Monday, July 02, 2007


Scenes From a Vacation

And...we're back. A few vignettes from the last week:

And now back to our regularly scheduled blog.

Great to have you back! I missed my daily fix
Glad to have you back - I can't believe I am checking this blog at 6am on the off chance that you would post - I am not even an academic.
We live on a military base, which probably explains how my 5-yr-old daughter has learned to call cadence. All exclamations and protests are now in loud, lengthy, boot camp form. When we're out of the military (soon!)we're moving to a commune in the hopes that she picks up meditation. Silent meditation.
I've wondered about the corn-height thing too.

(For those confused by the bit: our grandfather raised corn, and "knee-high [corn plants] by the Fourth of July" was an axiom in our family, a truth along the lines of "the sun rises in the east.")

My entirely uneducated guesses:

--Grandpa grew crops in the upper midwest. That short, late-starting growing season put his corn behind the schedule of most places. I live in the south, and the local corn is dang tall already.

--The engineered and hybridized varieties of corn grown by modern commercial farmers probably grow a heck of a lot faster than the seeds our grandfather planted in the seventies and eighties.

--Also, he was growing sweet corn, not "dent" or "field" corn, which is what most large farms grow. Maybe sweet corn grows slower?

--He didn't fertilize the bejeezus out of his garden, if I remember right.

My personal theory: communism. I blame the Reds. Can't trust 'em.
I also grew up with "knee-high by the fourth of July" as the rule of thumb.

In my limited experience (18 years of corn watching) this was determined by the amount of rain that fell in the spring. Too much or too little, and the corn would be too short.

This was in far upstate NY (dairy country), and applied to feed corn as well as sweet corn.
I imagine in a few years it'll be “What do we want? Dinner! When do we want it? Now!”

my money's on:

"Hey-HEY! Ho-HO! Empty tummies have got to GO! Hey-HEY! Ho-HO!" etc...
Welcome back! I also know the saying, which I learned in the upper midwest. On my current trip I have seen corn that is either dead (drought) or irrigated and heavily fertilized (and ready for harvest).

As for air conditioning, you can learn all you want about Carrier and Air conditioning from the ASME. You can also learn about related contributions from a comic book series they produced
by looking under the August entry.
My sweet corn is knee-high right now, a month after going in the ground, and that's on schedule. Way up north here, we also look for peas by the 4th, and (a-hem!) I had my first passel of peas tonight, the 2nd.
Good to see you back! Your kids sure are cute ... I'm eagerly awaiting progress in their capacity to cause trouble. Hmm ... maybe The Girl can go make friends with anonymous's little girl? Heh.
About the corn...I don't know about everywhere, but around here (Indiana), the saying was "The corn's as high as an elephant's eye," which is how that line made it into whatever song it was in Oklahoma. After all, in Oklahoma, the corn never even gets to be knee-high.
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