Odds and Ends

October 16, 2021

Most of us were puzzled when Seattle’s new professional was given the odd name Kraken. But a little research reveals that it refers to a giant mythological beast that the Norse believed to dwell in the north Atlantic region. It might have originated with the giant squid that can reach up to 50 feet in length. (Wik)

A tea farm in Alaska? Sounds far-fetched, but wait…Jenny Tse has just established its first tea farm and has garnered international awards in the process. By taking advantage of the geothermally heated greenhouses at Chena Hot Springs north of Fairbanks she has created a mini climate that is compatible with tea production. Singing Streams may expand to a full two acres that could yield about a half-ton of dried tea leaves in a year. (“Alaska” mag. Sept.,’21)

“Ice cream” What a misnomer. “Ice milk” is more accurate. Ice cream would be avoided in droves by dieters and would be very pricey as well. Some of us old-timers can recall eating real ice cream when we were young and living on the farm. when used by our mothers in a number of ways.

Agros was founded by a Spanish-American Seattle lawyer in 1984 to help Central American farmers and sharecroppers to own their land. As of 2010 it had enabled 1708 families in 42 villages and created 1600 small businesses. It had benefited at least 24,000 people. Of course, that is only a drop in the bucket compared to its actual needs. (“Buy This Land,” Chi-doo)

The liver is an incredible organ, in some ways more complex than the heart. And a healthy one, even with a large part removed, can function as well as an intact one. while regrowing the missing section.

(“A Surgeon’s Book of Hope” by Wm. Nolen; M.D.)

San Antonio, TX, is the nation’s seventh-largest city (TIME, Oct. 11-18, 21)

Comanche Quanah Parker was the son of Peta Nuena and captive Cynthia Parker. He made war on the whites for 36 years until he finally became a peace-maker between the races. In his later years, he fascinated the public by appearing as a plains warrior chief and even in a business suit like those worn by his White neighbors. He craved publicity and adored cameras. He had seven wives and at least 28 children. (“Wild West”, Oct.,21)

Can money grow on trees? Many people in the small town of Gustavus located near Glacier Bay, Alaska, would say yes, if you are speaking of spruce tips. Harvested in the spring, the tips provide a boost to the local economy. Adults and kids vie to pick several tons daily at $3 a pound. When the quota is reached most of the harvest is frozen and shipped to breweries where it is concerted to seltzers. Natives have used them for syrup in the past. (“Alaska” mag., Sept., 21)

Robert Hall