Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The new fence is finished, the chickens have been jailed, and finally I managed to plant my peas without fear of hen retaliation in my garden beds. I am glad about this, though the chickens are cranky and the dog is bored without any yackety fowls to chase into the woods.

Saw my first black fly while I was picking fiddleheads down by the stream. Then later I saw my cocky base-stealing son get picked off at third during the season's first elementary school baseball game. Fortunately he later caught a fine fly ball, his team won, and the coaches decided against taking the kids out for ice cream afterwards. We all would have frozen to the picnic tables.

Otherwise, there is no news here. I caught James's head cold so haven't written a thing since I last spoke to you. I haven't even read anything in particular except for Andrew Lang's fairy tales. I did do a crossword puzzle in 5 minutes, so I'm not entirely brain-dead. It was an absurdly easy puzzle, however, with bizarrely small print. Maybe print size was the puzzle-editor's tricky complication device, as opposed to tricky clues. If so, perhaps he or she ought to go into word searches instead of crosswords.

Maybe today I will plant carrots. Bur first I will dig up a random Bartlett's quotation for you. Here it is . . . and, what do you know?--it's a good one . . . that is, if one defines good as "refreshingly aggravating and liable to make the reader laugh and/or spit."

From "Tired Mothers" by May Riley (Mrs. Albert) Smith [1842-1927]

I wonder so that mothers ever fret
At little children clinging to their gown;
Or that the footprints, when the days are wet,
Are ever black enough to make them frown.

Ick, ick, ick. How I hate Mrs. Albert Smith. Ick. I frown plenty about those black mud tracks "when the days are wet." (Though to be honest, Tom and the dog are more to blame than the boys are. I think my helpful frowning has trained them to take off their boots before coming into the house. It has seemed to work less well with the other two.)

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