Page 1

INSIDE MEGA BOONDOGGLE page 2 COTTAGE QUARTET page 5 BIG CHECKS page 6 LUNCH BAGS page 8

MAY 2013 VOL. 7, NO. 12

CVFD Exasperated Over County Volunteering Policy

PEAS & DUMPLINGS page 10

SINGING AT WHITE HOUSE page 11 ONE IN FIVE IS HERE page 13 FAMOUS WRITER page 14 DON’T EAT IT page 18 TRAUMA STRONG page 19

Batesville artist Tim Wright presented a portrait of Claudius Crozet to Jefferson-Madison Regional Library Director John Halliday April 15. On the left are Crozet librarians Anna Thomas and Pam Grammer.

COMMUNITY BUILDERS page 20

Crozet Portrait Donated to Crozet Library

DECIDE TO LIKE IT page 21 STOICS page 22 CROSSWORD page 23 GRILL TIPS page 24 LIVE/WORK page 26 NUPTIALS page 27 WATER IS LIFE page 28 COOL TOOLS page 26 CASH PRIZE page 32 IDIOM ORIGINS page 37 HELADERIA Y TAQUERIA page 38

Batesville artist Tim Wright presented a watercolor portrait of Claudius Crozet to Crozet Library April 15, giving it versions of both known likenesses of him. The portrait is done from a daguerreotype taken of Crozet during the 1850s, at the time he was directing the construction of the Blue Ridge Tunnel. The

original photograph is in the possession of Virginia Military Institute, where Crozet served as the school’s first rector. Educated at France’s famed Ecole Polytechnique himself, Crozet is regarded as one of VMI’s three founders, and he designed the dress uniform the

continued on page 4

The 103-year-old, all volunteer Crozet fire department is groaning in dismay over an April decision by the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors to forbid the county’s professional firemen from volunteering at a local fire station during their off-work hours. Citing the Federal Labor Relations Act, a law designed to prevent employees from being pressured or intimidated into “volunteering” extra unpaid hours on their jobs, and relying on advice from County Attorney Larry Davis, the supervisors will not allow their career fire service employees to serve even at all-volunteer stations like Crozet’s, where no one is paid, according to CVFD chief Preston Gentry. “It comes down how you interpret the law,” said Gentry, “because neighboring counties do allow it. You just can’t volunteer at the station you normally work at. continued on page 8

Palmer Challenges Snow for Samuel Miller Seat on Board of Supervisors Liz Palmer of Ivy has entered the race for the Albemarle Board of Supervisors seat for the Samuel Miller District, challenging Duane Snow, who has held it for one term. Palmer made her announcement on the front steps of the Albemarle County Office Building in Charlottesville on April 11, where she was introduced by her campaign manager, Sally Thomas, who held the seat for 16 years—a winner in a write-in campaign in her first election in 1994—before retiring in 2010. Palmer, a veterinarian, got involved in civic affairs when she became interested in county water supply issues and stream

health and became active in Albemarle County Service Authority planning. Thomas said Palmer’s career has shown that “she has a soft side and is used to dealing with crises in pets’ lives,” but “she has a hard facts side, too. She dug into our water and sewer systems and saw what we were allowing to happen to our mountain streams.” Palmer joined the League of Women Voters and, working as a citizen, “revised our water supply system,” Thomas said. She praised Palmer, who was eventually appointed to the county water board, for her diligence in getting command of facts and policies. continued on page 7

RYAN JONES

TRUE OR FALSE page 9

Lucie and Alice Taylor cross the finish line at the James Sun Memorial 5k in Old Trail April 28.


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CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

From the Editor Empire Builders It is just silly of the county supervisors not to allow their paid firefighters to volunteer at their local firehouses in their off-duty hours if these are not the stations they are normally assigned to. The practice is common in nearby counties. This policy only make sense in the context of the county fire and rescue department’s relentless bureaucratic empire building and its insidious “who, me?” efforts to undermine the volunteer civic organizations, notably the Crozet Volunteer Fire Department and the Western Albemarle Rescue Squad, who provide these services over wide sections of the county at high standards of dedication, virtual professionalism, and enormously lower

cost to taxpayers. WARS for instance is under steady pressure to start charging the people it carries to hospitals, a practice which will destroy its community support because folks will assume that its expenses are being covered. It will become a client of the county, all so the county can tap a new way to raise money, this time from insurance companies who will simply raise their charges on us. Expect the volunteers in both organizations to quit if that stage is reached. Already both CVFD and WARS are demoralized by the years of sniping and guerilla warfare from county officials. These organizations are built literally on generations of community support and the volunteers’ personal sacrifices. They embody the ideal civic culture that Jefferson

envisioned for America. We have achieved it. But, no. County policy seems determined to exterminate them and apparently only out of local government’s lust for control, control, control. Empire building is rampant all through county offices. It’s time for the supervisors to start representing us and not their employees. Those employees work for us, and just because we hire them does not mean they get to rule us.

Since that day, the outpouring of support from family, friends, neighbors, co-workers and the community has been astounding. “Thank you” seems too small to express our heartfelt appreciation for all the gifts that have been bestowed upon us. I, along with my children, want to make sure that everyone knows how appreciative we are and how much your kindness and support have meant to us.

To the Editor

Bypass Boondoggle The so-called Western “Bypass” of Charlottesville will dry up future state money that will be needed for Crozet-area road improvements by tying up half of all state dollars

From a Loving Wife of 47 Years On Friday, March 31 my life and the lives of my children and grandchildren forever changed when my husband Carroll Herring was killed.

Judy Herring Crozet

continued on page 16

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CROZET gazette the

Published on the first Thursday of the month by The Crozet Gazette LLC, P.O. Box 863, Crozet, VA 22932.

www.crozetgazette.com © The Crozet Gazette

MICHAEL J. MARSHALL, Publisher and Editor news@crozetgazette.com | 434-466-8939 ALLIE M. PESCH, Art Director and Ad Manager ads@crozetgazette.com | 434-249-4211 LOUISE DUDLEY, Editorial Assistant louise@crozetgazette.com

Call today for a free consultation 434-296-0188 CONTRIBUTING WRITERS: John Andersen, Clover Carroll, Marlene Condon, Elena Day, Phil James, Kathy Johnson, Charles Kidder, Dirk Nies, Robert Reiser, Roscoe Shaw, Christina Shoup, Heidi Sonen, David Wagner.

Don’t miss any of the hometown news everybody else is up on. Pick up a free copy of the Crozet Gazette at one of many area locations or have the Crozet Gazette delivered to your home or dorm room. Mail subscriptions are available for $25 for 12 issues. Send a check to Crozet Gazette, P.O. Box 863, Crozet, VA 22932.


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MAY 2013

CROZET gazette

Wright Portraits —continued from page 1

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Keydets wear to this day. The library already has a print of a portrait of Crozet done sometime later, the original of which is also at VMI. Crozet died in Richmond in 1864. Wright, who said he has no formal training in art, has done about 100 portraits of historical figures, about 25 from the Civil War era, as well as many taken from photographs of American Indians that date from the last years of the 19th century. Wright said he paints the portraits to promote awareness of the subject’s significance. He said he would donate 25 percent of every sale of the Crozet image to the Build Crozet Library fund. The portraits tend to have more grey and brown tones, he said, to

Wright’s Portrait of a girl blowing bubbles

his spare time from his job as a home inspector. Wright is also a furniture and cabinetmaker and built his house. “It’s not a loose watercolor. I build colors and I work surfaces over three or four times,” he said. “In my paintings, the closer you get, the more detail you see. If my painting is not right, it will look wrong the farther you back away from it. A loose painting looks better at a distance. “I’ve never studied under anyone, but I’ve painted ever since I was a kid. I picked up watercolors in 2008. When I started out as a furniture maker I had excellent teachers and they taught me the principles behind design. It’s a blessing to be able to paint. It brings contentment and joy to make things people appreciate.” When he decided to do a portrait of Crozet to make a personal contribution to the new library, he investiWright’s portrait of R.E. Lee gated Crozet’s life. “I read up on him convey the qualities of the photo- to do it. I didn’t realize how intelligraphs he works off of. gent he was. Jefferson called him the “I think everybody has a story to most brilliant mathematician in tell. A portrait can bring a lot of peo- North America. He was something.” ple who have been forgotten back to Wright’s watercolors are displayed life,” he said. He is at Valley Green particularly drawn Gallery in to photos taken by Nellysford and Gray Edward Curtis, Hawk Designs in famous as a photogWhite Hall. He also rapher of Indian has a website, timtribes in the West. wrightwatercolor“I like to be able portraits.com. He to bring out the does take commisexpressions and sions and makes mood of the person portraits from old I’m painting so the family photographs. viewer can see the His prints, which he life and mind of the makes himself to person.” He said he ensure their quality, paints about a dozen sell for around portraits a year, in Wright’s portrait of Thomas Jefferson $100.


CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

5

Cottage Project Proposed for Crozet Avenue Site at April CCAC Meeting

NOW ON SALE The current struture at 1278 Crozet Avenue is considered a demolition project by contractors who have examined it.

A four-unit residential development proposed by developer Charles Schreck for a parcel three doors north of the Dairy Queen at 1278 Crozet Avenue was discussed by the Crozet Community Advisory Council at its April 18 meeting and met with a positive response. The parcel, now zoned for two units, is eligible for up to six units according to the Crozet Master Plan. It is commonly referred to as “the Oakley property” and has an early 19th century house on it that was originally built south of the railroad tracks and has been moved twice in its history. Unoccupied for years, it has virtually no level or plumb surface in it and is considered a demolition project by contractors who have examined it. The property was the focus of an effort to have it included in the downtown commercial district, but that idea was opposed by neighbors who feared it would lead to creeping commercial zoning changes into the northern neighborhoods, and it also failed to win the agreement of the CCAC. The boundary between commercial and residential area was left at an intermittent stream, essentially a drainage ditch, that is the south edge of the property. Schreck proposed to replace the house with another with a similar “vernacular architecture” style and to place three units along a driveway behind it, either cottages or townhouses. “I’m not interested in commercial or high density,” said Schreck, who said he was reluctant to proceed with a decision on how to site the rear

units before learning if the concept was suitable. He said the houses would be two-stories and in the 1,700- to 2,000-square-foot range. “Architecturally, I’m very aware of the streetscape,” he said. “It will look like the side of Crozet Avenue north of the tracks—front porches, shutters. “We have a water barrier problem on the property. We’re restricted by code in what we can do with the original home. I need to take it down. It’s a mess.” Schreck said the county may reduce stream buffer requirement from 100 to 50 feet in this location, as it already has for a parcel on the opposite side of the ditch. CCAC member John Savage said, “There are no red flags raised here,” and Bill Schrader agreed, conveying the CCAC’s general approval pending the development of more details about the housing types. Schreck said he would come back to the CCAC to discuss a more elaborated plan. On other topics, county director of facilities management Trevor Henry told the CCAC that the utility relocation project, which is undergrounding electric and telephone lines through downtown, is half complete. He said construction bids to build sidewalks and other improvements to Crozet Avenue, called the Streetscape project, should be back by August. Henry said the county intends to make special efforts to communicate with affected businesses throughout the construction process and to mitigate it effects on customer access to businesses as continued on page 17

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CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

Lions Club Raises $12,200 for New Crozet Library’s Large-Print Section Beaming with satisfaction over one its most successful fundraising drives ever, the Crozet Lions Club presented three ceremonial checks totaling $12,200 to the Build Crozet Library committee at a supper meeting at The Meadows April 22. The money is meant to support the large-print book section of the new library. One check for $4,000 represented the personal contributions of the members of the club. The second for $5,000 was from the Lions of Virginia Foundation (the firstever contribution from them to a cause championed by the Crozet club) and the third for $3,200 was the net from the Lions’ wellattended Pancake Supper at the Field School in March. Lion Skip Thacker called that check “community support.” “Our mission is to help the visually impaired,” said Club president

Karl Pomeroy. “We’re doing it in historic fashion. This is the first time in the history of the club that it has been able to donate so much money to a single cause.” Crozet Librarian Wendy Saz told the club members, “My heartfelt thanks to you Crozet Lions for such community spirit. The library’s motto is that we are here to help citizens grow, learn and connect. We’ll be doing that better in our new library.” As a token of exchange, she presented Pomeroy with a Crozet Library baseball cap. Bill Schrader announced that Crozet furniture maker Dan Hunt has been selected to build the new library’s circulation desk and that he will build it out of locally harvested wood. Schrader said that the furniture 1234567890-= and computer equipment for the qwertyuiop[]\ library has been ordered, paid for asdfghjkl;’ zxcvbnm,./

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from the $750,000 (including the Lions’ gifts) that the committee has raised so far. Jefferson-Madison Regional Library director John Halliday told the Lions, “The J-MRL is the second largest library by geography in Virginia and one of the most heavily used libraries, per capita, in the U.S.” He noted that he first spoke to the Crozet Lions Club about the need for the new library 12 years ago. “I think Crozet Library is going

to be one of the most beautiful in Virginia,” he said. “We’ll be moving in in less than six months.” BCL committee member Tim Tolson, a former J-MRL trustee, won the Lions’ traditional 50/50 raffle that night, $26, and immediately donated it to the BCL fund. In other club fundraising news, Phil Eaton reported to the membership that their persistent efforts to collect aluminum cans for recycling had netted $15. Every bit counts.

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CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

Liz Palmer —continued from page 1

Palmer said her goals are “supporting excellence in our schools, natural resource protection and maintaining public trust. I intend to hike from one end of the Samuel Miller District to the other knocking on doors and learning from the voters what they see as the key issues to be addressed by the Board.” She said she has heard from parents already who are worried about school sizes and the effects of growth on them. Redistricting, changing school attendance zone boundaries, and school additions are choices confronting the western Albemarle schools. Palmer credited citizen concern with producing a legacy of intelligent and effective public planning in Albemarle. “This planning and protecting, which I intend to emphasize, is essential not only to our quality of life, but also for the robust economic vitality of our county,” she said.

