Flowers For George Washington

First in War, First in Peace, First in the Garden

Bilbo Baggins: “Where is my Precious Tax Cut”

This week’s bunch of freshly cut flowers are yellow and pink Snapdragons which supposedly resemble the open mouth of a fire breathing, larger-than-life, hobbit-baiting Dragon.

Snapdragons from Trader Joes Manhattan Beach.10/28/2012

Although, to me, they rather look like the open mouths of helpless baby chicks who have made an oath of fealty to kowtowing politicians who promise benevolent tax cuts that will line our pockets with “hundreds of dollars” so that everyman can watch his favorite television show on a new 3D Flat Screen, or squeeze out another night on that long, overdue Discover America Family Vacation, or accessorize their 4by4.  Which just proves, that if you’re going to go over a fiscal cliff, you might as well enjoy the ride.

“As a very important source of strength and security, cherish public credit. One method of preserving it is to use it as sparingly as possible, avoiding occasions of expense by cultivating peace. Avoiding likewise the accumulation of debt, not only by shunning occasions of expense, but by vigorous exertions in time of peace to discharge the debts which unavoidable wars may have occasioned.

The execution of these maxims belongs to your representatives, but it is necessary that public opinion should cooperate. To facilitate to them the performance of their duty, it is essential that you should practically bear in mind that towards the payment of debts there must be revenue; that to have revenue there must be taxes; that no taxes can be devised which are not more or less inconvenient and unpleasant; that the intrinsic embarrassment inseparable from the selection of the proper objects (which is always a choice of difficulties) ought to be a decisive motive for a candid construction of the conduct of the government in making it, and for a spirit of acquiescence in the measures for obtaining revenue which the public exigencies may at any time dictate.”

George Washingon’s Farewell Address, 1796

“You ‘Aint Nothing But A Dead, Double-Voting Democrat!”

This week’s freshly cut flowers are cream and cardinal Calla Lilys, or to be more precise, Zantedeschia “Picasso” named after the Spanish Artist whose ability to re-imagine himself and his art has influenced so many including former Governor and Presidential Impressionist, Mitt Romney, whose shape-shifting political personna resembles one of Picasso’s early cubism works.

Another unlikely influencer is Hans von Spakovsky, who for more than 15 years has been fanning the flames that voter fraud is a real and persistent danger to America’s Electoral Vote. While legislation mandating byzantine voter ID requirements has been struck down in almost every state it has been proposed, there is no doubt that this is a fight that will come up again. You can read all about Mr. von Spakovsky and his friend’s here.

“One method of assault may be to effect in the forms of the Constitution alterations which will impair the energy of the system and thus undermine what cannot be directly overthrown. In all the changes to which you may be invited, remember that time and habit are at least as necessary to fix the true character of governments as of other human institutions, that experience is the surest standard by which to test the real tendency of the existing constitution of a country, that facility in changes upon the credit of mere hypotheses and opinion exposes to perpetual change from the endless variety of hypotheses and opinion; and remember, especially, that for the efficient management of your common interests in a country so extensive as ours, a government of as much vigor as is consistent with the perfect security of liberty is indispensable; liberty itself will find in such a government, with powers properly distributed and adjusted, its surest guardian.”

George Washington’s Farewell Address, 1796

Shamrocks and the real town drunk

This week’s bunch of fresh cut flowers are Bells of Ireland surrounded by a flurry of sweet smelling Freesia. The Bells’ delicate white flowers belie the thorny nature of their dramatic, spiky spires, somewhat like Rick Santorum’s innocuous grin masks the downright evil nature of his ignorant thinking. And still, the sweater-wearing candidate’s campaign grinds on because there are evidently a whole bunch of people in this wonderful land of ours who actually believe he would make a wonderful President. Just pause on that for a minute.

On another similar note, for such a provincial country, can someone please explain how St. Patrick’s Day and Cinco de Mayo can obtain such a national hall pass when it comes to full-throated inebriation?

“I have diligently sought the public welfare; and have endeavoured to inculcate the same principles in all that are under me. These reflections will be cordial to my mind as long as I ame able to distinguish between Good & Evil.”

George Washington, 1756

March 11, 2012 Manhattan Beach Trader Joes

Happy Birthday, George!

February 15, 2012 Santa Monica Farmers Market

This week’s bunch of freshly cut flowers are deep purple Lisianthus. Their vibrancy and long life are a perfect symbol to celebrate yesterday’s anniversary of the birth of George Washington. Sure we have President’s Day, but is it fair to lump the likes of 41, 43 and 21 together with the hall of famers like Lincoln, FDR and Number 1. Born on February 22, 1732 near Pope’s Creek, Virginia, Washington was arguably the greatest among the founding fathers of our country. Not that he was the most intellectual or sophisticated or even the most astute politically, as those honors might go to Franklin, Jefferson or Madison. No, Washington’s greatest strength was his judgment, his ability to make the right call in times of crisis. To rise above partisan bickering and individual interests and to act in the best interests of his country. Those qualities are sorely missed today.

“There are four things, which I humbly conceive, are essential to the … existence of the United States as an Independent Power:

1st. An indissoluble Union of the States under one Federal Head.

2dly. A sacred regard to Public Justice.

