Sorry, still here. I’m going to just go ahead and institute a new policy (nay, blolicy) that says if I don’t have a new post up on any given weekday, I’m either stuck under a heavy piece of furniture, out of town, or recovering from having been out of town. That way all of you fine readers don’t clog up my inbox over and over again with concerned missives. (Missives, which, sadly, must be stuck in my spam filter.)
Last week I was in Iowa playing in the dirt with my mom—we planted many things, several of which I expect will go on to become deer food, but hope springs eternal. For those of you who don’t know my mom, she is in the midst of a long and bloody battle with the local deer population, which seems to be approaching the millions. Since shooting animals in a residental neighborhood is generally frowned upon, she’s erected an electric fence that circumfs (v.; runs the circumference of, for those of you without dictionaries handy) the entire house, making a visit to my childhood home exciting for hosta-eating deer and unwary UPS guys alike. I know this sounds like something out of a Nancy Mitford novel, but no, this is real. You’ve been warned.
Somehow though, the deer do get past the fence from time to time, so now she’s taken to spraying the tastiest plants with coyote urine, a tactic which so far seems to be working. Despite what sounds like it would be a difficult harvesting process, coyote urine is surprisingly easy to get–you can find it at www.predatorpee.com, a site that also sells skunk spray (for deterring unwanted loiterers), bobcat pee (for scaring mice) and mountain lion pee (for those of you with persistent armadillo hassles). Still not making this up. A 16 oz spray bottle of mountain lion goes for just under $30. A bargain if you’ve ever had to scrape armadillo poo off your front porch.
When I got back to Madison, I had a neatly lined-up social schedule ready and waiting, the highlight of which was surely hanging out with Irene’s Heather and her lovely beau. They took us to Zack’s Avenue Bar, the spot for Friday Night Fish Fry in these parts. It was truly wonderful, and, Irene, I think it would make a wonderfully kitschy spot for your rehearsal dinner. Just a thought.
After dinner we mingled with the hoardes at the Isthmus Jazz Festival. I feel like a dope for not comprehending what a monster affair this would be ahead of time, but now that I’ve heard a few of the headliners I get why this is such a big deal. I don’t even understand jazz but I do know that the bands I heard were pretty phenomenal. And there is just something extra good about hearing really good jazz with belly full of fried fish, a few pitchers of Leinies within reach, and two very entertaining new friends, especially when said jazz is being played outside overlooking a vast lake full of sailboats and is FREE.
Honestly, I cannot understand why anyone would want to be anywhere else.