Friday, November 30, 2007

Composting at home. It's on.

Hell yeah! Here's my beautiful new worm compost bin, one of the many benefits of my gardening class. I never thought I would be into a worm bin at home--but it's so cool. I'll make sure to track my progress on this little bloggity blog.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Back on the west side.

Mind & body still think I'm in NYC...had an amazing time. Good friends, good food, good drink & so much art. My NYC crew is the best--thanks Mr. Adamc. and the Cheney third floor crew for showing me the best time, I love you guys! More tomorrow--36 hour marathon begins now: office moving/catching up on work/night gardening class. Go!

Friday, November 16, 2007

NYC Bound...

Heading back to my love: NYC. From my summer visits...

Yo Ill. I miss you. Why you gotta go back to AZ for Thanksgiving?
No more hung over brunches @ the Red Hook soccer fields...

I stand corrected?

Perhaps the hair+mushrooms=oil spill cleanup isn't such a crazy idea after all? Hair and mushrooms create a recipe for cleaning up oily beaches

Monday, November 12, 2007

Mailer on Writing & Actvists on Oil-eating mushrooms

Norman Mailer, interviewed 16 years ago on Fresh Air, perfectly distills the transformative/therapeutic/beauty of writing "If you can absolutely capture a state of mind in a given moment you are very often freed of that state of mind" It's why I scribble in my journal. It's why I breathe in books.
In other things that have captured my emotions: This oil spill has the Bay Area absolutely flailing--reports of a lack of clean-up efforts coupled with volunteers getting arrested for trying to pick up oil globs on the beach. The 58,000 gallons of bunker fuel is extremely toxic (chew some gum around it and the toxins will get in your gum, crazy), and people are picking it up with kitty litter scoopers and dumping it in garbage bags on the sidewalk. Then complaining about headaches from the fumes....Others are inspired by a speaker at the Green Festival this weekend, that proposes floating huge mats of human hair in the ocean to absorb the oil spill, then plant oil eating mushrooms to completely absorb the oil. For real: I'm all about innovation, but this website is straight out of crazyland, encouraging rouge volunteers to expose themselves to toxins.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Field Trip Day!

My GCTEP class got a taste of Permaculture in the East Bay today--these photos are all from Chris Shein's garden at Merritt College. Banana, fig, pomegranate, apple, cacao and persimmon trees, herbs, cacti, bamboo structures--there's a little bit of everything in this 1 acre hillside oasis. You won't see straight paths with row crops here--permaculture is all about common sense, following the paths that nature sets before us. Terrace gardens, built to the contours of the land. Swales provide water catchment for heavy rains. A handful of vegetables and herbs are let go to flower and seed, to bring in beneficial insects & spread seed for the new year. It's all about life-cycle, systems thinking. It's about knowing the land and thinking towards the future.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Discovering my own unoriginality.

An awakening: I've been suffering under the guise of ego, fooling myself that I have a unique perspective on the world, part of which I express on this silly little blog. Until this week of coincidental blog/web sightings so utterly similar to my own...

1. Cover of print version of SF Chron today. above the fold: HEARTBREAKING under same photo of oil covered bird. (see yesterday's blog post)

2. This week's Fecal Face homepage, features both Banksy & green roof of CA Academy of Sciences.

3. Shortly after posting my own photos of a trip to the Carnivorous Flower exhibit I was forwarded very similar, although much better, photos of the same exact exhibit from a friend taken just one hour after I wandered through this plant heaven.

Don't worry. While I've suffered a blow to the old ego (of which I also falsely thought I didn't have a big one. Surprise, surprise, I guess I do.) it's really a new beginning. As Ms. Miranda July says in her new book, Learning to Love You More: "Sometimes it seems like the moment we let go of trying to be original, we actually feel something new — which was the whole point of being artists in the first place."

Thursday, November 8, 2007


See the full report on the oil spill in SF Bay here.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

The rush of the ballot box and Yes on A. No on H.

I always forget how much I love voting. It's a rush--from the moment I spot the 'vote here' signs I get excited. I love that school gymnasiums, the children's section at your local public library and church community rooms transform into gateways of democracy for a brief day. I love the random group of volunteers that greets you--from retirees to college students. I love when you sign in, receive your secret ballot and retreat to the covered voting booths to cast your ballot. I love seeing your neighbors receive their 'I voted' stickers and put them on with pride. It's pride, it's a process, it's making a decision and standing by it, it's a secret, it's democracy in action.

Today's local elections will most likely bring in a record low voter turn out today. Perhaps it's because these were the main options for the big ticket item, the Mayoral race: George Davis, occupation: Writer/Nudist Activist; Grasshopper Alec Kaplan: Vegan Taxicab Driver; Harold M. Hoogasian: Florist/Coffee Farmer; H. Brown: publisher, SF Bulldog with degrees and certifications in Fire Technology, Cryptology and Emergency Medical Care; Chicken John: showman. Absolutely hilarious, until you reach the reality of the situation, it's a shoe-in for career politician Gavin Newsom who states in the voter info pamplet: 'San Francisco is a beacon'. Yet he can't even make it to one Board of Sups meeting in his 4 years as Mayor.

I met someone today who said they don't vote--why? he asked me, it doesn't matter. These were LOCAL elections that effect the everyday in a very tangible way...and it scared me. I'm scared that I'm part of a generation bogged down by cynisim, oppressed by apathy, disconnected and dispassionate. What does really matter then?

Monday, November 5, 2007

Sunday, November 4, 2007


Made my first visit to the Conservatory of Flowers today--just in time for the last day of the Carnivorous Plant exhibit. Glimpsed the insect trapping sundews and butterworts, pitcher plants and bladderworts along with orchids and tropical plants I've never seen before. It was a magical wonderland, one of my new favorite spots on the planet.

Tortoise Plant--it's a wild yam.

Bat plant. I'm really into this bizarre primordial plants. Totally unreal.

Some of the man-eating plants...

Friday, November 2, 2007

The future is now

I've been watching the CA Academy of Science LEED remodel for the past six months, it's on my running path through the park. Check out an article on it's amazing new green roof here.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Covered in a blanket of fog

I never really believe that it's going to clear out by afternoon. Everytime it happens it amazes me. I wonder if I'll ever get used to it. Just like I've gotten used the earth quaking beneath my feet.