This is a Public Service Announcement

Hey there.  If you don’t follow us on social media, you may be getting this news a bit late, but here it is:  We finally feel pretty good about our patio, and on Friday, September 6 at 6:30, we’re going to christen it in style.  We’re having samples and demos from Plantation Peanuts, Biscotti Goddess, Center of the Universe Brewing, a presentation from David Stover (our beekeeper extraordinaire), and music with The Shivers.

Two things here:  We’ve been getting a ton of support from our vendors.  Most of them are local, and we really dig the folks that are making stuff by hand.  They help us out on the regular by coming by a Farmhouse to set up a table and spread the love about what they’re making.  Which brings us to #2 – the Social thing.  Our mom is on “the Facebook.”  Granted, she activates an account, trolls some kids and grandkids for a couple of weeks, then disappears, but if she can do it you can too.  Oftentimes, our vendor partners throw these things together pretty quickly, so we get the word out on Twitter or Facebook to let you know.  And if you’re not on there you’ll miss it.

In further news, we had a health & wellness seminar last weekend at the Midlo Urban Farmhouse.  Pretty cool.  Had a real-live doctor, a professor, and a professional organizer explaining how you could get your act together.  The folks who came by really enjoyed it, and we’re going to try to make this a regular gig.  Cool?  Right on.  We’re thinking about every two weeks, and we’ll rotate between Midlothian and The Slip.  Keep your ears peeled.  Maybe look on Twitter or the Facebook?  Mom?

We’ve been reading a lot of Mark Twain lately.  Just wanted to share that.

If you’re looking to get your groove on this weekend, we’ll have Tabb Justis in The Slip Saturday night, and Buzzy Lawler for Sunday brunch.  Midlo will have Rob Williams Saturday and Wayward Bills Sunday.  Shenanigans start at around 6:30 on Saturdays and around 11 am on Sundays.  If you think you have Farmhand talent, hit up brae@theurbanfarmhouse.net.  No twerking or balloon animals.  They scare us.

We know it’s fall because we can’t park in the Fan, and because we just whipped out our Early Fall Menu.  We run several different menus each year, as Mother Nature is fickle, and we want to take advantage of that.  This one will have all of your old favorites, with cool things like a Roasted Butternut Squash salad and a Hummus Sammie with chili, cumin, and fresh jalapenos.

And now we’ll go to Mother Jones in the Midwest for a Big Ag update.

There’s this awesome stuff they feed cows.  It’s called Zilmax, and it makes cattle bigger faster.  It does this by mimicking stress hormones, increasing heart rate and blood flow.  Like they were riding the Tour de France.  But cows don’t ride bicycles, so the result of this doping is that cows were often too stressed out to get to slaughter.  In many cases, they were physically unable to walk to the slaughterhouse.  Which may be good if you’re a cow, by one would assume that cows like to be somewhat ambulatory.  So a bunch of big packing companies puffed up and said, “Well that’s just cruel” and decided to ban the use of the drug in beef that they buy.  It’s already banned in most of the civilized world anyway.  But not to worry.  Another big pharma company makes a product called Optaflexx which pretty much does the same thing, so we’ll still have cows with the shakes.

A bit closer to home, legislators in Maryland decided to do something about chicken waste.  The Eastern Shore of Maryland is like the chicken capital of the world, and as you might imagine, millions of birds make millions of tons of bird poop.  So they made this great deal with farmers around the Chesapeake to use this caca as fertilizer.  Great, right?  Unless you like to see living things in the Chesapeake Bay.  All of this fertilizer created a massive phosphorus drip that drained right into the Bay, creating an annual “dead zone” the size of…well…the Chesapeake Bay.  So the State of Maryland, which already mandated controls and limits on things like lawn fertilizer and laundry detergent, decided to ban the use of chicken poop as a fertilizer.  So we won’t have to worry about phosphorus or arsenic or antibiotics or any of the other cray cray things we feed chickens ending up in our food.

But we do.

Under pressure from the chicken lobby, whose sky is now in no danger of falling, the Maryland Agriculture Secretary said, “various stakeholder concerns are making us take a second look at this. “  Well played, Chicken Big.  Well played.