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“I have a background of being an ordinary citizen activist. I know the frustration of feeling that officials are not listening, or watching decisions being made that seem based on ideology instead of the best interests of Albemarle citizens. Public trust can’t be taken for granted, but an elected body must constantly prove that it is paying attention to citizens and thinking for the good of both present and future generations. I won’t forget what it feels like to be a citizen in the audience. Public trust is the glue that binds our democracy and renders government functional and efficient. Any decision worth making can be made in the light of day.” She said she will posting statements about her positions on issues on her website, Lizpalmerforsupervisor.com so that citizens can familiarize themselves with her views. Retired James Madison University professor of finance Brooks Marshall is volunteering as her campaign treasurer.

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CROZET gazette

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Local Girl Scout Brownie troop 231, consisting of third grade girls who attend Brownsville and Crozet Elementary Schools, gathered and prepared 50 nonperishable food bags April 22 to donate to the Ronald McDonald House in Charlottesville. Ronald McDonald House helps many families in need of housing and food while dealing with challenging health situations in their family at the University of Virginia hospital.

Fire Volunteers —continued from page 1

“They are doing it so the volunteer stations can’t get supplemented,” he said. County maps show that it delineates 10 first-response fire districts, geographic territories, served by 10 stations within them. The ruling is apparently based on an interpretation that Albemarle County is only one district. Neighboring counties that do allow career firefighters to volunteer in other districts are interpreting their first-response districts as actually distinct and their stations as separately administered. “Cohesion between [the professional and volunteer] fire departments and continuity in relations between the departments would be improved if [the paid firefighters] would be allowed to serve as volunteers,” said Gentry. “Their training would help the volunteers.

The food bags are designed for breakfast and lunches for people on the go who do not take time to sit down and eat. The bags typically contain items such as applesauce, plastic fruit cups, raisins, crackers, oatmeal, popcorn, cookies, chips, cereal bars, granola bars, microwaveable foods such as macaroni and cheese and various cups of soup. The troop meets at Crozet United Methodist Church.

“We’ve lost 23 percent of our volunteers to the career service. We don’t want to tick-off the county, but we have no paid people here, so how could it hurt?” “And who is the county to tell an employee how to spend his free time?” added CVFD president Rodney Rich. The Supervisors went into executive session to discuss the policy, citing the Freedom of Information Act allowance for legal matters—though that exemption is usually considered pertinent only for discussing active lawsuits that the county is involved in, not matters of general policy— and announced a decision afterward, Gentry said. CVFD leaders are trying to think of a way to get the supervisors to vote in public on their decision, he said. Crozet, North Garden and Scottsville have the only remaining all-volunteer fire departments. They cover about half the county’s 740 square miles.


CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

inthegarden@crozetgazette.com

Kalmia, the Un-True Laurel Occasionally you run across plant names containing the modifier “false,” such as False Hellebore (Veratrum viride). For some strange reason, this sets me to imagining some Shakespearean-type hero exclaiming, “Oh, thou un-true Hellebore, thou most false Hellebore!” Not sure who Hellebore was, but obviously not some one to be trusted. In the plant world, the terms “true” and “false” don’t carry the moral weight they might in literature. For example, a true Laurel is simply a species in the genus Laurus, just one of the several genera in the

family Lauraceae. There are many plants that have “laurel” somewhere in their common names, but alas, most are not true Laurels. Some of the laurel pretenders are found in the genus Kalmia, and are members of the heath family (Ericaceae), which includes azaleas, rhododendrons and blueberries. The seven Kalmia species—or eight, depending on which taxonomist you believe—are exclusively American. Most are found in eastern North America, with one found in the western part of the continent and another in Cuba. Some species are attractive plants, but have never made inroads into the gardening world. Several occur farther to the south, primarily in the Carolinas, while one has a particularly interest-

ing natural distribution: the New Jersey Pine Barrens, the North Carolina Coastal Plain, and a few rocky mountain tops in the southernmost peaks of the Blue Ridge— but nowhere in between. We’re most familiar with the Mountain Laurel (Kalmia latifolia), one of those Maine-to-Florida plants that ranges from the southern corner of the first state to the northwest corner of the latter. And as is usual in plants with such a wide distribution, those native to the northern extremes are likely genetically far removed from their Deep South cousins. Irrespective of its origins, Mountain Laurel is one of our most beautiful native shrubs. Its irregular branches can reach 10 to 15 feet in height, even up to 25’ in the largest individuals. Never a tidy meatball of a plant, mountain laurel will become scraggly-picturesque with age. In forest conditions, its sinewy branches weave around in the understory. I recall my goddaughter referring to them as “vine-trees” during a hike in the mountains. Mountain Laurel is best known for its gorgeous flowers. Even as white or pinkish buds they are quite showy, and only become more striking as they open up into ¾” white bells that are held in clusters of a couple of dozen flowers. There are dozens of cultivars on the market,

Kalmia latifolia

some with deep red buds, others with pink, red or purplish flowers, and some with bands of contrasting color in the flower chalices. Many fine cultivars were developed at the University of Connecticut, but I have read that some of these don’t perform well in the south. I can’t really say if that includes us in the Upper South, but you might consider the cultivar ‘Pristine’, discovered in a native population near Aiken, South Carolina. At its best, Mountain Laurel leaves are a glossy green. If planted in too much sun, however, entire leaves can become somewhat yellowish in winter. If the leaf veins remain green but the rest of the leaf turns yellow, this is a sign of chlorosis, a lack of chlorophyll in the leaves caused by high pH soil. Kalmias, like most heath family members, want acid soil. This is not usually a problem in our area, but if you have any doubts, run a soil test continued on page 29

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10

MAY 2013

CROZET gazette

Seasonal Flavors

MEMORIES & RECIPES FROM AN ITALIAN KITCHEN [ by denise zito • denise@crozetgazette.com \

Fresh Peas & Dumplings

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Some things in life must be done perfectly or not at all. If that means you only serve a particular dish once a year, when the ingredients are at their peak of flavor, then so be it. Like Thomas Jefferson, I think there is nothing so sublime as a fresh English pea. As you may know, Jefferson held a yearly contest to see which of his neighbors would produce the first bowl of peas. I’m not a fan of the edible pod pea that became so popular with U.S. gardeners in the seventies. I prefer the perfect English pea. And of course a bowl of perfect spring peas, served as a vegetable side dish is a delight. This month I’m sharing a recipe that has been a mainstay at my house on that day in May when finally there is the bounty of peas, enough for an entire quart. I still hear from friends who were lucky enough to be visiting on the day there was a quart of fresh peas ready and this dish was served. Please never tell me that you tried this with frozen peas. I would think it a horror!

Fresh Pea Soup with Butter Dumplings The soup: 1 quart of freshly shelled English peas 4 ½ cups water 1 tsp. sugar ½ cup white wine

4 ½ T. butter 4 ½ T. flour ¾ tsp salt Freshly ground pepper Gently boil the peas in the water, with the sugar for about 30 minutes, until the peas are quite soft. Then either put the soup, cup by cup in the blender (be careful—hot soup in the blender requires great care) or use one of those handheld immersion blenders to completely emulsify the peas in the water. Return the puree to the pan. Season with salt and pepper and add the wine. Melt the butter in a small skillet and stir in the flour. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly with a whisk. Then add a cup of the warm soup and stir to blend. Return the thickened soup to the pot and stir well.

The dumplings: 6 T softened butter 2 eggs ½ cup flour ¼ tsp. nutmeg ¼ tsp. salt Using a wooden spoon, beat the eggs with the flour and then beat in the butter. Season with salt and nutmeg. Drop by half teaspoons into the gently boiling soup. Cook gently for about 5 minutes and serve. Makes 6 first-course servings.

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CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

11

by Phil James phil@crozetgazette.com

Victoria Morris: From Bacon Hollow to Pennsylvania Avenue When Ben and Icy Shifflett’s beautiful baby girl Victoria was born into the highlands of western Greene County in late fall of 1895, the name of everyone’s game was work, and none of it easy. The challenge of surviving the upcoming winter in the mountains was compounded with the arrival of their ninth child, two of whose earlier siblings had not lived beyond childhood. Greene’s Bacon Hollow is contained by Flattop, Wyatt, Hightop and Snow Mountains. Roach River, proceeding from below Powell Gap, runs the full length of this secluded vale. Since the 1930s, residents have exchanged distant glances with the windshield explorers who stop at the hollow’s namesake overlook 1,200 vertical feet above on Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park. It was an apt description that “a woman’s work is never done,” particularly amid such remote surroundings at the turn of the 20th century. Sans electricity and with a water supply that only ran outdoors and downhill, everyday was a tough haul for Isaphrine “Icy” Shifflett simply to keep

Victoria Shifflett Morris with sons (l.) Fred, (r.) Alton, and (front r.) Tim. Early-1930s, near Mountfair, VA. [Courtesy of the Leonard & Victoria Morris family.]

her growing family fed and clothed. Her husband Ben’s lot “from sun to sun” centered on subsistence farming and managing his minimal livestock. Wage paying jobs were seasonal, few and dangerous: stave mill jobs, cutting and dragging timber logs, saw mill work, digging sassafras stumps and roots or stripping tree bark to sell. More often than not, any semblance of diversion from most tasks at hand involved singing ballads, to one’s self or in turn with others. This pleasing distraction was one in which several members of the Shifflett family excelled, and it was a very important part of the family and communities in which young Victoria was nurtured. When Victoria wed Leonard Morris near Christmastime in 1919, song collectors from home and abroad had begun to wend their way into the hinterlands of Appalachia in search of the old tunes. Sometimes referred to as “songcatchers,” these collectors were typically academics. Their passion was to preserve variants of original English and Scottish popular ballads before the singers, along with their songs brought over from the old country, were lost to eternity. Among the more preeminent of the collectors was Cecil Sharp, who made several trips to America from England during the years of the First World War. With his able assistant Maud Karpeles, he traversed the remote mountains of Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia, noting down the words and tunes of a vanishing art form. Owing to the remoteness and difficult access in certain regions of Appalachia, pockets of singers could still be found who remained uncorrupted by more contemporary musical influences. Nearing the close of his time in America in 1918, Sharp wrote in a letter to one of his hosts, former U.Va. English Professor C. Alphonso Smith, “I have found the tunes in Virginia

extraordinarily beautiful; I think of greater musical value than those I have taken down anywhere else in America.” Smith, a founder of the Virginia Folklore Society and himself an avid ballad collector, had introduced and directed Sharp to traditional singers in central Virginia. Among those local singers, a small handful eventually would be singled out for special honor. Victoria and Leonard Morris moved to Browns Cove in northwestern Albemarle County, and, between 1922 and 1927, were blessed with three boys of their own. Leonard found ample work on the area’s farms, and, in his spare time, shaped wooden handles for all manner of hand tools, selling them through the local continued on page 12 Above left: Victoria Shifflett (Morris), c.1912, at age 17. [Courtesy of the Leonard & Victoria Morris family.]

Victoria and extended Shifflett family members, near Nimrod, Greene County: (l.–r.) “Florence, Victoria, Berti, Johnny Wyatt.” [Courtesy of the Leonard & Victoria Morris family.]


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CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

Bacon Hollow is in Greene Co., VA, west of downtown Dyke and Blue Ridge School. A spectacular view eastward into the hollow can be had from Bacon Hollow Overlook at milepost 69.3 on Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park. [Map courtesy of White Hall Media]

Victoria

—continued from page 11

store. During fruit harvest seasons, they labored together alongside their neighbors in the orchards and fruit packing sheds, earning seasonal cash in an otherwise barter society. The Great Depression sent the nation reeling. Though its effects were less visible on the rural poor than on the dependent masses in the cities, despair was prevalent throughout the land. President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal initiatives offered relief work and a subsistence government wage to many of the neediest. First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt quickly became known for her interest in the plights of the poor and oppressed, and she maintained a rigorous travel itinerary to that end. The same weekend in 1933 that FDR toured the Civilian Conservation Corps camps in Shenandoah National Park, the First Lady was a guest at the Whitetop Folk Festival in southwest Virginia, where she was entertained with the musical traditions of mountain singers, dancers and musicians. John Powell, one of the organizers of the festival on Whitetop Mountain, was a Virginia native and renowned composer who had graduated in 1901 from the University of Virginia. His association with Mrs. Roosevelt led to his being invited to organize a contingent of traditional singers and musicians from central Virginia to perform in concert at the White House.

Victoria Morris was among the group chosen to accompany Powell to Washington. Her credentials had long been acknowledged by her neighbors. Scholars and authors Roger Abrahams and George Foss analyzed the repertoire and styles of many singers from the region and noted that Victoria and her Shifflett cousins Ella and Florence were “some of the most outstanding folksingers in the area.” In attempting to describe the voice of Victoria Morris captured on early field recordings, Ernest C. Mead Jr., then-chairman of the music department and now professor emeritus at U.Va., wrote, “No system of notation can adequately catch the epic quality of Victoria Morris’ severe yet intense and figured style...” During the long administration (1933–1945) of President Franklin Roosevelt, more than 300 diverse musical events were held at the White House. Both the President and First Lady genuinely enjoyed traditional music styles, and John Powell’s circle of performers surely did not disappoint. Following the performance, Eleanor Roosevelt, in her usual warm and gracious manner, chatted with the group and showed them around the White House. Near the close of their time together, she asked Victoria if there might be something she would like to have as a souvenir of her visit. Having noted a rough edge on the stair railing where her hand rested, Victoria replied that she wouldn’t mind having a “splinter of wood” from the White House by which to remember her special visit. Mrs. Roosevelt replied that she would see that Victoria’s wish was fulfilled. A short time after settling back into her busy life as wife and mother in Brown’s Cove, a package arrived from the White House. It contained a photograph of the First Lady, personally inscribed to Victoria—framed in wood that originally had

Leonard Morris (1893–1969) with his wife Victoria (1895– 1964) alongside the Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park. [Courtesy of the Leonard & Victoria Morris family.]

been used in the reconstruction of the White House roof following its burning by the British Army during the War of 1812. The treasured keepsake had a small, engraved brass plaque affixed to it stating its provenance. Victoria Shifflett Morris’ God-given talent for singing, nurtured and encouraged by family and friends, provided her with lifelong enjoyment, as well as a story or two to be cherished by her descendants.

