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Legal Stuff

I fully intended to comply with the subpoena I received last week, but it was lifted. Somebody in the county has missed their opportunity to have me decide their fate by sitting on their jury. Maybe they heard I was in the jury pool and decided to settle.

If I lived in Utah I would love to be on the jury for this incident reported by the BBC: Woman jailed for ‘neglected’ lawn

A 70-year-old US woman has been left bruised and bloody after an unexpected clash with police who came to arrest her because her lawn was dry and brown.

Trouble flared when Utah pensioner Betty Perry, 70, refused to give her name to an officer trying to caution her for not watering her lawn.

I wonder if her decision not to water her lawn had anything to do with Fierce heatwave fans US wildfires

A heatwave in the western states of the US has caused a string of wildfires, threatening homes and closing highways.

Hundreds of people in the town of Winnemucca, Nevada, had to leave their homes on Saturday because of an 8,000-acre fire.

In California, some 200 people were evacuated from homes in the town of Independence, on the eastern spine of the Sierra Nevada mountain range.

Temperatures as high as 38C [108°F] have followed a drier-than-normal winter.

Which CNN reports as affecting Utah in One killed, homes destroyed as wildfires char western U.S.

The Utah Highway Patrol on Sunday reopened a 100-mile (161-kilometer) stretch of Interstate 15 and 25 miles (40 kilometers) of I-70 that were closed when a 250-square-mile (402-square kilometer) fire jumped the highways and filled the air with dense smoke Saturday. Poor visibility was blamed for several accidents, including a motorcycle crash that killed two people.

The fire in central Utah had swept across parts of two counties, charring an estimated 160,000 acres, or 250 square miles, fire information officer LaCee Bartholomew said.

So you have a police officer arresting a woman for not watering her lawn during a drought, and this makes sense on exactly which of the multiverses? Maybe the heat got to him?


1 ellroon { 07.08.07 at 9:38 pm }

I saw this too. I wasn’t aware the drought was so widespread. Politicians here in southern California haven’t yet said a peep about water rationing….

If an elderly woman’s yard in Utah is being neglected, get those cheerful Mormon neighbors to come and help. Sheesh!

2 whig { 07.08.07 at 11:49 pm }

We got a notice that our water would be rationed in the East Bay if we have another winter as dry as last year again this year.

What is with this national fixation on lawns? It’s the most foolishly inefficient use of land I can think of, at least grow some flowers or fruit trees or something, or maybe some cactus if you are in a drier climate.

It’s like a green desert, some places. Lawns everywhere and not even any animals grazing, of course, it just gets mowed.

3 Bryan { 07.09.07 at 12:16 am }

We are restricted to watering twice a week from 4pm to 10pm if we have a separate irrigation well, which we do, to avoid salt water migration into the drinking water wells as a result of a lowering water table.

We have gotten some rain recently, but the local water table really needs the rain to fall in the mountains in northern Alabama to do us any real good. The local rains will keep things green, but the aquifer is fed from the mountains.

Lawns are polluting the bayou with the fertilizer and pesticides needed to produce grass. The local herbivores can’t live on the grass grown for lawns, but the pests brought in with the sod can.

I personally hate lawns and their evil spawn – golf. Both should be restricted to Scotland.

If my town would give up on the whole mowing thing, my front yard would be covered in moss roses and wild flowers. I’ve been on the receiving end of a few ordinance violations for my “lawn”.

4 hipparchia { 07.09.07 at 1:32 am }

of course they should have arrested her! what was she thinking? letting her lawn dry out like that was just encouraging it to catch on fire. didn’t she understand that she was endangering the entire community? sheesh.

[/awful sarcasm]

my dream lawn: sea oats and sandspurs.

5 Bryan { 07.09.07 at 11:10 am }

I will cheerfully supply you with all of the sandspurs from my front yard. 😈

Trees, large live oaks, make the best “lawn” – shade, wind break, oxygen, and critter food.

