Song Lyric Sunday- March 6, 2022 – Fruit

This week the theme is songs that mention any fruit. 

I’ve made myself an agreement.
Only post songs on Song Lyric Sunday that I’d choose for my own playlist.
Sometimes I can’t recall any that fit the weekly theme, so I just don’t participate. Other times, I have BIG choices to make because I have more than one to showcase.
My choice was tough this week. It’s Sweet Cherry Wine by Tommy James and the Shondells. That group ranks in my top ten- possibly, top five favorites. The video contains the lyrics, so I chose not to post the lyrics. The current tension and atrocities in our world make this one a good choice IMHO. (Crystal Blue Persuasion is my favorite of their many excellent songs.) Cheers everyone!

Tommy James and the Shondells is an American pop and Rock n Roll group that was most active in the 60s. They had two number one singles in the U.S. — “Hanky Panky” (1966) and “Crimson and Clover” (1968) — but also released five other top ten hits, including “I Think We’re Alone Now“, “Mony Mony,” and “Crystal Blue Persuasion“. Their iconic hits are often played by ‘oldies‘ and ‘classic rock‘ stations. The band (from Niles, Michigan, USA) initially formed in 1959 as “Tom and the Tornadoes”, with the then only 12-year-old singer-songwriter Tommy James as the front man.


https://jimadamsauthordotcom.wordpress.com/2022/03/05/taste-the-fruit/

NATURE KNOWLEDGE: Black Raspberries

July 4th Week Vacation 2011 073These are Black Raspberries. Many people refer to them as “Black Caps”. As you can see in the photo, when the fruit is picked, the white core remains attached to the plant. This is the simplest way to tell them from Blackberries.

Another way to tell the two berries apart ( in my area of upstate New York and western Massachusetts), is according to their time of ripening. Black Raspberries appear in June and Blackberries are in August.

Black Raspberries are a small fruit and grow in sparse numbers per bush while Blackberries can yield gallons of fruit in a similar space.  I’ve found it hard to find significant patches of wild Black Raspberries. They are susceptible to many blights which also plague wild Raspberries. One final note, they are far less painful to harvest than Blackberries, simply because, their thorns are much smaller and their fruit tends to grow outwardly.

A Black Raspberry patch is indeed a great find!

NATURE KNOWLEDGE: Red-Tailed Bumblebees

new photos 017redRed- tailed bumblebees are delightful to watch in my garden. They are easy to spot, with their bright patch of orange, as they buzz around nectar rich flowers. Colonies, of these bees, number around 200 members. Aren’t they pretty?

2948342526_cf7a110d6f_bThe queens come out of hibernation in early Spring. Queenie lays eggs of worker bees right away. The workers build nests in stone crevasses or , sometimes, in old birds nests. They tend the eggs too. A while later, the male bees hatch to mate with females and carry on the nectar collecting business, which is their source of food. In the Fall, all the males (including worker bees) and the old queen die…the new queens, hatched that year, hibernate in order to start the cycle again in the spring.

These bumblebees are common in the United States and Europe. In recent times, their numbers have diminished as their habitat has been reduced and pesticides have killed some of them off. You can make a difference in their population numbers by keeping nectar rich flowers in your gardens.

Last season, I noticed an alarmingly reduced number of honeybees and red-tailed bumblebees. Part of last year’s dilemma was, in my opinion, the unusually warm and snow-free winter which affected the natural timing of tree flowers with bee hatching. Whatever the reason, my fruit trees bore far fewer fruit due to the absence of pollinators. I have high hopes for this spring to come.

As a footnote, I have never been stung by a bumblebee. One of my favorite childhood activities was catching them in jars, then releasing them. Mom warned that I was asking for stings, yet they never did. The photos above were taken by practically placing my camera lens on the subjects…still no stings. I don’t recommend antagonizing bees but would hope that people avoid them rather than kill them. They are very important to farmers and our produce!

Hot Tomatoes

I’m sure you have heard the statement,”It’s all in your head.” It’s a common phrase which begs for the answer,”What’s your point?”.

Psychology doesn’t always explain everything and our taste buds are a fine example.

When I was a child, I used to watch my sister gobble the garden-fresh fruit of the tomato plant with a passion. One summer, she consumed enough of them to break out in hives. They became forbidden to her for much of that season. I ,on the other hand (or tongue), could not stand their taste. I practiced taking bites of the eye-appealing delicacy, with the same intoxicated look that my sister always had, only to retch and spit it out.

I finally found them palatable when they were hot. My “tomato war” lasted many years until I had one on a hamburger. I was in my teens and rejoiced that I could finally taste the “good” in them. You may think rejoicing is a bit “over the top” but my silent war with my taste buds was a bitter one. All that time, I did enjoy ketchup and other tomato products but never tomato juice or fresh fruit.

I have had a similar struggle with carrots. It was in an opposite delivery. Cooked carrots ruined many a stew for me yet eating them raw has always been one of my favorite snacks.

The varied tastes people have, scientifically, must have to be from our individual abilities to taste chemicals that are present. I’ve read that some of us(me included) cannot enjoy a glass of orange juice when it immediately follows brushing our teeth. Others have no idea what we are experiencing. This would be one of those,”It’s all in your head.” moments from their perspective. My answer is,”Where ever it comes from, it remains yucky!”

When realizing how varied peoples tasting skills are, it makes me all the wiser when it comes to tolerance of their ideas. How varied we are in experiences and views! It is very exasperating when someone cannot seem to grasp what you are saying. It would be easy to call them dumb or stubborn and sometimes that is exactly what they are. But, I propose we all keep our taste buds in mind the next time we connect with people. There are many ways to “taste” life. None of them are wrong but they are, oh, so varied.

NATURE KNOWLEDGE: Gray Catbird

Gray Catbird

This is a Gray Catbird. It has a harsh voice tone like the crying of a cat.

It is said that they are very shy but I accidentally discovered their weakness. They just love oranges! ( Notice the orange reflection on their chests in my photos? That is the orange treat that is out of the frame. It is not their natural color which is all gray.)

These photos are from my archives. My magical fence no longer is producing lovely captures since my neighbors cut down a tree beside it.

A few years ago, I placed oranges out to draw Baltimore Orioles. Well, I was successful in two ways. I did get orioles but I also found catbirds.

I developed quite an affection for these rather plain birds. They were very comical and pushy. I like a bird who knows what she wants.

I grabbed a few facts from the Cornell Ornithology Lab:

Cool Facts

  • The Gray Catbird’s long song may last for up to 10 minutes.
  • The male Gray Catbird uses his loud song to proclaim his territory. He uses a softer version of the song when near the nest or when a bird intrudes on his territory. The female may sing the quiet song back to the male.
  • The Gray Catbird belongs to the genus Dumetella, which means “small thicket.” And that’s exactly where you should go look for this little skulker.
  • The oldest known Gray Catbird lived to be 17 years 11 months old.
The Catbird is a relative of Mockingbirds and quite the vocal copycat too. They are about the same size as American Robins. They have a lovely flash of copper color beneath their tails. It is often hard to spot.
Upon reading about their behavior, I did see that they enjoy berries and fruit when they can get it but primarily eat insects. What a find my oranges topped with grape jelly must have been!
So next time you think a cat is in trouble in the thicket…it probably is a Gray Catbird pushing its weight around.