This engraved plaque was attached to a wood-framed photograph of Eleanor Roosevelt. Hand-inscribed “To Mrs. Victoria Morris with best wishes Eleanor Roosevelt,” it was a gift received by Victoria in recognition of her singing performance for the President and First Lady at the White House in Washington, D.C. [Courtesy of the Leonard & Victoria Morris family.]

Follow Secrets of the Blue Ridge on Facebook! Phil James invites contact from those who would share recollections and old photographs of life along the Blue Ridge Mountains of Albemarle County. You may respond to him through his website: www.SecretsoftheBlueRidge.com or at P.O. Box 88, White Hall, VA 22987. Secrets of the Blue Ridge © 2003–2013 Phil James


CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

13

Western Albemarle First Quarter Real Estate Report by David Ferrall ferrall@crozetgazette.com 2012 was a big year for local real estate. The Charlottesville MSA (metropolitan statistical area) saw sales increase 15 percent over 2011, and in the first quarter of this year we experienced the seventh straight quarter of year-over-year sales increases (see chart, courtesy of Nest Realty). That’s reason to celebrate indeed, as a stabilized housing market is a bedrock foundation for local and national economies. Crozet real estate experienced the best sales numbers since 2006; in fact, one of every five sales last year in Albemarle County occurred in Crozet! Sellers had the best chance in years to attract a buyer with a fair price, while buyers enjoyed historically low mortgage rates and good inventory. With an unusually active and strong fourth quarter, the indicators were in place for a busy first quarter, the start to the traditionally

active spring real estate market. So how did Crozet fare in the first quarter? The answer is just okay, which is a bit of a surprise to market watchers and participants. The fourth quarter of 2012 ended with 53 total sales, and 76 properties under contingent or pending contract. This latter number rose to 103 at end of 2013’s first quarter, but as March ended the number of sales totaled only 45. This figure is a slight drop quarter-to-quarter from 2012, when 47 sales were recorded. No doubt some new construction settlements have been delayed into the second quarter due to wet weather and power outages that slowed construction over the past few months, but the number of quarter sales is still a head scratcher. A quick drive around town would suggest otherwise as well, with new houses and developments seemingly popping up everywhere. So while quarter sales may not have been quite as

CHART COURTESY NEST REALTY

In 2012, One in Five Albemarle House Sales Was In Crozet

strong as expected, local activity suggests 2013 should exceed 2012 in total sales. Of the 45 sales in the quarter, 29 were detached properties and 16 were attached. This ratio is pretty consistent quarter to quarter. The majority of attached properties were in Old Trail and Highlands. Coming quarters should see a shift more towards Old Trail, as a whole development block has been dedicated to a local townhome builder, and the units seem to be going up at a rapid pace. Haden Place has also broken ground and attached houses

there are already under contract to close later in the year. Of the 103 contingent and pending deals, 60 are for new construction, which has local builders quite pleased. Among the detached properties there were three sales over $1m, the most in any quarter since the second quarter of 2007 (five sales over $1m). Nine of the sales were on an acre or more, the balance being, for the most part, in developments. Old Trail sales represented 25 percent of these, but groundbreaking for single-family houses in Wickham Pond and continued on page 24

Third Thursday at The Lodge at Old Trail Celebrate our 1st Anniversary with Secrets from the White House Kitchens Thursday, May 16, 2013 • 5:30 PM To mark our first anniversary, we have invited author and chef, John R. Hanny to share his book Secrets from the White House Kitchens A Celebration of Foods Enjoyed at the White House & the People Who Lived There. Those that know The Lodge, understand our passion for great food. This is sure to be a delicious event for the mind and the taste buds. Join us as we raise a glass to toast all that we have accomplished in our inaugural year.

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MAY 2013

CROZET gazette

Phil James Gets Writing Awards

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Crozet historian Phil James was honored by the Virginia Outdoor Writers Association with two awards for his column in the Crozet Gazette, Secrets of the Blue Ridge, and for his book of the same name. James received Excellence in Craft Awards at the 2013 MasonDixon/Virginia Outdoor Writers Association Joint Spring Conference held March 14–17 at the Stonewall Jackson Hotel and Conference Center in Staunton. James was the recipient of the First Place “Bob Gooch Newspaper Column Award” for his Secrets of the Blue Ridge column titled “The Albemarle

Pippin: Victoria’s Prince.” The award honors the memory of Bob Gooch, known as the Dean of Virginia Outdoor Writers, whose syndicated column “Virginia Afield” once appeared in 25 newspapers across the state. Over his 40-year career, Gooch penned nearly 2,000 magazine articles and 20 books. Additionally, James’s book, Secrets of the Blue Ridge: Stories from Western Albemarle, was recognized with the third place Book Award, finishing behind the outstanding photography books of Ann and Rob Simpson, nationally and internationally recognized nature photographers.

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Boy Scouts from Troop 79 joined in the effort to restore the American Chestnut to vitality by planting trees on a development plot on the Fried Family Farm near Innisfree Village on April 16. From left are Walker Smith, Jordano Bakalian, Landon Smith (front) & Ruis Owen-Brown.


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The Bama Works Fund of Dave Matthews Band in the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation (CACF) has issued a $100,000 matching challenge grant to help Build Crozet Library purchase books, furnishings and computers for the new library. All donations, up to $100,000, will be matched dollar-for-dollar by the BAMA Works grant, effective immediately.

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MAY 2013

To the Editor —continued from page 2

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coming to the Culpeper District of Virginia’s Commonwealth Transportation Board between now and 2050. In building the bypass, Albemarle will have gotten more than its share of funding for the nine northern Piedmont counties making up the district. Each argument for the 6.2-mile highway collapses quickly if anyone does third-grade math. This highway built for trucks that trucks can’t use will need another $56 million added to the $244 million already allocated to make it usable and will then only save truckers, according to VDOT’s analysis, 66 seconds off the 10-hour drive from Lynchburg to NYC. No manufacturer would build a plant anywhere on the planet to save a minute off any full-day drive, slamming reality into the proponents’ main argument. Meanwhile, VDOT has consistently reported that the “Bypass” will do nothing for local congestion. Since only 10 to 12 percent of the 47,641 to 51,939 vehicles per day on U.S. 29N pass through the area—90 percent is local traffic—the intersections along 29N will remain an “‘F’ level of service” even after the state borrows a fortune to build this socalled “Bypass.” Last week, the highway’s safety argument fell by the wayside. According to VDOT Traffic Engineer Robert Rasmussen, in a letter forwarded to all Albemarle County supervisors, there were 260 accidents, or 304.83 per 100 million vehicle miles of travel, in 2010 along the 3.3 miles of US 29N the “Bypass” is supposed to relieve. That’s a stiff rate; one of the highest in the state. All but a handful of those accidents, however, take place at the intersections of Hydraulic and Rio Roads with 29N. If you exclude the intersections, the accident rate drops to 76.92 per 100 million vehicle miles of travel, meaning that over three in four of the accidents would be prevented if Virginia continued its original “three-party agreement” which promoted overpasses at Rio and Hydraulic before other traffic improvements. In the early 1990s, the three-party agreement sequenced possible projects along 29N and concluded the overpasses should be first and that only IF all the other improvements

CROZET gazette failed to solve traffic issues and funding was available would any bypass be considered. No matter how expensive, no bypass, after all, can solve local congestion or local intersection accidents. Yet in 2012 letters Secretary of Transportation Sean Connaughton tried to make 29N safety the primary issue, saying that “900 crashes in Albemarle County” represent “almost 50% of all crashes along the entire Route 29 corridor from North Carolina to the Fauquier/Prince William County Line.” VDOT’s April 2010 report illustrates that the secretary not only can’t fathom the dollars he’s borrowing for future generations to pay back, he can’t do arithmetic either. Of the 7,103 crashes over three years that VDOT notes along the 218 miles of U.S. 29 in Virginia, 887 are indeed in Albemarle County. Do the math. That’s about one accident in every 12 and certainly nowhere close to “almost 50%.” Assuming that the bypass diverted 10 percent of all traffic from the congested stretch of U.S. 29, as VDOT argues, and assuming that there is a direct correlation between the volume of traffic and the number of accidents, building a $300-million “Bypass” might prevent 89 crashes over three years, or about 30 yearly. Alternatively, assume Rio and Hydraulic Roads were given gradeseparated interchanges at an estimated cost of $80 million. The two intersections accounted for 738 of the 887 crashes along that stretch of U.S. 29. Assuming that those interchanges cut the accident rate by 75%, 553 crashes would be prevented over three years, or 184 yearly. Put another way, fixing Rio and Hydraulic Roads would cost roughly $435,000 per yearly accident prevented, while building the bypass would cost $10 million per yearly accident prevented. Change the assumptions and you still get a vast cost-benefit discrepancy between the two alternatives. Every single “Bypass” study over 20 years, indeed, illustrates this kind of fiscal irrationality. VDOT has announced several times that any Charlottesville Bypass is “no longer an effective option to serve corridorwide trips,” including after completing 2009’s $1.5 million Route 29 Corridor Study. Albemarle County’s comprehensive plan is just as specific: “The (Bypass) project as continued on page 17


CROZET gazette

To the Editor —continued from page 16

planned does not meet community or regional needs and has been determined to be too costly for the transportation benefits to be gained. The transportation goals of the Bypass can be more effectively realized with improvements to the existing Route 29 corridor.” Instead, we taxpayers are on the verge of borrowing $48,133 per daily vehicle or $4.54 million per second saved in order to reap, according to the only cost-benefit analysis, less than $8 million in public benefits. What happened to rational planning? Rational planning, again,

CCAC Meeting —continued from page 5

much as possible. The construction of Library Avenue means that a detour route through The Square will help keep traffic moving while one lane of Crozet Avenue is closed. The fence separating the railroad tracks from The Square parking lot, a requirement in CSX’s agreement to transfer ownership of the lot to the county, will be installed this month, Henry said. He also reported that the problem of wheelchair access to the lower level of the new library from its parking lot has been resolved through a new grade for the sidewalk. The grand opening of the new library is set for September 28, said Schrader. Library staff will take over the building in August. White Hall District Planning

MAY 2013 sequenced 29N projects beginning with overpasses at Rio and Hydraulic Roads, but it fell under the influence of a car dealer who managed to get himself appointed to the Commonwealth Transportation Board in 1994. He became the driving force in the CTB’s 1995 resolution eliminating the overpasses and advancing the “Bypass.” Worried that drop-in buyers might decline if an overpass was nearby, he also formed a group called the North Charlottesville Business Council in 1993 and slowly convinced other businessmen that his concepts were good for business everywhere. While he’s protecting his business, however, what is slowly dawning on other

business people is that, if the “Bypass” is built, there’ll be zero state dollars for transportation projects in Crozet or Pantops or downtown Charlottesville. Albemarle Planning Commissioner Mac Lafferty notes that “Bypass” funding, even before the coming change orders begin boosting costs left and right, will tie up half of all moneys coming to the entire Culpepper District of the

Commission representative Tom Loach told the CCAC that during the review of the county’s Comprehensive Plan its been established that enough housing units have already been approved in the county to meet expected demand through 2030 and that there is no need to consider expanding the boundaries of the Growth Areas. Following the death of Carroll Herring, who was struck by a hitand-run motorist while he was at his mailbox on Rt. 250 near Brownsville Road, the CCAC asked the county for stricter enforcement of the 45 mile-per-hour speed limit and placement of speed monitoring radar on that stretch of highway. Western Albemarle High School student James Sun was hit and killed by a car not far from that spot, too, and the 5K race established by his classmates in his memory was run in Old Trail April 28.

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CTB through 2050. And Jim Rich, the former Culpepper district representative, fired for talking fiscal sense over this so-called “Bypass,” confirms that analysis and blatantly calls the project a “colossal waste of taxpayer money.” If the “Bypass” is built, the car dealer and his friends in state government, however, will have tied up so much money that there will continued on page 31

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An Outreach Program of Tabor Presbyterian Church Sunday Worship 10:30 a.m. • Adult Sunday School 9:15

• May 15, 7 p.m.