6 Cookie Jill { 07.09.07 at 6:59 pm }

Oh…man we are broiling out here. we are getting particularly “crispy” too. Just change the name of California to “Wild Fire Food”


7 Bryan { 07.09.07 at 7:40 pm }

The creosote bushes explode into flame. We have the option of using salt water, that isn’t good for the equipment or ground. Some of our continued die off since Ivan is the amount of salt water carried inland.

It isn’t even time for the Santa Anas and SoCal is alight.

Know where the ocean is at all times, Jill. It’s going to be a long summer until the rains and mudslides start.

8 hipparchia { 07.09.07 at 7:49 pm }

they stand up well to hurricanes too, the live oaks. and i’m seriously annoyed with all the people who plant palm tress around here.

sandspurs, bring em on.

9 Bryan { 07.09.07 at 9:19 pm }

Palm trees, and the sand pines have shallow root systems and all of the foliage on top, thus guaranteed to be pushed over in the wind.

You wouldn’t be a fan of sandspurs if you had to help someone get them out of their shih tsu’s coat.

10 Steve Bates { 07.09.07 at 10:18 pm }

What’s this about burning bushes? do they talk? Or is that an activity we can indulge in ourselves, metaphorically, of course? (Burning bushes, I mean.)

I remember holding my breath in some particularly dry summers, waiting to find out whether wildfires near Livingston, TX were headed for my parents’ trailer… which, in a stroke of irony, survived all the possible fires and ended up, years later, surrounded by fallen trees due to Hurricane Rita, not at all the end I expected for that property.

This is one of the rare summers that Houston has a little rain every day, with only an occasional flood day. The rest of the nation is not so lucky. Stay safe, everyone.

11 hipparchia { 07.09.07 at 11:40 pm }

clippers, dude. shih tsus are the happy ones. for real fun, you should go with lhasas.

pines at least look good, and live here. palm trees are ugly.

12 Cookie Jill { 07.10.07 at 12:05 am }

Yeah, Brian. Thank goodness the beach really is just about 5 minutes drive from any part of town. However, should the entire city be heading that direction, could be problematic.

Here in Santa Barbara, we are only three mudslides away from being cut off from the rest of the world. At least we have a few more options than those up in Big Sur. (they get helicoptered out when the fires and slides come around….)

13 Bryan { 07.10.07 at 8:00 am }

Steve, we have had some fires before the current thunderstorms started. It was a mixed blessing at first, with the lightning starting fires before there was enough rain to dampen the debris. The rain is nice, but worthless to the drinking water problem.

Don’t forget that every dog is an individual, and some just don’t like clippers, Hipparchia. My Mother’s last dog, a miniature poodle, was fine with it, but my neighbor’s shih tsu was mental about it.

We only have one large pine left after Ivan, and it’s protected by oaks. All of the free standing pines have either blown over, or been killed by the salt water.

I remember, Jill. I lived in Monterey for a couple of years while attending the Defense Language Institute. It was pain to get to, and PCH was not guaranteed to be opened any time of the year.

14 hipparchia { 07.10.07 at 6:53 pm }

true. my present dog puts up with a lot from me, but he draws the line at clippers.

we’ve lost a lot of lovely pines too, but i have to admit [whisper] i’m not sorry to see the water oaks go. [/whisper] unfortunately, an awful lot of the live oaks are still looking stressed. i think their future may be limited.

15 Bryan { 07.10.07 at 8:56 pm }

We have water oaks, live oaks, camphor trees, sugerberries, magnolias, ficus, cedar, crown palm [looks like a big palmetto], Chinese tallow, crepe myrtle, and one lonely, crooked pine left on the block. Something should survive, but the red oaks and all but that single pine are gone.

16 hipparchia { 07.10.07 at 9:50 pm }

there’s an indian hawthorn planted near me. i sooooo wanted it to die, but it’s the healthiest, happiest thing around here. sadly, like the pines, the cedars in my neighborhood did not fare well at all.