February 26th, 2020

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Hard Things

Life is full of things which are hard or tedious or otherwise unpleasant that need doing anyhow. They help make the world go 'round, they improve skills, and they boost your sense of self-respect. But doing them still kinda sucks. It's all the more difficult to do those things when nobody appreciates it. Happily, blogging allows us to share our accomplishments and pat each other on the back.

What are some of the hard things you've done recently? What are some hard things you haven't gotten to yet, but need to do? Is there anything your online friends could do to make your hard things a little easier?
polychrome

Poem: "Strange and Twisted Creatures"

This poem is spillover from the January 22, 2019 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] pantha. It also fills the "Negative Self-Talk" square in my 6-4-18 Mixed card for the Winteriron Bingo Adventure. This poem has been sponsored by a pool with [personal profile] fuzzyred, [personal profile] erulisse, and [personal profile] ng_moonmoth. It belongs to the Christmas storyline in the Shiv thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

Warning: This poem contains intense and controversial topics. Highlight to read the warnings, some of which are spoilers. It includes hangover-like symptoms from superpower overstrain and low blood sugar, emotional upset, caregiving, guilt, feeling unworthy of help, self-loathing, reference to recent torture with superpowers (for cause), reference to recent sexual assault, ethical dilemmas and debates, revulsion, everything is awful and Gray is not okay, shying away from emotions, kinky sex issues, feeling filthy, and other emotional mayhem. If these are touchy topics for you, please consider your tastes and headspace before reading onward.

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Mood-Boosting Foods

Here are some foods ranked by amount of antidepressant qualities.

Right now, the health industry treats "depression" like it's all one thing, which is about as useful as treating "fever" that way.  Lots of different things can cause depression, which is why the same solution doesn't work for everyone.  Thus people often have to try multiple therapies before finding what works for them (if anything does). It's a gamble.

One of the things that can definitely fuck up your mood and clarity is a crummy diet.  If you eat junk you will feel bad.  That means if you feel like crap in a society with generally awful eating habits, diet is a good first thing to check when you don't feel right.  If your diet is already healthy, move on to other possible causes.  If not, consider adding more mood-boosting foods and cutting down or eliminating junk.  Depression often has multiple causes, so sometimes you'll find that one solution is not enough but combining several will work.  In this case, diet is very often one of the contributing factors, another good reason to check it.

Another aspect is that self-care in general improves mental health, and food in particular.  Try pampering yourself with healthy foods to see if you can set those as comfort foods.  If you don't have the energy to do that, but you do have people asking how they can help, ask them to bring you mood-boosting foods.
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Perennial Vegetables

These are mainstays of permaculture, but you can grow them without it too. 

I have a lot of chives -- garlic, regular, even wild -- and asparagus.  I have great luck with many herbs, some annual and some perennial.



I grow rhubarb and daylilies as a ground cover, not to eat.  I grow lovage as an annual.

I love sorrel, but haven't found any in a long time.  I've had walking onions in the past.

I'm going to try growing Jerusalem artichokes this year.

I also grow raspberries, blackberries, mulberries, serviceberries, and assorted other fruiting canes, bushes, trees, and whatever.  Plus black walnuts and hazelnuts.  The hickories haven't nutted yet, nor have the persimmons borne fruit although I think one bloomed last year.  I've had fuckall luck getting pawpaws to grow, but they're fussy.  Try, try again.
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Hunting and Conservation

As hunting declines, so do conservation funds.

I have told and told and told people, when animals cease to be useful to humans, they cease to exist.  Humans protect what they want.  If they want ducks and deer, they will set aside habitat for them.  Hunters get out and see the environment, see it changing -- they notice if things are wrong.  People in cities go from house to car to building and may never bother to visit a park.  They don't see it.  Hunters know the weather's changing because they are out  in it and the game timing is changing too.  Most other people don't.  What they don't see, they don't love; what they don't love, they don't protect.

Well, here it is: as people hunt less, they become disconnected more, and support wildlife less.  They are not, for instance, transferring funds once spent on hunting to some other wildlife fund.  Maybe they're spending it on video games or veganmeat, but the point is, they're no longer spending it on wildlife.  That is a big problem.  The government is spending less on conservation at a time when we need to spend much more.  And with the threats to the food supply from climate change, we damn well better  know how to hunt and forage if we want to eat.  Or it'll be like that TV show where people risked death to raid for canned goods when there were dandelions and rabbits as far as the eye could see.
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Birdfeeding

It snowed last night.  Now the snow clings to branches, but has melted in some patches on the ground.  One of those patches is covered with a giant flock of starlings mixed birds including plain blackbirds, red-winged blackbirds, brown-headed cowbirds, and starlings -- probably at least a hundred of them -- all scratching and poking at the ground in search of food. 

EDIT 2/26/20 -- I got a closer look when they moved to the south lot and I could see more different types of fieldmarks on individual birds.  :D  So at least a substantial number of these are natives, not invasives.  They're skittish and at once point they startled, filling the air with black and red wings.  \o/

EDIT 2/26/20 -- I went outside and fed the birds.  More snow is melting, some icicles forming.  The big flock is gone but I heard cardinals calling.
polychrome

Poem: "Without Diversity"

This poem was written outside the regular prompt calls. It fills the "Rainbow (multiracial)" square in my 10-31-19 card for the People-watching Bingo fest, and the "Empathy" square in my 11-1-19 card for the [community profile] transbingo fest. It has been sponsored by a pool with [personal profile] fuzzyred, [personal profile] erulisse, and [personal profile] ng_moonmoth. This poem belongs to the Rutledge thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

Warning: This poem contains intense and controversial topics. Highlight to read the warnings, some of which are spoilers. It includes divisiveness, sociopolitical wrangling, opinionated journalism, artwork of atrocities, agitation for religious discrimination, references to unpleasant refugee issues, economic activism, a fractious but fair debate, a prompt vote on a town proposal, and other challenges. If these are sensitive issues for you, please consider your tastes and headspace before reading onward.

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