May 19, 2024
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May 19, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

That gosh darn Farmer’s Almanac—what is that thing exactly? According to Wikipedia, the Old Farmer’s Almanac is a reference book that contains weather forecasts, tide tables, plantings charts, astronomical data, recipes and articles on a number of topics, including gardening, sports, astronomy and farming. I don’t quite understand: do the farmers get together and make a recipe and if the recipe doesn’t come out the way the farmer’s wife wants it to, she yells at him and then he predicts what the rest of his winter is going to be like? Is that how it works? If their hydrangeas weren’t up to par this summer, does that indicate the amount of ice storms we are going to get? If the farmer’s sports teams aren’t doing well, does that mean hail for everyone? If the moon and stars don’t line up with Venus, is that an astronomical indicator of colder weather? Or, do they go down to the banks of their rivers and see what the tide looks like? If the tide is calm, the winter will be calm. If the tide looks a bit uneasy, break out the shovels and snow tires.

None of this makes any sense to me. Every single year they have to come out with the winter forecast prediction. Some years they have been right and some years they have been wrong. Boston got more snow than they had in years and that was not included in last year’s prediction. Go figure! They are predicting bad things for this upcoming winter. Bad rains in the west, something about El Niño and the drought (I have no idea). The Midwest will be getting lots of snow from December to early February. You know, farmer person, I have a bar mitzvah in Chicago in February and I will not be able to go if there is as much snow as you are haphazardly reporting there is going to be!

I am really hoping that this year’s prediction is wrong because if we have another winter like last winter, I might go even crazier than I already am. And folks, that is not pretty at all!

Here we all are, enjoying a very pleasant summer. Some days have been so hot that sunscreen actually melts right off your face. Standing outside and walking around has been great for the beverage companies. I was in the city last week wandering around and I must have consumed two vitaminwaters and two bottles of regular water with the magical Snapple drop-ins (love that invention). Other days, we have had beautiful sunshine with very low humidity; absolutely gorgeous. People have been posting their stunning pictures at the beach, by the pool, the swim club, just magnificent.(Then again, people have also been posting pictures in Iceland and Alaska; maybe it is warmer there in the summer as well.) So who the heck is this cranky farmer and why is he trying to ruin my summer?! Did I insult him in some way? I don’t even know who the guy is! And why can’t he wait until after Labor Day to dump all of this information on us. And better yet, why is he allowed to do this at all? Is he related to the groundhog that we all wanted to kill this past year? Oh wait, didn’t Mayor Bill de Blasio actually drop him and cause him to die? Is that why the farmer is so angry at us? Because a New Yorker killed one of the residents of his farm?

I love the summer because as hot and as unbearable as it can get, you cannot slip and fall on the ice. You don’t have to pull your back out shoveling, and no one misses school!! You also don’t have to worry about losing power and freezing all of your extremities off. Summer is the best. It is warm. I get to watch my grass die every year, whether I water it or not; I find it to be my yearly science experiment. The ice cream truck comes every Friday, everyone is more relaxed, even me, which is a miracle, and everyone just seems to be in a better frame of mine. I am thinking that we have to do something about this Almanac. Ban it? Hide it from the farmer? I will think of something, but until then, I am going to enjoy the few weeks I have left before going to figure out who needs boots, who needs new gloves, what happened to the scarves and where did I put those stupid shovels…..yuck!

Banji Ganchrow is sad that she is not going on a baseball road trip this year, but she is happy that she isn’t sending anyone off to Israel this year. That will be next year when she will turn into an absolute basket case and might insist on being packed inside of one of her sons’ trunks…

By Banji Latkin Ganchrow

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