The Prune: Better to be an antsy busy bee than a distracted grasshopper

CANNED ROMA TOMATOES are ready to be consumed this winter — by a hungry grasshopper. submitted photo

by Todd Sharp

I get a little antsy this time of the year. I start to feel uneasy about the upcoming quieter season.

Fewer folks around to share stories with. I’ll miss the energy and excitement, the vibration created by diverse ideas, cultures and traditions of the busy, vibrant communities we share in the summer.

During the winter and early spring, I take time to make practical plans for summer improvements.

Then summer picks up like a furious late afternoon thunderstorm and quickly whizzes by filled with fun and grasshopper distractions.

I spend time hopping around to festivals, parties, playing in the water, pedaling my bike, grilling ribs and smoking brisket.

I was cheerfully pedalling by some brothers picking up windfall apples off the ground to make applesauce for the winter. I realized I’m not ready for winter. I still haven’t put up any tomatoes for chili and spaghetti, no applesauce — frozen or canned.

I didn’t toil with a huge garden this summer.

Now I’m antsy.

I should be behaving like the ant, getting projects done and preparing for winter, but I’m truly a summer grasshopper.

I can get to the Harvest Fest farmer’s market this weekend for a bushel of apples to make sauce and crunch on a fresh Cortland, maybe bake a pie.

There is plenty of time to can a bushel of Roma tomatoes.

I do appreciate all the hard working farmers, weeders and harvesters.

I love the fall but autumn doesn’t like me; allergies and the tendency to ease into the regular pattern of football viewing or TV bingeing, I settle back on the couch, resting and recovering from the summer.

Coupling this inactivity with Halloween candy, my jeans grow tight before I roll off the couch and get back to the routine of winter spinning, indoor workouts and making plans.

I’m fighting back this year. I’m keeping the healthy, rambunctious grasshopper mentality alive and well into December and past Christmas.

I’m going to ride my bike at least 20 miles before I sit and watch three hours of football.

I’ll eat carrots with guacamole instead of corn chips,

I’ll make a pot of Cuban black beans instead of grilling brats.

I’ve had a playful summer and don’t regret a minute

Editor’s note: When not bingeing on carrots as he says, “Farewell, Fritos!,” The Prune Todd Sharp sells advertising for the Green Laker, Express and The Ripon Commonwealth Press.