Tool for this Task

Forget spring break-up. Yeah, yeah, and the robins. Back in the early 14th century, when I was growing up in Alberta, the first sure sign of spring was a dead gopher on the road.

Some things don’t change.

roadkill screen shot anonymized

Googling “first sign of spring,” though, turns up things other than roadkill: things as diverse as litter in Saskatoon and asparagus in Innisfail.

Going a little further afield turns up annoyingly wonderful photography from as far away as Tibet and Siberia, with the expected images (aww, baby lambs) and the rather unexpected ones (flaming effigies, among them, raising the evolutionary psychology question of whether lighting fires to celebrate stuff is really as hard-wired in the human psyche as it seems to be).

Why am I thinking of signs of spring in early May, well past the vernal equinox, you ask? Well, after several weeks of seriously below-average temperatures, our stalled trees are finally leafing out and the tulips are finally blossoming out: early-, mid-, and late-spring-flowering types all jostling each other in a mad race to beat the irises. I mean, they have some pride.

Signs of spring — however late or jumbled — call for a celebration. Maybe even a fanfare.

All in all, I’m glad the tulips made it out, and not just because they’re harbingers of a yearned-for spring: In truth, I was feeling a little pressure to get some, you know, fresh content, because I’d had a comment about that very thing last week.

Page needs fresh content.

“Yikes,” I thought, “I’m doing the best I can.” But there was more: first the smack, then the offer of help.

 Writing manually is time consuming, there is tool for this task.

“Is it just me,” I thought (slipping into what my mind’s ear fondly thinks of as a recognizable Russian accent), “or does spamming comment have Russian accent?” Not trusting own self (OK, OK, I’m stopping it now), I sought qualified help to answer this question.

I thought so!

Anyway, Russian-inspired spammers notwithstanding, it turns out that many things are time consuming when done manually: writing, taking pictures, and making videos, among them. But what fun would it be to do any of them automatically in some way, if that were even possible? And, you know, it’s really not possible. This not being my first rodeo, I’ve seen the output of the tool for writing blog comments. Maybe once too often, Tovarich.

What’s up to all, the contents present at this web site are truly awesome for people knowledge, well, keep up the good work fellows.

Bah! Or, maybe, “Nyet!”


Note: The lovely photo of Red Square (used in the video, “From Russia, with Spam”) is by Adam Baker, and licensed under Creative Commons Attribution.



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10 Responses to Tool for this Task

  1. Tom Watson says:

    The old-timers say that in the 14th century gophers were a lot bigger than they are now. Seeing as how you originated in that time frame, is that true?

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      Tom – Well, I was just a kid, so they looked big to me. I’m not sure that’s good scientific evidence.

  2. Tulips. Meh. Especially in the same-colour swathes from a distance.

    Spring is here when I open the condo apartment door (on 22nd floor) and smell soil & moisture in the corridor (coming from the fresh air vent in the hallway). Mmmmm. 😀

    I do actually leave the condo — went for a walk yesterday, 2 times, the second on the way to play ping pong (via our moat in the back 40).

  3. John Whitman says:

    Isabel: Another sure sign of spring. My allergies are back, but I’d sooner have allergies than be freezing.
    John W

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      John – Ah, choo! In an ideal world, we would not have to choose between sneezing and freezing. Just sayin’.

  4. John Whitman says:

    Isabel: My problem isn’t so much sneezing as it is itchy eyes. See if you can come up with a rhyme for that.

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      John – Well, there, I was afraid of that. Itching and bitching? True enough, but not limited to cold weather. Irritation and coldification? No, I am not, I fear, a rhymer.

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