Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Base Tours

As some of my readers know, I saw the Occupy camps as a recruiting opportunity.

Here in Portland, we specialize in disaster relief operations.  The explanation for that is somewhat regional in that we live under the threat of impending doom, as a major earthquake is expected, if geology is any guide.

Another explanation is the pioneers who started coming here after the Lewis & Clark troupe were hardy campers and camping has never been far from the surface.  That may be why Portland's was one of the largest Occupy demos, and one of the best organized.

The so-called Elk Club (the people who took the park and lived there in a demonstration community in the shadow of the Elk Statue) is rightly proud of its little window in the sun.  We decided to end the demo before the eviction notice.  When the evictors arrived, the A Camp kitchen and medical tents were already gone, as was the Food Not Bombs tent in B Camp.

You've probably heard of "eco-tours" (already popular) where tourists travel with experts in various aspects of ecology.  They visit both hopeful cleanup sites and disaster sites.  Hanford is of course on the list (there's already an interpretive center) as is OMSI (for a taste of Portland's science mindedness).

There's a different kind of tour I'll call "human rights tours" where you have these international groups coming through looking at the USA's prison systems.  Of special interest are the holding pens for so-called "illegal" immigrants (per Anglo-Euro jurisprudence) and what work is performed there.  The USA is known around the world for its prison-centric militaristic culture and many want to see it first hand, in some cases just to see what they're up against.

Recent meetings with PBI and Amnesty International folks etc., me wearing an AFSC / NPYM hat, have given me some ideas for steering the new recruits.  The workshops will dovetail with the weapons inspector programs, a grad school major expected to be popular in this region, as a part of environmental sciences.  The disaster relief and cleanup industry is already targeting visitation sites, with assistance from whatever agencies.

By this means, I think expanding travel opportunities for campers is in the cards.  It's not "seen one seen them all" by any means.  A given Elk Club veteran might start with some local visitations and then loop through a few more distance locations before returning to a local theater or meeting hall to deliver a report.  We expect hundreds of such reports, becoming thousands as more become involved.  Where the IAEA fits in I'm not sure, given it seems to have been banned from operating in North America (we have queries to State about this).

When monitoring a site, you need to camp out nearby, using whatever gear and sensing equipment the university has provided.  How supply lines are managed depends on the scene of course.  You might just use the local Wal*Mart, and / or you might need off road vehicles, perhaps electric (less noise, less footprint) to navigate to the kitchen.  Some camps will grow a lot of their own food, perhaps with assistance from various biodome models (designed for permaculture).

The medical tent might need special equipment for over-exposure to whatever toxins had been determined to exist in this environment.  GIS / GPS servers will be aggregating this data.

Outfitting all the frack sites with sensors is already jobs aplenty for an FDR-scale CCC.  Anyone who thinks there's a shortage of work opportunities should think again.  Foreign aid agencies, as well as church networks, have their role.  I should draw on more contacts in Vilnius for more church involvement.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Comic Interlude

Smallest Occupy
:: occupation of world's smallest park, Mill Ends Park in Portland, Oregon ::

Sam was pounding the table today, saying we weren't ephemeralizing fast enough.

We were at Laurelwood Brew Pub planning a next gala event, in part a homecoming for those who'd been at RISD this year, for the SNEC event (yeah, insider jargon, I'm full of it).

On the ephemeralization front, Occupy is in the lead, taking over the world's smallest municiple park today, according to the Guiness Book of World Records. Hi Cameron.

It'll be a failure of capitalism this Xmas if we don't already have the action figure kits, manger scene scale (like toy army guys), with little anarchists with tents, little riot cops with vans.

Junior can line up the cops around the camp while the anarchists amass.  Depending on political leanings, the narrative may go differently.

Some will put the baby Jesus right inside a tent (Food Not Bombs tent?), complete with straw, cute animals, and a few defectors from the 1% (the three Magi).

Others will have their policemen smash those dirty commies with gusto, MacArthur style (President Hoover as King Herod?), while mom & dad beam proudly.

Koski has been replying to Zubek on Youtube, sharing the war on Poly, where grown children are still grumbly-grumpy about Bucky getting a molecule named after himself 'n stuff, when he really didn't invent anything new.

How can you put a refrigerator in a dome shaped home anyway?

