Saturday, April 17, 2010

One Norwalk Shellfish operation

I know that Soundbounder did a post recently on Norm Bloom's shellfish operation, but i got to go visit with Stamford's shellfish commission.
The first thing that struck me was the smells, the fresh sea smells.  No decay, rest a wonderful sea salty smell that reminded me of Galveston and the shrimp boats.

Then there are the oysters and clams -piles and pile of them.
They made my mouth water!
Here are pictures:

First the oyster, just harvested, piles of them!:

Then we get to some of the workings:

A few boats in dock:

Then to an incoming boat:

The real cultivating of the oysters that he does is incredicble.

Sadly, no samples were available for organoleptic testing.

Friday, April 2, 2010


We all have them, if we admit it.
Fear of germs, bugs, insects, spiders, snakes, SUV's. etc...
How do they effect us and what we do to the environment?
Farmers had a phobia of insects ruining their crops and insecticides were created and used (that goes back a long time to Egyptian times by the way).
I think that one will cause us problems for a long time to come.
Of course that one still continues to day and has spread to urban dwellers (to control roaches and bed bugs) and suburban dwellers (to control, ants, ticks, termites. etc...).
I do not use them.  I will use a bug spray on my self, but that is because of the next one...
Then there is a fear of germs and so everyone uses antibacterial whatever to try to stop them.
We will never and they are so necessary that it is a good thing.
Bacteria, most bacteria are very beneficial and necessary for life (and death) and we try to randomly stop them all.
I will admit to using chlorox, but I am mostly trying to stop bacteria "mats" from forming and making things slippery.
Having dealt with some of the worst bacteria this world has to offer (note I did not say viruses, thankfully we are not that sophisticated), Clorox is my lifeline.  At the same time, I don't really care about all the grimy every day bacteria that are in the soil and door knobs.  When I cook food, I wash my hands very, very often, too many of those nasties live in the food we buy and I prefer not to pass them on to the people I serve.
Now the question, what happens to all those antibacterial products we use when we are finished with them?
They go down the drain and many keep killing, long after their job with you is done,
I do like Clorox because it tends to get destroyed by common soil organics,  Some of the by products I do not like, but some of the others keep killing at very small concentrations,
What about peroxide?  great stuff, but does not penetrate the bacterial mats well enough for me,  And surprise as a very reactive substance, it also creates unusual compounds with soil organics, but it is not too bad.
So my statement?
I would like not to use anything and regular soap does a great job of removing bacteria from your hands with out destroying the rest of the world.  Yes regular soap, the pH and lathering does wonders!  So does hot water.
Use the tough stuff only when you have to and sparingly.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

The Mill River has the last laugh!

With all the rain the past month, the Mill River has over flowed its newly prepared banks each time around the now deconstructed Mill River Park.
While pictures are worth a thousand words, I really only have the over flowed river.

The large boulders that were to be the rivers right bank edge are now almost an island as the river has had its way with the ways of men,
When will we ever learn?