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What's your Permies take on the 4th of July?  RSS feed

 
gardener
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Location: Little Belt Mountains, MT
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I thought this would be an interesting thread for those in America getting ready to celebrate Independence Day tomorrow - what are your plans? How are you recognizing the day? Without getting too political (as I know this subject often can), what's your homage to independence going to be tomorrow?

We're not keen on fireworks here, especially with fire season underway, so we usually take on some sort of outdoor project - garden, fence, whatever makes our spirits sing. My husband's sick, so I'll be taking the sheepdog and the baby up the mountain to collect some wild edibles tomorrow.

I'm taking tomorrow to consider a little wild edibles side business in our small shops here - just selling jars of dried mullein, with recipe cards and such for toddies. Another stroke for our self reliance, and one that won't take much of my time to put together.

I thought this was a nice article on using gardening to push for your own independence: The Importance of Gardening on Independence Day.

What about you guys, what are you up to tomorrow?
 
pollinator
Posts: 246
Location: Unincorporated Pierce County, WA Zone 7b
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Overall, just not a fan.  It seems to bring out the mob mentality in our area.

The fireworks here go for days.  The big ones.  Tomorrow night the ground will actually rumble.

I have never understood a culture that celebrates winning a war by making it sound like a war zone for days on end.  People are fleeing war zones and we're audibly recreating one.  I've been listing to the sounds of bombs since Friday night. 

Not to mention the fires. And the stressed livestock. 

Tons of industrial meat on the grill.  I, at the last minute, thought I might pick up a side of ribs and looked at the grocery store.  They were so cheap I just walked away; there is no way they came from a good place.  I'll dig something out of the freezer instead.

I'm not anti-4th of July.  I like grilling and cherry pie and the old-fashioned sort of fireworks.  That's not what this county is about anymore.  It's about going to the casino to buy fireworks then spending a week blowing the county up.

 
steward
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Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
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It's about going to the casino to buy fireworks then spending a week blowing the county up. 

That stands to reason...
who else in the world has a national anthem with ..."Rocket's red glare, the bombs bursting in air..." ?

Our nation was forged through a war, and it has maintained itself with a (seemingly) continuous stream of wars.

If you can read, thank a teacher.
If you can read English, thank a soldier.

 
garden master
Posts: 2811
Location: Cache Valley, zone 4b, Irrigated, 9" rain in badlands.
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Just another work day for me... The irrigation water comes down out of the mountain just the same as always. Might as well put it to good use.

 
gardener
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Location: Central Oklahoma (zone 7a)
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A day like any other, only with agitated dogs to soothe.

Without, as you say, getting too deep into politics: the patriotic pride I was taught as a child has not robustly survived my further education in history and modern affairs.
 
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Location: Northeast Oklahoma, Formerly Zone 6b, Now Officially Zone 7
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Hmmm....just thinking about this over coffee.   I think I can do this without scraping my fender on the cider press

I read the Declaration of Independence.  Always strikes me hard that it's written to be read aloud, real loud.  Still is in our town, I've read where some places have stopped; too inflammatory or something like it.  Can't help but ponder that when it was written, more than 95% of our nation were self-sustaining farmers, or very close to it.  Occurs to me that would constitute real freedom if we could get back to that state, or at least closer.  To me the DoI is simply a clear statement to 'just leave me alone and let me do my thing" but doesn't absolve you of doing the right thing (and being nice).  How convoluted it has become. 

Perhaps your personal vintage has a lot to do with how you feel and act over the 4th.  I was born right after WWII to parents who grew up in the Great Depression.  My father fought in the Pacific for 3 1/2 years, against folks whose mission statement was clearly to deprive people (like my parents) of life and liberty.  No real gray areas there.  Not like today when we don't seem to know what we're fighting for or who.  My father despised the Vietnam war and the politicians who prosecuted it for his belief that it completely lacked of purpose.  I suppose he was in a position to know.

PTSD wasn't talked about then and was considered a shameful condition; as a kid we didn't have to worry about only the dogs getting upset over fireworks. 

240 years later and we can still talk about it and disagree with one another, or even protest against it without someone busting down the door and throwing us in jail. And isn't that an achievement worth a quiet moment of reflection?  

Have a safe Fourth, don't blow any fingers off.  Me, I'm having some grass fed beef burger and veg from my garden.


 
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Location: northeastern USA
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YAY!!!  4th of July - it's a DAY OFF.  hahahahahaha.  As a 'wannabe' farmer, or at least, wannabe surrounded by sustainable farming, I work a full time J-O-B off the land to pay for the land - not time enough to do real farm work.  ANY day off work in the middle of growing season is a window of opportunity to try to catch up, so I get to work outside instead if in.   Without enough knowledge or experience, most of the time I don't know if I'm doing busy work or something productive (but at least it's 'exercise') and don't know if I'm removing what should stay or leaving something that should get pulled out, but I plow ahead anyway.   This weekend - independence for a sawtooth oak that was choking under grape & creeper vines, multiflora rose, and who knows what else (lot's of 'who knows what' around here); freedom from choking weeds for what I thought were huckleberries (but discovered are a mix of different who knows what); chopped down (and burned - is that permie?) wild parsnip before the seeds dropped (only need to get blistered ONCE to know what THAT is); and now I need a break from the sun, so have left rescuing the daylilies to complete later.  (I brought yellow daylilies from a cabin I lived in 30+years ago - reminds me of the encouragement of the landlord back there, who was willing to loan me a bit of seed money when I found the land I'm now living on...  And the smaller focal point of yellow provides a nice contrast to the orange daylilies that abound.)   Happy growing!
InThereSomewhere.JPG
[Thumbnail for InThereSomewhere.JPG]
looking for yellow daylilies
 
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The homage to independence day here will be a bit of puttering in the garden, part of which is to gather edibles for a nice meal later in the day.  In terms of reflecting on the holiday itself, I tend to think in terms of Daniel Quinn's "Takers versus Leavers" and note that around the signing of the DoI there were both takers and leavers wanting to weigh in on the governance of the country....as seems to be just about the case anywhere.  My understanding of Quinn is that 'Leavers' are more live-and-let-live and aspire to a life with a low footprint, which seems to be a Permie inclination.  But also reflecting on that time-period, one can be thankful for the fact that some king, duke, or stand-in isn't knocking on your door every other month to gather your boys for the militia or simply take your goats and grain on a whim.   Not perfect, but with age life increasingly seems to take on more of that "work-in-progress" appearance.
 