Community Handbell Choir Concert

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Pets and Babies Living Happily Together with Dr. Emily Kinniard and

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T’ai Chi Beginning Form Level Class

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MAY 2013

CROZET gazette

Beware of Processed Food [ by elena day • elena@crozetgazette.com \ Back in 1973 I had gone home for a brief visit and run into a friend I’d known since grammar school. She excitedly told me about a movie she’d recently seen called Soylent Green. It was a futuristic movie about the overpopulation of the Earth in the 21st century and how people survived on a food product called Soylent Green. The product came in yellow, red or green wafers that in the end were discovered to be reprocessed human corpses. I preferred rose-colored glasses back then and quickly put the worry of an overpopulated, heavily polluted, impoverished and starving world out of my mind. Recently, thinking about the corporate control of our food system and what is passed off as “food,” I looked up Soylent Green. The movie is set in 2022 in NYC, home of 40 million. Unemployment is 50 percent. Housing is dilapidated and the homeless are innumerable. Summer temperatures are over 90 degrees Farenheit both day and night due to recent climate change resulting from the Greenhouse Effect. (I was really surprised to discover that this was anticipated in 1973.) The 1% are still eating rare “$150-a-jar” strawberry jam. The movie stars Charlton Heston, Edgar G. Robinson (in his last film) and Joseph Cotton. Heston is Detective Thorr, assigned to investigate the murder of Cotton’s character, wealthy corporate lawyer and board member of the Soylent Green Corporation, William R. Simonson. This massive corporation provides “high energy vegetable concentrates,” advertised as being produced from “high energy plankton.” Green wafers are their newest product and better than the yellow and red varieties. Food riots are a weekly occurrence because the company has a difficult time keeping up with demand for the wafers on which most people survive. Detective Thorr is told by his friend and roommate, Sol Roth (played by Robinson), that the oceans are depleted of life and that the wafers are really human remains and not plankton. Sol has opted for assisted suicide at the government-

assisted suicide facility after researching and finding out the truth about the Soylent Green Corporation’s product line. Of course, Simonson had been murdered because he too had discovered the product’s ugly secret. Detective Thorr goes to the heavily guarded waste disposal facility for corpses that is also a Solyent Green food plant. Government agents chase him through deserted streets in the dusk to dawn government-imposed curfew to keep him from revealing the true workings at the Soylent Green Corporation. Predictably, Heston kills all his pursuers but does suffer a serious gunshot wound. In the end he is carried off to the local hospital hysterically screaming “Soylent Green is PEOPLE ! We’ve got to stop them … SOMEHOW !!!” We can expect him to be another corpse sent to the Soylent Green food processing facility shortly. Although we’ve not yet arrived at the situation depicted in Soylent Green, one can’t help but see trends and parallels. The climate crisis is obvious. And there are too many foods out whose labels confuse and outright deceive consumers. At least we can still choose not to eat these products, unlike the food-challenged population of 2022 NYC. Let’s take a look at cheese, a relatively benign product compared to Soylent Green wafers. There are a lot of categories with the word cheese on labels these days. What in the world is “cheese food” or “pasteurized prepared cheese product”? Apparently, FDA regulations stipulate the amount of cheese, moisture and milkfat present in what can be called cheese, cheese food, cheese spread, and cheese product. It’s all processed to varying degrees and contains added whey, salt, preservatives, and food coloring. Processing is advantageous because it extends shelf–life and provides uniformity of product. Processed cheeses don’t separate when cooked because of emulsifiers like sodium phosphate, tartrate or citrate. And that’s why processed cheese slices are great for hamburgers and why Cheez Whiz maintains its consistency on crackers! Processed cheese has been around since 1911. It was invented by Walter Gerber of

continued on page 31


CROZET gazette

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MAY 2013

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BY DR. ROBERT C. REISER crozetannals@crozetgazette.com

Trauma Surge Capacity May is the best month in the ER. The contagious diseases of winter are mostly gone, lessening the chances that I will get some horrible flu or stomach bug. The senior residents are as clinically strong as they will ever be as residents and require little supervision from me. I do have to put up with their “senioritis” though. They are good and they know it. They push back and challenge my attempts to minimally supervise them. At the same time they are realizing that in a month they, and not I, will have the ultimate responsibility for their patients’ outcomes and so they are now paying very close attention to the details of my patient management. I am enjoying our friendly sparring all the more knowing in a month they will all be going to new places, geographically and professionally. May brings its own diseases as well. Asthma visits are soaring thanks to Charlottesville’s incredible yellow- green spring pollen blanket. It would help some if the patients could stop smoking. May is also the beginning of motorcycle crash season. This is largely a disease of males although we do see the occasional female injured, usually as a passenger. It would help some if the patients could stop drinking. Trauma of all types begins to spike in May as more people engage in outdoor activities, climb ladders, operate machinery, and participate in recreational sports. I like treating trauma and asthma. Unlike the flu and stomach bugs, I can’t catch them. The trauma experience and organization in Charlottesville mirrors the national trends in trauma care

that resulted in so many good outcomes in the Boston Marathon bombings. Remarkably, every one of the bombing victims who wasn’t killed instantly will survive. That’s 264 people, many critically injured, descending on the emergency medicine system simultaneously. How did Boston do this, and could Charlottesville? As horrific as the bombing was, it was mitigated a great deal by several factors, some planned, some fortuitous, and some simply heroic. The first factor was heroic, the number of spectators who, despite the initial panic of two explosions and the gruesome carnage all around them, immediately began first aid for the victims. Tourniquets fashioned from sweaty T-shirts undoubtedly saved many lives. Given Charlottesville’s record of volunteerism, I suspect the response here would be similar. As a side note, tourniquets had fallen out of favor for first-aid many years ago in the EMS community due to concerns about impairing circulation and killing limb tissue, but the endless wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have taught us the value of immediate tourniquets as primary damage control in trauma and we are back to using them. The next factor was both planned and fortuitous, the nearby medical tent. The tent was set up at the finish line and staffed to care for many patients, both runners and spectators. This was good planning. That the tent happened to be so close to the victims was fortuitous. Here in Charlottesville we do something very similar for almost all mass gatherings. The organization is called Special Events Medical Management (SEMM) and they provide support for Foxfield, UVA football games and graduation, concontinued on page 32

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20

CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

Masons Honor V.L. James and Six New Eagle Scouts Crozet-area Masons in King Solomon’s Lodge No. 194 presented their Community Builder Award to Crozet Volunteer Fire Department stalwart Virgil L. James at a dinner awards ceremony April 26 and honored six new Eagle Scouts from Troop 79 in Crozet with Youth

Recognition Certificates as well. The Scouts recognized were Dan Baer, Jacob Ball, Quentin Goodbar, Stephen Krenitsky, Gavin Ratcliffe and Dale Savoy. Only Savoy was present to receive the award, as the others are at college or in the armed services and were represented by

From left to right: Hu Shaffer, Goldie Tomlin, Victoria Savoy, Kevin Savoy, Dale Savoy, Jane Baer, Darren Goodbar, Lilia Goodbar, Debbie Goodbar, John Ball, Alyson Ball, Vic Pena, Sandy Conley, Gary Conley, John Effland, Amy Effland.

V.L. James and Goldie Tomlin

their parents. The occasion of the awards was a rare public opening of the Lodge, noted Lodge Master Goldie Tomlin, who served as emcee for the ceremony. The Masons want to make a Bangkok ‘99 Thai Cuisine pointTeeter to endorse the virtues proHarris

moted by scouting, Tomlin said, because they agree so closely with the ideals of Masonry. “There is a parallel between Scouting and Masonry,” he said. Each Scout received an ornate continued on page 25

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CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

21

The Blue Ridge Naturalist

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A Spectacle of Nature: Periodical Cicadas Because a large emergence of periodical cicadas is expected in May, you’ve probably heard a lot about it. U n f o r t u n a t e l y, much of the publicity is negative when, in reality, the emergence of these insects is a spectacle of nature. Periodical cicadas spend, depending upon the species, between 13 and 17 years in the nymph (immature) stage of development in Virginia. Going about their lives unseen beneath our feet, nymphs exist underground where they feed upon plant juices that they suck from roots. Once the nymphs have reached maturity, they exit the soil to mate. These adults die soon afterwards, but the females will have left behind fertilized eggs. More than a decade later, the next generation of periodical cicadas will again enter our sphere of existence. Most of a particular population will come out in one particular year, as has been predicted for 2013 in the Eastern United States. While these insects can be very loud when many thousands of males emerge and sing simultaneously, I disagree that their en masse singing constitutes a “substantial noise problem” that is “annoying.” Rather, it’s truly an other-worldly experience that should be considered quite marvelous! The singing insects are not deafening. If you are in an area where you can clearly hear the chorus of cicadas without the interference of other sounds, you will feel as if you are in an outer-space movie. It’s amazing! It’s sad that people don’t allow themselves to enjoy such a unique and uncommon phenomenon. On the other hand, I can see where it could be unpleasant to find thousands of these insects underfoot once they die. However, all you need to do is to move the dead insects away from the house to a less-trafficked

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This mating pair of periodical cicadas will leave behind fertilized eggs in the tips of small branches and twigs of trees, but that is not harmful to these woody plants. Photo: Marlene A. Condon.

area of the yard. You can accomplish this chore by sweeping the bodies into a dust pan from patios or decks and delivering them to their final destination. If you need to remove them from the yard right around your house, you can use a rake to get the carcasses to where you want them. By doing this, you allow Mother Nature to dispose of the remains by recycling them, as is supposed to happen. Numerous kinds of critters will come to feed on the bounty of dead animals and the bodies will be gone in no time. Virtually every article tells us that cicadas will cause damage to trees, both large and small. The “damage” refers to brown twig tips and brown leaves that appear some time later. The tips of tree branches die after female periodical cicadas make slits in them to hold their eggs. But the dead twig tips, even on small trees, are simply not a health problem. People have become obsessed with continued on page 30

CROZET PARC YMCA Swimming Fitness and Family Fun

Outdoor Pool Season Begins May 1!

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Summer swim lesson registration now open! Have fun and learn to stay safe with swim lessons at the Y. Lessons available for children of all ages and abilities. The kids shouldn’t have all the fun, check out our adult aquatics programs with our Masters Swim Team, Triathlon Clinics, and Adult Swim Lessons. Everyone should learn how to swim. and be safe in the water. Ask us about our scholarship opportunities. With summer around the corner, there are many things to celebrate, so why not have your next party at the Crozet PARC YMCA. Call today and ask about our rental options. 1075 Claudius Crozet Park • Crozet, VA 22932 434 205 4380 • www.piedmontymca.org

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22

CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

By John Andersen, DVM gazettevet@crozetgazette.com

Ruff is Tough “Cody” is one of the few dogs that I’m actually afraid of. Having dogs and cats try to bite and scratch me is quite literally a daily occurrence. The majority of these are not terrible pets, but just scared and anxious about being in the vet office. Their behavior is mostly predictable, and by using muzzles or towels, we are usually able to do the horrible things we need to do to them (like trimming toe nails and taking their rectal temperature) without getting bit. But Cody means business from the moment I step in the room. He

usually instantly lunges at me, only being held back by his owner’s grip on his leash and collar. The fact that his owner is a young woman who must barely weigh 100 pounds doesn’t help my confidence. With my heart racing, I calmly toss the muzzle across the room for the owner to secure, and then proceed with the examination. Only today Cody wasn’t growling. His owner’s complaint was that he was vomiting and not eating for five days. By the time Cody came in, he was so weak and dehydrated that he even let me look in his mouth. “He must know you’re trying to help him,” his owner commented. “No, you just waited so long to bring him in that he’s almost

dead,” I replied. Wait a minute. Okay, I didn’t say that. I wanted to say that. I probably just grunted. “I would have brought him in sooner but he was acting fine until today…well, besides the vomiting and not eating,” said the owner. Cody ended up having a severe gall bladder infection, but did eventually recover. Any of you gall bladder survivors out there can attest that gall bladder pain is incredibly intense and probably one of the worst types of abdominal pain there is. But I did believe that, besides the vomiting, Cody was acting fine all week despite the terrible abdominal pain he must have been having. Because, quite simply, animals are tough! I am no longer surprised by a dog’s or cat’s ability to hide significant pain or illness from their owners. A lot of the problems we see are chronic problems that only recently got so bad that the animals finally started showing their owners signs of distress. And many of these owners are the A+, tuned-in, attentive

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pet people. It’s just that showing signs of injury or illness is not in our pets’ nature. Consider their ancestors, wolves and wildcats. Wolves live in packs that maintain a strict pack hierarchy. Show any signs of weakness and you are getting chomped on your way down the ladder. The pressure to maintain social status and pack stability is huge, and therefore you’re probably not going to soften up unless you’re really hurt. Wildcats (like bobcats and other smaller felines) are more solitary in nature, but are different in that they are not only predators, but also potential prey. If they are walking around looking sick and wounded, they may become a target. Additionally, our pets are wonderfully simple minded. They tend not to get bogged down with sadness or depression or anxiety about their circumstances. They simply survive. Here are a few true examples of tough pets I’ve seen: -Jimbo was a newly adopted dog

continued on page 32

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CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

Boston Strong

by claudia crozet Solution on page 36

1 2 3 4 Across 1 Ishmael’s captain 13 14 5 Not pro 9 Should it be true 17 13 Boston’s legendary legumes 19 16 Damon or Dillon 17 Gold dome home? 23 18 Gray subj. 19 Uncle to Zorro 27 28 20 Galahad and Jagger 22 Punk relative 32 23 League where Jackie Robinson debuted 37 38 25 Parody 41 42 27 Like a cool ewe 29 Likely (with to) 45 31 French assent 32 Local EMT group 48 33 Defense Dept. intelligence agcy. 34 Boston _____ Garden, setting 52 53 of Make Way for Ducklings 37 PC key 56 57 38 Sam Adams or Tom Brady? 63 40 UVa sobriquet 41 Utterly useless 65 43 Skins goals, briefly 44 Magic stick 45 Figure watcher, for short Down 46 Bread or whiskey 1 Six pack 47 Bestseller cells 2 Bowler or derby 48 Risk 3 Letters on a wanted poster 50 Crews on the Charles do it 4 Superiors 52 Wine label term implying 5 Thoroughly despise regional excellence 6 He takes the red pill in 53 List topper The Matrix 55 CIA forerunner 7 Sigma successors 56 Breezy 8 Emerson advice: “_____ 58 Rocky coastal location of on yourself; never imitate.” Salem, Marblehead, and 9 John Hodgman: Gloucester “_____ PC” 63 Humane org. started in 10 Boston market and England 1824 meeting place since 1742 64 Oldest baseball venue still 11 _____ Act of 1765 in use sparked protests by the 65 Like dry skin Sons of Liberty 66 Any time now 12 _____ von Bismarck 67 Derriere

