Nearly a month has gone by without any new posts, despite my recent statements about blogging in earnest. I'm finding that teaching writing classes not only involves lots of time grading papers but also focuses my interest on writing. I'm actually writing a lot in various journals and notebooks, but not focusing in the short run on material I want to post here. We'll see what develops. Let's just say, my cessation of blogging is not due to deterioration of my health. I might be back soon. It probably depends on how spring unfolds - wildflowers, lizards, interesting insects, etc., usually fire me up and prompt me to keep my camera batteries charged.
I have been teaching since 1965 and have recently joined the English Department as an Associate Faculty member at Feather River College. Recently taught Nature Literature in America and am currently teaching Interpersonal Communication and Basic Reading and Writing.
My previous post was a short photo-essay on a non-native tree, the pistache. The current one is more typical of my work in that it focuses on a native species, the Mountain Ash, and pays some attention to the season, in this case the "holiday" season. To partially answer my title question: Christmas is partly about red and green, thus the Mountain Ash. It is also about buying lots of stuff, thus the despicable message on the window of a local shop. Maybe this was meant to be satirical, but maybe it wasn't. It might be interesting to do a natural history of Black Friday. Some merchants are acting a bit sheepish and apologetic about continuing the pressure to launch the Christmas shopping season earlier and earlier, yet doing it anyway. One such example is a merchant calling the big day "plaid Friday." I hope that posting the bottom photo will suffice to get my cynical streak out of the way. Then, over the coming days I will post items about ties between nature and traditional celebrations of the season. From the perspective of a naturalist, the many different pagan celebrations are the richer field to mine. Stay tuned, and Happy Thanksgiving.