Gimme a break right?

I bet they talk like this at Harvard all the time (snicker, superior Princeton sniff).

Me to David (typo fixed):
This stuff about the fridge:

You should remind folks that many of the architects working with
Fuller came up with more conventional rectilinear "stage prop"
interiors, that would protect privacy, but not have to be weatherized,
as the surrounding dome was doing that.  More efficient, by simple
back of the napkin computations.  More green.  More sustainable.

In fact, Fuller's designs were quite smart and his cultist followers,
e.g Kirby Urner, think the ambient culture just didn't have the IQ.
"It's Planet of the Apes around here" is his usual off-the-kuffka
remark (cuffka.com).

The usual picture, duh:

(duh rectilinear as you like inside -- could be a city)

All this crap about the refrigerator is just teasing at recess, not
serious in any way.  "Hey, your zipper's down!".

I'm something of a misanthropist when it comes to mean little children
that grew up to become mean little adults.
 I've been yukking it up on the Wittgenstein list too.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

POW Camps

A re-gearing may occur when a camp changes status. The Business Plot camps in the Occupy Iraq and Occupy Afghanistan movement have a POW flavor about them. Those caught in these so-called "face saving maneuvers" have become the cosmetology kit for Washington, DC.

As pawns of the privatized security industrial complex, active duty conscripts are prisoners of war-making institutions such as NATO. They are kept in a kind of limbo, akin to refugee status, with a minimum of human rights. The North Americans have developed a prison-minded culture, so spreading this non-democracy to overseas bases is actually just a matter of following the same playbill.

I ranted on the power of prayer in our Quaker adult discussion group this morning, talking about the integrity of a moral vision. This was somewhat in response to the neuroscientific jargon which some Quakers have picked up, part of a meme virus I'd trace to a murky liberalism, by some twisted path.

I also shared about David Koski finally getting to screen cast his work in a way that lets him stay in the environment he's most productive in, a home office setting. That's how my prayers are being answered of late too: in the comfort of the indoors, even though it's the great outdoors that I scheme about (in terms of bringing more interesting work to our state).

Tara came in second overall in the LD category, in the debate tournament just concluded.

I've been sharing about these events on Facebook as well.

I do agree with George Lakoff that people seem easy to program, a two edged sword. The jingo-jihadists who want more war strut out "Republican Guard" as a meme, and the two-stroke thinkers (lawn mower brains) get all fired up, perhaps because "Republican" is "our word" (makes 'em mad just reading about someone else using it).

Stoking hatred for the Pakistanis hasn't been working fast enough either, although WDC's professional hate-mongers have been at it 24/7. As more of this transparent saber-rattling goes on, it becomes easier to isolate the meme viruses to their sources, often tycoon types with out-of-control egos and no use for "checks and balances" -- lots of senile geezers who use their bank accounts to inspire awe among the sycophantic politicos.

OPDX is "bad for business" in the sense of serving with the non-aligned against the self-aggrandizing uber-powers. The camps we're story boarding are not for prisoners so much as for those willing to freely express their conscience by acting on behalf of the Global U, providing food services, sanitation, shelter. How these camps contribute to the betterment of humanity's condition is relatively easy to see.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Kicked Back

I'm in the Michael Jennings Chair of Computer Science, a welcome hand-me-down from a darling FNB couple. This chair was presented pre the Chairman's trip to Brazil, which so far sounds marvelous. They drug it up to the 3rd floor, not far from Hawthorne Theater. Holden chose wisely, among neighborhoods. Welcome to 97214.

I got to Wanderers too late to blog anything about the electric bicycle fashion in Portland. It's a lifestyle option some opt for. My electric ATV and electric snowmobile fantasies somewhat dovetail. Anyway, the speaker had departed well before I got there. Not complaining, as I was having a lovely time down the street, near Angelo's.

I'm back on the front lines of Math Reform again today, an old beat of mine by now, count me as one of the grays. Speaking of which, I was riffling through Powell's on Hawthorne and found an old copy of Everything is Under Control by Robert Anton Wilson.

I bought it for under $13 in part for nostalgia value. Under GRUNCH there's my website teleport.com/~pdx4d/grunch.html
Thank you RAW. The then owner of Teleport married a member of our Quaker meeting (I was at the wedding) and I later bought the domain grunch.net to continue with that work.

