Saturday 24 April 2010


I spent quite some time this afternoon moving plants around. Mostly, tomato plants from one greenhouse to the other. As a result, I can report that I have grown 39 Maskotka, 55 Red Cherry, 34 Black Russian, 22 Green Zebra, 40 Cuor di Bue, 37 Principe Borghese, 27 Gardeners Delight, 38 San Marzano and 42 Tigerella and an unidentified tomato without a label that became separated from its colleagues.

I thought I'd got over my habit of counting everything, but it seems that it's still lurking somewhere in the warm dark recesses of my comfort zone.

Funny, isn't it, the things you do as a child as a more-or-less compulsive habit? Like stepping on the lines in the pavement, or not, depending. I'm not sure I'm quite ready to share, actually. It's not that I did anything particularly weird, but I don't know if they were the sort of thing that anyone might have done or if they were peculiar to me. And I'd not care for you to think I'm odd.

The sight of Gordon Brown busy pressing the flesh while being serenaded by an Elvis must be one of the more bemusing events of this election campaign. I went out for dinner with some elderly friends two days into the campaign and we all gloomily agreed that we were already sick of it. It's not the election or even the politicians - repellent though so many of them are, at least their jobs are on the line. It's the ghastly journalists, who yabber on endlessly, speculating and hypothesising.


Anonymous said...

I envy the British short election campaign time. Here in the U.S. it seems never-ending. Many of the political pundits seem to be very full of themselves and babble too much.

Z said...

Well, the official campaign is short but we've been building up to it for months. Of course, some of the earlier speculation was exactly when the election would be called - it was left almost as late as it could be.

The pundits are wetting themselves with joy in the hope of it being a close result, in view of the opinion polls. There will be all the more for them to bang on about.

Marion said...

I'd like four of your Gardeners Delights, please.
I had an odd childhood habit that I wouldn't want to divulge, too. Sometimes I find I still want to do it and I do.

Dandelion said...

Yes, it's the journalists. They're not elected, and yet they're messing with the election process. I don't think they should be allowed. I think all paid media should be abolished.

Dave said...

Counting things (and avoiding cracks on pavements) is very important.

Christopher said...

Odd? By no means. Agreeably exceptional, yes, in so many ways. (Not counting having stopped sucking your thumb.)

Cuor di bue = beefheart? I sometimes grow beefsteak tomatoes, massive things with fluted segments. I wonder if they're the same?

Malcolm Cinnamond said...

Journalists are dreadful people. Ex-journalists are worse.

Anonymous said...

"Trittst du auf die Lücken, bricht's deiner Mutter den Rücken."
If you step on the lines it brakes your mother's back.
I have no idea how or when this saying developed. Obviously it has a municipal connotation, only after sidewalks were built one can step on the lines or gaps between stones.

savannah said...

i keep clinging to the fact that we still have free elections, but my confidence is fading fast here in the states. it's more and more about money and influence. when did national elections turn into high school popularity contests? *sigh* xoxo

Z said...

Investigative journalism is one thing, and reporting facts is another - for a recent example, the MPs' and Lords' expenses scandal. It's the speculative pundits that are so tedious, and mischief-making to boot.

Ex-journalists should all be banned to small islands and made to keep pigs, Malc. That'll learn 'em.

I have indeed stopped sucking my own thumb, Christopher. I do have dreadful other habits, though.

I'm not surprised that Dave counts things - actually, I'm quite surprised when people don't know, for example, how many steps there are in a flight they use regularly. If you're carrying something you can't see over, it's necessary to know when you've reached the end so you don't fall over. But counting things *because* - well, I agree. I hardly ever avoid cracks in pavements these days though - but, like Marion, I do it (and other things) if I want to. But then I don't have a mother any more, so maybe it doesn't matter. I shall have to remember your saying, Mago, and intone it impressively at people (who won't understand me).

It is a beefsteak tomato, Christopher, but not one of the very segmented types. Principe Borghese is a plum tomato and I bought the seeds in Italy. I like to buy seeds on holiday. And I like to try different varieties, though as I had so many seeds left over, these are all ones I've grown before.

About the only thing in favour of all this malarkey, Savannah, is that a lot of young people who hadn't bothered to register to vote now have. One can only hope that they now actually read up about the parties and don't just go by hype.

Z said...

By the way, Maskotka is a very good outdoor bush variety, so it's useful for pots and tubs. I sometimes have had blight in outdoor tomatoes in the ground - though not for the past few years, so maybe the fungus (?) has died out in my garden.