Plants everywhere

I was pleased to speak with Lisa Sorg, now writing for the News & Observer, about a few current and upcoming projects recently.  Lisa was a natural, and I was happy to have the opportunity to share more about my projects and approach to outreach. Views change with time, experience, and knowledge into clearer vision, one can hope.  I’m indebted to those who have shaped my thinking through strategic action for farmed animals including Matt Ball, Nick Cooney, Jon Camp, Peter Singer, Carol Adams, and so many more. Yep, I just made an Oscar speech.  Except also: thanks Mom. That … Keep goin’

Urban forest cob experiment part II: trenching

This week, my focus was on digging a trench for our cob cottage.   Once complete, it will be filled with drain-grade gravel (smooth, not sharp pieces) and a drainage pipe.  It’s called a rubble trench foundation, an ancient technique popularized here by architect Frank Lloyd Wright. I calculated that I could dig about one side per day, every other day.  I found, however, that I was not as tired/sore as anticipated, and was able to dig one trench side each day, working only 2-3 hours each day. Along the way, I checked the size of my trench with Rob’s leftover … Keep goin’

My urban forest cob experiment part I

I’ve been talking about building a cob house for long enough now that rather than questions like “how’s that cob cabin coming along?” I’m hearing “Are you still doing the cob cottage thing?” Well, now, folks, ground has been unearthed. Backs have been hurt. Sweat has evaporated. I’m starting this project. What is it that I want to create? A small cob “getaway” and guest-house in our back yard with (hopefully) solar-powered electricity and possibly a “pump” and tank for kitchen sink water.  A place where I/we can write/read/play music and house our guests, now that we live in the … Keep goin’

How senior dogs play

Senior dogs know to save the best for last:  what we can learn from them Last night Syba was pouncing all around our small apartment, so I took out my new Moto G out to film her on the heels of her 13th birthday in March. How she ends her play is the true lesson she teaches us.   How senior dogs play The video also includes footage of her running around the East End park this morning, one of her favorites. See other Syba stories here.   … Keep goin’

“Bad dog” caught in the act: Top 5 guilty moments

Driving while coned

In 2014, our dog Syba elevated her “Bad Dog” status in five memorable ways and I was compelled to document this new level of badness.  Read on to see our “bad dog” caught in the act top 5 guilty moments.       She’s old and still Bad. Top five reasons Syba was a “Bad Dog” last year. And why she didn’t care. Having an old dog is great. They don’t bother you with wanting to learn new tricks. They don’t jump up on you due to their arthritic back legs. Heck, they can’t even see you half the time. … Keep goin’

Ingredient #1: Community

Beautiful Ikaria

What is the #1 ingredient for a happy life?   Spoiler alert: It’s not Reese’s Puffs. Though that might be a close second.  Let’s start with a little background on what statistically could be extrapolated as the number one ingredient. Who lives the longest? In some parts of the world, people are living to over 100 years old. Let me correct that: they’re not on life support, they are life’s support: actively involved, healthy, still independent. What is the secret to their longevity? Blue Zones All over the world, there are clusters that have been found to have a high … Keep goin’