Glenn has just arrived, with Amber, his daughter. We're saying good bye to Steve, who departs for Europe tomorrow. Alex Aris came by after, meeting me at the bus stop, bidding our Chairman adieu before he fell asleep.

Friday, December 02, 2011

AFSC Banter

:: federated states ::

Per my squibs to Facebook, there's been much ferment in Quakerdom and old alliances are being supplanted with new ones. Twas ever thus. In the grand scheme of things, Philadelphia is still an important town, and Cherry Street still resonates with some authority. I'm not sure I can say the same for Washington, DC (WDC) however, which seems in steady decline as a world capital.

The new maps have come out, of the new AFSC regions, as devised for North American states commonly considered to be part of a single Federation. That means British Columbia is out, and Hawaii is in. Guam and the Marshall Islands, important foci in my AFSC work, do not seem to have much focus. East coasters especially are not known for their attentiveness to Pacific Rim details and affairs. We take all these maps with a grain of salt therefore. Philly, like WDC, has its characteristic thought patterns.

The timidity of Christians in general is a theme I'd like to take up. I think there's a desperate race to the bottom as each tries to "out meek" the other, in a bid to inherit the Earth. According to Apocalyptic renderings, "the meek shall inherit" meaning if you just keep your head down and do a modest amount of good, then you'll have your reward in Heaven, and perhaps even on Earth, God Willing (InshaAllah). Besides, who wants to be bossy? Just a comfortable "go along to get along" attitude is what most people call "liberalism" these days, and many Quakers would count themselves among them.

"Geek" rhymes with "meek". What if we beat 'em to it? "World domination" was our stated goal as well. Could the prophets have heard wrong, misplaced a syllable? Something for theologians to mull over perhaps.

At the other end of the spectrum, you have your "dangerous Quakers", but then a lot of those are far from Christian (Praise Bob), in terms of branding. These brands have not been well represented as there's a tendency to demonize, forgetting we're still talking about Friends of Christ.

Having a "Christ" outside of Christianity may seem a contradiction in terms, but then Friends are comfortably free of most doctrines and breezily point out that Christ himself was not a Christian, as if that settles the matter.

As an NPYM delegate, I'm supposed to help the AFSC keep up to date on what Friends are doing to fill the vacuum, now that Christianity has dropped the ball.

That's not my only responsibility of course. I represent different lineages. NPYM is an umbrella organization with many branches and sub-types represented. Unless you're intimate with the history, you're probably not aware of how many brands of Quaker there already are.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Revenge of the Gnurds

Coming soon, to a theater near you.


Then take a Victory Vacation.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Fire and Ice: Korean War (movie review)

This two-DVD set was among the five documentaries we checked out from Movie Madness, for a small fee, due Saturday. We've already watched them all.

I'd been sparring with Cherlin, an OLPC guy, about North Korea in some thread and decided to back fill with some History Channel. Getting the North Korean point of view might take a Clint Eastwood (Korean version), but in any case I learned a lot about the American historians' point of view, colored as it was by the dizzying power of being a superpower, at least in its own head.

I'm tempted to say that Douglas MacArthur and Joe McCarthy were two of the worst things to ever happen to America, but then I temper my armchair viewpoint with the observation that both were products of their times and it's always within the power of the many to rein in the one, or should be, so blame the weak groupthink maybe?

Clearly those Main St. USAers weren't following too closely, as most are not today.

Who has the time?

Let Madison Avenue handle it (let advertisers pay for news, yeah good idea...).

The narrator relives the realization USAers kept having that they were not in charge of world events (such an alluring idea though). Blaming the OSS for "losing China" was as dumb as thinking Russia ("the invisible hand of Moscow") was pulling all the strings in China.

These simple mental models based on a smattering of loosely connected proper nouns just don't serve as reliable guides (don't constitute real thinking). People give in to ideas not because they're correct, but because they're easy to grasp, compact, even cute (the song of the sirens).

Would that intuition have a stronger hand eh?

By the end of the film (made around 1999), MacArthur has been reduced to a thespian. His final speech before Congress is squirmy / uncomfortable in its self-indulgent cliches, many of which he coined (so not cliches then, I realize).

