It’s Hugh, your friendly neighborhood chaos muppet, and this is another episode (issue?) of my personal newsletter I call The Hughsletter. I’m glad you’re here.
We crossed over a million “official” deaths from COVID in the US this week. I say “oficial” because we know this number is an undercount, but that knowledge only serves to make the horror of it all the more real. And the leak from the Supreme Court that shows the very real rolling back of the rights of women has many of us shook. And there’s still a war in Ukraine, with over 46,000 folks dead from the Russian invasion.
As is my custom, when the world feels overwhelming, I find solace in my yard – I plant things as an act of resistance. And as I talk about below in The Half-Acre Habitat, I’m working hard to turn my half acre lot into a place hospitable for all the creatures that live there, not just the human ones.
Going forward, each week I will dedicate one post to my progress towards that end. Maybe a project I worked on, maybe a tour of the plants in bloom, maybe a discussion of a setback. I will be showing my work.
On the blog this week
Firehouse Soup: John’s recipe for never-fail soup.
I Know.: The leak from the Supreme Court has dredged up a lot of bad memories for a lot of women. This is my letter to them.
The Bad News: Shelden’s brother died, but that’s not the whole story.
The Half-Acre Habitat: Flowers and birds galore!
A Closet Full of Grief: A metaphor I find helpful.
Things I found while looking for other things
I love Dolly. Check out this transcript of an interview, where she talks about her new book, new album, and her work ethic.
“I don’t have time to burn out. I’m burning up. Sometimes I get tired, sometimes I get a little, you know, I say, Lordy, I’m going to slow down a little bit or I am going to burn up. Because I’m a creative person and every new thing will create something else. And you know, energy, begets energy and creativity begets creativity. So I just really have to stay with it. Cause I want to see things happen. I want to make things happen.”
Colorized footage from 1929 of a fashion shoot. Flappers, short hair, “modern” swimwear. There is so much to love about this. These women were models and look… normal? The flapper was a proto-feminist in an age that didn’t permit them much – married women couldn’t even have a bank account in their own name for decades yet.
If you are interested in habitat building, I have a couple of books I can recommend. The Humane Gardener is marvelous and recent. But back in 1993, Noah’s Garden came on the scene and while it’s not well known now, I think it is a wonderful, beautifully written book. And The Living Landscape is a wonderful, large-format book with sound science and lovely photos of what’s possible.