they just keep tumbling along

maybe it’s because i’m from new york city, but this story tickles me pink.  also, i kind of secretly love tumbleweed.  seriously.  the name is awesomely literal, it’s random and it conjures up such specific iconography.

also, once, when i was driving across spain with friends, we saw tumbleweed all day.  the landscape kept changing- prarie, mountain, desert, forest, but the tumbleweed were constant. probably because the rain in spain does NOT fall on the plain.  and all five of us new yorkers were amused.  to cork it all off, we pulled to a stoplight in zaragoza and a tumbleweed as big as fiat tumbled in between our car and the equally sized compact full of spaniards and stopped at the light with us.  and when the light turned green?  it rolled right on.

buy some today!

Linda started her online business, the Prairie Tumbleweed Farm, as a joke. It was 1994 and she wanted to teach herself how to design a website. Since she lived on the prairie in southwest Kansas, where rolling tumbleweeds are sometimes the only dynamic feature of an endless flat horizon, she invented a farm that sold tumbleweeds, listing prices at $15 for a small one, $20 for a medium and $25 for large.

Lucky for her, some people didn’t get the joke. People emailed the site wanting to buy them. But even then Linda doubted she would be able to spin this straw into gold. “When I got an order I was just amazed,” she says, sitting on the porch of her home in Garden City, Kansas. “And each order I got, I thought it would probably be the last order. I remember thinking they would probably get them and send them back immediately as soon as they find out what they are.”

But that didn’t happen. In fact, the orders just kept coming — an average of 15 per week. Though she’s coy about her annual income from tumbleweed wrangling, she says it is over $40,000 a year. Not bad for a bunch of dead, dried-up weeds. Who buys them? Well, says Katz, rocket scientists, for one. NASA purchased tumbleweeds when they were designing their Mars Tumbleweed rover. “And if you go to their site on the NASA site to the tumbleweed rover, and you go to their links, they say that they only buy their tumbleweeds from Prairie Tumbleweed Farm,” Katz says proudly.

Hollywood has also come calling. Katz’s tumbleweeds have appeared in films like Johnny Depp’s “Neverland.” And she has supplied tumbleweeds to the big purple dinosaur kid’s show, “Barney.”

Katz says people usually use her tumbleweeds to recreate the look and feel of the old west for theme parties. But some customers tell her they buy tumbleweeds to remind them of the home on the prairie they left long ago.

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truth

“I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

truth

Upon common theatres, indeed, the applause of the audience is of more importance to the actors than their own approbation. But upon the stage of life, while conscience claps, let the world hiss! On the contrary if conscience disapproves, the loudest applauses of the world are of little value - john adams
November 2007
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from the man who taught me everything:

“Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.”

bygones


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