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Going Topsy Turvy

It is Spring again and I’m back to gardening. This year I am making my first real attempt at vegetable gardening. I don’t have a lot of sunny areas good for gardening, and so I have created a large container garden at the end of my side patio.

It seems every year I write some sort of blog about gardening or golf. This year is no exception.

I am not entirely sure why I started a vegetable garden. I have this crazy neighbour who converted a whole acre of his property into an urban vegetable garden. He is completely organic, and he’s got everything. He will sell vegetables to you by the bushel. Actually, he is required to give away the vegetables because he isn’t licensed to sell them, but he charges in the neighbourhood of $15.00 a load for his teenage son to run them over to your house in a little red wagon. With that kind of service, I don’t really need a garden to get access to “fresh”.

But yet, I still have this garden, and strangely, it is filled with some vegetables we don’t eat in quantity. I have beets, Brussels sprouts, spinach, lettuce, jalapeño peppers, green peppers, cucumbers, and of course, tomatoes.

I decided to use the Topsy Turvy device to grow my tomatoes. For those of you who don’t watch American television at 3:00 in the morning, a Topsy Turvy device allows you to hang your tomato plants upside down. They are supposed to enable you to grow a lot of tomatoes without the complexity. It is ingenious, and about the most ridiculously expensive thing I’ve ever seen for the money. But I had to have it.

Lately, I’ve been thinking about ingenuity. Not to point fingers, but I am feeling like recently there isn’t a lot of ingenuity in the HR Profession. We need simple and clever devices to deal with a whole host of human resources maladies. We need new tools in our HRIS systems, new questions for employee surveys, and some low-level toy to get the attention of the employee population. Squeeze dolls just don’t cut it anymore. Heck, if the military can promote itself by creating video games, why can’t we?

Not that seeing this Topsy Turvy device has led me to any further insight, but if you don’t have a hobby, I suggest you pick one up, and pick it apart and find some way to add some ingenuity to our profession. I think ingenuity is woefully absent.



  1. Ingenuity – ‘Necessity is the Mother of Invention’ in the absents of ‘Absolute’ necessity, maybe a think tank group of creative minds could be formed. The mandate would be to identify common HR related issues, clarify and quantify (prioritize) the issues. Then Brainstorm about creative solutions to the most common and pressing ones.

    Intellectual property will be shared by the group equally – marketability of the ‘inventions’ to be determined. Most importantly it could be fun!

    aka: MailJunky

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