Notes on Lecture with Dandelion and Periwinkle

dandelion and periwinkle
Dandelion and Periwinkle as seen in April 2013

This past week I was more than a little distracted by the news in Boston. I grew up in the Boston area – I used to go to the Boston Marathon as a child when it passed through Newton, cheering on the runners. I lived in Cambridge, worked at MIT and spent time in Watertown. I have many friends who live there. Despite my intense interest in the details, I have no desire to become a political blogger. I will refer you to the blog of my friend Daled Amos – he writes well, explains political topics if you want more information and has a background as a teacher. He often quotes other political bloggers.

I have hopes to write a Nature Notes post this week and maybe a recipe for rice salad. If not, they will show up next week. Meanwhile, a few notes of interest:

  • I had the opportunity to attend a lecture at Rutgers by Professor Maud Mandel on
    Muslims and Jews in France: Genealogy of a Conflict. In a tiny nutshell, her premise was to “question past monocausal explanations” (I believe she meant she was suggesting more than one cause). Her book is coming out in January 2014; here are a few of the causes she mentioned:
    1. Jews from Algeria made citizens of France; Muslims were not. (1870)
    2. North African Jews had welcome from established Jewish community; Muslims had no one, initially.
    3. In 1968, Maoists (a group of Leftists) tried to convince Algerian Muslims to side with Palestine. The Maoists equated Palestine with Vietnam. At first, it didn’t work, but later it caught on.
    4. For two years Muslims and Jews worked together on racism (SOS Racisme), but then that fell apart. (1984)

    Rutgers Bildner Center for the Study of Jewish Life hosts free lectures like this one in the spring and fall; see Public Events.

  • On The Prosen People blog of Jewish Book Council you can read the April Jewish Book Carnival.
  • I published an interview with marketing director David Rekuc: Blog Interview on Marketing, eCommerce and Edison, NJ. Looking to interview other central New Jersey business people, especially those who make good use of social media, websites and/or blogs.

Note about the photo: I love the combination of dandelions with all the purples of this season. I purposely left a few in my front yard, to complement the grape hyacinths, creeping phlox and purple deadnettle. The periwinkle/dandelion photo is actually in a yard a block from my home.

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9 thoughts on “Notes on Lecture with Dandelion and Periwinkle

  • I am not much of a gardener but am obsessed with removing dandelions. My family is making fun of this obsession but it is turning me into more of a gardener. I would write more but I’m off to the nursery! But maybe I will get to a point where I am such a good gardener that I will love dandelions.
    And of course, I too have so many childhood memories of marathon.

    • Miriam, thanks for leaving a comment on this lonely little post. It was brewing in my head all last week and especially on Friday. Yup, it certainly was weird hearing about familiar places in international news.

      And now I’ll be happy to go back to posting blossoms. As long as you remove the dandelions by hand or with a tool, I’m OK with that. It’s those pesticide things that get me.

      Enjoy the nursery – I’m still thinking about what I would get. Maybe some begonias, since they don’t need to much sun, and they don’t need nearly as much water as impatiens.

  • Leora, my hubby will purposely leave some dandelions too. He likes the colors as much as I do. I feel sad for the victims of the Boston bombers and I am happy they caught them. I hope the people of Boston can feel at peace now. Wishing you a happy week!

  • As bad as a gardener as I am, we do not use chemicals for the weeds. I use this tool I am in love with that is sort of like a pogo stick with retractable teeth. It makes very satisfying holes as it picks up the weeds, roots and all. We mostly bought ornamental grasses & asters & lavendar and something else local that I love whose name I forget–a flowering perennial. And snap dragons which have always been a favorite. And a ginger plant which we won’t use for food since we want to keep the root in the ground but an homage to my love of all things ginger. So thanks for inspiring me and maybe with time I’ll get better at this. . .

    • I love love love snap dragons. They are hardy, good in cooler weather. I have one that is still alive in my lawn (they sometimes survive through winter).

      You bought a lot! I find I like to buy a few plants at a time because otherwise I have too much planting to do at once.

  • To extend a little on point 3, the French extreme left in the 1960s and 70s were Maoist and Trotskyist groups but also had links with such group as the Red Army Faction (which had links with the Palestinian terrorist organizations).

    • Thanks for adding your own knowledge on the extreme left. She did mention Trotskyists briefly but I don’t recall anything about the Red Army Faction.

  • I love the tones that dandelions present us…and then…I adore the wispy and delicate looking white puffs that remain. Lovely photo.

    Interesting on the lecture.

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