07/31/2015 05:06 pm ET Updated Jul 31, 2016

Blueberry Picking Rules

I went blueberry picking today. Late-season, late-in-the-afternoon is just the way I love it. The air is still, the rows of bushes straight and beckoning. Blueberry picking is a serene activity.

I wish that everyone could experience blueberry picking.


By 'everyone' -- I don't mean, like, 'everyone' everyone.

I'd like to suggest a few exclusions:

- If you are bound to be loudly disappointed because you remember when the blueberries were bigger, sweeter, firmer, juicier - please don't come.

- If your children have an attention span under seven minutes and/or you are forced to yell "Stop That!" more than seven times a minute - please don't come.

- If you have a story to tell that requires multiple uses of the phrases, "So then she goes..." and "So then I go..." - please don't come.

- If you wish the bushes were closer to the parking lot - please don't come.

- If your cell phone (let's just call it your Blackberry, because I can't resist) rings more than three times in a half-hour - please don't come.

- If Rover has to participate - and has to poop - please don't come.

- If you and your loved ones can't keep track of each other, and you have to shout "Marco"/"Polo" on a regular schedule - please don't come.

- If you feel the need to smuggle out blueberries in your purse to avoid the weigh-in - please don't come.

- If you shriek when a bee comes within 24 inches of you - please don't come.

- If the ambiance of blueberries compels you to grope your significant other's private parts - please don't come.

- If you can't bear the thought of your kid eating something that has not yet been de-germed - please don't come.

- If you need to sing more than one stanza of "I Found My Thrill on Blueberry Hill" - please don't come.

- If, despite the 1,200 bushes available, you still want to pick from the one bush I have chosen - please don't come.

Other than that...

Everyone's welcome!

Read more from Nancy at her blog, "Not Quite Old."