Kids’ Crossword

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BREAKFAST

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STARTING AT 5AM

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14 Condescend 15 Dessicated 21 Sniffer 23 Revere’s lantern site? 24 Hops kiln 26 Confer a title 27 Graceful inspiration for pond pedal boats in 34A 28 Saintly sign 30 Boston Tea _____ 33 Catch some z’s 34 Fed. bldgs. in Greenwood and Ivy 35 Onetime center of Irish monasticism in the Hebrides 36 “Sacred” wooden fish in 17A, and famous cape

38 Dogwood or redbud 39 Caesar’s bad day 42 Green agcy. 44 Dad from Cardiff 46 Tries all over again 47 Girl behaving badly? 48 Bloods rivals 49 Part of ACC 51 Yankee Doodle Dandy portrayed by Robinson 52 House to Javier 54 Deal _____ deal 57 Yippee! 59 Company 60 Rower’s need 61 CSX and Amtrak 62 Make a living the hard way (with out)

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24

MAY 2013

Real Estate —continued from page 13

CONVENIENT CARE + Allergies

Grayrock North holds potential for their national builder. Price numbers have held the line quarter to quarter. This is somewhat surprising given persistent inflation in building material costs and decreasing inventory. Excluding the three sales over $1m, total sales figures for price-per-square-foot ($136), average ($324K) and median ($296) prices were all within 2 percent quarter to quarter. This holds pretty true across detached sales, while attached sales saw a slightly larger, six percent increase in priceper-square-foot to $140, and a 10 percent increase in average price to $275K. The average price of a detached property was $322K. The one unpleasant number that is up quarter-to-quarter is for distressed sale properties. Lender-owned (7) and short-sale (1) transactions represented almost 18 percent of total sales for the quarter, up from just under 11 percent last year. This trend should reverse as prices continue to stabilize and banks/lenders work through their inventory. And speaking of inventory, there is currently a bit over nine months available, down from 11 1/2 months at the end of last year’s first quarter. And inventory is important. According to the folks at the KCM Blog, which tracks real estate market

CROZET gazette data, diminishing inventory is one of the reasons that now is a great time to sell a property. Other factors are strong demand and limited new construction inventory. This last factor is interesting, since real estate watchers expect that as real estate gains traction, more builders should emerge. Greater new home availability could increase supply and over-balance demand, favoring the buyer once again. While this doesn’t seem likely anytime soon, and certainly not locally, there are more new home builders in Crozet today than there were at this time last year. Housing prices should continue to rise through the year. Strong demand and continued low interest rates will result in price increases of 3 to 7 percent this year, according to Ivy Zelman of Zelman and Associates. Fannie Mae supports this view, predicting that strong demand will push homes sales up 10.5 percent this year, and 6.2 percent in 2014. They also predict a slow creep in mortgage rates, from a current rate around 3.5 percent for a 30-year fixed mortgage, to 4.5 percent by the end of 2014. That’s still quite low by historic standards, but that jump of almost 30 percent will diminish consumer buying power. For sellers who have been on the sidelines, today represents their best chance in years to sell their property for a fair market price. Meanwhile buyers continue to enjoy low borrowing costs and reasonable inventory.

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Easy Summer Grilling Tips Firing up the grill for the first time of the season is very exciting.Who doesn’t love cooking and eating outside? Here are a few tips to make that first cookout a breeze. Clean your grill: The easiest and most effective way to clean the grill grate is with each new fire. When the coals are hot, put the grate on, let it warm up and scrub it with a long handled wire grill brush. You may think cleaning the grate after cooking would be easier, but you want to leave the blackness encasing the grate till the your next use; this helps prevent rust. As far as the inside goes, keep ashes dumped frequently and wipe out any big food pieces.

Recalibrate your meat thermometer: Many grill enthusiasts have a feel for when their meat is done, but if you use a thermometer, make sure it’s accurate. Test your thermometer in a pot of boiling water and a small bowl of ice water. The boiling water should read 212 degrees F and the ice water 32 degrees. You can adjust the bolt at the base of the thermometer if it’s off. Let meat rest: Beef, pork and poultry should all rest after they’re grilled. Remove the meat from the grill and transfer to a cutting board for 5-10 minutes to rest. This helps retain the natural juices. Fish can be served right away. Happy grilling season!


CROZET gazette

Eagle Scouts —continued from page 16

certificate inside a cover that was prepared by the Masons’ state headquarters office. Former state Grand Master Dr. Jeffrey Hodges was present at the ceremony, to the evident pleasure of the Crozet Masons. Hodges is an Eagle Scout himself and earned bronze and silver Eagle palms beyond that rank, a rare distinction. “Six Eagle Scouts in Crozet in one year is really amazing,” said Tomlin, sounding amazed, as he conferred the awards. Troop 79 has produced 59 Eagle Scouts since it was formed in 1950, scoutmaster Gary Conley said. “Six in one year is a very high number. We have several more in process.” To earn Eagle rank, scouts must complete 21 merit badges and a community-oriented service project. There are 50 boys in the troop now and it has a scout-to-adult ratio of two-to-one. “We run a boy-led troop,” said Conley. “We don’t specify the program, but it’s always a learning experience. They get to learn from their mistakes. The effort we leaders put into scouting is well worth it.” Assistant scoutmaster Vic Pena said, “Eagle Scouts stand out because they have the ability to get things done. Scouting develops them into outstanding citizens.” Conley noted that Savoy went beyond Eagle Scout and earned a bronze palm as well, the first that Conley has ever awarded. Tomlin also called attention to the mothers of Scouts and the wives of scout leaders. “We owe a debt to those who support those in scouting,” he said. Tomlin gave an extensive report on V.L. James’s 58 years of dedicated service to the CVFD (he joined in 1955 at age 18). He credited James with introducing the first self-contained breathing apparatus to the department in 1960. Incredibly, before then Crozet’s volunteers often showed up at house fires in short-sleeved shirts and entered burning buildings without protection against the smoke and flames. James is famous at the firehouse for his skill driving fire trucks (he’s considered the CVFD’s best), his knowledge of local addresses, and

MAY 2013 his ability at fighting fires, Tomlin said. The CVFD named James the Firefighter of the Year in 1993, 1994 and 1999. In 2006, when he marked his 50th year as a volunteer, he received citations from thenPresident George W. Bush, the Albemarle Board of Supervisors, the Elks Lodge and, closer to home, the Crozet United Methodist Church. James was present at the scene of the crash of Piedmont Airlines Flight 349 into Bucks Elbow Mountain above Crozet in 1959. James said the crash site, where 26 died, was a scene of carnage that he wished he had never seen.

Tomlin called attention to the many gruesome sights that fire and rescue volunteers must face in the line of duty, such as people burned in cars, and the extraordinary burdens their service can place on them. In a tribute to James, CVFD Chief Preston Gentry called James “cantankerous. “We love him. He is a true brother. I call him whenever I need advice. Mostly, it’s pretty good. If he doesn’t agree with me, I know I need to do more homework. “People like V.L. are the cornerstone of our department. Men like

25

him made us what we are today. I wish we had ten times the men we have in V.L. It’s a privilege to know him.” In brief remarks Hodges told the audience that “Freemasons build communities and build better men in their hearts. The integrity of a community is like a woven rug. Its strength is in interwoven members. It’s fantastic that the Lodge had this occasion to salute you and what you do to make this area such a wonderful place to live.” Formed during the Civil War, the Crozet Lodge will celebrate its 150th anniversary next year.

CLASSIFIED ADS ALTERATIONS AND TAILORING: Experienced seamstress with 30 years of tailoring and garment alterations experience, working from home in Crozet (Highlands). Call for a free consultation. Ruth Gerges: 434823-5086. 2 COMMERCIAL SPACES FOR LEASE in Crozet Shopping Center, Retail or Office only. Space 1 is approx. 859 sq.ft, Space 2 is approx. 1238 sq.ft. or can be leased as a whole. For more information, call Dave at 434.531.8462. FOR SALE: DBL Wide Mobile Home. Asking $77,500. Like new, 2 BRs w/walk-in closets, 2 full baths, all appliances included plus washer & dryer, gas fireplace. Ready for DISH hook up, has upgrades, located in Beaver Hill Park in Crozet. Must be 55 yrs or older. Call 434-882-4002. HELP WANTED: Summer Part Time Gardening/Watering/Plant Care: Need approximately 10-12 hours per week of watering and light weeding help in flower gardens. Mid-June to late August. Near Crozet, off Miller School Road. $12/hour. Call 804-3579694 or 804-357-9698. HOUSE FOR SALE: 1800 sq. ft. 3/2 ranch on 2 acres in Afton. Appraisal and assessment $265k. Selling for $235k. Or 2 acre lot in Afton $50k. No realtors please. Call before 9 p.m. 434-4653316.

HUGE YARD AND BAKE SALE: Rockfish Presbyterian Church, Saturday, May 18, 7:30 a.m. - Noon. Rain or shine. NO EARLY BIRDS! Hwy 151, 2 miles north of Nellysford. Quality home furnishings, books, and bake sale indoors with tools, lawn & garden under the Pavilion outside. High quality Baked Goods­—don’t miss it. GET IN SHAPE NOW: Come join the fun and get a great workout with your friends and neighbors. Boot Camp for REAL People meets on M/W/F at 5:50am at Crozet Park. All ages and abilities are encouraged. For more information visit www. m2personaltraining.com or call Melissa Miller at 434-962-2311. GREENER PASTURESLAWN CARE & GARDEN SERVICES. Mowing with care, gardening with flair—Creative Design, professional Installation, soil building, small projects. Serving Northwestern Albemarle. 30 years Horticultural Experience. Call Charles Today! 960-6221. MOVING SALE: 20 Years of Stuff! Household goods, Tables, Chairs, Futon, Desk, Picnic table/ benches, Covered Glider, Sail boat—mast boom & sails, Men’s mountain bike, Power tools, Hand tools, Cabinets on wheels, Work benches, Desk, Propane wall furnace, Ladders, Wood of all kinds, Fishing tackle, Tackle boxes, DR Power wagon, DR

Brushhog 36”, 3 point tractor tools, Pond scoop, Brushhog Backblade. May 18 & 19. 315 Miller School Rd. (Take 250 west to Miller School Road, then ½ mile to the farm road, through the hay field then ½ mile to the sale.) MULTI-FAMILY YARD SALE: Western Ridge in Crozet, Saturday, May 11th, 7am-12pm: baby/children/women’s clothes & shoes, toys, bicycles, furniture, appliances, house wares, sports equipment, and more. PART-TIME HELP WANTED. Three Days per week. Come by B&B Cleaners between 8 a.m. and Noon to apply. V.L. MURRAY YARD SALE: 3251 Morgantown Rd, Saturday, May 4, 8am - 1pm Multi-family yard sale at Murray Elementary featuring clothes, toys, DVDs, CDs, household goods. Proceeds help send our DI teams to the Global competition in Knoxville, TN Baked goods and snacks also available YOUR LOCAL SOURCE FOR INNOVATIVE, TOOLS for the garden, homestead and farm. Unbreakable broad forks, spades, hoes & rakes; nontoxic weeding torches, farm implements and more. www.waycooltools.com www.earthandskysolutions.com 823-4600 To place an ad, or for more information, call 434-249-4211 or email ads@crozetgazette.com


ANN ARDEN Home Furnishings

26

CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

Live/Work Project Starts in Crozet

SPRING SALE!

Ben King and Vito Cetta

All categories and brands like Natuzzi Ediitions and Natuzzi Italia are now on sale! Come in to see them today! Tues-Sat 10-6 404 West Main St. Waynesboro 1-888-997-7663 www.ann - arden.com

New Patient Offer! Happy

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Valid for new patients only. Offer transferable. Please share with your family & friends!

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In the residential building boom in Crozet a novel form has appeared, the live/work townhouse concept in which the upper floors of the building are designed to be residences and the lower level is zoned as commercial space. Architect and developer Vito Cetta has begun an eight-unit townhouse project in Liberty Hall, a new housing area, largely built by Ryan Homes, on Radford Lane across from the Harris Teeter shopping center. Cetta, an early proponent of the Neighborhood Model development concept, which stresses mixed-uses, green spaces, and walkability, was the designer and builder of other Crozet neighborhoods such as Parkside Village and Wayland’s Grant. He had just begun work in Wickham Pond when the real estate market collapsed in 2008, a project since taken over by Ryan Homes, and he has come out of retirement to do the live/work project. “The market is somebody who

doesn’t need to be on Rt. 250, but they want to be close to it,” he said. “The idea is, say, an architect lives on top and his office is below. That’s the configuration.” The two spaces are not connected, he said, you have to walk outside to get to one from the other. But if a buyer really wanted a staircase inside, it could be accommodated. All the units will be rentals. Cetta said it is most likely that the levels will be rented to different tenants. The commercial level has 720 square feet per unit—that’s enough space for three offices, a bathroom and a waiting area, he said—and it is more likely that those units could be connected. The two-floor residential units will have about 1,400 square feet. Units will be reached by walkways through landscape areas from a parking lot at the west end of the building. There is no parking near the door of each unit. Cetta expects the project to be done by August.

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CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

Engaged!

