Saturday, August 30, 2014


I lived in Kansas for a few months in 1976. My working hypothesis was that all the earth is beautiful, so why be seduced by pretty snow-covered mountains.............. that was my working hypothesis. The truth is that our car broke down in Kansas and we ran out of money. So we found work -- it's a good place if you can find work -- then we rented an apartment in back of the Swedish bakery and just lived there. That does not diminish the working hypothesis in any way. All the earth is beautiful. Sunflowers in Kansas are just as beautiful as California sunsets....... But they did have a lot of Lutherans in that little town. They were open-minded people -- don't get me wrong -- open-minded and fair in their judgment ..... It just wasn't a lot of fun. I believe they failed to see the humor in it -- it being "life in this universe."

Bob Dole – his last name rhymes with Droll. He was from Kansas. I met him once and I found out that he had a sense of humor and a dry wit. Meeting him was almost like being in Kansas and it only took a few minutes – you didn’t have to really go there like I did.

I still believe my working hypothesis – that all the earth is beautiful. Most of the people who live in Kansas like it there because it is beautiful and they can see that beauty. Some of them leave and come to places like California, in search of adventure and ocean breezes, but you know what Dorothy said -- Dorothy the evanescent goddess of Kansas – she said there’s no place like home, there’s no place like home, there’s no place like home …….. and she woke up.

You might take issue with Bob Dole on this or that question, but you would never challenge Dorothy.

Gardening News

I am working for Oscar at the greenhouse in Goleta. I go there twice a week. He grows tomato seedlings and other vegetable starts which are sold at the Farmers Market. I am the Production Manager in this operation. I am also the entire production staff. Most of the work involves taking little tomato seedlings in little pots and transplanting them into bigger pots. Also watering everything. Seedlings need daily attention. That’s what I do for Oscar.

The greenhouses are located at Elwood Canyon Farm which is an organic market garden of several acres. There is an abundance of natural beauty at this site and we enjoy the wildlife and the singing of birds while we are at work.

The farm is only one-mile from the ocean and it’s all flat ground, so the cooling breezes come in. Usually by 11 a.m. we begin to feel an onshore breeze coming in.

So it doesn’t get too hot there, but even so, I schedule the harder work for first thing in the morning. This is called “horticultural strategy involving the sustainability of labor resources.” I should write a paper on this and get funded, but I have the unfortunate habit of boiling it down to a few paragraphs and nobody will pay for that.

Reading the Manual

My daughter is getting married next Saturday, so I had to buy new shoes and a new coat. The new coat is linen. It will wrinkle after one hour, but it’s the first hour that counts, and the linen is lightweight and comfortable plus it looks smashing…. By the second hour no one will notice the coat, or me.

A man plunges ahead never seeking instruction or direction. A man plunges ahead because he is a pathfinder and a pioneer. He will find his way and discover new things.

And yet there are those rare instances when it is better to read the manual.

Your daughter’s wedding is such an occasion. And the manual is Father of the Bride starring Spencer Tracy. You study this essential film and you adopt the posture and the attitude. You dress appropriately and the words will come to you without rehearsal. Things may be go wrong and you might be the only one to notice that. But you have a peerless guide to walk through it with you.

Wedding Poem

Wedding Day...
Merry Love...
Heavenly Kisses
Sweet forever
Yes and Yes
Always and Always.
Starting on Monday.
Tuesday was
Terrific. We
like Wednesday.
Thursday is better.
Friday is fantastic.

You're Darn Tootin' !
Heavens to
Blessings and
Star Dust.
You and Me,
Baby. I
can't give you
anything but Love...
The Wandering Sea

The Wandering Sea
The North Star
Glistens. Orion
remembers the
morning. Venus
in the morning.
Mercury speeding.
Mars Glowing
Jupiter's Jamboree
Saturn is silent....
Neptune is the
Ocean of the
sea shells
and oysters
with pearls