of course not. Let's imagine that the Detroit Tigers win the World Series the next five years in a row, and the Detroit Red Wings win hockey's Stanley Cup each of those years.
In the companion interview, Jack spoke with Daniel Howes who writes about business for the Detroit News. Jack writes:
Against all odds, the Detroit Tigers are in the baseball playoffs -- even though they may have been disappointing in the last days if the season. But what has their unexpected rise meant to the city’s economy? And how much could it be worth if they go all the way?
Here's the perspective of a season ticket holder, South of 8 Mile. He writes:
About half way through the game I got a phone call from a neighbor, asking if I was home. The neighbor informed me that there were several gunshots on our street, right in front of our houses. I inquired whether it could have been fireworks, but she felt it was definitely gun shots. She called 911 and the DPD was there within about 5 minutes, took a report, then took a report from another neighbor as well.

...This morning I got a call that kind of caught me by surprise. It was from an Associated Press reporter. Seems a friend passed word along that I would be a good person to interview. The reporter wanted to know what life was like "South of 8 Mile," well.....sorta. Actually, he wanted to talk to me because I lived in Detroit, had Tigers season tickets, postseaston tickets, wished to hear what my perspective was on things, and how the Tigers had impacted the city this year. Towards the end he asked what my take was after last night's game.
Read or listen to Essay: Paper Tigers - 10/4/06 by Jack Lessenberry
Also listen to the companion Interview: Daniel Howes - 10/4/06 by Jack Lessenberry
Read Detroit Tigers playoffs: Game 1 by South of 8 Mile *

* Contains Adult Language

# posted by Tami @ 10:00 AM 0 comments links to this post
Wednesday, October 04, 2006

A study of Michigan buildings

Today we visit Marjorie O'Brien's Blog, Michigan Architecture. Marjorie (aka (I Am Jacques Strappe) was a featured photographer last April on Michigan in Pictures and is currently attending NMU in Marquette. She writes about the regional materials used in downtown Marquette buildings.
The bulk of the structures in downtown Marquette were built between the late 1870s and the early 1900s. Because of its local availability, sandstone (especially of the red variety) is one of the primary building materials. Sandstone doesn't weather very well -- especially not in Michigan's environment -- but its softness allows for intricate detailing and ornamentation.
Read Architecture of Marquette: Sandstone by Michigan Architecture
And read her related post entitled Marquette Windows
Also read Michigan Photographers: Michpics Talks with Marjorie O'Brien by Michigan in Pictures

# posted by Tami @ 12:33 PM 0 comments links to this post

Oh my gourd!

'Tis the season for gourds, indian corn, pumpkins, corn mazes and jack-o'-lanterns. And dETROITfUNK has a bunch of photos of gourds as do many other Michigan Photographers featured on Flickr.

So why DO we carve our pumpkins? Not knowing much about the jack-o'-lantern's history, I went searching at Wikipedia. They have an entry describing its origins, both in folklore and how that translated into what we know today as the North American Tradition. It reads (in part):
An Irish legend tells of Jack, a lazy but shrewd farmer who used a cross to trick the Devil, then refused to free him unless he agreed to never let Jack into Hell. The Devil agreed. When Jack died, he was too sinful to be allowed into Heaven, but the Devil wouldn't let him into Hell. So, Jack carved out one of his turnips, put a candle inside it, and began endlessly wandering the Earth for a resting place. He was known as "Jack of the Lantern", or Jack-o'-Lantern. ...In England, Scotland, and Ireland, there is a long tradition of carving lanterns from vegetables
And how can we talk about jack-o'-lanterns without mentioning that loveable, unseen comic strip character, The Great Pumpkin from Charles M.Schulz's Peanuts. According to Wikipedia:
The Great Pumpkin is supposed to be a Santa Claus-like being that seems to exist only in the imagination of Linus van Pelt. Every year, Linus sits in a pumpkin patch on Halloween night waiting for the Great Pumpkin to appear. According to Linus, the Great Pumpkin rises out of the pumpkin patch he finds to be most "sincere". ("Look around you! Nothing but sincerity as far as the eye can see!") The Great Pumpkin then flies through the air to deliver toys to all the good little children in the world.
It's a nice thought Linus! I'll wait in the pumpkin patch with you this year.

Take a look at October by dETROITfUNK
Also feast your eyes on these gourd and pumpkin tagged pics on Flickr
Click here to read the Wikipedia entry on Jack-o'-lantern
Click here to read the Wikipedia entry for The Great Pumpkin

# posted by Tami @ 10:49 AM 0 comments links to this post
Tuesday, October 03, 2006

all things autumnal

Fall is in the air, leaves are turning brilliant colors, then swirling to the ground, gardens are giving up their last produce for the year and the skies are more turbulent. Let's take another look at Autumn in Michigan.

First, look at this stunning photo by jamelah on the Michigan in Pictures photo blog. michpics writes:
This is one of the photos in a great set by Jamelah called ah, autumn. I recommend you view it as a slideshow.
I second that!

Next, read Kitchen Chick's post about her garden filled with tomatillas including her special Salsa de Tomate Verde recipe.
It's October, and it's the time of year when I marvel at my garden. The summer flowers are past their peak, the tomatoes are pretty much done, the basil has been harvested, but I'm amazed at how much of my garden continues to grow in spite of the chilly days and colder nights. Most of all, I'm amazed at my tomatillos, which have defied all frost warnings and are continuing to set fruit.
She continues:
My favorite dish to make with tomatillos is enchiladas verdes de pollo (green enchiladas with chicken). I use a cooked salsa verde that works well for either enchiladas or chilaquiles, and when the harvest is bountiful I scale it up so I can freeze the excess sauce.
Finally, view a series of fall images: a pond reflecting the cloudy sky above by Giancarlo Rinna, a tree in it's fall colors in the Motor City by CH Carroll of Beautiful City blog and Jolli Lodge's photos of a leaf that became impaled and a sunset over Pyramid Point.

