Even though I'm a warm-weather gal, I love having a week of cold, short days between Christmas and New Years. In between reconciling my books (quite a task) and finishing up chores, I am feasting on Michael Pollan's book, Second Nature: A Gardener's Education.
You've heard of him if you are at all interested in the food that you eat. His books The Botany of Desire, The Omnivore's Dilemma and In Defense of Food are all at the top of my list of faves. He writes the way that I think, combining science with a back story. If I ever get the chance to develop my own college course (!), it will be on the social implications of agricultural advancement (and the historical impact of plant diseases). Pollan is an expert on these topics.
Here's an except from the introduction of Second Nature:
"For soon I also came to the realization that I would not learn to garden very well before I'd also learned about a few other things: about my proper place in nature (was I within my rights to murder that woodchuck that had been sacking my vegetable garden all spring?); about the somewhat peculiar attitudes toward the land than an American is born with (why is it that the neighbors have taken such a keen interest in the state of my lawn?); about the troubled borders between nature and culture; and about the experience of place, the moral implications of landscape design, and several other questions that the wish to harvest a few decent tomatoes had not prepared me for."
Well, back to my bookkeeping. But first, I'm going to stash my new book in the storage room under my house to alleviate the temptation to curl up on the couch and keep reading.....
Happy New Year!