Joe McCarthy was a terror, a bully, and Americans proved hardly able to corral this mad cow, because so infected themselves with their own "anti-communism". Was there any science in that rhetoric at all? Welcome to Planet of the Apes (1950s onward).

Sorry, I'm judging with hindsight and that always looks bad.

Good thing the American people started tuning out after awhile, rather than continuing to treat the Korean War as a spectator sport put on by generals in theater, like some kind of NFL.

That's just tasteless ugliness.

Watching humans blast their own infrastructure apart out of vengeful catharsis is just to watch the death throes of a pathetic species, another life form gone astray. One hopes to tune in later and find something worth watching.

Well made. Good footage. Tightly scripted. What a nightmare.

Speaking of Clint Eastwood, another documentary I got was a.k.a. Cassius Clay, a biography of Mohammed Ali that is rather deftly made given it's in the thick of things (in the midst of wars). It's a film that comes out boxing, dancing. Ali was smart to have this made at the peak of his career. Smart guy all around, a real dancer.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Esozone 2011

:: esozone 2011 ::

My main intent was to catch @mathpunk Tom Henderson in the act, and that I did. We were first introduced by Keith Loftstrom at a Barcamp (#4 in PDX -- I'd been at the first).

I arrived just as he was taking the podium and stayed on through the Duke of Yuke, which I found relaxing.

Dinner with Alex had been a blast.

Now I'm back at the scene but all has gone quiet.

Steve Holden, the Chairman of a small global dictatorship, a virtual state, and myself, an unassuming Minister, would qualify as MVPs in many a diplomatic circle, but our presence here is unannounced. I did not file a resume or advertise as a speaker, as I had no idea when the trip to Silverton would be over.

We came back by Hwy 214 from Silverton, through Woodburn, connecting with I-5 to Wilsonville, stopping at Fry's. Tara had been interviewing for one of her choices of college (I joined at the end), then I united her with her champion debate team (the one she started as a sophomore).

I fondled the Brother MFC scanner / copier / color laser, going for about $500 -- on the high side compared to the others, but so like what I have now... I tore myself away with Holden's help with a recharger for AA/AAA batteries, some of each, and a palette of Red Bull (sugar free), which Tara drinks also (a Taurus family), stocking stuffers (for a vestigial Xmas).

During our stopover at Blue House, I found Food Not Bombs cooking up a storm for the GA at Colonel Summers. That might be a small one, like Holladay Park was (on my beat).

I know what it's like to show up with enough vegan chili for an army, to find only a few skate boarders with their boy and girl friends (which is fine -- plus sometimes we bring live performers, other entertainment, and blend in).

The temperature may get below water's freezing point tonight. FNB was serving at the same site last night as well, but then we're troopers, were doing the same thing a year ago, and years before, even without an Occupation.

Esozone is on the edge of China Town, or Old Town as we call it. I parked just inside the Chinese Gate so Steve, a citizen of the UK, could see how America is dealing with its problems. Mike D is a skilled worker. I know him from Duke's Landing, one of our hubs (though more of a storage depot in this chapter).

One of the dudes at R2D2 (Right To Dream Too) said "you can take my picture: I'm native American but I not one of those who believes your camera will take my soul". "Only two thirds of it" I bantered, as I snapped the shot. Smile. That was earlier today, while waiting for Tara.

Tom: the general uses everything, the artist makes do with nothing. A sense of self is a temporary matrix holding all together, both convergent / divergent. When narrowly focused, as in a trance, we may lose perspective on what our role may be, in the bigger picture.

Apparently the camera was not recording, so the performance has vanished into our brains and blogs as it were.

The audience was engaged and nurtured I thought.

Silverton was a hoot. I thought of contacting Gus but we were there for such a short time, hanging out at one of the main downtown watering holes (after dropping Tara at Silverton High). We enjoyed two appetizers, a couple drinks, and shoved off, back to Portland (a hub or "base") and Esozone.

Off to a food pod for some occufood next, probably the one at the base of Hawthorne, near Lucky Lab, where I am now, by way of Helium across the street.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Tweeting About Maths

:: Ministry of Education banters with Republic of Math ::

Re: "Wittgenstein was a beery swine" (cited clip)

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Virtual OPDX

click for larger view

Per my intra Blue Tent memos, I think a mistake of some other occupants is to think the 1% controls with money.

