I was eating some dandelions the other day. It wasn’t quite a whim. It’d begun with yard work.

We have lawns. We don’t pesticides or fertilizers on them, except some fertilizer from our compost barrels. We compost a lot of kitchen waste.

I used to pull the weeds from my lawn. We stopped doing that as we read about the bee decline and witnessed how the bees enjoyed our dandelions. Butterflies, too. But, for fire reasons, we cut the grass back to four inches high. That height also protects the roots so watering the lawn isn’t required often. In the even of drought or water shortages, of course, the first thing I do to save water is to stop watering the grass.

While I was doing the back yard cutting the other day, I was taking stock of all the dandelions we had. I knew that people used to eat dandelions as part of a basic diet and wondered about dandelions’ health impact and their taste. To the Google! Sites claim that dandelions are tremendously healthy. Here’s an excerpt from Nutrition-and-You.com:

  • Certain chemical compounds in fresh dandelion greens, flower tops, and roots are known to have antioxidant, disease preventing, and health promoting properties.
  • Fresh dandelion leaves carry 10,161 IU of vitamin-A per 100 g (about 338% of daily recommended intake), one of the highest source of vitamin-A among culinary herbs. Vitamin-A is an essential fat-soluble vitamin and antioxidant, required for maintaining healthy mucosa and skin.
  • Its leaves packed with numerous health benefiting flavonoids such as carotene-ß, carotene-α, lutein, cryptoxanthin, and zeaxanthin. Consumption of natural foods rich in vitamin-A and flavonoids (carotenes) help the human body protect from lung and oral cavity cancers. Zeaxanthin supposed to possess photo-filtering functions and therefore, may help protect the retina from harmful UV rays.
  • The herb is an ideal source of minerals like potassium, calcium, manganese, iron, and magnesium. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids which helps regulate heart rate and blood pressure. Iron is essential for red blood cell production.The human body uses manganese as a co-factor for the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase.
  • It is also rich in many vital vitamins including folic acid, riboflavin, pyridoxine, niacin, vitamin-E and vitamin-C that are essential for optimum health. Vitamin-C is a powerful natural antioxidant. Dandelion greens provide 58% of daily recommended levels of vitamin-C.
  • Dandelion is probably the richest herbal sources of vitamin-K; provides about 650% of DRI. Vitamin-K has a potential role in bone strengthening by promoting osteoblastic activity in the bones. It also has established role in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease patients by limiting neuronal damage in the brain.

Sounds impressive. Curious about how they taste, I went out in the morning, harvested some fresh dandelions from the yard, and chowed down on the raw leaves and flowers.

Turns out that they taste like mildly-bitter Romaine lettuce to me. Super, I thought. I liked being able to eat it because. It’s a great added bonus to helping the bees, and it helps reduce our yard waste. I guess I have a new pastime this year, harvesting dandelions and trying new recipes. Bet they’d be pretty tasty on a grilled pizza.

I’ll let you know.


Floofproach (floofinition) – the manner taken to walk up to, pet, or speak to a housepet.

In use: “One must be cautious in their floofproach when dealing with Tina. She’s gentle and sweet, but she is large and has her floofuliarities. For example, an unexpected hand toward her face will earn one a sharp rebuke.”

Friday’s Theme Music

I’m streaming the original Beatles’ version of “With a Little Help from My Friends” (1967). Don’t know. My streaming began with Ringo singing the third verse.

“Would you believe in love at first sight?”

“Yes, I’m certain that it happens all the time.”

Why this, today? Don’t know. Some inhibitor breakdown in the stream, a word caught in the wind, a flash in the brain, or maybe a neuotransmitter collision. I usually imagine my neurotransmitters as little sports cars racing through my head on beautifully constructed highways and country roads. Lately, though, ala Sim City, my neuro landscape is more like a hot and humid city under constant expansion, construction, and repair. There’s a lot of jackhammer and bulldozer noise. Big rigs transport loads of information as commuters struggling to get to work in their part of the brain creep along in traffic.

Sorry, side bar. On with the music.


The Micro-Code Dream

This is a recurring dream. I had it twice, maybe three times in the past few weeks. It’s also a sequel to another dream. The first dream was dreamed at least twice. Both dreams evolved in its depths and complexity, or my ability to remember them. As always,  I wonder how much I remember and how much I manage to fill in gaps through my imagination without being aware that I’m doing so.

In both, the backdrop is that I’m with IBM. The first dream has me being given a project. Not uncommon. I have a print out of several pages. Most of the back pages are lines of micro-code. The first page is an explanation that this list of hospitals need to be notified of these micro-code changes by a specific date. It’s a Friday afternoon. The date is the following Monday.  So, YIKES. The next four pages are lists of hospitals where this code needs to be applied, with identifying fields.

The first thing I do is get a yellow highlighter and a list of hospitals that are our customers. Then I go through the list, highlighting the hospitals that are our customers. I also make notes in black pen.

Follow-up is to create the letter to send these customers. I do this on a computer, merging the letter with the data fields from the hospital lists, import the letters into email, and send them out. Done and done. My boss checks on me. I confirm with her that it’s done. She’s surprised that it was done so quickly, and I show her what I did and how. Done and done.

The second dream has me at some team party. I work in a one-deep position, from home, so I know few people, but I’m on this campus with my team, who are usually just voices on the phone or names in emails. I’m wandering the party and encounter some product engineers. They heard that I took care of the hospital micro-code notification. They have questions. Essentially, they want reassured that it went okay.

First, I sit with a senior guy with the micro-code in a room full of computers on desks and in frames, with people working on things all around us. It’s very noisy with the sounds of fans, hard-drives, and conversations. He shows me the micro-code and begins to ask who and what questions.

Excusing myself, I go to my computer bag in the other room and get my working company, along with a print out of the letter that I sent, and another print out that shows who it went to and when. I give these to him and tell them what they are. He’s surprised and asks me why I gave them to him. I tell him, that’s what I would’ve wanted to know if I was following up.

Everything is quickly answered with these papers. Other of his team members come by to ask and see, and he tells them what I gave them, and they’re all relieved that it’s been done. Time to party.

But first, another team comes up to check on the project, too. The first team gives the second team my papers, tells them what I did, and everyone is satisfied.

As this ends, another engineer is talking loudly at a table. She’s talking about a modem’s identification and wondering who was dumb enough to use last names as part of a modem’s identification. As I turn, I hear another person say my full name, because that’s the name used as a modem identification.

I go over and tell them it was me and answer questions. Yes, it was ignorant, but I was ignorant about the process, working alone, and learning on the job. She said she can change it for me. I shrug that off, because we’re not using it anywhere except the lap now. It’s older and we use new stuff for production and operations, but the old stuff is helpful for trouble-shooting customer issues who are using old stuff.

That ends. Everyone is going off to the party in the next room. I begin a drift that way. Others find me and congratulate me for the work on the project. That amuses me because it seems like it was such a quick and easy project.

The main party is in a huge ballroom at the end of a hall. Music is blaring and people are dancing in there. That’s also where the restrooms are. I need to use one but can’t get to them because of the dancing crowd. I make a long detour around the crowd until I find a place where I can cut through, go in, use the bathroom, and come back out.

When I do, I’ve decided to look up some people while I’m there. I find several and huddle with them. Speaking loudly over the music, in a huddle with our arms intertwined over one another’s back, I tell them that I’ll be leaving soon, but I wanted to thank them and tell them how much I enjoyed working with them.

The dream ended.

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