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But I always thought Adam was funny! OR "Gardening with theHumor Impaired"! ;-D

Hi, Folks!

Speaking of allergy-free gardening, it appears that some folks on this list
are allergic to *ADAM*!  Now, I realize it's possible to be allergic to
nearly anything, but, personally, I find an Adam allergy rather disquieting
(and that's before he gave me his credit card number as ACGA Emergency
Office Assistant to re-up his membership [for TWO years, no less -- unlike
the rest of us who simply re-up for the year and hope we'll all still be in
business for another! ;-)] and I totally abused my position and bought lots
of COOL solar-powered dohickies for my new pond [which is in my backyard
rather than up at the community garden -- bad, BAD me!]) !! ;-D

The symptoms appear as follows:  Someone posts a question or comment about
gardening in general to the list.  Adam replies, usually in a humorous tone,
with his thoughts on the topic and related his experiences gardening in NYC.
I'm JUST about to respond with examples of how we do things in Southeastern
Pennsylvania (which is ALWAYS superior to anything they do in NYC! ;-)),
when someone posts an allergic reaction, stating that:

1) Adam isn't funny

2) What they do in NYC isn't the way the rest of the world does things

Well, DUH!  My impression (and it could be that I've spent waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay
too long answering polishing garlic bulbs with a toothbrush and then
answering even more obscure phone calls, e-mail and snail mail at the ACGA
office than anyone ever DARES to post here!) is that Adam is simply trying
to start a conversation and begins, as Wendell Berry in his latest book,
"Life is A Miracle" (reading it because I have to review it -- stay tuned
for the review coming soon to this list!) states, that we all must begin
when we dicuss anything, with his own life history and experiences.
(Unfortunately, in Adam's case, that history means being a community
gardener in NYC  -- but gosh, *somebody* has to live in NYC and considering
that many of the gardens are still there IN SPITE of Guiliani, I'd say that
Adam is doing a decent job.) *I've* thought (although what do garlic growers
*really* know -- it's the Eggplant People who have true Enlightenment! ;-P)
that Adam never meant his posts as the be-all and end-all of knowledge on a
topic -- rather, he was hoping that the folks who garden in different parts
of the country would add to the thread and share THEIR ideas on the topic,
too.  (A few NYC folks would probably chime in and tell Adam he's full of
compost, but that's just the way they all are up there! ;-D)

The point, I always thought, was to stimulate discussion ABOUT THE TOPIC!
Instead, we seem to be getting this allergic reaction that, like all
allergic reactions, roars itself into a rash about something that is
inherently innocuous and is so fixated on dealing with the allergern to the
exclusion of all else.

Personally, I think there's a lot more knowledge on this list that isn't
getting tapped because (almost always a lurker, usually west of the
Missippi) suddenly burts forth and ends the TOPIC by attacking not what Adam
said, but how he said it.  Maybe it's just an East Coast phenomea (we're
gardening under EXTRESS stress out here, folks), but lots of us HAVE to use
humor or we'd be carted out to the funny farm while our gardens were paved
over to enrich developers who'd LOVE to fit us with concrete shoes if they
could only figure out the tax deduction!  A little tolerance to other's
speech patterns and a willingness to share knowledge, rather than sow
discord could go a long way to making community gardening a "legitmate"
rather than "temporary" land use in North America.

Personally, I think Adam's funny.  And he does it all in a lot fewer words
that I can ever muster! ;-)

So, what do you think?

Dorene Pasekoff, Coordinator
St. John's United Church of Christ Organic Community Garden

A mission of 
St. John's United Church of Christ, 315 Gay Street, Phoenixville, PA  19460

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