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Oysters have never been better than they are right now. Their fattening time begins in October as the weather cools off.  They go right on improving and being well worth eating until early spring.

With warmer weather and the sounds of Spring birds, my mind goes to growing food.  I recently read a great article in the Jan 12 addition of  Common Dreams (online news service) by Frances Moore Lappé called “Farming for a Small Planet.”  Lappé writes, “People yearn for alternatives to industrial agriculture, but they are worried.

A surge in boardings in 2017 pushed Washington State Ferries to its highest ridership since 2002. Last year, the nation’s largest ferry system carried nearly 24.5 million people, enough to fill CenturyLink Field every day of the year. Ridership grew by more than 250,000 over 2016, increasing for the ninth consecutive year.

“Mark 4 at 12 o’clock,” was Dad’s signal to get ready to shoot.  “Mark 4” meant that there were four ducks flying right toward us.  They were Mallards we were hunting, and they were coming right over head.  I looked up to shoot and the flock veered away and out of range.  They had seen my face.  Any shot over 150 feet was wasted as Mom’s 20 gauge wasn’t effective.
 

If you live on Vashon, are concerned about your carbon footprint and wonder what you can do about it,  you’ll appreciate this article.  It describes our situation.

One great singer can make make you lean in and listen, but when two voices come together in an inspired pairing… that is truly special. Two voices, one song.

Widely considered Britain’s most popular artist, David Hockney is a global sensation with exhibitions in London, New York, Paris and beyond, attracting millions of visitors worldwide. Now entering his 9th decade, Hockney shows absolutely no evidence of slowing down or losing his trademark boldness.

Vashon Events is pleased to announce a new partnership with Vashon Center for the Arts to showcase local bands at the Katherine L. White Theater on First Fridays, beginning on February 2nd. In coordination with the First Friday

One way to think about our thinking is that at every level, from sensory perception to the highest levels of abstraction, it involves an act of comparison to a point of reference.  At the level of sensory perception, an incoming stimulus is compared to the threshold of stimulation of a neuron. 

I have been staring at the floor now for years, even though it has not been a pretty sight. While the collective sprawl of white pine decking came along to replace the pressboard sheets that had made up the first floor in this house just about thirty years ago,

A lot of people who had to sell their homes at a loss in the last ten years might disagree with that sentiment, but it has worked for Charlotte. She stood her ground, er, dirt, through the recession, and now her dirt is worth more than ever.

Each year, according to Brad Lemley, in his book The Secrets of Underground Medicine published in 2017, 2,00,000 people in America get the frightening diagnosis of cancer of some sort.  Despite millions of dollars spent yearly on cancer research,  and on treatments, the percentage of those cured does not rise.

In the article in The Beachcomber about housing prices on Vashon, several things seemed clear to me:  1) demand far exceeds supply, 2) properties always go to the highest bidder, 3) low and moderate incomes lose out, and 4) everybody seems to think this is an inexorable situation like the tides or the seasons.

Vashon Maury Island Audubon Society presents Maria Mudd Ruth and her two recent books on Thursday, January 11th at 7 pm.  Event is free and open to the public

Best known for his sweeping international and political fiction narratives, including The Woman Who Lost Her Soul, winner of the Dayton Peace Prize and finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, Shacochis is novelist, essayist, journalist and educator

As a reminder from last time, what I’m addressing, to a large extent, in this column is epistemology…the theory of knowledge…the study of how we make sense of things.  I was first introduced to epistemology by reading Hermann Hesse’s 1946 Nobel Prize winning novel, The Glass Bead Game, as a junior in college.  However,

In my previous column  I mentioned Chicken Soup for flu prevention and to ease symptoms if you already have a cold, stuffed up nose, or the flu. How do you know the difference between a cold and the flu ? With a cold you don’t have a fever; with the flu you have cold symptoms plus both a fever and aches. Both are caused by viruses.

“I’m sure there was some familiarization, but the question is, how familiar was he with        it?”      
Allen Zarembski- Univ. of Delaware

Right from the start, I will have to state in this latest struggle with words in this space, that for purposes of clarity I will have to suspend (at least this time around) my substitution of the term 45* for the name of the so-called current president of these United States.

Well, friends, comes now the end of another year, and with it come Christmas, Kwanzaa, and the Solstice which will mean longer days and more light for us up here in the Northern Hemisphere. Hanukkah has passed. The sixth of January will bring Epiphany for western Christianity,

Our Grandma Ollie always had us kids pour her beer down the side of the glass to keep the bubbles from escaping thus making less foam.  She gauged our success by the height of the head of beer in her glass.

The setting is rainy, wintry Vashon, yet Red Ranger Came Calling: A Guaranteed True Christmas Story is a warm-hearted musical for all ages and Drama Dock’s holiday gift to the Vashon community. The show runs Thursday-Saturday, Dec. 21, 22 and 23 at Vashon High School Theatre

Vashon Events is once again partnering with the Red Bicycle Bistro & Sushi to host a showcase of holiday songs to benefit Island Nonprofits this holiday season. The Fifth Annual Will Sing for Vashon will take place on Friday, December 22nd beginning at 8pm. The event is always an open call for Vashon Island musicians to perform a holiday song. In the past over 25 acts perform through the night and this year is no exception.

The winter solstice has always seemed to me to be more meaningful than the summer solstice.  The promise of longer days at the darkest and coldest time of year is more heartening than the beginning of shorter days in the summer.  The darkness of December lends itself to stillness, introspection, and peace:  Silent Night.

To remain healthy through this coming holiday season, we need to pamper our immune systems. Iron feeds the immune system. Think red meat, the best food source. Think zinc gluconate, a 13 milligram  lozenge of it at the very start of a cold, every two hours for up to a week but not longer. Too much zinc actually weakens immunity says Reader’s Digest book 1801 Home Remedies.