Monthly Archives: December 2011

Winter Solstice

It is my recommendation that you not tell your great horned owl that some people celebrate the Winter Solstice with a citrus bath.

You might find your bath interrupted by gallons of ice cold orange juice dumped over your head, all in the name of Dongzhi.

How are you celebrating the solstice?

Are you celebrating Christmas? Does your version of Saint Nicholas ride a sleigh or a Yule Goat?

Are you celebrating Hanukkah? Do you light your menorah with oil or candles?

Do you celebrate Goru with the Pays Dogon of Mali?

If you are in the Southern Hemisphere, then you are celebrating the Summer Solstice. Perhaps you are tying the sun at Machu Pichu?

Here on the back of the hill in deepest, darkest Brooklyn, we are enjoying mulled cider, leftover latkes, and Bubo’s fondness for Christmas carols.

We are also rubbing salve on a dragon who learned the hard way that even dragon scales are flammable when doused with olive oil for the “historically accurate” living menorah.

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Pluviculture

There are wicked storms brewing all over the country, pets. New Mexico had a blizzard, freezing winds are slicing through Minnesota, and it has been raining across the East Coast. The dragons are organizing a “living menorah” for Hanukkah, though with the rain I am less concerned for my non-fire retardant house.

The slick weather has kept me indoors, making latkes with Mordecai and I hope everyone who travels to Grand Army Plaza for the giant menorah lighting will stay dry and warm.

All this weather-watching brings me to today’s word.

Pluviculture is a noun meaning the science of making rain. Originally from the Latin for rain, built on the model of agriculture.

During the Dust Bowl era of the American Great Depression, traveling showmen criss-crossed the country attempting to “make rain”.

Cloud seeding has been utilized since the 1940’s, and not just for ending droughts. The US military had a rainmaking operation called Operation Popeye intended to slow down military truck activity in Vietnam during the Vietnam War by increasing the rains over the country.

Nowadays, rainmaking has even taken on a metaphorical meaning, referring to the process of bringing new clients and new money into a company.

No need for pluviculture in Brooklyn these days; Mother Nature is taking care of the precipitation for us.

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Channukkah

Happy Chanukkah to those of you who celebrate! The dragons are attempting a “living menorah” each night from the roof. Thank goodness it’s raining. This house is NOT fire retardant.
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Bubo’s Early Gift

It feels rather wintery in the Northeast; grey skies, chilled air and the scent of apple cider everywhere.

Bubo received an early Winter Holiday gift – friends Tiffany and Joe celebrated Halloween with a Jack O’Lantern dedicated to my dear pet.

Joe did an excellent job carving Bubo’s likeness, don’t you think?

It’s amazing how much like a little girl a Great Horned Owl can sound when excited, you know?

Do you celebrate anything from my home? Do send me pictures! I would love to see them.

Now, I must investigate what is happening in my garden. I keep hearing some rather suspicious sounds from out there. There’s a pre-holiday fervor in the house, what with so many different holidays being celebrated here, and it’s gotten everyone rather frenzied and mischievous.

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