There's money involved, but control is with spin, and the 1%, according to Bucky, are the ones most attuned to something he called "precession" (at which point we trail off, as apparently nobody knows what he meant by that -- the guy was just nuts right?).

On the Wittgenstein list, I make the point that our Jew of Linz had like superpowers in comparison to your average run of the mill Fortune 500 CEO capitalist, and yet he was an unemployed, houseless vet a lot of the time.

Who are these "giants"? "God only knows" right? Reminds me of our "great pirates" discussion on Internet Radio.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Phone Meeting Notes

S Module

Thanks to David, I got clear on three things:

The volume 4 octa in which an icosa is inscribed, faces flush, is the same model Fuller employs to develop his S modules, 24 of which form as the difference between this octa and its icosa. These S mods have a volume close to that of the A, B & T: about 1.08x bigger. Ergo, octa 4 minus x > 1 = 3+ volume of the icosa (where x = 24 S).

The relation between the T & E is a buried gap in Synergetics 2, a 0.9994... that seems too much of a focus (over-amplified?). In 2011, we see E amplified by Phi**3 (volume-wise) giving E3, 120 of which make "super RT", embedded in which, as long face diagonals, is our "most important icosa" (the one from the Jitterbug) with edges 2R. On the T side, we see T amplified by 1.5 (volume-wise) giving K (1.5 T), 120 of which make the 7.5 volumed RT (interlaces with 6.0 volumed RD). The scale factor (volume-wise) to the E3 (E-mod * phi **3) is just 2nd-root(2) ** 3 (linearly: 2nd-root(2)).

The octa scaled up so as to contain the "most important icosa" also embeds a cubocta of edges 1/2 those of the octa. For comparison, the octa 4 (mentioned above) contains the cubocta of volume 2.5. The "most important icosa" is related to the cubocta of volume 20 by Jitterbug Transformation. Interesting factoid: the edge of the cubocta in scaled up octa is 1/10 the volume of the most important icosahedron, looking at PV = 2 (1 D), and icosa-volume = 18.51... with cubocta's edges 1.851... (same digits). That's weird, because we're talking about an edge vs. a volume.

Handout from Police
:: opdx 11-10-11 ::

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Adult Discussion

Multnomah Meeting Sign

Our Multnomah Meeting Adult Discussion section (meets 8:30 AM), was all about Occupy Portland and Occupy Together. This was not at my instigation in any way and I had no foreknowledge of the topic, though I can't say it surprised me. The white board note taker listed all of our names as we went around, although one of us (not me) declined to be identified.

Many views were expressed, including the idea that outward violence would inevitably be necessary to make some kind of point. "Mayhem = catharsis" is how I'd characterize this school of thought. One strikes fear in the opposition by seeming "out of control" -- I was thinking of Dick Nixon, who relished the "mad dog" aspect (mask) when dealing with his imagined foes.

Others spoke to the "inward weapons" in play and how the stupid stuff might be less necessary. John Wish cited a Harvard study saying that violence levels were trending down. He also explained about the city tax structure when we got around to discussing the public restroom issue, which I raised.

Lew, a water and sanitation engineer, and a member of our Nicaragua Delegation, joined myself and a few others for some follow-up discussion in the Social Hall, where other Occupiers, some new to our group, were mingling as well.

When it came my turn to talk, I mostly regaled them with stories of Smedley Butler, the Fighting Quaker, and his outreach to the Hooverville in DC. "Moron MacArthur" stormed the place, ensuring FDR's victory in the polls. Could it happen again?

Would a commitment to public infrastructure, not only latrines, but warming spaces, be considered a "victory"? The commitment to regather next year, and perhaps many years thereafter, to showcase the new village-level democracies springing up around the world, out of refugee camps in many cases, prisons and military bases in others, seems to have plenty of inertia behind it.

OPDX itself has reached a point where a phased, planned shut down, with a plan to reboot next year, would be welcomed by several of the institutions involved, not least the social service agencies who treat drug addiction. They haven't shown up around the perimeter in their community service vehicles (for the most part), to do screening and intake, but they have infiltrated and well know what's going on, and aren't shy about informing.

