Notes to Self ~ 13 Nov 2015


► What to give for Christmas this year? I’ve started my list.  This Desktop Edible Insect Hive Grows Your Daily Protein At Home.

  • Lower your food carbon-footprint
  • Feed your livestock kitchen scraps, harvest and prepare–all on your kitchen countertop. Comes with a starter kit of mealworms. Think of it: the mealworm smoothies; quiches; stews and casseroles! High in protein, low in carbs.
  • No animal diseases transmitted; no hormones or antibiotics required; no farm effluents to pollute local waters.
  • Squeamish? Get over it. The Golden Age of Big Burgers is over. Insects are the wave of the future (or is that the onset of dry heaves?)

► How the Tick Got its Name

  • We’ve had a lot of tiny ticks (8 – 10 at at time) off the dogs this month.  If found inside, they go down the drain, but outside, each small dark dot is compressed against the pavers with a piece of gravel.
  • And with this action, each minuscule arachnid produces a most distinctive “TICK!” and that, I claim, is how the tick got its name.
  • OTOH, if they had been named on the basis of the same fate to the huge, fat, round blood-and-babies variety, we would today know them as “SPLATS.”

► Lastly, as an alternative for those who for some odd reason have not already gone to Livin Farms to order your Insect Hive for that special someone on your Christmas gift list, it’s that time of year again when I mention that you can replace your loaned-and-not-returned copy of Slow Road Home or What We Hold in Our Hands OR buy a few as gifts. You know you’ve thought about doing just this very thing and now is the time to put legs on the notion.

Go to Fragments from Floyds/stuff to order, or find them in Floyd at the Country Store, Artisans Studio in the Station, at Hotel Floyd or the Jacksonville Center for the Arts. But order direct from me for a better deal and with the potential of a special inscription upon your request.

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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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