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Y

Nicole Maupin & Drew Taylor Michael and Candie Maupin of Lynchburg, Virginia announce the engagement of their daughter, Nicole Maupin, to Drew Taylor, son of Andy and Tina Taylor of Grifton, North Carolina. The couple met at Liberty University, where the bride is getting her Master’s degree in Professional Counseling, and the groom is getting his second Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering.

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Kathleen Chambers, daughter of the bride, was the maid of honor. Dan Black, brother of the groom, was the best man. The couple will reside in Crozet.

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CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

© J. Dirk Nies, Ph.D.

Water: Life’s Elixir (Part Two) Water flows. It’s constantly on the move. Responding to gravity and heat, water circulates from land and sea to clouds and back again. Evaporation, condensation, precipitation along with the movement of water on and under the surface of Earth comprise the hydrological cycle--the continuous global processing of water powered by energy from the sun. The world’s supply of fresh water depends upon this progression of water from earth to sky and back again. Evaporation purifies water. As water enters the atmosphere as a vapor, the gaseous molecules of H2O leave impurities behind. Of the world’s total supply of about 332.5 million cubic miles of water, 97.4 percent is saline. Fresh surfacewater, such as rivers, streams and lakes, constitute a miniscule 1/150th of one percent of the total water on Earth. But it is these resources, along with fresh, shallow groundwater, all of which are continually fed by precipitation, from which we obtain life-sustaining water. Weather and wildlife are affected profoundly by the great ocean currents that circumnavigate the globe. By delivering tropical warmth and moisture to northern regions, otherwise barren land becomes lush. Conversely, where there is upwelling of cold, nutrient-rich polar waters near the equator, such as occurs with the Humboldt current off the west coast of South America, tropical sunlight promotes phytoplankton growth, making the waters off the foggy coast of Peru one of the world’s greatest fishing grounds for anchovies and the tuna that feed

upon them. Whether as a vapor, a liquid, or as a solid, water always is on the go, although ever so slowly at times. To a great extent, this movement of water, and the water-borne heat, cold and nutrients it carries, shape the climate and influence the abundance and variety of life on Earth. The major ice sheets found in Antarctica and Greenland can store ice for millennia. Ice from Antarctica has been dated to be 800,000 years old, though the average time frozen water spends in Antarctica is much shorter, about 20,000 years before it returns to the ocean. As a liquid, water cycles through the environment much more rapidly than this. Soil moisture, especially in the absence of ground cover, quickly evaporates in a day or so under hot dry conditions. Water below the surface of lawns, fields and the forest floor can be held in place for weeks or a few months. Months elapse before the headwaters of rivers reach the sea. Waters in large lakes may reside there for 50 to 100 years before moving on. Groundwater in shallow aquifers on average takes 100 to 200 years to make its way through porous rock into streams and rivers. In contrast, the waters of the ocean and those that are found deep underground are very slowly recycled to other parts of the environment. Water molecules that make their home within the bounding main reside there for more than 3,000 years on average before evaporating from the surface of the sea into the sky. And deep groundwater (fossil water) can spend more than 10,000 years beneath Earth’s surface before seeing again the light of day. Unlike liquid and frozen water,

water vapor always cycles very quickly. Once in the air, water vapor does not stay put for long. As moist air rises and cools, humidity in the air reaches its dew point and condenses on dust particles. When these initially small water droplets fuse into larger drops too heavy to be sustained in the air, they fall as precipitation from the clouds. Typically, after about nine days, moisture that has made its way into the atmosphere returns to earth again as rain, hail, sleet, snow or dew. More than 100 quadrillion gallons of water fall from the sky back to earth each year. When this quantity is averaged across the entire surface of the planet, worldwide annual precipitation becomes a value we can more easily grasp; approximately 40 inches fall each year. But this is just the average, and real-life deviations from this are extreme. The amount of local precipitation that falls annually varies from less than 0.1 inches in Chilean deserts to more than 450 inches of rain on the slopes and mile-high summit of Mt. Waialeale in the Hawaiian Islands. The conterminous states (the lower 48) receive about 30 inches during an average year, and here in Albemarle County we average about 46 inches of rain per annum. Higher amounts fall in the Shenandoah Mountains, owing to a phenomenon known as orographic uplift, as additional moisture is wrung out of the air when it rises to pass over them. Average annual precipitation at Big Meadows on Skyline Drive is 52 inches, for example. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) estimates that 30 percent of the precipitation that falls in the U.S. fills streams, lakes and rivers through surface runoff, or replenishes the water table as it seeps deeper into the soil. The majority (70 percent) returns to the atmosphere, either by direct evaporation from land and bodies of water, or via transpiration from vegetation. Through the process of transpiration—the drawing up of water from the soil by roots and evaporation of this water from aerial parts of plants, predominately from leaves but also from stems and flowers— vegetation plays a significant role in the movement of water from the

Cycling of water on land. [http:// g a . w a t e r. u s g s . g o v / e d u / g r a p h i c s ] evapotranspiration.gif

ground into the air. Worldwide, vegetation provides about 10 percent of the moisture found in the atmosphere. Consider these agricultural examples. During its lifetime, a corn plant will take up more than 50 gallons of water from the soil and release this water into the air. When taken together, an acre of corn emits 3,000-4,000 gallons of water each day to the atmosphere. For perspective, one inch of rain falling on an acre of ground is equal to 27,154 gallons. This means that a corn field transpires roughly an inch of moisture from the soil into the atmosphere each week at the height of the growing season (27,154 gallons divided by 4,000 gallons per day equals 6.8 days). Because much of the country west of the Mississippi does not reliably receive this much precipitation each week, many farmers in major corn-growing states such as Nebraska (the “Cornhusker State”) supplement natural rainfall by irrigating their fields with surface water and groundwater. Across the country on average each and every day, 74,900 million gallons of surface water and 53,500 million gallons of groundwater were used to irrigate fields and orchards in 2005, according to the USGS. In summary, water is always in motion. Its movements in, on and over the land, air and sea shape the climate and promote the diversity of life on Earth. Agriculture and food production are absolutely dependent upon immense, reliable supplies of water. I try to bring this to mind whenever it rains. And as clouds shower refreshment upon the earth, I also take grateful pleasure in marveling at the travels and transformations of that fresh rainwater, some of which was in a salty ocean or a plant’s muddy roots a mere week or two ago.


CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

In the Garden upcoming events —continued from page 9

to determine the pH. It should be no higher than 6.0. You’re most likely to have a higher pH around fresh mortar in building foundations, so planting a Mountain Laurel right by your house might not be the best idea. Various fungal diseases can produce spots on the foliage of Mountain Laurels, both in the wild and in gardens. Aside from using nasty fungicides for control—not recommended—good horticultural practices are the best way to head off problems. Good air circulation is important to warding off fungal diseases, and this is a tricky balancing act. You want your plant in a place where it’s not crowded by other shrubs, and the air is free to move, but you don’t want it exposed to excessively drying winds. High overhead shade is best, especially from late morning through afternoon. Too much moisture on the leaf surfaces can promote fungal growth; on the other hand, you do want the plant’s roots to receive adequate moisture. Once again, a balancing act. Indeed, Mountain Laurel has been referred to as a “finicky” plant by one authority. To a certain degree, this gives lie to such truisms as, “Native plants are tough survivors. Lower maintenance, lower water needs, etc.” Any plant needs to be in the right place. You may see Mountain Laurel growing in many places in the wild locally, but there are many places you will not see it. In addition to the cultural caveats given above, good drainage is key to successfully growing these shrubs. A moist, north-or east-facing slope would be ideal. But what if you want to try growing Mountain Laurel in less than ideal conditions? I’ve heard a couple of different strategies to address the drainage issue. One is to plant on top of the ground, presumably scratching up the soil surface first. Then you pile pine bark around the root ball. This would certainly give you the desired drainage, but I would worry about the plant drying out quickly. Frequent watering would be indicated, especially in the first year. A similar, but less radical, strategy, involves planting high, with about half the root ball above continued on page 30

MAY 4

Free Comic Book Day at Library

Comics at the library? On Saturday, May 4, Crozet Library will join with Atlas Comics to celebrate Free Comic Book Day. Stop by the library any time from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. to get a free comic book while supplies last. All ages are welcome.

MAY 5

Faithful Men and Beautiful Feet Concert for BCL

A concert by the Faithful Men and Beautiful Feet, with orchestral ensemble, will be held at Crozet United Methodist Church May 5 to benefit the Build Crozet Library fund. The concert will begin at 6:30 in the sanctuary. A reception will follow in the fellowship hall.

MAY 10

Field School BBQ and Silent Auction The Field School will hold a Bid and BBQ Bash May 10 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the school at 1408 Crozet Avenue. The event will offer a silent auction and a barbeque supper with wine and beer. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children. Field School is a private school for boys in the middle school grades. The event is open to the public.

MAY 11 & 12

Crozet Arts & Crafts Festival

The spring Crozet Arts and Crafts Festival, now in its 33rd year, will be held at Claudius Crozet Park, May 11 and 12. The festival will be open Saturday from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m., and Sunday from 10 a.m 5:30 p.m. Admission is $6. Children under 12 are free. Proceeds benefit Claudius Crozet Park. In addition to over 100 juried

artists from across the country, the festival also features wine and cider tastings, children’s activities, live musical entertainment and a wide selection of local food vendors. For more information or to prepurchase Crozet Arts Dollars, visit crozetfestival.com.

MAY 12

Greenwood/Afton Historic District Dedication A six-year wait will culminate May 12 when members of the Greenwood/Afton Rural Historic District Committee and a representative from the Virginia Department of Historic Resources formally dedicate the recently placed “historic marker” in Yancey Mills. “The marker is in the gateway to the Greenwood/Afton Rural Historic District, which consists of 16,700 acres that encompass pioneer turnpikes, railroad and tunnels built by Claudius Crozet, historic architecturally significant houses, such as Swannanoa, and the mountain village of Afton,” said Francis “Jack” Scruby, a member of the committee. The Historic District contains a diversified population that includes descendants of the original 1730’s settlers to the area. It has been on the National Register of Historic Places since May of 2011. The dedication will be held Saturday, May 12 at 2 p.m. at the Hillsboro Baptist Church. The public is invited.

MAY 16

Route 151 Corridor Study Meeting

The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) will hold a second public information meeting on the Route 151 Corridor Study Thursday, May 16, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Rockfish River Elementary School located at 200 Chapel Hollow Road in Afton.

The Gazette’s Upcoming Community Events listing is intended for free, not-for-profit or fundraiser events that are open to and/or serve the broader community. Events are included at the editor’s discretion. Priority is given to special events. Space is limited. Submit event press releases for consideration to news@crozetgazette.com.

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The meeting will present draft recommendations developed since VDOT hosted a meeting at the Rockfish Gap Community Center in March that solicited the public’s input on safety issues at key intersections along the corridor. VDOT staff will be available to answer any questions. Comments about the project may be submitted at the meeting or by mail until May 28. Written comments should be sent to Rick Youngblood, Project Manager, Virginia Department of Transportation, 4219 Campbell Avenue, Lynchburg, Va., 24501. Comments also can be emailed to lynchburginfo@vdot.virginia.gov. The public is asked to reference “Route 151 Corridor Study Comment” in the subject heading.

MAY 18

Batesville Day 10K, Parade & Fair The 38th annual Batesville Day celebration will be held Saturday, May 18 in downtown Batesville featuring a 10K race, family friendly parade and fair. Race registration will begin at 7 a.m., with the race start at 8 and awards at 9:30. The parade lineup will begin at 10 a.m. and the parade will march at 11. Last year’s “Best in Show” winners were “The Goolsby Family” and Allison ThompsonTriplett (assisted by her family dogs) was the Grand Marshall. At noon the event will move to Batesville Field, just east from downtown, for the Community Fair. Music by the Central Virginia Blues Society featuring Batesville’s own Bluzonia and other hometown musicians will be featured along with food from Plank Road Exchange and Kona Ice. Parking for the event is located in the Batesville Field and car-pooling is encouraged.

JUNE 1

WARS Open House

The Western Albemarle Rescue Squad will host an open house June 1 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The public is invited to talk with members, check out their equipment and tour the Squad’s facility on Crozet Avenue, opposite the Dairy Queen. There will be refreshments and handouts. For more information, call 823-5103 or 434-531-8814.


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CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

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Garden

the ground. The planting hole should be wide and amended with pine bark or a similar material; then, more pine bark is placed around the root ball as in the first example. A note of caution about Mountain Laurel and the other Kalmias: they are poisonous to livestock and humans, evidenced by such common names as SheepKill and Lamb-Kill. Enjoy them, but don’t plant where critters can munch.

Cicadas

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—continued from page 29

—continued from page 21

the idea that the natural world basically needs to be made safe from itself! Goodness, how could trees have survived throughout the eons of time if this impact were as detrimental to them as entomologists and others would have you believe? Yes, the brown tips may be aesthetically displeasing to human eyes, but the cosmetic manicuring of the natural world is nonsense that is truly disastrous for our environment. We need to get away from it. The reality is that many of the tips will break off naturally on windy days. You may consider them to be “littering” your lawn. But they will not harm your grass and you can certainly rake them off to the side of the yard if you are so inclined. But please, don’t remove them from the yard by sending them to a landfill or burning them. These twigs are important to many kinds of critters as well as to the proper functioning of your yard. The twigs will provide food for animals, such as some kinds of grubs (immature beetles) and termites, whose job is to recycle wood. By keeping dead wood within your immediate environment, you don’t force these animals to look to your home as a food source. When the wood-eating organisms defecate, they return to the soil some of the nutrients they obtained by eating the twigs. In other words, they fertilize your growing plants so you don’t need to do it. These recyclers will themselves provide nutrients for the many species of birds (such as Pileated Woodpeckers), skunks, lizards, salamanders, and numerous other kinds of wildlife that will search for them. The twigs that don’t fall off the trees thanks to the wind will be broken off by the kinds of birds and squirrels that need such small dead twigs to make their nests. They cannot reproduce without them. Extension agents, landscapers, and pesticide applicators often cite problems where none really exists because they don’t see the big picture. My hope is that by way of this column, you now do. Adults and children alike should take advantage of this somewhat rare opportunity to enjoy what is truly an impressive show put on by Mother Nature. Periodical cicadas are big insects that are easy to observe; they don’t bite or sting; they won’t come after you (although they may buzz right by you!); and they are remarkably colored with their black bodies, orange wing veins, and bright-red eyes. We should appreciate the free entertainment provided by these creatures as well as their role in helping so many other organisms to survive.

