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Busy Like Bees

Apr 29, 2024 12:51PM ● By Daniela J. Jaeger
A community working together

You have probably heard the phrase, “You are the bee’s knees.” Its origin is unclear, but it seems to have entered common language in the 18th century and became popular in the 1920s. Originally, “bee’s knees” referred to something that does not exist, like striped paint or a left-handed hammer. Later, it represented excellence; if someone or something was the bee’s knees, he, she, or it was considered the best. Through the years, the English language has adopted many phrases and words to describe greatness: cool, awesome, excellent, fab, out of sight, sick, lit... As times change, so does our language.
So, now you are wondering: Do bees really have knees? I can assure you they do. Each of their six legs has five sections, and between the femur and the tibia (yes, they have these too) is a definite knee. So, bee’s knees do exist.

Here are some other interesting facts about bees:
• A bee’s body has three sections: the head, thorax, and abdomen.
• The honey bee’s home is called a beehive, and three different kinds of bees live inside: worker, drone, and queen.
• Sadly, worker bees live for only six weeks in the summer, but they can live for up to six months during the winter.
• Bees can fly up to 15 miles per hour.
• A bee’s wings beat 200 times per second.
• One bee can visit 50-100 flowers during a foraging trip; however, one worker bee will make only one-twelfth of a teaspoon of honey during its lifetime.
• To make one pound of honey, worker bees have to visit two million individual blooms to collect the nectar.

Now, you are probably wondering why I am telling you all of this. Well, I was asked a few days ago how I can be so positive amidst all the changes here in a Southwest Florida. As we move closer to the end of the second year of our Hurricane Ian recovery, I think of that beehive.
In our local communities, we have three groups of people in our own beehive: residents, workers, and visitors. Like the busy bees, we all contribute toward building a new and even better place to live and enjoy.
All the bees rely on each other to keep the hive healthy and productive. TOTI Media, as a local business, provides services and jobs, but we also rely on our residents, visitors, and other local businesses to provide for our shared “hive.” So, to everyone out there who is working so hard, I’d like to say, “You are the bee’s knees!”
Like bees, in some ways we are fragile, but we also can be resilient. We all need each other. Without each and every one, none of us would be where we are today. Of course, for many of us, there is still a long way to go in our recovery. Rome was not built in a day, either. We will get there.
The poet William Blake wrote, “The busy bee has no time for sorrow.” Keeping busy has helped us all to get through the pain of loss. As we move forward, let’s remember that there are many ways to be part of building a new and even better “beehive” here in Southwest Florida. Reach out to your family, friends, and neighbors, start a new business, or just take the opportunity to become a volunteer for one of the many wonderful organizations serving our communities. For more thoughts on this, please read A Community of Hope on page 25, in the May/June issue.
Just get involved. Be the bee’s knees. That’s what I believe makes a community thrive, and that’s why I think so positive.
Speaking of keeping busy, Dan Whicker, who has worked for TOTI Media for more than 10 years, has just published his first novel. If you’re looking for your next beach read, check out Planet of Eden.

Enjoy this issue of your favorite magazine, friends!
Daniela J. Jaeger
Group Publisher, TOTI Media