Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Jack Pines and a Fat Cat

If you were to ask me to name my favourite tree (and I know you were all planning to bring this up casually in conversation), I would answer confidently and decisively: The Jack Pine! I love these trees. They stand taller than most around them. And they have a wind-tossed irregular shape that speaks to me of refusal to comply to any sort of rule. My sort of vegetation. I like all trees. I am a self-confessed tree-hugger when out on a hike. I love the rough bark and their strength and height.

There have been few times in my life where I have lost my temper, I mean really lost it. One such time was when I was googling images of jack pines and found pictures of ... wait for it ... bonsai versions of them. I saw red. This was tantamount to footbinding baby girls or something!!! How could anyone do this??? I went nuts, called Ange, and vented. After giving me my head for a few minutes, she told me to pull myself together, and, in one of her many creative bursts of talent, wrote a brief short story involving me, and a hero called Jack Pines, who was based loosely on a handsome fisherman I had actually met in Maine many years ago. As for the fictional acocunt, I remember it involved a wharf (as all Ange's stories do) and a debacle at a seedy bar, frequented by rough characters. I was momentarily soothed... momentarily.

Anyway, above my desk (pictured) I have a framed print of Stormy Weather, Georgian Bay, by Frederick Varley (c. 1920). There are four more pictures of jack pines around it. I find it so soothing to look at, redolent of the Canadian wilderness and that refusal to be conventional.

As for Tibbles, he had his annual check-up. What a drama king, you'd think we were killing him by putting him in his travelling box. He had a great check-up once he was there. He is in amazing shape for his age (11) and the nurses all love him for his gentleness. We asked some advice on his diet as he has put on some weight. Yes, he's now 22.5 pounds!!! His food intake portions have been small all this time. Now they will remain small but he'll be on calorie-reduced cat food. Also, no more yoghurt (long story!) I'll keep you updated on his progress.

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

First the f word, now the c word...oy vey....

Blog Princess G said...

wha-? No I didn't.

Capt. Luke said...

yes you did you saucy girl

Anonymous said...

saucy is one way of putting it. I can think of three or four others...

Blog Princess G said...

Well, I see my typo now, as Capt. Luke has kindly pointed it out to me.

Three or four other ways eh? How... ANONYMOUS of you!

Anonymous said...

typo or freudian slip? Where's some carbolic soap when you need some.

Blog Princess G said...

I'm far too dainty for carbolic soap. Distilled dew from the petals of evening primroses is what I bathe in.

L.H. said...

So that's it. Blame the distillery. Or the bathtub gin. Or the intoxitation from attar of roses.

Blog Princess G said...

Intoxitation? HA! I know who L.H. is.

L.H. said...

I am no "yankee gent" as you so...trustingly...put it.

The wikipedia says:

In the wild, evening primroses acts as primary colonizers, springing up wherever a patch of bare, undisturbed ground may be found. This means that they tend to be found in poorer environments such as dunes, roadsides, railway embankments and wasteland.

Anonymous said...

A cake of old-fashion laundry soap-- rough, grainy, wax-like. It could take the stain out of your shoe, your saddle, many other things.

L.H. said...

Intoxitation was a mis-spelling. I am a tee-totaller, all you know me will know that.

Anonymous said...

cheeky!

Anonymous said...

Now that all the excitement has died down, maybe we can comment on the actual post. The Jack Pines is a splendid tree that expresses the wild, untamed, somewhat heart breakingly lonely landscape of the north. Defiant against the cruel elements.

Ange said...

Re The Jack Pines story:

I wish I could find it on my computer, I would post a little excerpt here. But it's gone....it was so many years ago, but you never know, sometimes things are buried somewhere, I might still dig it up one of these days. It was a funny story, there was another character too, I think his name was "Cod".

-Ange