I have just finished listening to a very thought provoking Podcast, hinting on a topic my husband and I have often discussed.  Though the Podcast was not directly on the topic, it sent me here.  The topic is societal fear, the Podcast actually was on the history of public bathrooms and how we got where we are now with sex separate facilities and the issues they cause for transgender, non-binary, intersex, and disabled people.

It takes me back more than 3 decades when as a  Mom with young children, I was faced with having to take a son into the women’s room or hubby having to take our daughter into a men’s room because we didn’t want them going into the other facility on their own or leaving them outside to wait while we went in.  Even then, the idea of single the sex bathrooms seemed absurd to me.  You don’t have them on buses or airplanes.  We share bathrooms in our homes and in some small businesses that have a single facility, why can’t we have bathrooms that accommodate everyone.

The answer is fear, unreasonable fear.  It has been pervasive in history.  When bathrooms were a privy, everyone used them without regard to gender or color, then indoor bathrooms came along with water and sewage infrastructure, but women were basically kept at home.  As women entered the workplace, the system changed, but only for privileged white America when we unnecessarily segregated a whole population out of fear.  Building code was written to mandate separate sex bathrooms. Then after desegregation, the fear switched to AIDS, could you catch it in a bathroom?  Then more open acceptance of same sex marriage, or has it just fomented more irrational fear as the issue of which bathroom a transgender, non-binary, or intersex individual must use.

I think most of what drives today’s issues is fear of change, fear of what people perceive they can’t control but shouldn’t control.  Fear caused by generations of ignorance by people raised to believe that anyone of a different race, religion, gender identity, or nationality is alien and suspect if not outright dangerous.

Back to the Podcast, the code, through the efforts of lawyers, researchers, and architects who are themselves in one of the categories in the first paragraph or at least open minded and not driven by fear, has changed to allow new building to have one large bathroom with grooming areas, hand washing areas that vary in height and are  long “sinks” angled away from the user, and toilet areas with stalls of varying sizes to accommodate everyone regardless of size or disability.  This would work, it would be as they put it in the podcast, “more eyes” to prevent unwanted behaviors, but unfortunately the code doesn’t mandate this change, just allows it and as long as the FEAR is there, it will continue to be a problem in our society.

It is time for our small-minded fear to be cast away and recognize that we are all humans on the same planet and can benefit from each other’s cultures, beliefs, ideas.

Midnight Marauders?

With all of the pears and most of the apples gone, and now the grape vine totally stripped of leaves, I think I must have midnight marauders. I have run deer out of the orchard dozens of times, but nothing has ever bothered the grape vine before. Two days ago, one end was stripped of leaves, yesterday about half, this morning, it is bare.

There is still plenty of wild vegetation and grass so I’m not sure why they are coming this close to the house and eating the grape leaves. I guess as soon as the weather chills, it will get a pruning job. I’m glad I got the grapes before this occurred because the few that were left to ripen are also gone. Perhaps, I need to run the electric fence strands around the orchard as well as the garden.

A couple of years ago, I was looking for a waste free chicken feeder to put inside the coop and found the plans for this using a 5 gallon bucket, a hole saw, 3 PVC elbows, and it is perfect. It holds an entire 25 lb bag of feed pellets, three hens can feed at a time, and because they have to stick their head in and down to get to the food they don’t toss it everywhere or scratch it out like they do in an open or tray edged container. The only drawback is the lid provides a great perch to look out the windows toward the house, so I have to add a flower pot on top to keep the lid from getting fouled by the fowl. That designer was genius and the plans were easy to follow. If I hung it, it would become a moving target, bet it would be fun to watch them trying to feed, but it sits on an old galvanized feeder tray to raise it off the floor a few inches.

I finished the mittens yesterday and returned to spinning the ruby and purple Shetland/Bombyx braid, using my new ring distaff and the Finch spindle. I can’t model the mittens as they are for someone with small hands like a tiny woman or larger child. I had someone look at mittens in my booth two years in a row and say they wanted mittens when walking their dog, but their hands were too small for the ones I had. I will put then in the shop with the dimensions posted, maybe they will fit someone’s idea for mittens. There is enough of the blue Tunis left to spin for a matching hat. The mittens need to be washed and blocked still.

It is a slow day. No canning. I still need to mow before we start getting rain again.

Take care and enjoy the pending fall weather.

This is the end

I just picked the last 3 small cucumbers and one huge yellow one that was missed and was given to the chickens. The refrigerator is full of pickles, but no more fresh ones.

This morning we had a successful, non stressful run to the Farmer’s Market. I paid for a month of membership to preorder so I could be in the first hour of shopping. Everything I ordered was ready with my name on it, prepaid (except one item as the vendor had a very legitimate reason to not be there today). I also found out that one of my favorite vendors that isn’t on the site preorder, has a way to preorder from him too. And I already have arranged with two other vendors to do the same. I was in and out in under 10 minutes with minimal contact. Only one vendor’s stand was so crowded that I turned around and skipped it.

One of the items preordered was a double container of fresh figs. I came straight home with them and made 3 more quarter pints of fig jam. I wish I had bought twice as many. Maybe there will still be more next week. Last week a vendor had Asian Pears and I had hope to buy enough to make a batch of my favorite jam, but not this week. Maybe some kind of pears will show up and I will use what I can get.

Then we had succeeded in snagging a curb side pick up from the grocer and all the other items that we normally get from there were prepaid and delivered safely to the back of the Xterra. I finally felt safe shopping today as cases rise in our region.

A good day, ended with a walk around the pond.