Those of you who know me are aware that I possess some bad traits. One of my personalities is that of grammar nazi. I am an orthographomaniac, otherwise known as compulsive-spellchecker. These traits may well be genetic. By example, the proliferation of the apostrophised “its” gives me fits. It’s not “it’s” it’s “its”!!! Folks, we’re talking about what we should have learned in 3rd or 4th grade. Despite the concern for correctness, I unabashedly love words, wordplay, creative spelling, and take pleasure in a good neologism. You aren’t having a good day unless spellcheck has redlined you for something like “orthographomaniac”.
Here at the tompostpile, one of our passions is growing things. We’re not a farm, and not even a minifarm. We’re a microfarm. We try to grow as much of our food as possible. Someday you’ll learn the name of our microfarm.
The early spring of 2012 has gotten us microfarmers busy, up here at the foot of Ridge Hill. The seed orders have come, early plantings of peas are in, freshly seeded flats wander from table to hall to window to the greenhouse out in the garden, according to light, moisture, and temperature needs. One of these weeks the strawberry and asparagus plants will come. We get ours from Nourse Farms (noursefarms.com), South Deerfield, MA. They’re the best source for strawberry plants, asparagus, and small fruits, that you could ever hope for. Their plants are top notch, and reasonably priced.
Imagine the grammar nazi, poring through the catalog, comparing varietal characteristics, looking for just the right varieties, when he found not only an “it’s” where “its” should have been, but saw that the description for their currant bushes described their beautiful and easy-to-pick “strigs” of berries. Yeah, right, Nourse Farms. Gotcha! You mean “STRINGS”!
Tom, as Chief Orthographer-General, writes Nourse Farms a corrective email. Gets back a gracious response within a day, from Mary McNerny, in the farm’s office. Here’s what she said: “Thanks for the report! We will get this fixed…except for “strig”. Strig is a correct term. and refers to the “pendulous chain of small berries” found on currants. Glad you are reading all the pages….let us know if you find anything further.”
The orthographer consults Merriam Webster.
Which says that a “Strig” is:
1a : the footstalk of a leaf or flower.
1b dial Eng : the rachis of a hop strobile , or the fruiting raceme of the common currant
A strig is also a thin narrow part or attachment of various tools
Sometimes it’s way more fun to be wrong. You get corrected, and actually learn something.