Monday, September 18, 2006

Blog Business

First off, I was mentioned on WTVP while I was gone? What was up with that? Somebody share?

For Peggy, on the Rutabagas: You CAN mash potatoes and rutabaga together (roughly equal proportions), but I was actually talking about "mashed rutabaga" -- all by itself -- which you make exactly the same way you make mashed potatoes. Cut into small chunks, boil until fork tender, mash with milk or cream.

For Knight in Dragonland, on the Nature vs. Duct Tape post, who said "I can't tell what's supposed to be there and what's a weed. Let me know if you find some good resources." -- What I did, when we moved, was let everything come up the first year and see what it was. A more scientific method would be to call the county extension from the U of I and talk to a master gardener there. There are various field guides to recognizing seedlings, none of which I can decipher. But I HAVE discovered that things that come up in straight lines are generally planted on purpose. I don't think I'm doing this "clustering to make the best use of space" thing in the veggie garden next year. I'm doing straight, military rows. They were much easier to weed when I could see what wasn't in the row. On a much more practical note, ask your neighbors. They probably at least vaguely remember what was in that flower bed, and if they like gardening themselves, as mine do, they'll be a gold mine of info.

For fans of my felines, they were competently cared for by my baby brother, who gave Orange Cat shots like a champ, but they are happy to be home. Orange Cat purred so loudly last night at the return of the warm sleeping bodies I thought he might go over his monthly purr-quota before he got to mid-month. Grey Cat, on the other hand, got lost in the dark, which he does sometimes, so he sat downstairs crying. I called to him, which usually helps him figure out where he is and where we are and how to get from A to B, but he was too lost and it was too dark, so I had to go rescue him from the mean nasty dark living room so he'd quit crying.

I have the only cat in the world who can't see in the dark.


C. J. Summers said...

Billy Dennis and I were on "At Issue" with Jonathan Ahl (filling in for H. Wayne Wilson while he's on sabbatical). The topic was on how blogs impact public policy. Jonathan made some off-handed remark about blogs that talk about their vegetable gardens vs. ones that talk about politics. Billy and I both thought he was referring to your blog, but it turned out he was picking a subject at random and didn't have you in mind at all. Nevertheless, we briefly discussed your controversial liquor license blog entry and plugged your blog. Any increase in hits?

Eyebrows McGee said...

If it was Sept 6, yes. Otherwise, no spike. :)

My two belated rejoinders -- and without hearing Mr. Ahl's original comment -- are:

1) Gardening can be political. I certainly garden for environmental, political, and theological reasons!

2) I think people often talk about "blogs about politics" vs. "blogs about gardening/cats/whatever" when they mean "good blogs" and "crappy blogs." Erma Bombeck "just" wrote about housework and children, but she wrote insightful, coherent, well-edited pieces. Culture is about more than just politics and political commentary; humor writing about housework is just as important culturally. I think today, though, there are sooooooooooo many people keeping banal little diaries on the web in the form of blogs that are basically stream-of-consciousness nonsense that it's easy to dismiss the "less serious" realms of cultural discourse in blogs.

Which is to say as long as there are excellent books and articles in the print media about gardening, there are going to be excellent blogs about gardening. As long as there are excellent books/articles on any topic -- sex, literature, love, dogs, business strategies -- there are going to be excellent blogs on that topic. It's just that there's going to be a lot more stream-of-consciousness 14-year-olds blogging on some topics than on others and making the noise-to-signal ratio unbearable.

Maybe I'll send Mr. Ahl an eggplant to show him I'm not offended and thank him for the plug! :D

Jonathan Ahl said...

Ms. McGee (or is it Ms. Eyebrows?):

CJ's account is accurate about how your name came up, including my intent of naming of a random topic (gardening) and not speaking specifically of your blog. (Although maybe it was subconcious, as I do read your blog and am quite interested in your gardening acumen.)

I agree with you, there are good blogs and bad blogs, and rarely do they have anything to do with topic. While I read a lot of political blogs, some of my favorites have nothing do with traditional political blogging.

check out:

When blogs are good (or whenever any media is good) it transcends what it is about and taps into greater truths.

So I'm glad you are not offended, and I think we are all in agreement here. But I still want one of your eggplants. Yum.

Billy Dennis said...

Two items of note.

First, don't believe a word Jonathan Ahl says. What he REALLY said was something to the effect of " ... useless losers who blog about their gardens, like that loser Eyebrows McGee." C.J. and I lept to your defence. We literally beat him about the head and shoulders until he relented. It was the most excitement on Public Television since Scarlett Johansson made an appearance on the Charlie Rose show and Charlie reached up and groped her.

Second: I'm going to beat up Ahl and WMBD newsie Dave Dahl for introducing me to
. I get so little sleep already, not I'm addicted to this site. Damn the both of your.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info on the Rutabegas. This all new to me! Yes, you were discussed on WTVP. It was all very good and made you look professional. I love the cat comments as I am a cat person and seriously want one, but my husband does not. I am letting him win this one for now.

Eyebrows McGee said...

You guys are hysterical. (And is alarmingly addictive.)

Jonathan Ahl said...

Good News: I am now the proud owner of delicious eggplants from the garden of Eyebrows McGee.

Bad News: They were delivered while I was in Springfield, so I missed my chance to meet the famous blogger.

Good News: I don't think my wife and son like eggplant, so I get to eat the whole thing myself.

I'm making Ratatouille tomorrow!!!

Eyebrows McGee said...

I hope you enjoy them! But beware of that fatalli pepper.

The green pepper is a garden sunshine, it's a sweet pepper. Mr. McGee likes them a lot.

JasonS said...

Try doing the same thing with Cauliflower some time. Killer good.

On another note, I can't get my head around the placid-voiced Mr. Ahl using the word, "Yum." It's like Charo quoting the Gettysburg Address. Out of character, you know?