As a follow-up to my prior immortal potato post, here's Dave McConkey who claims to have found a way to petrify potatoes, and he then makes works of art out of these perma-potatoes. I'd be curious to know what exactly his process involves, but I doubt it's actual petrification, since soft tissue doesn't petrify (as far as I know).
If you want to delve deeper into the mystery of petrified potatoes, check out the Potato Rock Museum, which describes itself as being "all about the search for the elusive 'Potato, Rock' or the 'Petrified Potato' or the Per Mineralized Potato."
I just relistened to Frank Zappa's 1971 album, Live at the Fillmore East, or, Freaks & Motherfu*#@%! for the first time in about 40 years, and marveled again at the visionary talents of this supreme musical weirdo. Of course, Zappa died too young at age 52, and we were deprived of many potential years of his music.
I thought this vegetable song might somewhat counterbalance all the bacon and meat talk on WU.
Katrina Dodson, who blogs at weirdvegetables.blogspot.com, reports that Brazil has a variety of broccoli named Ninja Broccoli -- or Brócolis Ninja. It seems to be similar to the broccoli found most frequently in American supermarkets. In fact, it may be the same as American broccoli. (I can't quite tell from what she writes.) She isn't sure how the Brazilian variant acquired the Ninja label, but offers this possibility:
ninja broccoli began to sprout as a genetic accident, a hybrid among fields of "normal," or sprouting broccoli (recall that the U.S. "normal" broccoli is this genetic aberration). At first, farmers considered it an undesirable variant but could not get rid of this broccoli that kept appearing and spreading mysteriously. A Japanese scientist, who preferred to remain anonymous, compared these cunning broccoli to ninjas, and the name stuck, immediately snatched up by marketing professionals as a stroke of genius: Ninja broccoli, your kid's favorite vegetable.
How in the world did I reach the age of 43 without knowing that it was possible to burble a pea? Instructions can be found at askapastor.org:
you take the roundest pea you can find. You purse your lips and tilt your head completely back. You place the pea on your lips and blow out a gentle but consistent stream of air until the pea begins to lift off your lips sustained by the air.