Gardener’s Diary

Spent most of Friday on the grass and blue plantings, finished up yesterday morning during a brief shower.
While Robert had his sailing lesson, got mulch for about 1/3 the cost of buying it in bags, at Cape Cod Recycling; spread about half.
Raining this morning, looks like it’ll stop around noon.
Hoping to get a glimpse of Air Force One when it lands at Otis today around 2:55.

Thanks, But No Thanks

Keeping in touch with what the enemy is thinking notwithstanding, I finally had enough and removed my name from an email list for an outfit called, perhaps with intended irony, “Progressive Business Publications”.
This organization was founded by one Ed Satell, a weathy Republican entrepreneur known for his charitable work in the greater Philadelphia area.
Last year, the Connecticut AG launched an investigation into this company for “deceptively market(ing) and sell(ing) state compliance posters to employers–posters that are already available from the state, free of charge”.
Progressive Business Publications’ catalog has dozens of audio conferences on practical subjects like energy compliance, finance and accounting.
Sprinkled in among these, though, are a few sinister titles that suggest that they advocate sadistic management practices for “difficult” employees.
Some examples: “Managing Employees from Hell: Discipline That Gets Results”, “Take a Stand Today: Squash Negative Attitudes in the Workplace”, “Stop Hiring Losers: How to Read People Like a Book”, “Stopping Difficult People from Sucking the Life Out of Your Organization”.

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Gardener’s Diary

All in all, there are 87 perennials in the new gardens in the back.
I picked up some more today. This is a sickness, but I’m keen to get in on discounts early enough that the plants can get established before the first freeze.
I’m disgusted with the crabgrass, though, and the fact that it’s there at all is partially the fault of the stupid shed people, who refused to book my installation when they first promised.

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Sun Tea

It was 100 degrees in the sun yesterday with 70+% humidity, a good day for very little except swimming and making sun tea.
You need a big glass jar, 2 gallons or so. Plastic won’t work, the container has to be glass. I found one for $2 on clearance at Walmart.
I used mint regular and green tea, 4 bags for 5 cups of water. You put the tea bags and the water in the jar and let it sit in the sun for 3-5 hours.
Sun tea is mellow, and I much prefer it to brewed ice tea. It goes without saying that even mentioning it in the same sentence with powdered ice tea mixes, those convenience food disasters that taste like bitter sawdust, would be heretical.
The caveat is that because the water isn’t boiled, sun tea must be consumed quickly, within a day or so. In the Dog Days of August, though, this is not difficult to do.

Gardener’s Diary

It’s been raining off and on all day.
Re-planted the first two Miss Kims, removed the burlap and the ties. Fed the front gardens.
Checked out some gorgeous cherry and pear trees at Mahoney’s Osterville. Waiting for markdowns in about a month.
Even though these are the dog days, Fall has started to creep into the bones.
It’s not just the appearance of mums at supermarkets or “back to school” sales, it’s the inclination of the light, more like September than August.

Summer and Onion Rings

On the way back from trips to the NH seacoast when my sister and I were kids, we had a must-do stop: the onion ring stand at Salisbury Beach.
The rings were big, about 1/2 inch wide, and dipped in a batter that fried up light but crispy and not overly sweet.
The rings were served in paper boxes, with a good half dozen “extras” piled on a straw in a display of abundance.

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Body Type Profiling?

We’ve been reading a lot lately about racial profiling, i.e., making assumptions about the behavior and motivations of our fellow citizens based on appearance, particularly skin color.
In spite of the gamut of non-discrimination in employment laws, there are some “professionals” out there who nonetheless want to train job interviewers to reject or accept candidates based on physical characteristics: in this case, body type.
I received an email today from an outfit in Texas that claims to be “a human resources company dedicated to helping employers attract, then screen applicants for job fit.”
Their seminar on “Interviewing – the Behavioral Approach” includes a section on Somatotyping, a self-described “invaluable” technique “to identify behavioral traits in the applicant that can impact job performance”.
Somatotyping was developed by a Harvard psychologist, William Sheldon (1898-1977), who used photographs of naked Ivy League undergraduates to classify human bodies into the three physical types that have become part of our daily vocabulary: ectomorph, mesomorph and endomorph.

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