Gardening! Summer 2013 Edition!

Before we could garden we had to clean up...

Before we could garden we had to clean up…

Our new place has its problems, we’ll talk about those some other time, but it does have a nice backyard with multiple garden beds. But before the backyard was nice we had to clean it up. I think the previous tenants only used the backyard for drinking booze and the beds for ashtrays. So, nature had been allowed to do its own thing. Meaning the beds were full of weeds as was most of the landscaping… It took a good 12 to 20 hours cleaning up the yard before we could begin planting grass and vegetables.

Just a small sample of the weeds that had to be pulled and dug up before we could get started.

Just a small sample of the weeds that had to be pulled and dug up before we could get started.

This garden is almost solely the work of D. She has spent the past week working on the yard and beds while I was at work. But, the work has really paid off the backyard looks amazing and the beds look great as well. (Thanks D!)

Turning over the soil in the other bed

Turning over and working in new soil in the one bed

The bed with vegetables planted

The bed with vegetables planted


The other bed with vegetables planted. Also note along the fence more vegetables

We’ve got banana peppers, jalapenos, summer squash, eggplants, green beans, melon, tomatoes, and okra. We’re hoping to get some pumpkin in as well. Our big worry right now is that this week it’s supposed to get up to 110 degrees Fahrenheit this week. That is not typical for this time of year in Davis and our transplants might not survive the heat… We’re doing everything we can to try and mitigate the heat. Including watering up to three times a day and covering the beds in straw to reduce evaporation.

We’re keeping our fingers crossed!

Contemplative Transciptions

Ma Yuan's Scholar by a Waterfall

Ma Yuan’s Scholar by a Waterfall

It jumps from thought
to no-thought like
riding over cobblestones.
Uncomfortable and enchanting
all at once.

Watching waves tumble over
each other in their race
for the shore, I
see men crawling
over their fallen dead
scrambling for sand

Now I see your face
or is it our face?
It is sad and unhappy. Tied
to old people, old ideas.
It can’t see it’s own
beauty for the wrinkles.

Is this poetry? Skimmed
off the top of my thoughts
and thrown away like
cream from milk?

Is this thought?
Mere images that
play on and on. An old
phonograph: scratchy and
tinny but irresistibly

Some say that’s what
love is like. Wonderful
in the most useless of ways.
I always thought love
was a silver bullet
to the head that
sadly doesn’t kill
you. Only leaves you
always mumbling about
your slippers

Or is that old age?
It’s hard to recall
They come and go, and
go and come. As waves,
as men, as music that flirts
about the ears…

mist rising from the water.

2012 Goals: How Did I Do?

Not as good as this guy…

Happy New Year to you all! This post is late but you know how it is with the Holidays. I kind of wish we could find a way to spread them out a little better. The gauntlet from Thanksgiving to New Year is killer for whatever normalcy you have in your life. No wonder I feel the need to make resolutions come January 1st. My life gets completely frazzled and torn out of shape by December 31.

Here’s my goal post from the beginning of last year.

Let’s see how I did!

1. Pay off credit card debt – This has been a millstone around my neck for too long. I want it gone by the end of the year.


2. Climb Half -dome – Now is the time to start planning this.


3. Cut down on distractions – I spend too much time reading stuff. It’s all very interesting stuff but it doesn’t serve any higher purpose. It’s just another way to distract myself from my life.

I got distracted and failed to keep this goal. Though I do think I was better at being focused

4. Write a poem a week – 52 weeks, 52 poems

Um, kinda? I got through February, so eight poems and I did start the SSPP (Surreal Space Poetry Project)

5. Draw something once a week – 52 weeks, 52 doodles


6. Continue meditation – Extend meditation time from ten minutes to twenty, add evening meditation.

Meditation came to an abrupt stop with the time change in 2012 and then the move…

7. Step away from the television and computer – I have a great dog, a beautiful wife, and wonderful friends. I should spend more time with them instead of tapping keys.

I did do this!

8. Fix my knee, start running, cycle more, swim more, do some free weights – I figure with all the free time I have why not make myself better with it?

Did it! Except until the move to San Diego but one of my goal’s for this month (Jan ’13) is to find a weight gym

9. Intentionally left blank

10. Intentionally left blank

Yeah, I don’t know what that was about!

Grade: Satisfactory. Room for improvement in areas.

I’ve done goals for the last two years (2011 and 2012) and I don’t think they’ve done much for me. Either I have anxiety over them and feel like I’m not accomplishing anything or it feels like I’m being coerced into doing something by past me, future me doesn’t like that. I might do goals/resolutions for 2013. But, before I do I need to think long and hard about them as well as how to make goals that I won’t forget about or just not do.



The Fear of Writing or Holding onto Dreams

I’m much more in love with the idea of being a writer than the work required to be one.

So here I am. I don’t have a job. I have very few prospects. I’m afraid of failing. I’m afraid of even the appearance of failing. But. But. But, I’m not so scared of failure that I’m willing to try something I desperately want to try. I’m only scared right now of not being able of finding a job. I’m only worried of not being able to provide the kind of life for my wife that I know she deserves.

And I don’t think that’s enough.

It’s just not enough to get me to take the risk and sit down and write.

Why? I’ve been thinking about this for sometime now. I know I’m not the only one. Lots of people have been quite successful making a career out of thinking about our fears. And lots of people are trying to make a living off of it. I don’t know if I have an answer, yet, but I think I’m approaching one. It has to do with dreams.

Right now, while I’m excreting out the 10,000th cover letter or résumé I can tell myself it’s just a temporary gig, that there are other options available to me whenever I want to take them. I still have the dream of getting paid to be a writer. No one can take that away from me.

But myself.

All I’ve got to do is sit down and write. Poof, now it’s not a dream. Now it’s reality. Now I have to make good. What if I fail? When it turns out I can’t write what dream do I have to cling to then? For what purpose then will I be grinding through the minutiae and bullshit of daily life?

I don’t know. And, I don’t think I want to know. It’s a lot safer to sit here and not write.

So, I don’t…