Many of you know me as the custodian at Old Paiute High School. I have not lived in Germaine for very long — about two years — so I hope you do not think me too forward about commenting on community affairs. It has come to my attention that a very bad corporate citizen has set up a research facility in Wilbur County.* This company, a huge transnational conglomerate, is called Malsanto. Let me tell you about Malsanto. My grandparents on my mother’s side of the family farmed for many years in the area around Ontario, Oregon.
They grew alfalfa and corn and melons, among other things. They are dead now, but my uncle kept the farm going until three years ago, when he took his own life, and those of his wife and three children. Why did he kill himself and his family? One word: Malsanto.
Now you may think that this is hyperbole, but let me tell you what Malsanto did. You see, my uncle was struggling, as most small farmers do. Six years ago, the company which sells him seed offered to give him some melon seed at half price, if he would try this new variety. Now, my uncle is not the most well read man, and he is a farmer, not a lawyer. So he didn’t read the fine print, which said that the crops would yield sterile seed.
Now that is not such a big deal with melons, as many varieties are seedless. But my uncle was a poor man. A portion of his crop always goes to seed production. They didn’t tell him that although the seed was sterile, the pollen was not. And that when the new varieties cross-pollinated with his seed crop, then all of his seed would be rendered sterile.
My uncle’s business, and his life, were ruined by this company, Malsanto. And his cousin in Idaho was driven from business when his organic corn crop was contaminated by Malsanto’s genetically-engineered corn from his neighbor’s field. Not only did it destroy his organic farm, but Malsanto then sued him for “stealing” their G-E seed stock.
This is evil, and it is unconscionable. But let me tell you one more thing about Malsanto which you might not know. This company is not only in the seed business. For decades they have produced pesticides and chemical defoliants which have been tied to cancers and other human ailments. They have produced horrible weapons for use in war. This is not a company which is out to better humanity. They are not a company which we should welcome here in Wilbur County. If you care about this, then you should join a group of people who will be discussing Malsanto at the Germaine Public Library on March 3rd at 1 pm.
* Editor Correction: While this facility is only 20 miles from Germaine, it is technically in Harney County, not Wilbur County.
The Town Gossip
Goings on About Town
by Thelma Louise McCoy
“You know I can’t reveal my sources, honey, so there’s no use asking.”
From what I hear there has been another sighting of the Wildman of the Ochocos. He was seen running practically naked through the woods carrying a gunney sack. According to a source close to the matter, he may have been wearing a moss loincloth and nothing else. Kind of cold for that nonsense!
I see that young Bodhi Hedrick has got a new style. Hey, he didn’t get it from me. Orange! And a ring in his eyebrow too! Bodhi, your parents have to live in this town too.
Looks to me like Shu Arlington is renovating his house. He was seen down at the Feed & Seed picking up some lumber that came in for him. I’ll find out more when Regina comes in next week for a cut and perm. I know she has been wanting a family room.
A friend reports that Cynthea McCoy was seen coming out of the Harney County Courthouse in Burns. I hope everything is okay out there on the McCoy spread.
Have you seen that crystal necklace Daniella Arlington has been wearing about town these days? I hear she got it up there at the Cherokee Nation of Wilbur County where she gets those herbs she likes to brew up that she says are good for the immune system.
Saw Lucy Charlebois and Rita Budreau having lunch at the Germaine Coffeehouse & Cyber Cafe looking thick as thieves.
There is a rumour going around that Christine Bradford is visiting with the McCoys. Now do you think Cynthia’s visit to Burns has anything to do with Christine being in town?
The Stars Over Germaine for May
Monthly Horoscope by Madam Zorro
In general, the stars over Germaine are obfuscating.
Aries (March 21-April 20)
May will be pretty much the same as the other four months of 2007 until the 2nd half of the month. Things will begin to unravel around the 16th. Not in a bad way, necessarily, more like a ball of string or knot that has tied up your energies. It’ll come undone and straighten out and you will feel ready to face Detective Hinterteil when he comes poking around.