Are you in the mood to eat cider and doughnuts, carve a pumpkin, and rake leaves? OK, maybe not so much the raking part.

Take a tour of leaves like burning and other Fall photos in jamelah's slideshow at Michigan in Pictures
Tickle your tastebuds with Salsa de Tomate Verde, Cocida by Kitchen Chick
Look at Water Reflects by Giancarlo Rinna @ LeavesOnTrees.com
See this Motown in Fall photo by Beautiful City
View Impaled and Pyramid Sunset by Jolli Lodge Photo Blog

# posted by Tami @ 10:35 AM 0 comments links to this post

Albertus & Alberta beautify Detroit

There are a fair number of bloggers out there documenting the positive side of Detroit. We'll be featuring two today, dETROITfUNK on St. Albertus and DetroitBlog on Alberta Winbush's Better homes and gardens.

dETROITfUNK posted a beautiful series of photographs of the sanctuary at St. Albertus. He writes:
I went to morning mass at St. Albertus today - what a fantastic sanctuary! St. Albertus was part of what once was the primary Polish neighborhood in Detroit - Long before Hamtramck.
He also photographed some of the women and girls in traditional dress!

Detroit Blog featured Alberta Winbush, a longtime resident of Detroit's State Fair neighborhood. He writes:
Like a lot of people in vanishing neighborhoods, Winbush took advantage of one of the city's many recent offers to buy abandoned houses and empty lots at a pittance. Now she owns a good deal of the empty land surrounding her, a strategy that provides her with somewhat of a buffer between herself and the realities of the area.
She is an amazing woman living in what's considered by most to be a very dangerous place.

Read St. Albertus and view the gorgeous photographs by dETROITfUNK
Also read Better homes and gardens and look at the wonderful pictures of a garden refuge in the city by Detroit Blog

# posted by Tami @ 8:26 AM 0 comments links to this post
Monday, October 02, 2006

Ergonomics, Shmergonomics? by PC Mike's E-Journal

PC Mike talks about a subject near to me, and that is sitting in front of a computer for many hours each day and the toll it may take on your body if your workspace isn't ergonomically correct. He writes:
My neck is killing me. My buddy Ryan's right shoulder is hurting him. Our co-worker Alice says she's been getting neck pains, too.

What do we have in common? Computers. We all spend way, way, too much time hunched over keyboards. I know I slouch. I try not to, but gravity takes hold. And I'm not sure whether the monitor should be eye level or higher. Or lower, for that matter. Or whether I should rest my arms on a desk. Or wrists.
Mike asks for comments/suggestions and there are a LOT of them. Still think it's a bunch of bunk?

Read There might be something to this ergonomics stuff by Mike Wendland

# posted by Tami @ 2:26 PM 0 comments links to this post

Celebrating the Tigers

Greg Eno, Out of Bounds Sports writes:
Friday night, the Tigers were one out away from a win that would have crept them ever-so-close to the frustratingly elusive AL Central title. A foul ball was lofted toward the stands on the third base side. A seemingly impossible play would have to be made in order to catch the floater, but Inge, the most athletic of all the Tigers, was going to try to make it anyway. Running full speed, Inge crashed into the metal barrier and fell forward into the stands, having gotten his glove on the ball -- a miracle in of itself. He didn't make the catch, but he was inches from doing so. Moments later, the pesky Kansas City Royals tied the game, and won it in extra innings. Celebration on hold. ...The Tigers lost the game. They lost the division. They lost home field advantage in the first round of the playoffs. In fact they cannot, as a Wild Card, have home field advantage in any playoff series they play. From May 16 to September 30, the Tigers held at least a share of first place. But the MLB schedule ran to October 1st, and on that day, the Tigers were no longer even shared occupants of first place.
But, what do the fans think? Sportspig, Leelanau Sports Guy's World, writes about the Detroit News interview of what they called a "longtime fan". He writes:
What's the definition of longtime fan? I don't know if you can be 23 and considered a longtime fan, can you? It means he was probably in diapers when the Tigers won the 1984 World Series and spent his childhood cheering the Tigers teams of the 90's. That doesn't seem like "longtime fan" to me.
Read A Game Of Inges: Tigers Can't Hold On To Division by out of bounds
Also read about this fan in This really cracked me up...by Leelanau Sports Guy's World

# posted by Tami @ 2:23 PM 0 comments links to this post

Locally-grown spinach by The Environment Report

GLRC's Brian Bull reports on the local spinach farmers that are benefiting from the recent E. coli outbreak. He writes:
Bill Warner owns an organic spinach farm. He sells his crop at local farmers' markets and restaurants in Wisconsin and to some restaurants in Chicago. Warner says he thinks the E. coli incident will steer consumers toward smaller, organic farms like his.

"We just will tell people that in every step of the way we do, we're eating our spinach. We drink the same well water that we water with. So it may get people more back to, 'Y'know we don't want the big conglomerate foods, let's go back to buying from who we know.'"
Also read POLLUTION IN THE HEARTLAND, a series by GLRC that addresses related issues

# posted by Tami @ 2:19 PM 0 comments links to this post
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