Milestones and Veggies


A milestone for my little blog: Just broke 50,000 views (50,002 at last check) on the site today! Woohoo! Thanks to everyone who comes by and reads on a regular basis, and to those who drop by once in awhile, or ever at all.

In other, vastly more interesting news, all charges have been dropped against the Michigan woman who was cited for planting a vegetable garden in her yard. I wish I was kidding that this had happened at all. Julie Bass’s blog is here. I first heard the story via the Health Ranger, Mike Adams.

(NaturalNews) This is a breaking news update: Michigan gardener Julie Bass has confirmed with NaturalNews that all charges have been dismissed in her case, including the two misdemeanor dog licensing charges the city threatened her with after dropping her “illegal gardening” charge.

You can read more about it on his site, and here is the article that sounded the alarm.  This is right up there with the illegal clothesline issue I blogged about awhile back on my other blog. It just baffles me that there are people who feel the need to control other people’s lives to this degree. I have neighbors who grow huge zucchini plants in their front yard. They have a teeny tiny backyard that gets almost no sun so where else are they going to do it? I couldn’t care less.

Anyway, I just thought it was incredible that it actually went to court.

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41 thoughts on “Milestones and Veggies

  1. congratulations on your blog milesone, DD! Well-deserved. You know how much I adore your blog. 🙂

    Oh, yes. I read about that garden case a bit ago. Insane. Thank GOODNESS the charges were dropped. I can not imagine… can not fathom in the least someone being offended by a vegetable garden. The mind boggles. I think some just (sadly) like to complain just to have something to complain about.

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    1. Thank you, Tasha 🙂

      It does seem that way, doesn’t it? And talk about Big Brother! It’s hard to imagine a more idiotic way to waste the court’s (and by extension, taxpayers’) time and money.

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  2. p.s. Oh, and yes- the clothesline thingie is equally ridiculous. I have mine on my balcony. Here, people actually tend to frown on the use (or at least overuse) of dryers due to all the energy they cost.

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    1. Poor Julie, for having to put up with that smallminded bureacratic bullsh!t, and hooray that it’s over with, in time to harvest her garden. I have a clothesline in my backyard and a big wooden half-barrel with cherry tomatoes growing out of it in my front yard – I had no idea that I’d be considered an outlaw in Oak Park, Illinois! And y’know, I’m not even that much of an earthy crunchy organic hippie – just a plain vanilla suburban schoolteacher who likes to save a few dollars on utilities and eat a fresh salad when possible. Just as DD said, there’s not a whole lot of sun in my backyard, so I’ve put the tomatoes in the front yard and a little strip along the driveway.

      Gypsy, what’s the feeling about clotheslines in Europe? Here, whether people want to admit it our not, it’s turned into a ridiculous point of Class Warfare: in neighborhoods where not everybody can afford their own washer/dryer, it’s common, of course, to either handwash things, or bring a few damp items hom from the laundromat and hang them on the line when you’ve run out of quarters. Nobody whould ever say a thing – they’ve got bigger things to worry about. Consequently, the more snooty “planned” communities like to think that they are too affluent and fabulous to need such an opportunity, and veil their snobbery behind comments about aesthetics (I also think there’s a touch of that twisted Puritan repressed perversion among people who can’t bear to see somebody’s bra hanging out on the line ;D )
      – to the point where some towns actually pass ordinances about such things. In recent years, the eco-conscious community has joined the fray, b/c of course line drying saves fossil fuel, and those folks back up the cheapskates like myself who can afford a gas dryer (don’t get me wrong – I love the damn thing on rainy or cold days, or when I’m in a rush, or when I have a big load of towels that I want to fluff up in the dryer w/a few clean tennis balls) but also like to lower the gas/electric bill (especially in the summer, when I’m spending good money to aircondition the house, and figure I might as well put the heat outdoors for SOME good use!) and enjoy the lovely fresh smell of air-dried t-shirts and bed linens.

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      1. MaryJ,

        To answer your question, clotheslines are commonly used and no one gives a frell if they can be seen.

        I’m sure Germans and the rest of Europe would be amazed that this could even be an issue in the States.

        I think you’re right that in the States it’s about snobbery and/or hypocritical puritanical b.s. If those people freak out at the thought of seeing OMG underwear on a clothesline, they’d better never even consider living here. Because the relaxed attitudes towards nudity here would have them fainting dead away.

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  3. Congrats DD on your 50,000+ milestone!! This does not surprise me at all. Your blog is worth reading.
    The Michigan news does not surprise me at all. Back in the days many people grew gardens where ever they had land to use. I remember always walking home from school and seen tons of veggie in the front, side, and backyard. Those was the days. Now many people are growing it only in their backyards because of rules and regulations. This is why the lady getting fine and etc does not surprise me. There are certain cities as where the lady got fine and where my mother live that when you do anything you must call the city and get permission in writing. They will come out to you and you pay for a fee of them coming out to get a paper to start building or changing your property. And I am not talking about condo area. I am talking about “your own” house property. I don’t know Oak Park quite well on their rules and regulation but I know it is not so bad as where my mom lives.