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Location: south-central ME, USA - zone 5a/4b
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Eric Thomas wrote:I read the Declaration of Independence.  Always strikes me hard that it's written to be read aloud, real loud.  Still is in our town, I've read where some places have stopped; too inflammatory or something like it.  Can't help but ponder that when it was written, more than 95% of our nation were self-sustaining farmers, or very close to it.  Occurs to me that would constitute real freedom if we could get back to that state, or at least closer.  To me the DoI is simply a clear statement to 'just leave me alone and let me do my thing" but doesn't absolve you of doing the right thing (and being nice).  How convoluted it has become. 


It's funny - this is exactly what I feel about the whole thing. This country was founded on principals of self-sufficiency, self-education and reliance on your local community over some far-off bureaucracy run by rich men wearing fancy clothing. We were farmers and craftsmen, looking for a better life created by us and for us. We wanted to be free to do our own thing without interference by depts of making you sad, which may have looked a little different in that day but certainly were exactly that. "Just leave me alone and let me do my thing" is exactly right!

I wrote up a thing years ago on the whole "the pursuit of Happiness" phrase being as it's so easily misunderstood in today's McModern World View. See, our country's founding fathers were men of philosophy, often citing John Locke as inspiration and using terms and phrases directly from his works. Thomas Jefferson himself is quoted as saying the John Locke was one of the "three greatest men to have ever lived". That use of a capital letter on "Happiness", if you're familiar with philosophical treatises, denotes it as having a very specific definition, and when we look for that, we do find it in Locke's works... The gist of it is that by "pursuit of Happiness", the DoI is specifically citing as an "unalienable Right" the act of removing "pain" and "uneasiness" from our lives. These (pain and uneasiness) are contrary to, and therefore hindrances of, the experience of Happiness.

John Locke - An Essay Concerning Human Understanding, Chapter 21, Section 42 wrote:Happiness and misery are the names of two extremes, the utmost bounds whereof we know not... But of some degrees of both we have very lively impressions; made by several instances of delight and joy on the one side, and torment and sorrow on the other...


John Locke - An Essay Concerning Human Understanding, Chapter 21, Section 36 wrote:For, as much as whilst we are under any uneasiness, we cannot apprehend ourselves happy...pain and uneasiness being, by every one, concluded and felt to be inconsistent with happiness...that which of course determines the choice of our will to the next action will always be- the removing of pain, as long as we have any left, as the first and necessary step towards happiness.


John Locke - An Essay Concerning Human Understanding, Chapter 21, Section 61 wrote:But as soon as any new uneasiness comes in, this happiness is disturbed, and we are set afresh on work in the pursuit of happiness.


and, to quote myself here:
Me wrote:There is no mention of property or "possessions" here, only a very clear definition of "Happiness" being a spectrum of experience we perceive through impressions of "delight and joy", and of its pursuit being the removal of the hindrances to those perceptions.


How's that make you feel about depts of making you sad?   I truly do believe that permaculture, in all its varied forms and practices, are exactly in line with what the Declaration of Independence was purveying with its most famous second sentence. That "People Care" ethic is all about people having what they need to thrive, right? We permies, as trained and disciplined thinkers in whole systems approaches, should find a lot of encouragement in hearing an echo of the past reinforcing the messages we preach today.

So off to do some more puttering about in the gardens
 
Destiny Hagest
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Tristan Vitali wrote:I truly do believe that permaculture, in all its varied forms and practices, are exactly in line with what the Declaration of Independence was purveying with its most famous second sentence. That "People Care" ethic is all about people having what they need to thrive, right? We permies, as trained and disciplined thinkers in whole systems approaches, should find a lot of encouragement in hearing an echo of the past reinforcing the messages we preach today.


Exactly! So much this. To me, permaculture is independence and freedom, and it feels so good to practice it every day.

Today we went and harvested mullein and bee balm, and of course I produced copious amounts of food in the kitchen in celebration of my husband being home. We talked about plans to start our own business together (one of these days when we get the time), we ate berry trifle, and picked wildflowers with our son. Very nice way to spend the day

Eric Thomas wrote:Hmmm....just thinking about this over coffee.   I think I can do this without scraping my fender on the Cider Press.


I know what you mean, I cringed as I put this thread up - I seem to start fires inadvertently around here sometimes But I think we've mostly done a fine job here of keeping it from going the direction that lands it in the naughty section of Permies
 
gardener
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Location: Federal Way, WA - Western Washington (Zone 8 - temperate maritime)
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Replying to this question from someone, I'm afraid I said that if I hung the flag out, as I used to do, it would have to be upside down... the naval sign of distress?   But I am proud to be an American when I'm working with like-minded folk who are taking action (a rare commodity), to further our patriotic ideals.  I'm afraid the rest of the 'cultural norm' for this date just seems more and more hollow the older I get.  I either know too much... or maybe not enough?  ;)
 
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