Getting the public restrooms rebuilt, and made sturdier, for OPDX Twenty Twelve, would be part of this plan going forward. In terms of perimeter vehicles, we've mostly had voyeur TV vans serving the passivist spectator flag wavy NFL/NRA stations. The TV vans have not been exotic, just the usual networks we all recognize, except on rare occasions.

The elements for a phased shutdown are already in place, as a part of the built-in DNA. Humans have an inherent sense of community, an ability to internalize. OPDX is not a full protein, when it comes to Village life. There's no mortuary, no place to bury the dead, for example. In future versions of this microcosm, transplanted elsewhere, we'll have those features, much as the larger bases (and universities, like St. John's) have them today.

Many within OPDX are happy to work with the Portland Police on a drag net operation to purge the camp of meth dealers. The social service agencies have the same safety concerns as the public at large, which is the 99% after all.

But then will healthcare become more available, to these people in need?

The Americans may need to outsource such care-taking to subcultures with more compassion, such as doctors without borders and so on.

USAers aren't especially well known for being able to deal with their social ills; getting kids to sign up for a military adventure is one of their biggest social programs, when it comes to government handouts, and that's not necessarily a drug free career either (on the contrary). JFK (a commander in chief) was on lots of drugs.

The devil is in the details.

Big pharma, in making money (profits) the standard, is cheating (cutting corners), thereby cheapening the quality of its proposed solutions.

Lindsey Speaks
:: OPDX 2011 / GA Nov 6 ::

Friday, November 04, 2011

On the Beat

:: brooklyn basement ::

I was pleased to join Glenn around lunch time on his birthday, to chow down at Hopworks and then survey the Brooklyn Basement once again, a project he and Barry have been working on.

I zipped downtown on my bike last night, in case the new trainee showed up, and he did.

I had the classic experience of getting a stranger to tell me his pet paranoia, what we're supposed to expect at Occupy Portland. But later I grew suspicious (more paranoid) thinking this rant was too well rehearsed (what with that baby in his arms and everything), maybe an act?

What's Crazy Mary again? Or was this Monty Python in a parallel universe?

Anyway, he said the chemtrails were really a UN plot to replace the ozone which the 1% had destroyed (yet another coverup). That's the thumbnail version (I'm leaving out the Surgeon General part). When the misses showed up, he said she knew even more of the details, and oh, could I spare a trailer for when the meltdown comes (any day now).

That night, a trailer, SkyBlue, went missing. Or was it later? Sherlock Holmes is on the case.

So while Will took SkyBlue for a test drive behind his bike (he brought her back -- not a suspect; he was cooking today with the others), I yakked with David Koski on my cell about what appears to be a new discovery:
that the "two phi down" version of the rhombic triacontahedron of volume 7.5, which interweaves with the rhombic dodecahedron of volume 6, added to the octahedron-inscribed cuboctahedron of volume 2.5, gives that icosahedron (also inscribed in the volume 4 octahedron) used to introduce the S modules.
I was getting all this while roaming around Occupy Portland, and helping Will with the trailer hitch. Pretty good multi-tasking I thought. Then I biked home, filed my FNB memo, mentioning some that I'd met there (a light night; there's no organized serving from the FNB booth on Thursdays).

Carol is in Philly tonight. Good to hear from Uncle Bill. Looking ahead to Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Halloween 2011 (3 of 3)

Halloween 2011
:: halloween 2011 ::

A high point of Halloween the-day-itself was getting to tour the basement apartment Glenn and Barry have been working on for so many weeks. Barry is really good with dry wall and does measurements to 1/16th of an inch. There's no texturing to speak of, as there's nothing to cover up. This is craftsmanship beyond what you would get from most contractors, was Glenn's assessment, and as a craftsman himself, he's in a position to know.

Earlier, Glenn and I took Sarah-the-dog to Laurelhurst park. I forgot to take a baggie again, like that time walking with Officer Bader.

Fortunately, a McDonald's cup lay nearby, thoughtlessly dropped by a shopper-consumer (I don't call them "capitalists" usually). Sarah went again at the park, where a nice lady had bags to give out, and a male version of Sarah into sniff testing (that's dogs for ya).

The Laurelhurst Park lake has been remodeled to positive effect. You can see the bottom even. I wouldn't call it "stimulus money" as it's just a day in the life of a city that works, to do maintenance and upkeep.