Taurus (April 20-May 20)
Have you been feeling like a bull with a ring in his nose? A little subdued? I gotta tell you that is probably not going to change in May. The only way you are going to be released from the limitations of this world any time soon is by taking drastic measures. I don’t see that happening. You’re more likely to keep pawing the ground and sending up a cloud of dust which may make you feel like you’re having some impact, but it’s just a cloud of dust.
Gemini (May 21-June 20)
May 8 – 17 would be a good time for Gemini to deal with financial matters. For some that could mean getting the piggy bank or the sock down to the credit union. For others, you might want to make sure that auxiliary set of ledgers is in good order. The IRS was a little surprised by your tax return which is why the refund you expected hasn’t yet arrived.
Cancer (June 21-July 22)
Saturn is still in your second house and the crises of confidence is still with you. Should be getting used to it by now, so you might want to stop shining. If you study hard you will do well at the spelling bee in Madras. You will only have yourself to blame if you’re not ready.
Leo (July 23-Aug. 22)
Saturn has settled down into Leo like it never wants to leave. Being pedantic, overbearing and dysfunctional may earn you a room at the Restin’ Easy instead of settin’ easy in your Barcalounger with a Bud in one hand and the remote control in the other. In fact, if you do manage to come down from your fool’s nest you should seriously think about losing the Bud altogether.
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
A letter arrives from Konigsberg, Germany from a distant relative. You are not sure if you should accept the invitation due to your age. You are not likely to get younger. That adult education correspondence course on Jungian psychoanalysis helps you to understand your cousin’s deep-seated need to conceal certain family matters.
Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
You will begin to explore new activities this month and a chance encounter with an elderly woman will get you traveling down the information highway. You will be reminded of how much you love research and will consider a course correction in the trajectory of your career.
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
It’s true she is quite a bit younger than you, but if it doesn’t bother her then why should it bother you? Someone who has learned how to turn junk into treasure will inspire you to look at your options in a whole new light. This could become very lucrative. Be open to romance for the first two days of May.
Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)
Control has always been a major issue for you and lately things haven’t conformed to your need. If you don’t exercise patience things could go quite badly for you. Restraint is often the better part of a successful plan. Keep your eyes open and your head down.
Capricorn (Dec.22-Jan. 19)
Old friends come back into your life and the community begins to take a greater interest in you. Nevertheless, you may find the attention somewhat disquieting. It has been a long time coming, but you can’t say you didn’t think this day would never come. Part of you has to be surprised at how long it has taken.
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
You are at an amazing point of discovery. Everything seems new and exciting. Sometimes it seem like everyone is putting obstacles in your path, but they really don’t want you to get in trouble. Show them how much you know and they’ll gradually give you more space.
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
You are able to connect with people who share your interests, but the spotlight that begins to shine on you isn’t what you wanted. Sometimes you will want to erupt and lash out at those around you. Some will understand and others won’t.
If Your Birthday Is in May:
If you were born in May you are Taurus (the bull) or Gemini (the twins). The bull is powerful, reliable, but lethal when crossed. Keep your eye on the goal and count to ten. The twins representing Gemini, are the brothers Castor and Polydeuces (some call him Pollux), sons of Leda, brothers to Helen and Clytemnestra. Some say they are half brothers, that Zeus was the father of Polydeuces and Tyndareus the father of Castor. You will find yourself sinking in a quicksand of contradictions if you try to find the truth of this matter and that may be the lesson of the twins or the Dioskaurai. Truth is sometimes shadow, sometimes quicksand. Sometimes solid ground rocks and crumbles.
Disclaimer: This horoscope is presented for entertainment purposes only. The Germaine Truth does not endorse any particular system of divination.
Sheherazade Budreau is assistant to the librarian at the Wilbur County Library, and she is an assistant investigator for The Germaine Truth newspaper.
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