Creek Jots 2009-12-23

A local thrill seeker and devout Pastafarian
A local thrill seeker the only fast-moving object in Floyd on Tuesday

☼ Grown-ups in Floyd County approached Cabin Crazies until the sun broke out yesterday. This widely recognized local dare-devil captured in the stop-action image above wasted no time finding excitement under the blue skies over the heart of downtown Floyd.

☼ We’re still burning fire wood I brought up onto the porch last Friday  before the storm. I am pretty proud of that, and would give myself a pat on the back but my shoulders are too sore to reach it because of snow shoveling. I can, however, manage to toast myself without pain and later will have a self-congratulatory glass of wine instead.

☼ We got the nicest set of Ginsu Knives from my daughter for Christmas. I thought the product was a figment of SNL’s imagination, but no, there is such a thing. I really like them, but I’m running out of bolts to cut in half.

☼ I have some calendars left because of the missed opportunities to find home for them due to the several weather events lately. Email or comment if you’d like one or more while supplies last. Also, Slow Road Home and What We Hold In Our Hands: a Slow Road Reader make great gifts, or a way to spend that Xmas Stocking money Santa brought you.

☼ Snow fun anymore. After several freeze-thaw days, the top surface of this snow has gotten crusty and sharp. Walking in unbroken snow, still at least a foot deep, will eat up a pair of rubber books and can break the skin if you fall in it. Somebody come and take it away. It was sort of nice for an hour, but we’re done, so if the stage crew can just come in and drag away all the white, please do it now.

☼ I’m talking with a bed and breakfast in another nearby county about “teaching” a nature digital-photographic couples weekend this spring. Details TBA but the package might include some time in Floyd County (Friday Night Jamboree and a Parkway picnic on Saturday.) Anybody interested, let me know. More details soon.

☼ For joy: New NPR app just posted to the Android Market should be useful for catching missed ATC, Car Talk, Fresh Air, and Wait-Wait. Not sure what all can be accessed this way, but a good move for NPR!

☼ Speaking of which: My recent local NPR essay is up as streaming audio at WVTF, an essay I recorded a few weeks back. Consider this my Merry Christmas to Fragments readers, a celebration of finding our places in the world, all of us, as matters of personal fact or matters of hope for years future.

☼ I sent off an email this morning to a regional magazine who contracted to pay me very little considering the hours I spent “on assignment” for them in Floyd County in July. None of the prior email queries about this invoice have been acknowledged. I am hoping for a reply soon. If not, I will certainly get the message out to the photographers in the area to stand clear of agreements to work with this organization unless they are prepared to be abused.

☼ I’m looking forward to getting my own SQUARE so someday, especially if there is a book THREE, I can offer credit card sales to potential customers. No wait: patent disputes may push this out a few years. Might not live (or write) that long. Drat!

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. For what it’s worth Fred, when you first posted about the Radio Essay, I started to hit the play button in the rss feed. But…just before I did I glanced at my iTunes podcast directory that was playing as I read…And danged if you weren’t already next in the que. I subscribed way back whenever to the WVTF feed and there you were. Not only do I get your friendly voice coming to me from SW Virginia, I also get all of your fellow essayist as they are broadcast. I highly recommend the podcast feed.

  2. Hey Fred:

    I got the calendars!! They look wonderful. Thanks!!
    I can’t seem to bring up your website at work, it will come up, but locks up, and I have to shut down.
    Been too busy to get on computer at home, plus the teenager uses the computer a lot…

    Merry Christmas!
    Happy New Year!