Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Heirloom Tomato


It occurred to me that instead of buying seeds to grow, I could just buy the fruit/veggie itself and take out the seeds. Not only would this be cheaper and quicker, it would also allow me to enjoy the purchased edible. Tomatoes are quite easy to grow and after having grown a few plants, I decided to buy some heirlooms tomatoes and plant the seeds to see what happens. I didn't know the proper method to do so, but I suppose I did it just right (or there isn't a precise method - put the seeds in dirt). I cleaned the seeds off and planted them in small containers. Days later they sprouted and a few days after that I planted them in larger pots and a couple went in the "farm" out back. Yesterday I picked my first of many to come. Very exciting stuff.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

David 3, Black Widows 0


"That's a neat looking spider," I thought to myself one afternoon while putting my bike away in the garage behind my apartment. I then saw this spider again and again over the next couple days. I didn't think much of it until I saw a very unique red mark on it's belly. "I really should look this up."

My first guess was a Black Widow - mainly because it was freakishly unique and very threatening looking. Google image search "Black Widow." Yup, sure enough. The next day I did my research on how serious of an issue this was. It wasn't as terrible as I thought it would be. The bite may not be felt and the result of one would definitely be noticeable, which has an extremely low chance of killing you even if you never sought medical attention (but you'd be crazy not to). That and they lay 200 eggs at a time. Interesting. Yes, I should probably kill this.

Later that day as I put my bike away, my little friend dangled for me on the garage door. Didn't really move much - it just sat there. I grabbed a dust pan on the floor and raised it above my head. My heart started to pound inside my ears. My friend continued to dangle. BANG! Got him. BANG! Insurance.

Well that was over - until his friend seeks revenge (or the 200+ eggs hatch). A few weeks later I noticed a black spider hiding within a cinder block that one of my plants sits atop for a better sun vantage point. I moved the pot and sure enough, there were two Black Widows in the crevasses of the brick. What to do now. After a quick trip to OSH I came back with a can of spider spray and spider traps (and a Rangpur Lime tree, although totally unrelated) and took care of the situation. Two traps were placed inside the garage to await their fate and the two Black Widows were laced with chemicals. Inside their crevasses were a small collection of bugs and what appeared to be a third, dead Black Widow.

I may be in store for a Black Widow surprise someday, as I'm sure their little community of evil is surely out to get me. I suppose there are worse things to naturally have living around my apartment. There are a lot of animals I'm thankful I don't live near (and hopefully won't come in contact with).

Friday, July 3, 2009

2 Movie Wishes

As a movie buff, there has been two wishes I would love to come true. This reaches into the magical or fantastic so it obviously can't happen. But what if it could.

1 - There are certain movies that I love. As much as I love to re-watch them, I would love to be able to watch them for the first time, so be able to watch it with no knowledge of it's artist merit or narrative. To somehow wash my mind blank of any concept of the film and to experience with a fresh train of thought.

2 - Films are often not made as they intended. This can make the film either better or worse. I wish I could watch an alternative version of the film - be it with different actors, locations, budgets depending on what was originally saught. Imagine watching Tim Burton's Spiderman or Kubrick's Holocaust epic. Or The Shawshank Redemption with Kevin Costner, or to watch The Fountain with both Brad Pitt and an $80 million budget. Every time I hear that an actor had to pull our or they were intending something else to happen, I can only wonder what the film would have ended up like.