Crozet Readers’ Rankings April’s best sellers at Over the Moon Bookstore ADULT

Buddhist Boot Camp Timber Hawkeye

Beautiful Ruins Jess Walter

10 ½ Things No Commencement Speaker Has Ever Said Charles Wheelan

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry Rachel Joyce

The Burgess Boys Elizabeth Strout

Horseshoe Crabs & Velvet Worms Richard Fortey CHILDREN & YOUNG ADULT

Bliss

Kathryn Littlewood

Wreck This Journal Keri Smith

Everything On It Shel Silverstein

The World According to Humphrey Betty G. Birney

Write This Book: A Do-It-Yourself Mystery Pseudonymous Bosch

The Fire Chronicle John Stephens

MAY RECOMMENDATIONS

Recommended by Anne:

Adult: The Burgess Boys by Elizabeth Strout Children: Follow Follow: A Book of Reverso Poems by Marilyn Singer


CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

To the Editor —continued from page 17

never be enough to build the overpasses—the projects VDOT originally sequenced to go first because they did the most good for the least cost. Plus, there will be nothing for any other Albemarle transportation need. Randy Salzman Charlottesville Midway Women’s Club The Midway Women’s Club is a non-profit, volunteer group of ladies who gather monthly in each other’s homes to discuss ideas for local philanthropic endeavors. The club focuses on community service projects and holds various fundraisers to support their efforts. At Thanksgiving and Christmas, the women in the club voted to help two local families by purchasing groceries and gifts. The ladies regularly set up a manicure salon at Mountainside Senior Living and paint the residents’ nails. We also decorate the Veteran’s Medical Center for various holidays with funding provided by the Green Olive Tree. While there is much business to tend to at our meetings, we also have lots of fun. In December we met at the Boar’s Head for a lovely buffet lunch. In January we went to a movie together. We frequently invite various speakers to come to our meetings. Our fundraising efforts are quite unique—at one meeting we had a “gold party” where we brought gold jewelry to be bought by The Gold Lady—she donated a portion of the

sales directly back to the club. In the Fall, we held an auction of white elephant items to raise money. We all came home with various treasures and raised money for the club. You can look for us outside the Crozet Great Value on the Fridays before Easter and Halloween, selling delicious baked goods. Many of the ladies live near Midway Road, off Miller School Road, but we welcome all. If you’re interested in having fun and joining in our efforts to do good works in the community, please contact Carol Turner at 434989-2313 or Joice Wright at 540292-9319. We’d love to have you! Anna Rossberg Crozet Letters reflect the opinions of their authors and not necessarily those of the Crozet Gazette. Send letters to news@crozetgazette. com or P.O. Box 863, Crozet, VA 22932.

Processed Food —continued from page 18

product contains milk protein concentrates or MPCs. MPCs are created by putting milk through an ultrafiltration process to remove all the liquid and all the smaller molecules, including the minerals that are touted to be essential for good nutrition. The result is a dry substance high in protein, easy to transport, and used in processed cheese, frozen dairy desserts (Have you checked the labels on Breyer’s Ice Cream selections recently?), and energy bars. Most MPCs are imported from India and China. Sources are a combination of cow, yak, and/or water buffalo milk. Production facilities may be questionable and regulations minimal and/or unenforceable. Imports of MPC’s undermine our own dairy industry, from which small and medium dairy farmers have been almost eliminated in recent decades. Of course, other factors at play in the dairy industry that favor agribusiness and large dairy cooperatives. These stem initially from the removal of parity or fair pricing and antitrust enforcement by Ronald

Thun, Switzerland. In 1916, James L. Kraft applied for a patent to his own processing method in the United States. Kraft sliced American cheese (American cheese is virtually synonymous with processed cheese) became available commercially in 1950. The individually wrapped/ separated slices first appeared in 1956. More recently one might find Kraft Singles labeled “pasteurized prepared cheese product.” Kraft Singles are under the radar of regulatory agencies. They are clearly cleverly chemically engineered and are not regulated as to milkfat or moisture content by the FDA. The

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Reagan. However, it’s the hydra of globalization that rears yet another of its many heads in the form of MPCs. The USDA doesn’t even count MPCs as milk. John Bunting, an activist dairy farmer from New York, has estimated that if imported MPCs for December 2008 were to be converted back to milk hauled in tanker trucks, the convoy would be nearly 65 miles long, bumper to bumper.* Corporate profits are paramount. For dairy farmers, milk prices fall yearly and production costs rise. Antibiotics, GMO feed, bovine growth hormones and feedlots are the norm for the dairies of the 21st century. I suppose it could be worse…. It’s May, the gentle month. In May we already see the glimmerings of the bounty of August and September. Eat local. Eat healthy. Skip the Cheez Whiz and eat less processed food. Read labels and remember, we are what we eat. *Information regarding MPCs from Foodopoly, authored by Wenonah Hauter, The New Press, 2012.

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CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

Gazette Vet —continued from page 22

with a “bad leg.” They owner had taken him jogging a few times before bringing him in for his first check up. I felt something bad in his hip and recommended an x-ray that revealed a shattered hip. He was probably was hit by a car several months prior. Did that stop him from “happily” jogging three miles with his new owner? No way. -Mini was a cat who had snotty nasal discharge and congestion for years. We found a broken tooth with what turned out to be an infected root that had eaten through the bone into the nasal cavity. When we removed the tooth, Mini was like a new cat. -Bear was a puppy who had eaten a long piece of dental floss. Part of it was hung up in his stomach, while the other end went down the small intestine. As his intestines pulled the dental floss down with increasing pressure, it started to cut through his intestinal walls. The morning of surgery, he still managed to challenge his brother to a couple of games of chase! -Ruby is our own dog who we spayed in the fall. A spay is an open

abdominal procedure. That night I set an alarm to give her pain meds at 1 a.m. When I opened her crate, she launched out at me wagging her whole body as if nothing ever happened. -Minter was a stray cat found with two broken femurs (the thigh bones in the rear legs). He would try to stand up on his broken legs, all the while purring loudly at the newfound attention he was getting. He was the nicest cat despite what must have been terrible leg pain (his legs were fixed and he was quickly adopted). These are just a few examples of animals behaving quite differently than you or I would given the same circumstances. Animals feel pain just like we do, but for many reasons, they just don’t show it. As a veterinarian, I know that many owners are challenged with the delicate balance of “I don’t want to bring him in if it’s not a big deal” and “I wish I hadn’t waited so long.” Fortunately, if you use your instincts and your common sense, you will likely be a great advocate for your pet’s health. If you ever have concern, call your veterinarian and he or she can help you determine if you have a problem.

The newest edition of THE guide to Crozet is coming soon!

Reserve your ad today! Designed for newcomers, tourists and long-timers alike, the Crozet Gazette’s Crozet A to Z guide takes a panoramic view at what’s available in and around western Albemarle and northern Nelson Counties. Nobody knows the scene like the Crozet Gazette. Where to shop, where to get help, where to play, or take a class, or sip a glass—you can find it all in the guide. Crozet A to Z is a full-color, glossy, 8.5 x 5.5 magazine, published annually and available for free throughout the year. Look for it wherever you find the Crozet Gazette, or your nearest tourist or welcome center. The 2013-14 edition of Crozet A to Z will be out in early summer.

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CVFD Switches Semi-annual Raffles From Cars to Cash Prizes The Crozet Volunteer Fire Department’s twice-a-year new car raffles are becoming cash extravaganzas. “In the past, the winners of the cars or trucks were responsible for paying the tax on the value of the vehicle they won,” explained CVFD President Rodney Rich. “Now the tax has to be paid before the winner drives off in the car. We’re supposed to collect it. Who has $7,400 on them? That’s the average tax bill. This idea gives people more chances to win money.” And they can pay the 28 percent federal tax with the money they won. The CVFD will deduct it from the prize. For the spring raffle set for May 11, the CVFD will hold its customary fried chicken and barbeque dinner at the firehouse for ticket purchasers. Each ticket gets two free dinners. (All food cooked from scratch by the firemen, Rich noted.) You must present your ticket. The dinner will start at 6 p.m. and the raffle drawing will begin at 7. Four hundred tickets are being sold for $100 each. They are avail-

able at the firehouse or from Fisher Auto Parts in Crozet. Instead of drawing for other prizes as the countdown of ticket numbers is called, greater amounts of cash will be won for every 50th ticket number called. So, the holder of the first ticket drawn will receive $100. The 50th ticket drawn will win $300; the 100th will win $500; the 150th will win $700; the 200th will win $900; the 250th will win $1,100; the 300th will win $1,400; the 350th will win $1,700 and the 399th ticket pulled, the justmissed runner-up, will win $2,000. The grand prize, the 400th ticket, the last one left in the drum to be drawn, will win $16,000! (That’s $11,520 after taxes.) The CVFD hopes to raise about $12,000 it needs for training and gear expenses, Rich said. “So long as we can raise money, we can keep the our volunteer character going. We’re all volunteer, all the time. There are 50 active members of the department now and we are answering about 800 calls every year.” Get your ticket, fast. Back your firefighters.

Medicine

The next factor was just plain fortuitous. The bombing occurred on Patriots Day, a state holiday in Massachusetts and the operating rooms were running at relatively low capacity with fewer elective cases and so had a larger surge capacity. This was critical because several dozen of the victims needed immediate surgery and many more needed urgent surgery. The last factor cannot really be duplicated here in Charlottesville. The Boston ambulances were well coordinated to distribute the patients equally to seven trauma centers citywide so the numbers of surge patients were more manageable for any one hospital. Charlottesville only has one trauma center. But we have several plans we drill on to increase our surge capacity, should we ever need to. Here’s hoping we never do.

—continued from page 19

2013 - 14

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certs at the John Paul Jones center and even JMU football games. For the most recent Foxfield races, SEMM deployed on-site five ER doctors and 50 paramedics in a well-equipped medical tent. So Charlottesville is well prepared to medically support mass gatherings. The next factor in Boston was both fortuitous and heroic. The bombing occurred ten minutes before the 3 p.m change of shift at all the hospitals in the city, so twice the nursing staff was present in the ERs and ORs, both the oncoming and off-going shifts, and of course nearly all the nurses stayed to work. I am certain my nursing colleagues here in Charlottesville would do the same. ER nurses!


CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

33

BEREAVEMENTS

Carroll D. Herring Carroll D. Herring, beloved husband, father and grandfather, died on Friday, March 29, 2013. He was born on June 14, 1941, the son of the late McKinley and Lillie Herring. He was preceded in death by two brothers, Roy and Myrvin Herring; a sister, Gladys Puckett; brothers-in-law, Homer Shiftlett and Paul Fontenot; a special niece, Janet Tunstall, whom he adored and thought of as the daughter he never had; and his in-laws Carl and Louise Shifflett, who were like second parents to Carroll. Carroll is survived by his wife of 47 years, Judy S. Herring, who was his high school sweetheart; sons, Todd and his wife, Sherry, and Troy and his wife, Christy, all of Crozet; six adored grandchildren, Karley, Austin, Creed, Jade, Peyton and Casen Herring; his special brother, Kenny and his wife, Gladys, of Afton; three sisters, Estelle Fitzgerald of Stuarts Draft, Arlene Walton of Accokeek, Maryland, and Vernell Shifflett of Crozet; numerous special nieces and nephews who loved their Uncle Carroll; two sisters-in-law, Roger Shifflett and his wife, Darlene, and Monty Shifflett and his wife, Joan. Carroll graduated from Albemarle High School in 1961, a star baseball player. He was employed at Acme Visible Records for 39 years until its closing. He was employed in the Albemarle County Parks and Recreation Department. He looked forward to retirement but enjoyed working with his coworkers, especially his boss, Jeremy

Hughes, who he thought of as a third son, Joe Clark and Cody Sheler. Carrroll also helped his son, Todd, in his landscaping business. Carroll’s passions were working outside and his garden, sharing all of his harvest with friends and neighbors throughout Crozet. But the joy of his life was watching his grandchildren play baseball, as he did years ago coaching his own sons and other children from Crozet. The family would like to express their thanks and appreciation for the outpouring of love and support they have received. Anyone wishing to make a contribution in Carroll’s name may do so at the Crozet Fire Department, 5652 Three Notch’d Road, Crozet, VA 22932; or the Western Albemarle Rescue Squad, P.O. Box 188, Crozet, VA 22932. Funeral services were held at Crozet Baptist Church April 2 with the Reverend Sam Kellum officiating. Burial followed at Rockgate Cemetery. Friends may sign the guest register at teaguefuneralhome. com.

