Food Foraging, Classic Chicago TV

Free-standing espaliered fruit trees (Belgian ...
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Neighborhood Fruit (www.neighborhoodfruit.com). It surely was the name of this website that got me reminiscing about childhood memories of my ethnically diverse neighborhood. Our next door neighbors, the Federici’s, cultivated grapes on an arbor that bordered our property’s fence. Beneath the arbor was a convenient bench that we pint-size kids would walk along as we plucked the juicy fruit and popped it into our mouths before our playmate’s grandpa could catch us. Now comes a group of Californians who have built a website devoted to mapping, and making public, places across the country where fruit can be harvested from trees deemed “public.” There are two categories on the site: Find Public Trees, and Fruitfillment. Unfortunately, there are not many places—other than in and around California and points east of Indiana—that are mentioned. It could be because few people are aware of this website, and it’s just a matter of time. There are other pages on the site that are definitely worth looking at. Their recipe section includes one for Bison Blackberry Soup and heart-unhealthy Fried Watermelon Rinds. The Gardening Tips page tells you how to grow square watermelons and how to grow fruit inside a bottle, for example. The San Francisco fruit foragers gather as a group to take bike rides to find fruit for the picking. Trespassing is not allowed.

Freecycle (www.yahoogroups/freecycle). I first wrote about Freecycle.org when it was in its early stages some five years ago. At that time, Valparaiso had formed a group, but there was no Michigan City group. Now there is, as I discovered during a revisit last week. And there are over 1,000 members in the local group. Freecycle is not for people looking to score a bunch of stuff for nothing. Instead, it’s for people who have usable goods that they no longer need and want to pass on to someone who needs it. To participate, you need to join the Yahoo group for your geographical area. It costs nothing, but it reaps rewards for altruism and community spirit. Check it out.

The Museum of Classic Chicago Television (www.fuzzymemories.tv/) This is just up our alley, serving up loads of old television programming from archives dating from the 1970’s. These are short videos, so you need a fast Internet connection.Here’s your chance to see Siskel and Ebert from channel 11 before the pair went national, and with Sparky the Wonder Dog. See a young Carol Marin, Fahey Flynn, Harry Porterfield, Walter Jacobsen, Johnny Morris and many more news, sports, and weathercasters. It’s not all news, either. Watch a short feature about Riverview Amusement Park, and catch the Max Headroom pirating incident of 1987. If you did not live in the Chicago viewing area or are under the age of 45, you probably don’t know what I am talking about.

Geezer Quiz (http://blog.ivman.com). Go to Ivman’s Blague to take a little multiple choice quiz. Here’s the first question: In the 1940’s, where were the automobile headlight dimmers located? I think my 1963 Dart had the same dimmer location. See if you can answer the set of approximately 20 questions. They’re fun.

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~ by IndianaDunesPoet on August 4, 2009.

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