3dly. The adoption of a proper Peace Establishment, and

4thly. The prevalence of that pacific and friendly disposition among the People of the United States which will induce them to forget their local prejudices and policies, to make those mutual concessions which are requisite to the general prosperity, and in some instances, to sacrifice their individual advantages to the interest of the community.

These are the Pillars on which the glorious fabric of our Independency and National Character must be supported; Liberty is the basis, and whoever would dare to sap the foundation, or overturn the structure, under whatever specious pretexts he may attempt it, will merit the bitterest execration, and the severest punishment which can be inflicted by his injured Country.”

George Washington 1783

What’s in a name?

This week’s bunch of freshly cut flowers are virginal white CallaLilys, which are neither Callas nor Lilys but something entirely different: Zantedeschia aethiopica. A genus native to South Africa roughly translating to “Pig’s Ear,” the CallaLily has found popularity in Anglican countries where it is sometimes known as the Easter Lily, celebrating the resurrection of the rabble rousing rabbi. Of course, Easter (or Pesah in Hebrew), is also etymologically linked to Passover and the Exodus from Egypt.  To further complicate matters, the Easter Lily is also a badge that is worn by Irish Republicans as symbol of remembrance for those who died or were executed during the 1916 Easter Rising.

Which just makes me wonder, why can’t we all just get along?

“Religious controversies are always productive of more acrimony and irreconcilable hatreds than those which spring from any other cause.”

George Washington circa 1765

January 19, 2012 Santa Monica Farmers Market

Red, White and George!

This week’s fresh cut flowers are Red and White Gerber Daisies whose electric vibrancy elicits a certain patriotism in me as we begin the new year. I’m reminded that during the Vietnam Era, a certain phrase “America, Love It or Leave It” was a popular retort when anyone criticized what the government was doing. In fact, songs were even recorded that served up this mighty fine travel option. While it’s a bit sophmoric, I’m wondering if it wouldn’t be appropriate (and somewhat ironic) to jumpstart this lovely jingle whenever the Right starts to claim ownership of the moral center of the country and a desire to take the country back.

“I am really mortified beyond expression that, in the moment of our acknowledged independence, we should by our conduct verify the predictions of our transatlantic foe and render ourselves ridiculous and contemptible in the eyes of all Europe. It is but the other day we were shedding our blood to obtain the constitutions under which we now live – constitutions of our own choice and framing – and now we are unsheathing the sword to overturn them.

George Washington 1786

January 12, 2012 Playa Vista Farmers Market

A New Year Is Upon Us

This week’s bunch of fresh cut flowers honor those who won’t be with us to shepherd in the new year. As 2011 ends I think of all those who departed; some too early, others right on time. And here we are – left to carry on without them. So what do we do with the ever shortening time we have left? Do we spend it on frivolous tidings or do we start to impact those around us in some positive fashion. This is what we as a culture did in 2011. What will you do in 2012?

“My brave fellows, you have done all I asked you to do and more than could be reasonably expected.  But your country is at stake, your wives, your houses and all you hold dear. If you will consent to stay one month longer, you will render that service to the cause of liberty and to your country which you probably can never do under any other circumstances.”

George Washington, January 1777

December 30, 2011 Marina del Rey Gelsons

Oh by gosh, by golly…

This week’s bunch of fresh cut flowers are a Winter’s Mix of Hollyberry and Fern. The holly’s bright red berries offer a lovely visual contrast to the prickly thorns of the leaf itself. I am reminded that even as we celebrate the holidays and spend time with family and friends, we are in the midst of a global economic crisis and are certainly teetering on the peaks of great change. Where we will land is anyone’s guess. What can we do collectively to ensure the safest possible landing?

“These are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands it now deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.”

The Crisis by Thomas Paine written on December 23, 1776 which General Washington had read to the troops to boost morale during the depths of the first bleak winter of the Revolutionary War

December 18, 2011 Westchester Bristol Farms

Summer Stock and Tea Parties

This week’s bunch of fresh cut flowers are Matthiola Incana, commonly known as Hoary or Ten Weeks Stock, which seems analogous to our current congressional participants (across both the upper and lower houses), a ill-mannered lot whose remarkable amateurish performance suggests hopeful actors attending the Ogunquit Playhouse in Maine, where they could apprentice (paying $150 for the summer) to learn their craft and observe—and possibly work with—professionals.

Is this the best our country can offer in the way of representation?

“My best way of thanking voters was by making their interests my own and doing everything that lies in my little power, for the honor and welfare of the country.”

George Washington 1758

December 10, 2011 Manhattan Beach Whole Foods Market

Mon Ami, what happened to our Bonhomie?

This week’s bunch of freshly cut flowers are vibrant yellow French Tulips, which were first introduced to the West in the late 1500’s by an illegitimate Flemish herbalist who became the Austrian ambassador to the Ottoman Empire in Constantinople. While Tulips have long been a spring flower, certain varietals can flourish throughout the summer into fall and even winter as long as they avoid an early frost

“It is a maxim founded on the universal experience of mankind that no nation is to be trusted farther than it is bound by its interest.” George Washington on his relationship with the French – 1778

December 3, 2011 Santa Monica Farmers Market

Post Navigation

%d bloggers like this: