Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Shut Down

Yesterday I went home early, worked on my yard for about an hour, laying insecticide on ant hills and placing compost on the trees and shrubs I planted. I should have done this work earlier, noticing that one plum tree had lost its leaves and turned yellow, thinking about the comments made by the master gardener in the library last week that placing fertilizer before planting a tree would burn its roots. I am not sure if this is what happened or if it’s just the tree turning colors early for autumn. But there was an ant hill nearby so I wonder if this caused the problem, nevertheless it did not seem the tree was dying; its main trunk seems strong and sturdy, so I followed the gardener’s advice to place compost; something  that always helps a plant. I hope to water my plants after work today and place mulch later this week. I wonder what else I need to do to prepare my lawn for the coming winter, and I may plant more shrubs like cypress for privacy. The gardener said that it’s not too late to sow in the fall. After dinner, I sat out in my yard, enjoying the night sky which seemed much clearer today though I did not see the moon.

Last Friday, I went to the local planetarium and observatory, struggling to keep awake during the show, enjoying nonetheless the lecture on the night sky, afterwards walking to the observatory to peek at the huge telescope, glimpsing only 2 tiny stars through its lens. But I learned a lot, especially the times when Jupiter or Saturn are visible in this part of the world, admiring the ancient telescope which used to be in Princeton during the time Albert Einstein was teaching; the guide remarking  the great physicist would have peeked through its lens. The show ended at about 8:30 pm and I went home to watch the 2nd season of Homeland, watching the whole series to take advantage of the weekend promotion, which ended last Monday.  I also watched some DVDs about the moon that I borrowed from the library, enjoying the film after recently observing the harvest moon through my binoculars several evenings past in my back yard. I decided to learn more about astronomy especially about the moon since it’s the only object I see clearly in my circumstances and equipment. I don’t think I will spend more on telescopes but night watching is a good way to enjoy my patio.

Last night I wanted to watch the news about the government shutdown, but I felt tired and read books instead, my mind doing a ‘shutdown’ of its own, sick and tired of the posturing and inane bickering by clueless politicians. I debate this subject often with my colleague at work, breaking the taboo of avoiding the discussion of politics, religion or sex; where I take on the role as a liberal leftist while my neighbor as a Tea party libertarian, enjoying our discussions in a purely sporting fashion, to keep awake during the day. The discussions proved stimulating and fun although I fear that I should not be talking about this subject being a recent transplant. But I can’t help myself with all the excitement generated by media. I wonder what happened in the first shutdown, though it seemed to be quieter today than in the Clinton years, possibly because the public is jaded and tired of the circus in congress. I think the public resignation will be the true lesson of this event, despite what the president had said that the one does not cause a shutdown since the US economy is the foundation for the world economy and the US dollar the worlds’ reserve currency. Reasoning falls on deaf ears especially since the debt ceiling and Obama care have no connection at all.

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