Wow, some of the Halloween displays are really professional this year, like direct from Hollywood or something.

Sara (Cera) and Satya stopped by, enroute to practice, just as I was shutting off the porch light, now that we were drained of candy (Kit-Kats mostly). We had a dry not-windy night, couldn't ask for much better.

People had a good time. Satya likes the carving part, noted the 3rd eye in our latest work.

I did office work through some of the candy part, which isn't entirely asocial, as there's Skype and the cool people I'm on with for work. Tim Curry and Jim Carrey have more in common than I'd realized.

Sara had trailered my lentil dish to OPDX, our to-the-second intersection occurring in the middle of 28th, as the crew departed the community kitchen for the FNB booth in South Park (downtown ToonTown).

Tara and I consider Halloween probably our main holiday of the year. This was a good one. She got children, boys, bike rides, movies, pie, cooking, family time with me and grandma Carol (Bagdad celebration). Sara got to meet her for the first time, albeit in a hurried way in the night, bike lights flashing.

Synergeo has been a lot about lentils, and now this "dymaxion tesseract", which is really no more than another teaching toy. The Russian Dolls motif is becoming important, for David Koski too.

The meetup with Trevor the night before had been an eye-opener once again. Tom Ellard eh? The brilliant artist-musician. One the of links I shared on Skype was this hilarious one, which Tom might take down at any time, wherein two Protestants pray for the soul of this middle American. You can tell they're American by the shape of their heads.

Full sized video originally here was removed by user. This small embedded screen version is for reference purposes only, good luck finding it full size.  Fast forward to 3:48 for Funky Pervert:

:: reminds me of My Life in the Bush of Ghosts ::

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Looking Forward

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Poetic Comment

:: click for larger view ::

from the comments section of

Notes From the Occupation

48 hours inside Occupy Portland

· Articles · Cover Story · Notes From the Occupation
willamette week

Related comments:

@ Fun Center / OPDX
@ Ikea
@ Red Square
@ Fun Center

Monday, October 24, 2011

Another Brainstorm

October has been Brainstorm month at The Bagdad. Thanks to Wardwell for reminding me. I've enjoyed the three I attended, tonight's being the last.

The neuroscientist Larry Sherman and historical fiction author Jean Auel, wondered how the new magic of electronics might be rewiring our relationships.

The question was apropos, as I'd just gotten voicemail from Occupy Portland that a geodesic dome had appeared. I looked around through the Livestream channel later but couldn't spot it (not surprising).

I'd also texted one of the chiefs how Bill Nye the Science Guy was one of my heroes and then, a few slides later, there he was, projected large, next to a picture of Carl Sagan, and a musician who was not introduced. Larry had picked these guys as major influences.

Clearly, electronics were penetrating my theater experience in a big way. Plato's Cave is far from impermeable.

Mia Birk drew the most questions as she was the authority on re-engineering cities to make them bike friendly. She knew Portland really well and was happy to go street by street, neighborhood by neighborhood.

She understood a lot about ethnic boundaries, which are also namespace boundaries. Not everyone knows or cares what "bike lane" means, or all this other lingo (like "sustainable"), which cogniscenti treat as "the given" already. More physical separation between modes, between cars and bikes, is the harder step in a lot of cases.

Making car trips relatively more expensive: that won't be the cyclists doing that. We'll be those cyclists, running from higher pump prices.

I already hardly drive. Ward Cunningham made a lot of sense last week when he advised not choosing parameters you can't control, like "miles per gallon" (you get what you get). How about "fill-ups per month". What if you only fill up once every two months? That'd be different eh?

I actually had a question on this one: Trimet had been recently unveiling its new open source multi-modal trip planner and weren't trip planners a big part of making a city give up its secrets, in terms of showing off its routes? Kind of a nerf ball question I suppose.

Mia agreed, and somewhat made fun of how all these major players were heading off in various directions rather than sharing data and techniques.

Solving the problem might actually be more satisfying than showing the competition how incompetent it was. Always trying to beat an enemy is probably what CroMagnon excelled at, and why there're not Neanderthals left to tell the tale -- unless they linger genetically (memetically too? -- did they have music? play the flute? a hot topic).

