—From the Fool—

I saw some cats on Youtube do funny stuff, so I thought maybe my cat Gertie could do some funny stuff and I could tape it and then put it on the Web and somebody would see it and develop it into a miniseries like Breaking Bad or The Wire except without so much violence and Gertie and I could make some money.

A friend of mine tried this once, but it didn’t work out. He was a salesman, sold sporting goods, but I don’t think he had a knack for art.

Gertie did funny stuff sometimes, like once she chased her tail, which was pretty funny. But then she caught it and didn’t know what to do. Once there were fireworks outside and the booms got her scared and she ran under the bed and shat. That was funny up to a point. Once she left me a dead pigeon, but I don’t think she killed it, I think she just found it and didn’t want it to go to waste.

But when I pointed my cell phone at her and said “Hey, Gertie!” she just sat there. I waved at her but she just sat there. I tossed the rubber mouse but she didn’t raise a whisker. I put some tuna in her cat bowl and she walked over and ate it, but no big surprise in that. Any cat would do it.

So I thought, well, another million-buck idea shot, like when I tried to fry a piece of watermelon. But now I’m hoping I can get my sister to come over next Sunday and tape me trying to get Gertie to do something funny. That should be pretty funny.

—From CB—

This week we’ll finish the sixth draft—hopefully the last—of our novel AKEDAH: THE BINDING. It’s been a very long haul with a difficult creature. Reminded me of the bulldogging event in a rodeo I saw as a kid: the cowboy rides alongside the steer, jumps off his horse and grabs the horns, twists the beast’s head till it tilts on its side, then tries to get out of there in one piece. What that accomplishes I couldn’t say, and the same is true of writing a novel.

But we continue flinging ourselves onto the steer. Lest the collective brain go vacant, the next project emerged last week. We’re pregnant again.

—From EF—

Yesterday I finally got around to planting stuff in the two garden beds we’ve been slaving over for the past two weeks. Last summer, too late to do anything other than plant stuff in gopher baskets, we discovered that the damn gophers had breached the protective wire in our raised beds. This year, CB shoveled all the dirt out of each of the two right-hand beds, and we installed new wire, amended the soil anew, and leveled the soil to start over.

So yesterday, celebrating that I can still do stuff on hands and knees without wrecking the south end of my back (the neck objects, however), I planted beet seeds and starts for collards, chard, and giant red mustard. Zucchini are waiting for rehab of two half-barrels. Having seen how these giant plants overwhelm anything nearby, I’ve decided to give them their own mini-kingdoms and let’em rock on.

So next week I will tackle the second repotting of my tomato plants, once again pinching off the lower shoots and burying them in deeper pots to develop big root balls, and then it’s a race between the tomatoes and the garlic. They swap off in the same bed, garlic in fall and winter, tomatoes once spring really gets going, and I hope the garlic’s big balls develop as fast at the ones on the tomatoes.

But the real cliff-hanger is the beet seeds. In a week or so I should see the little sprouts, but given that we have had plentiful weeds every year, nothing that comes up is necessarily a beet. Any seed puts up pretty much the same pair of leaves to start with — the cotyledons — and only later with the true leaves can you tell what the plant is going to be. All newly-emerged sprouts are innocent until proven guilty.

Is there a lesson here?

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© Bishop & Fuller 2016

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