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MAY 2013

CROZET gazette

Browns Cove Family Offers “Cool Tools” for Gardeners & Farmers

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Ah, Spring! Grab your garden forks. If you’re Charles House of Blackwell’s Hollow, that means picking up your industrial strength broadfork, the one you designed and sell through your online company, Way Cool Tools. House and his wife Janet, with their three young kids, are homesteading on their two-acre property just north of Browns Cove, where they settled in 2000. They’re raising pigs—“Roto” and “Tiller”—chickens and ducks, potatoes and other vegetables. They heat with a woodstove and don’t watch TV. “We’re into gardens,” said House. “Yeah, we’re homesteading and homeschooling. We’re having fun.” For a serious gardener with big ambitions for planting but unworked soil, conventional garden tools sometimes seem inadequate, even flimsy. House wanted durable, efficient tools meant for small farms. Things like an all-steel, seven-tine, unbreakable broad fork or an all-steel grub hoe with an ergonomic handle and either a 5-inch or 8-inch head. “I had a vision for organic farming. I needed better tools and there was not a lot available locally. I had had some experience with WW Manufacturing in New Jersey, [a manufacturer of garden tools for professionals and nurseries]. They worked with us to develop new tools. They make the broadfork for us.” A certified gardener, he once worked on the Mother Earth News Eco garden outside Asheville, North Carolina. He has been a farm manager for Enniscorthy Farm in Keene and at the former Sugar Hill Farm near White Hall. He got into installing satellite Internet systems and had the idea for an online tool company. They launched WayCoolTools. com in 2007 and it now offers about 100 items, mail-order, including many items made in England by Clarendon Forge that are sold in Britain under the name Bulldog Tools. House said his broadfork is the company’s most popular seller. “We were exhibiting at the Virginia Association for Biological Farming conference one year and Eliot Coleman [a guru of four-season vegetable gardening] was a speaker. He said he wanted something that would flame garden beds. He also suggested that broadfork tines should

Charles House

be 10 inches and not 12 inches long.” Those were suggestions House took to heart. Some tools are designed by House, such as the broadfork and the garden bed flamer that uses an array of five torches fed propane to clear a 30-inch path for pre-emergent weed control. House is also a mid-Atlantic sales representative for a propane mower, designed for uses such as golf courses, that uses flame at variable heights to “cut” grass in a 40-inch width. “We want machinery and equipment that you can work on yourself. I want manfacturers to come around to that and not try to harness their customers. WW Manufacturing doesn’t even make replacement handles for their tools because they are unnecessary. “We get requests for scythes and I would carry one if I could find the right one. I have to have confidence the tool is going to treat the user right. We’re looking for things that are good for the environment.” The aim is to support and enable small farms. His next vision is for farm implements for low horsepower tractors, equipment that could form raised vegetable beds in one pass and similar equipment designed for orchards. Beyond that he wants to create “incubator farms,” places where people of any age interested in becoming farmers could come and learn the art and lore of growing wholesome food. It’s a vision that builds with solid hand tools, so good you can hand them down.


CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

35

Murray Elementary Sends Two Teams to the DI Global Tournament By Kristine Terrell The Virginia state Destination ImagiNation tournament was held April 13 at Western Albemarle High School with the top teams moving on to represent Virginia in the Destination ImagiNation global tournament in Knoxville, Tennessee in late May. Twelve elementary school teams were selected from Virginia, three of which are from Albemarle County Public Schools and two of these are from Virginia L. Murray’s fifth grade class. The other two are from Brownsville and Woodbrook Elementaries. Destination ImagiNation, or DI as the students call it, is part of the culture among the fifth grade class at Murray with close to one third of the students participating. The teachers and the staff fully encourage the program, which is designed to foster teamwork and creative problem solving by completing a long-term project (challenge) and a quick-thinking task. With only two classrooms per grade, students at V.L. Murray are all friends. “We

couldn’t pick the same challenge as they did, because we didn’t want to compete against them,” remembers Kathleen Hughes from the DI’Ablos team. The DI’Ablos team answered a fine arts challenge that entailed presenting a story about a character that wears a disguise. They were not allowed to use any verbal communication and they needed to have at least two characters that wore masks. “We needed to keep our story simple so that people could understand it because we couldn’t use any words,” said team member Will Stalfort. Their story is about the creative attempts of a school of fish that try to woo girl jellyfish. The DI’Ablos won first place at the Jefferson regional tournament March 2 and received the Renaissance Award, which recognizes exceptional skill in design or performance. They then went on to place first at the state tournament in their challenge, qualifying them for Globals. The DI’Albos are Lucas Adam, Teddy Bird, Evan Hajek,

Bottom left to back: Will Stalfort, Teddy Bird, Garrett Livermon, Sam Stalfort, Trevor Plesko, Lucas Adam (in green suit). Girls left to right: Kathleen Hughes, Libby Terrell, Sydney Dutton, Anna Livermon. Teammates missing from photo: Evan Hajek, Helen Snyder, Addie Patterson, Sam Duska

Kathleen Hughes, Will Stalfort, Sam Stalfort and Libby Terrell. The DiNamites team mastered a scientific challenge about wind energy. They were required to teach scientific concepts within their presentation and to design and create a piece of kinetic art that would move continuously for 15 seconds using

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CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

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CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

Put This Idiom in Your Pipe & Smoke It by Clover Carroll | clover@crozetgazette.com For my birthday this year, my dear friend Lois Whitehead gave me one of the Great Courses on CD, The Secret Life of Words: English Words and Their Origins. Consisting of no less than 36 30-minute lectures by University of Michigan Linguist Anne Curzan, this has kept me both entertained and educated through many drives to Charlottesville and back. By far my favorite lectures have been the two on Slang and Idioms. I often ponder the meaning and origins of the many colorful and imaginative idioms that pepper the English language, reflecting a shared American—and sometimes British— experience, and no doubt befuddling new language learners. What would a newcomer think we mean when we exclaim that it is raining cats and dogs or that the wind is blowing to beat the band? There are far too many interesting stories of the origin of idioms to cover here, so I have chosen just a few of the most interesting. In the sense I mean here, an idiom—from the Middle French idiome—is a group of words that, through usage, has taken on a distinctive meaning that cannot be inferred from the literal meanings of the individual words. The origins of some idioms are fairly obvious. When someone goes “out on a limb,” they take a risk as great as a tree-climber who jeopardizes his or her safety by crawling out so far the bough might break. When we wish to eavesdrop on a juicy conversation, we wish we were a “fly on the wall,” who is relatively invisible to the speakers but who hears and sees everything that transpires. If we perform well or interpret a situation accurately, we are complimented for “hitting the nail on the head,” a challenging feat for any novice carpenter. When I try to bang a nail in straight, my patience often “wears thin,” like the knees of old jeans. But the source of most idioms is more puzzling than obvious. They are often metaphorical, that is, they imply a comparison. When it is raining

Crozet

really hard, it is as if it’s raining cats and dogs— but of course there are not really animals falling from the sky. But why that particular analogy? This expression is believed to derive from the habit of cats and dogs of hiding in the thatched roofs common on early English houses. A hard rain would wash the surprised creatures out and cause them to fall from the roof—as if from the sky. “To beat the band,” that is to do anything to the furthest extent possible, originally meant that you sang or played or shouted louder even than your musical accompaniment, and later came to refer to anything superlative. Speaking of cats, why is revealing a secret referred to as “letting the cat out of the bag”? In earlier times, farmers who sold live pigs would often try to cheat their customers by substituting a cat for the pig, which was presented to the customer sealed in a bag so it could not escape. When the purchaser arrived home and opened the bag, the poor cat would jump out to reveal the trick. Many of these explanations come from the endlessly fascinating website www.worldwidewords.org, written by British linguist Michael Quinion. Quinion points out that most of these origins are not definitely known, but rather he has chosen the most plausible of various explanations based on evidence gleaned from publications, the OED, and other sources. Many of our idioms originate with farming and other once commonly shared activities, so that they would have been readily understood, but over time have lost their practical connection. When counseling a friend to seize a fortunate opportunity, we tell them to “make hay while the sun shines,” as does any good farmer who makes sure to cut the tall grasses when they are dry, will cut cleanly, and are less likely to develop mold in the bale. The foolishness of “sowing wild oats” comes from a prolific European species of wild grass call avena fatua, which is useless as a cereal, but devilishly difficult to get rid of. Thus sowing seeds for this pest would be a reckless and frivolous activity, often associated with male promis-

cuity (an easy association with seed-sowing). Why is someone who is anxiously awaiting an unknown outcome said to be “on tenterhooks”? This expression derives from the 18th century British method of making wool cloth. After being washed and died, the cloth would be stretched to dry in the sun by attaching it to metal hooks on frames called tenters. Whole fields of these drying frames might be visible as one traversed the English countryside. The analogy of being stretched to the breaking (or tearing) point to a mental state of anxious suspense is easy to see. Similarly, use of the expression “beating around the bush” to describe a failure to get to the point of an argument derives from hunting. In order to flush birds out of hiding, the hunter would beat the bush, but might get so caught up in beating its many sides that he would fail to successfully shoot any of the fleeing birds, thus missing the point of the whole exercise! Moving from hunting to fishing, we can see how “opening a can of worms”—live bait that would escape the can and be very difficult to get back in—came to refer to a complicated series of events that is likely to cause trouble or scandal and that you were better off not to set in motion in the first place. Curzan and Quinion both refer to “folk etymologies,” creative accounts that people have devised to explain idiomatic origins, but for which linguists can find no actual evidence. In this category fall some of my favorites. To “mind your p’s and q’s,” that is, to behave oneself, probably referred to children learning the alphabet; but a more intriguing explanation comes from the early days of printing. Typesetters had to individually arrange the tiny metal letters in order to spell out, say, an entire newspaper article. Because the actual printout would be a mirror image of the set type, they had to place all the letters in reverse! So in this context, it would have been extremely easy to get one’s p’s and the q’s mixed up, giving rise to this colorful expression. When I visited Shakespeare’s home in Stratford-on-Avon, the tour guide explained that a “rule of thumb” originally referred to the law that a man could not beat his wife with a rod larger than the width of his thumb. But Curzan and Quinion dismiss this as a folk

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CROZET gazette

MAY 2013

Las Cavañas Opens an Ice Cream Shop on Route 250 Las Cavañas, Crozet’s authentic Mexican grocery and food store, has opened an ice cream stand across the road from its Rt. 250 location near the Interstate 64 interchange. Store owner Maria Garcia said she undertook the project simply because “Crozet needs an ice cream store.” She has also opened a clothing store in the rear of the building that the ice cream stand is next to. The sign outside reads “western vaquero” and the stock includes items that she said her regular customers at the main market have been asking for, work clothes, boots, soccer jerseys of the most popular Mexican teams, and traditional Mexican items such as piñatas that are otherwise not available locally.

Maria Garcia

DI Globals —continued from page 35

with the team to help them learn about wind energy. “They taught us a lot and the snacks were delish, so we wanted to have them be part of our story,” said Anna Livermon, team member. The DiNamites placed second at the state tournament in their challenge and also qualified for Globals. The DiNamites are Sam Duska, Sydney

Nearly all the products are Mexican–made. Garcia’s husband, Ignacio Becerra, said they were interested in the location because it has good parking. He built the ice cream stand, painted in cheery, bright, sherbet-like colors, on a lowboy trailer that is parked next to small platform that brings customers up to the counter. The stand also offers tacos, tortas and quesidillas, chips (Mexican brand names) and candy. Six flavors of ice cream are offered with five different toppings. A regular cone goes for $1.59. There is a small table and chair in the trailer to give the counter attendant a place to sit down, but the service is all takeaway. Sales are cash only. The food is prepared at the main store and carried over to the stand. The set-up has county approval. Becerra said they have taken a one-year lease on the location, with a renewal option, and will give the business that long to prove itself. “We want to make it nice for people,” said Becerra. “She started sellDutton, Anna Livermon, Garret Livermon, Addie Patterson, Trevor Plesko and Helen Snyder. The two teams are working together in the next several weeks on fundraising to offset the costs of their trip to Tennessee. They have already sold lemonade and popcorn at two school functions wearing tutus, which is meant to represent their fundraising slogan, 2ToGlobals. They will be having a yard sale at the V.L. Murray school Saturday, May 4 from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m.

ing some of this at the store and people kept asking for more, so we opened this store. We’ll try it and see what happens.” It will be open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily. Garcia, with amazing dedication, is working those hours herself in the market across the road. She has two helpers. The clothing store also includes street clothes, belts, T-shirts, soccer cleats, hats, a wide variety of baseball caps, and religious items such as Ninos Dios (dolls representing baby Jesus that are traditional in Mexican homes) and statues of the Virgin of Guadalupe. Garcia built the display

cabinets herself. “She went to Lowes and got the stuff,” said Becerra. “It’s a little rough,” he acknowledged, but he too is impressed. Becerra shrugged off the difference in spelling the names of the store (at the original store the sign reads ‘Las Cabanas’ and at the ice cream stand ‘Las Cavañas’). “When we say it, it sounds the same,” he explained, implying that the first sign may have included a mistake. The name refers to a small cabin, he said, typically a little retreat in the mountains, a dream of theirs to one day have.

Idioms

when it is not working properly, probably derives from The Katzenjammer Kids, a comic strip created by the German immigrant Rudolph Dirks and drawn by Harold H. Knerr and published in many major newspapers from 1912 to 1949. In these hilarious episodes, clever pranksters Hans and Fritz caused all kinds of mayhem and havoc with their devilish hijinks. Now I could go on and on, but instead I’ll put it to bed and end on a high note.

—continued from page 37

etymology, providing the more prosaic, but plausible, explanation that many body parts were once used as guides for measurement—such as the foot and hand. The distance to the thumb joint being about an inch, the rule of thumb was most likely simply a measurement. One of my favorite idioms, saying that a mechanical device is “on the fritz”


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Crozet Gazette, May 2013  

The Crozet Gazette, May 2013. Volume 7, Number 12.

Crozet Gazette, May 2013  

The Crozet Gazette, May 2013. Volume 7, Number 12.

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