Jack’s Walk

The peonies next door. ©voyager, all rights reserved

Jack and I got a late start today because of rain. I wasn’t really feeling all that energetic either, so we stuck close to home and walked around the neighbourhood. Jack likes to do that every few days so he can keep up with the P-mail. When we’re on a trail I don’t notice that Jack is slow, but in town on a leash Jack dawdles and dithers and takes forever to get all the way around.  It’s his nose. It takes him in all sorts of odd directions, even backwards. He inches along inhaling deeply, seldom looking up and stopping often for an in-depth nosing. Sometimes he licks this or that particular blade of grass and sometimes he lifts his head to sniff the air around him, usually with his mouth open like a cat. He carefully leaves his own news in rationed dribbles on important posts and seldom leaves more than a few drops in any one place, believing that brevity is the soul of wit.

Lab Spider

It’s a perfectly posed arachnid from Avalus who says,

This spider found herself caught in glassware one morning in our lab. I contained it with a glass funnel to take the photo and released it.

I’ll bet that spider tells the story of this adventure at all the spider gatherings. Not everyone will believe her.

The photo is below the fold

[Read more…]

The Art of Book Design: The Romance of Insect Life

The Romance of Insect Life, by Edmund Selous, with B&W illustrations by Lancelot Speed and Carton Moore-Park throughout. Natural history stories from the insect world, published by Seeley & Co, London, 1907

I’m confused by the bird on the cover. Is it a gift of love or an object of love?

 

via: The Reader’s Desire

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

I’ve been waiting weeks for the first and only flower on my new purple peony bush to open. It sat there for the longest time just being a big, plump bud that didn’t change and I’ve been getting impatient. Well, finally, yesterday it started to unfurl and by late afternoon its petals were getting ready to spread themselves open to the sun. I was getting excited… and then the wind started to blow. And then the rain came and then my beautiful purple peony blew open and apart. Well, damn. At least the bees don’t mind. They’ve been busily gathering pollen all day so it hasn’t been a total loss.

©voyager, all rights reserved

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

The forest is slowly passing into summer. The trilliums have vanished from the landscape and the Jack-in-the-pulpits are fading out, but the false Solomon’s seal is exploding into bloom all over the forest floor. I think their star-shaped flowers look like fireworks and I love the gentle curve of their leaves. Their flowers should last for another week or so and then the white will fade to green and the forest will turn itself to the business of growing the trees another season bigger.

Tree Tuesday

I’ve had the Monkey Puzzle Tree on my list of trees to share with you so I was delighted to receive these photos in our mail this week. It comes from Lofty and it’s a splendid specimen.

An interesting tree that was planted in a local park over 100 years ago, a South American “Monkey Puzzle” tree.

©Lofty, all rights reserved

©Lofty, all rights reserved

©Lofty, all rights reserved

The tree was given the name “Monkey Puzzle” in about 1850 by a British Barrister named Charles Austin who remarked upon seeing the tree in an English garden “It would puzzle a monkey to climb that.” The tree had no common name at the time and so monkey puzzle stuck. The tree is a long-lived conifer and is now cultivated in temperate zones world-wide. Unfortunately, in its home range of South America the tree is on the Endangered list because of logging and fires. – source: Wikipedia

Thanks Lofty. Your timing was spot on.

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

Jack and I came across a bit of forest cute today; a baby chipmunk.  Well, I say Jack and I, but Jack was too busy sniffing and snuffling to even notice the creature. The chippy looked to be fairly young and it sat for a few seconds checking us out before dashing away on some important business.

The Art of Book Design: The Rules for Radicals

Saul Alinsky. Rules for Radicals. New York, Random House, 1971. ©Marcus Ranum, all rights reserved

Our book today comes from Marcus and I love the bright, quirky colours and design so typical of the 70’s.

Despite its age, this book is still relevant and contains Alinsky’s 13 Rules for Radicals which all political activists should be familiar with. Alinsky believed in working within the system and his philosophy was essentially one of non-violence. This book contains one of my favourite quotes:

“People cannot be free unless they are willing to sacrifice some of their interests to guarantee the freedom of others. The price of democracy is the ongoing pursuit of the common good by all of the people.” Saul Alinsky, via: Open Culture