Two husbands good

Sometimes I think it would be handy to have two husbands. I don’t think my husband would like this idea very much and there’s also the small problem of its being illegal so I’ll just have to make do with one. But I’m probably as close as I’m going to get to having two husbands just now and it’s rather nice. We’re living in what locals call a “double upper”. It’s a terraced home spanning three levels. We have the upper two levels and someone – my “second husband” – has the bottom level. We share the backyard with him and the guy who lives there mows the lawn! How fabulous is that! Not that I’m saying husbands are only good for mowing the lawn, that’s not what I mean at all. They are good for lots of other things too 🙂
 

George Monbiot – he can be my second husband any time – wrote a good article in the Guardian yesterday called If you must eat meat, save it for Christmas. He makes the point that our ancestors did not eat as much meat as we do. Once upon a time meat was reserved for special feasts like Christmas and this made it a privilege and a gift. Now most people in the developed world eat meat everyday and more than once a day and not only is it making us fat and sick, it’s also harming our planet. It’s quite extraordinary to think that there are some 59 billion farm animals alive at any given moment just to satisfy our desire for meat.

 
He goes on to say that one of the biggest barriers to becoming vegan or vegetarian is that most people just want to fit in and there are so few of us in the developed world who eat only plants. This is so true. Perhaps rather than giving up meat completely, we should try to save meat for special occasions only and stick with plants the rest of the time just as our ancestors did.
 
I find it strange that people talk about the objectification of women and how it is a bad thing and then we call dead animals “meat” but no-one bats an eyelid. I don’t think you can find language more objectifying that this. Although notice that I have used this word myself. Perhaps I am just trying to fit in. Fabric with sexy women on it is not objectifying women but calling dead animals meat is objectifying animals in my humble opinion.
 

It turns out my second National Insurance Number is a temporary one. HM Revenue & Customs haven’t issued me with two after all. Instead they sent me a temporary number to tide me over for two whole days until the real one arrived, which it did, about two days after the temporary one and two months after I applied for it 🙂

14 thoughts on “Two husbands good

  1. When I was a kid, eating meat was largely a weekly affair. We occasionally used to eat twice a week. As I grew up and became independent, my meat consumption has marginally gone up. But it feels nice to keep it to only once or twice a week. My wife being a vegetarian helps as well.

    Glad NIN is sorted.

    Two husbands is a terrible idea. And so is, two wives. Just saying 🙂

    1. I grew up in a meat-everyday-household. Dinner every night was meat and three veg. I don’t think I even really like it very much. I definitely prefer vegetarian food for taste. It doesn’t leave you with the same heavy, fatty feel after a meal either.

      Yeah, two wives is a bad idea. I don’t think my husband could cope with two wives anyway 🙂

  2. Two husbands. Think of the maintenance costs.

    A new piece of nonsense, Arctic Squirrels are contributing to climate change. Here

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-30456869

    The writer makes two telling statements:-

    ” this may result in increased loss of carbon from the system.”

    She concluded that squirrels were playing “a far more important role in this permafrost carbon cycle than we thought”.

    The words “may” and “were” don’t tally. Add to this the fact that there would not be a problem of melting permafrost if industry had not kick started global warming.

    I pass this on to you now, so that it doesn’t come as a undefended shock. Blame squirrels, never. It’s an outrageous calumny, but a good way to get another research grant. aaarg 🙂

    1. Yes, blame squirrels, never! Exactly. It is outrageous. I’m surprised the climate change “Skeptics” aren’t leaping all over this – “It’s not us after all, it’s the squirrels!”.

      And wives are supposed to be more maintenance than husbands aren’t they? For this reason, it seems far more sensible to have multiple husbands per woman rather than the other way around.

  3. I’m doing without one husband so I’m sure I could cope without two! However, I would love to have a life manager and arranger. Someone who could do my filing, sort out my cupboards and organise my non-work life. I could really do with a strong man who can dig a large hole in the garden this weekend. I want to transfer a huge potted camellia into the garden. If any men in Canberra are reading this and have a spare half hour this weekend, let me know. 🙂

  4. We don’t each much meat…just a small portion. At first it was due to cutting expense. But now I really don’t want more than a few bites to go with the rest of the meal. But when planning a menu (which I don’t do much of) it seems we plan around the meat item. We pick the meat and add the other stuff.
    Glad the insurance got sorted.

    1. Yes, it’s hard to change the idea that meals should revolve around the piece of meat. It’s so embedded in our culture. I went to an amazing vegetarian restaurant last night for a work Christmas dinner and it was delicious. Not one of the dishes had meat and it didn’t matter at all. The food was great and filling and there was no need to meat.

      1. My husband came home (he does the shopping) with a bunch of pork chops yesterday. He does a great job of trimming the extra bits of fat before freezing, but I could hardly watch him do it.
        I will try to disguise it in a bunch of cabbage and tomatoes and onions and okra etc. 🙂

  5. Something there is that does not care for the new font. The bold is OK, but the regular is a little hard to read relative to what you had before.

    1. Thanks for letting me know. I’ve changed back to the one I had before which I quite like. The comment button wasn’t working properly on that other theme either and that was irritating me a bit.

  6. I was at AGU all week looking at just cryosphere and paleo posters in preparation for some blogging, and it is absolutely depressing that the squiirrel story was picked up. Even in the narrow slice of stuff I saw, there were dozens of more deserving stories. It goes without saying that biological activity of all sorts in the active layer will enhance permafrost thaw, but you can’t call the squirrel contribution major without quantifying it, which I’m very confident the authors did not.

    Here’s the abstract:

    “A large pool of organic carbon (C) has been accumulating in the Arctic for thousands of years. Much of this C has been frozen in permafrost and unavailable for microbial decomposition. As the climate warms and permafrost thaws, the fate of this large C pool will be driven not only by climatic conditions, but also by ecosystem changes brought about by arctic animal populations. In this project we studied arctic ground squirrels (Spermophilus parryii), which are widely-distributed throughout the Arctic. These social mammals create subterranean burrows that mix soil layers, increase aeration, alter soil moisture and temperature, and redistribute soil nutrients, all of which may impact microbial decomposition. We examined the effects of arctic ground squirrel activity on soil C mineralization in dry heath tundra underlain by continuous permafrost in the Kolyma River watershed in northeast Siberia, Russia. Vegetation cover was greatly reduced on the ground squirrel burrows (80% of ground un-vegetated), compared to undisturbed sites (35% of ground un-vegetated). Soils from ground squirrel burrows were also significantly dryer and warmer. To examine effects of ground squirrel activity on microbial respiration, we conducted an 8-day incubation of soil from burrows and from adjacent undisturbed tundra. In addition, we assessed the impact of nutrient addition by including treatments with low and high levels of nitrogen addition. Microbial respiration (per gram soil) was three-fold higher in incubated soils from the undisturbed sites compared to soils collected from the burrows. The lower rates of respiration from the disturbed soils may have been a result of lower carbon quality or low soil moisture. High nitrogen addition significantly increased respiration in the undisturbed soils, but not in the disturbed burrow soils, which suggests that microbial respiration in the burrow soils was not primarily limited by nitrogen. These results demonstrate the importance of wildlife activity on soil C vulnerability in the Arctic. As C is moved from protected permafrost pools to thawed soils, burrowing animals, such as the arctic ground squirrel, may play an increasingly important role in regulating the transfer of C from soils to the atmosphere.”

    Note no quantification of overall contribution and that “such as” indicating that the squirrels are only one part of the burrowing animal action.

    Sue Natali is a serious scientist, but this result is minor. She had far more important stuff that could have been written about instead. But look, a squirrel! Meh.

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