Pat Beers and Green Beans --- (fleas, a baby, music)


Sometime more than 30 years ago I visited with Good Shepherd, Fitchburg, MA parishioner Pat Beers at her home in Westminster MA.  Pat and her husband George had a bumper crop of green beans.   Pat was “topping and tailing” the beans to get them ready for blanching and freezing.  It seemed like very labour intensive work.

I bought a pound of green beans the other day.  (One of the local supermarkets had them for sale at a bargain price).  I topped and tailed them, then blanched and froze them.  The operation took more than an hour!   I suspect that it is more energy efficient to purchase frozen beans from my local supermarket.  It would surely be much more time efficient!  But Pat Beers had inspired me from all those years ago!


My cats Adelaide and Ada show signs of being infested with fleas. 
The same is true for my dog Penne.  The proprietary meds (Front Line etc) seem to be less than efficacious. “Someone” told me that a bit of garlic when added to the pet food will help in warding off fleas. Do you know if this is true?


My good friend Joe S lives in London (U.K.) with his Dutch partner Marleise.  I had a good and long chat with Joe this morning.  He tells me that Marleise is “with child”.  I am delighted for both of them!


The choir at St. Boniface sang the Hallelujah Chorus (from Handel’s “Messiah”) this morning.  They sang it well.

But I was not “moved”.  I over-dosed on the “Messiah’ many years ago and would be happy if I never heard a note from it again.

(Mozart has some better “Alleluias” in his three works called “Regina Coeli”).
But the Handel is a crowd pleaser.  So the “crowd” (a.k.a. “congregation) applauded. That irked this old fart (jmp). 

Applause is a dreadful response to Church music.  It suggests that  the music is entertainment.

Loud “Amens” are better. They signify that the music is a matter of worship.

(This is not a criticism of St. Boniface Church.  It is a terrific congregation with excellent leaders!  It is a comment from me alone.)


  1. Hi Michael,
    I have found over the years that growing Pennyroyal anywhere in the yarn will keep fleas away. Some books will recommend a collar made of it, or sprinkling it on carpets, but I have heard of cats being poisoned this way -- but it sure worked to have it growing on the deck or in the side garden. You may have to use a bath or something to rid them of the fleas that have already taken up residence.

    We almost lost one of our three cats last week -- she ate leaves from a lily someone had brought as a "hostess gift". Acute renal failure ensued within 48 hours. After three nights in the kitty ICU at Berkshire Vet. she surprised us all by pulling through. Who knew?


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