    My mom is not allowed to keep her business signs on her truck when it is facing the street or side walk. When she want to build a Gazebo, basketball court, tennis court, an additional housings for her clients, or an additional room inside her property she has to call the city. When she wanted to get rid of the huge lake from behind the house because it was harboring mosquito she had hell fighting the city to fill it in which came out of her pockets not the city’s. She can only water her grass once a week. Her grass have to be kept short always. If not and a neighbor does not see it is short enough. A neighbor that has nothing to do will call the city for an inspector to come out. Pretty much anything she want to do on her own property which is a nice amount of land she must call the city to tell them what she plan to hear a yes or no and go down to the county building and fill out the form. Then set an appointment for the inspector to come out which have to be paid again for them to write it in the report that everything is up to code. It’s f’ing ridiculous! The higher or prestige an area the more rules and problem it is to live there. It is hell to own your own land/property and be told that you can’t do what you want with it and have to always fight the darn nosy neighbors and city with each move you make.

    Then why stay in that area you may ask. Because the area has excellent schooling, more people feel comfortable doing business up that side, and less crime rate because the police act fast. Not like living in Detroit and you have to end up driving yourself down to the station. Child I have tons of stories it is ridiculous!

    Sorry to be so long winded. Michigan is home for me. I lived many places but Michigan will always be my heart. Michigan is where I was raised up. Once again Congrats DD!!

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    1. I 2nd startingover, DD – it’s absolutely a blog worth reading! One of these days I’ll take my own blog out of mothballs, but not this minute. Tomorrow is the County Fair, but I can’t enter any projects this year b/c we’ll be in Europe when it’s time to pick them up, so my report would be kinda scanty, anyway.

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  4. Thanks Lora and MaryJ. 😀

    You know, I can understand building permits, especially when plumbing or wiring is involved. There are too many bozos out there who think they can do this stuff but really can’t, and you could end up with a really dangerous situation. Case in point is the house I live in now. The previous owner I guess thought he was Mr. Fix-It, turns out he was just a menace. I plugged something into an outlet in the main bathroom that he had installed, and when I pulled the plug out when I was done (hair dryer) the WHOLE FREAKING SOCKET came out of the wall, blew the circuit in the garage. We found other hokey crap he had done, apparently illegally, but by then we couldn’t go after him to make them fix it. Mostly these things are nuisance ordinances designed to keep people from turning their yards into garbage dumps, but they’ve gone too far. The grass thing is a good example. You all probably heard about that woman in Utah back in 2007 who was actually fined and thrown in jail for not watering her grass (she was elderly and couldn’t afford it). I mean, come on. Who handcuffs an elderly woman and throws her in jail over a few square feet of freaking lawn?

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    1. That is seriously a human rights violation, putting an old lady in cuffs for failing to water her lawn, especially when municipalities think nothing of imposing watering restrictions during times of drought. It makes me think there was something else going on there, like some of those awful gentrified neighborhoods where they want to squeeze out the old guard to make room for more affluent, often whiter owners.

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  5. Your welcome, sometime people need to draw the line with common sense and values, instead of making an example that no one is above the law regardless of what age a person might be.

    Mary may I ask what part of Europe are you going to?

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      1. Oh wow too cool. Ireland is so on my list to visit one day. You are truly lucky. When you come back please let us know if it is only in the movie or real life that it rains a lot there and if sheeps always block the road. I am a weird one because of that I want to go one day to take my own photos and also catch a festival or so more for photo taking (I make colliages and scrapbooks…plus I love to capture events).

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    1. Naw he got sent home with paid administrative leave.

      {After being arrested, Perry is now scared of the police. She says, “Don’t ever say no when the police tell you do to something. You better do what they tell you no matter what, even if you don’t have anybody to help you. You’ve got to do what they tell you or they will hurt you.”}

      This was so sad to read.

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      1. If I were that lady’s family I’d find her a barracuda attorney and sue that cop personally and the whole department for every dime they had. I might settle for a little less if they’d agree to fire him w/no pension.

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    2. Very sad. I’m hoping the cop’s superiors took further action after that article was published. I guess you can’t teach someone common sense, but he needs some sensitivity training at least.

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  6. We’re flying into Dublin, spending a couple of days checking out the Book of Kells and James Joyce Tower and stuff like that; then we are jumping on a westward bound tour for 4 days (both of us are nervous to drive on the left side of the road, and mass transit is said to be not all that great,) to see Blarney Castle, Killarney, the Ring of Kerry & the Cliffs of Moher. We’re leaving the tour after that and doing a day at the Aran Islands and a day in Galway on our own, before flying home out of Shannon.

    So far, startingover, everyone is warning us about the rain but it was like that when I went to London years ago and it was a great time anyway. I’ll keep an eye out for the sheep in the road (another good reason not to drive ourselves ;D ) but I think that’s supposed me be mostly common out west, in the rural areas.

