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Sunday, March 21, 2010

On the bookshelf…

You can tell I’m procrastinating, right?  There’s a load of dishes to be washed, a house to be cleaned, and here I sit, contentedly blogging.

From the Shabbos bookshelf (still enjoying):

First, Jodi Picoult’s newest:  House Rules: A Novel, by Jodi Picoult

And, in the non-fiction garden-related department, this (actually fascinating) book about bananas:  Banana: The Fate of the Fruit That Changed the World, by Dan Koeppel.  Amazing.  Scary.  Bananas.  Did you know they may be extinct soon?  Better hope not, because something like 1/3 of the world depends on them for nutrition every single day.  Better hope I made that statistic up!

Okay, there really IS work to be done… off to choose something to listen to and then get it DONE!

2 comments:

Emily said...

I don't think you made the statistic up: I think someone else did.

http://www.snopes.com/food/warnings/bananas.asp

Jay3fer said...

Okay, I love Snopes a LOT. But as much as I'd like to believe that disease-spreading practices are strictly banned in banana-growing countries, those countries (banana republics, dontcha know) don't have the best track record when it come to farsightedness and responsible governance.

Plantation workers are often illiterate and unaware of these "strict" regulations as they travel from one area to another with no quarantine measures. Panama Disease (Race 4) is transmissible through soil; a single footprint could potentially introduce it to a whole new crop.

I knew some of this before reading the book; still interesting, though. I'm not panicking just yet, but we HAVE driven vulnerable species to extinction before.

Beyond Scary Banana Facts, the book also talks about different varieties of banana, all of which are invariably more tasty than the standard Cavendish we know and love. One - the author writes - even approaches juiciness, with a delicate custardy flavour. It's not all gloom and doom, and we might be better off if the Cavendish vanished entirely tomorrow.

I am trying to grow bananas from seed. I thought it would make a fun "ISP" as I read along in the book. :-)))

(my seeds are not Cavendish, of course, but Musa ensete, I believe; actually a "false banana")

Yes, that does sound kind of rude.