Blog 2018

The Part about Being Scrappy Like a Farmer


July 8, 2018

The Part about Being Scrappy Like a Farmer


I’m not a packrat.  I like tidiness.  I dislike a lot of visual chaos.  I can’t write when things are so.  I mean, I can leave dishes in the sink for a week, or I can let the living room go when I have to finish a story or poem, work on submissions, or plant the garden in spring.  But then I must clean up.


Still, cleaning up, I have also become scrappy, all compliments to family farmers who waste nothing.  When I was a girl I lived on acreage owned by farmers.  That was a lot of fun, and included a rusted Model T Ford out back somewhere; only a day’s wandering landed that discovery.  I don’t know whose car it had been, originally, or if was kept for parts or nostalgia, but it was fun climbing into it, pretending to drive. 


Repurposing is the trendy term, and I was into it before it became so.  I have always said to myself not to throw a thing away that still has use to it.  I might need it someday, my mantra.  But now I’m totally into it.  You can live pretty well, being scrappy.  You don’t have to buy every little thing over and again.


Today, for example, I had to lay a little chicken wire on a very sloped area of the yard that borders my neighbor’s.  I have a small fence, as mentioned previously, and originally it was set up along the property line.  I reset it recently, pulling it in about two feet because it was now, after some few years, tipping about 25 degrees, tilting with the slope of earth, looking like it was falling over.  I had planted on my side of the fence and mulched heavily to help suppress a deluge of creeping charlie.  Having moved the fence in, the plants are now on the outside of it and the mulch is falling down the slope into my neighbor’s yard.  Not fun for him to mow—and today he pointed it out to me.  It has been on my list of things to do.  I had to think for awhile how to secure it.


Enter the chicken wire!  What to do with this old, rusty chicken wire I no longer use for tomato propping (too weak)?  Save it!  You might need that some day!  Just like the ground spikes for the old, solar lights that finally gave out.  Save them!  You might need them some day!  That day came for both wire and spikes, and I spent the morning securing the mulch.  I cut the chicken wire in half so I had about eight strips and I tucked all the mulch neatly back up the slope and pinned the wire into the ground with the leftover spikes from the thrown-away lights.  They are really sturdy, holding very well the wire that is hard to see now, and will be unseen when in a few years the daisies take over and fill that slope.


Et, voila!  Go ahead and repurpose/reuse to your heart’s content.  Be scrappy like our lovable family farmers!  The less that ends up in the trash is good for the planet, and therefore all of us.