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    1. Mary after reading your reply it is official. Pack me up in one of your biggest suitcase with heavy duty wheels and a few air hole PLEASE. I give you the money for baggage overage 😉
      Your trip sound truly fun! I just google the place you mention and my mouth had drop at all the beauty you will see.

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  7. I think you can pretty well count on the rain, bring rain gear. You might be surprised how quickly you make the transition to driving on the left side. If everyone else is doing it, and the steering wheel is on the right, you just kind of fall into it, your brain sort of adjusts. I had no trouble while I was in Japan.

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    1. DD you were in Japan. I am surrounded by all cool chicks with culture! Man I love this! My husband has been but I could not go because it was a business trip. He took photos for me and bought me back the money, a doll, and a scarf (I collect money and dolls).

      What are your thoughts on Japan / how did you like it?

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  8. I was stationed in Okinawa for 18 months while in the Navy. I only got up to the mainland for a few days on a trip to climb Mt. Fuji and bummed around Tokyo for a few days. I loved it, the Japanese people were extremely kind and helpful, and when I came back to the States I was homesick for Japan for a long time. I have lots of stories (no surprise) of my time there. 🙂

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    1. How is it getting around Tokyo if you don’t speak Japanese? I’m intrigued but I’m thinking it’s gotta be a much bigger culture shock than going to Europe.

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  9. Eeesh, I’m trying to remember! 😉 Long time ago. I remember taking the trains from Tokyo to Kami Seya to visit a friend, that was quite an experience. I think in Tokyo, we did more walking than anything, I don’t recall taking the buses or subways there. It’s not too hard to find someone who speaks at least a little English, and if you speak any Japanese (even a word or two) to them, they will bend over backwards to help you out.

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  10. Congrats DD on your 50K view milestone! I always learn something from this esteemed assembly, and today’s post was no exception. My good neighbor Skip has been experimenting with his garden for the past 3 years and I am grateful to be the beneficiary of his “over runs.” Heck, the guy could plant on the roof of his house for all I care.

    But maybe that’s the real point: I do care about him and his family and he cares about me and mine. Maybe if we all just get out of our own cocoons and really meet our neighbors we’d see the similarities between us (and our laundry). Our collective strength comes from caring about not just about our family, but all families. I know this sounds naive, but it isn’t all that different from stuff my Grandpa Ziggy used to say. We have to get along and make things better for the next generation. To not even try is just selfish.

    PS — please do post about your time in Japan…. pretty please!

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    1. Thanks, Rosie! 😀

      Yes, if we could all just be nice to eachother, the world would be a vastly different place. A little consideration all around could go a long way. That’s why I so loved Norway’s response to the attacks there. Instead of rioting and threatening lawsuits, they came together to console eachother and stand together. By all accounts, the sea of flowers in the plaza in Oslo is still growing, more than a week later. (and the government is paying for the victims funerals).

      I’ll try to get around to doing a post about my time in Japan over the weekend. I have to dig up my old photo albums from the basement! 😉

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      1. thank you both gypsyscarlett and mjblog! now to tell you a secret: i just got my first passport so while i do enjoy hearing all the tales of my friends’ trips abroad, now i can plan to travel to those marvelous places myself. huzzah!

        it’s funny i’ve worked in the fashion industry for most of my career but never traveled outside of the US/Canada…..

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      2. Congrats on getting the passport, Rosie! What prompted you to get one now? Do you have travel plans? As soon as I’m rich and famous we’re all meeting in Prague for coffee so now you’ll be all set to join us 😀

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      3. Oh Rosie, I’m so glad you have a passport – I believe firmly that you need to be able to jump on any opportunity at a moment’s notice. I’ve told DD about my aunt, who lived her entire life in the same landlocked little village in Poland, but never stopped looking up when a plane flew overhead, dreaming that it might land behind her house so she could climb on board and visit America. She was past 50 when my mom wrote to her and invited her to come visit us in NJ, and I am convinced that it happened b/c she believed it could.

        That plane could land in your yard at any moment.

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  11. Not naive, Rosie: very, very wise.

    The thing that stands out in my memory from DD’s comments upon returning from Japan was that you told me their garbage trucks played music and were painted pink. I still have the saki set you brought me – it’s been to many residences over the years, and I’ve used it for saki, to hold flowers, and even to serve condiments. Whatever the function, it is always displayed prominently, and whenever I look at it I feel the vicarious thrill that you get when a good friiend has been on a cool journey.

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  12. Rules, were meant to be broken, mostly because there are so many how else could you navigate the cobwebs of stupid modern social “norms”.

    Congrats on 50,000!!!! Would be cool to know who broke that barrier, considering how witty WordPress is with some of its features.

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  13. Thanks, Leonargo! Is there a way to see who the 50,000th person was?

    I know, it’s hard to imagine anyone taking someone to court over a vegetable garden. Seriously, get a life! How do communities let zoning and regulation get so out of control?

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