Local author Amy Stewart has become my very favorite non-fiction writer, not only because she’s so fun to read, but because her writing is so very practical in everyday life.
Case in point: the other day, a mildly tipsy houseguest was about to tell me a story about banana slugs for the third time. I deftly maneuvered the conversation to the gory sex lives of banana slugs (thanks, Amy!), and the conversation instantly became electrified.
Amy’s now turning her attention from frightening dinner guests and alarming nature-loving friends to everybody’s favorite topic, alcohol. (At least, it’s everybody’s favorite topic in my house. We’ve got a pretty big bar.) Amy’s had a fantastic column in our local paper for as long as I can remember, and she’s just re-named it The Drunken Botanist. Here’s my favorite snippet from the first one:
“Do yourself a favor and buy something decent. After all, if you’re not much of a drinker, the bottle will last forever, and if you are a drinker-well, you’ve made the commitment, so drink good booze. “
You’ll all be unsurprised to learn that the brands she recommends are almost all sold out locally. Glad I snagged the second-to-last Velvet Falernum in Humboldt County!
And since we’re dropping links, if you haven’t yet read Amy’s Humboldt County-based novel about the death of the printed word, go on over to her website and check it out. It’s newly available in pretty much every e-reader format out there, so all you i-something users will be very happy (it’s out on Kindle, too).
Next up, two organic pest control methods involving beverages are put to the test. Beer drinker Kathryn Olmstead wanted to see if slugs have as good of taste in beer as she does, so she emptied out a number of beers into pans to see which they preferred.
In a disappointing turn of events, it seems that slugs have godawful taste in beer, preferring Budweiser to the finer brands, like Guinness. I mean, it’s not like there’s ever any leftover Guinness, so maybe that’s a good thing, but Budweiser? Gross!
Last, The Healthy Home Economist has a tip about deterring flies from your picnic table area. Apparently, you can fill Ziploc bags with water and hang them above your seating area, and something about that just creeps the hell out of your flies. I’m sure it has something to do with the unseemly number of eyeballs they have.
Hey, it’s nearly free, not too big of a pain and just might save your food from fly footprints. I’m filing this under the “worth a try” section of my brain. Just don’t let the children loose with baseball bats or you might get an unexpected shower.
That’s it for this week. Enjoy the sunshine!