Like Mia, the neuroscientist and author were clearly brilliant, each pulling miraculous performances out of a hat, routinely. They seemed like insanely great stage magicians in that way, though I'm not intimately familiar with the work of either.

Fixing degenerative nerve tissue disorders seems like a really valuable goal, yet this guy spends a lot of time not in the lab but out begging for funding, knowing his schools are pretty low on the totem pole in some namespaces.

Those seeking the next breakthroughs need to get in line behind those just wanting to break things or keep things broken eh?

I bought Mia's book, signed both by herself and co-author "Metal Cowboy".

Saturday, October 22, 2011

A Domestic Future

Public Chessboard

Not lost on many people is the homey domey flavor of Rainbow Gathering tech, with lots of web-like fiber stretched overhead to provide a kind of utility network. One could imagine optical fiber stretching to the Camp X theater (unit J, 34" LCD dome), where we're showing some serious movies (a kind of officers' club).

The bases I've studied have had their R&R side, especially the one near Baguio which I understand is closed. Jim Flory would've been born nearby, in some prison camp, son of missionary parents. We were a technology family in the Philippines, exporting urban and regional planning from some of the best schools, plus with service in Portland on the resume, manifestly one of the better planned towns, Tripoli too.

The OPDX campus may have hit a glass ceiling in terms of what the PNW has to provide. No dialysis unit in the Medic Tent for example. These people are in pretty good physical shape on average. The refugee camps we're looking at have more heavy duty requirements, but that's precisely why implementing rotation, starting with media personnel doing coverage, makes some sense. Maybe Lara Logan will come down, and treat this as an occupation by some aliens (the thinking seems "not from around here" some days -- maybe that's the Python).

Patrick and I were brainstorming at Angelo's, and realized having interviewers encounter more embedded professors and retired military brass might be a good thing. CDI should have a tent, and project Dr. Strangelove. Given my footprint in FNB, I've already leveraged an AFSC presence.

We should get Glenn Baker out here on a documentary, get some overview on Occupations more generally (including the one in Iraq, supposedly ending if not turning more Rainbow).

I'm sure we have vets in some tents already, judging from the signs. Smedley Butler would likely join us (I say "us" without needing to bunk there -- I've got my delegates getting fed, and so stick to my beat, including Colonel Summers park when I'm able).

Back Office Park
:: at work, oct 21, colonel summers park ::

We had this classic scene at Angelo's, where like this guy and his more restrained buddy accosted me, loudly but not in too ugly a manner, over something to do with drink (a topic in bars). Was this the beginning of some altercation? He had a Food Not Bombs T-shirt on. I had the FNB trailer right outside, as my next stop was the OPDX campus (its new home). What a coincidence. He was proud of that heritage, a kind of Hell's Angels for him maybe? We parted friends.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Toward a History of Domes

You'd think Global U doctoral candidates would be fanning out across the land to chronicle the early history of geodesic dome building, as this was the architectural breakthrough for which the 1900s will be remembered in large degree.

A lot of the early pioneers are still alive and willing to talk.

Dick Lehr was only just caught on tape before he died. Other key players, such as with Synergetics Inc., TC Howard chief among them, may not have been taped yet, I don't know.

David Koski and I have been looking into it. Duncan Stuart is another one. Don Richter of course. Jim Fitzgibbon, Jonathan Smith, Jeremy Martin... Thanks to John Braley for some of this scholarship. Edward Popko has been providing some puzzle pieces as well.

However, in so many ways the Global U is broken and we get to live with the symptoms of that.

Getting a working curriculum is a top priority and philanthropy will have a lot to do with revivifying various moribund circuits, many of them "between the ears" in popular consciousness.

Or call it "connecting the dots".

Monday, October 17, 2011

Workaday World

Long time readers know I champion GST, pulled down from its dusty shelf, a little used abbreviation ("general systems theory"), as competition for Econ.

Econ deserves competition, by its own reasoning, yet college catalogs don't make room for such a discipline. They used to be smarter in colleges, at least relatively. Why those high tuitions again? A question for your Philosophy departments (ethics included).

Anyway, GST is heisting this word "work" (also used by Economists) to bring it closer to the Physics department meaning of "expending energy", or just "energy" (some work is potential, held back by a dam). There's no such thing as "not working", even in sleep.

"Unemployment" is with reference to an entirely different "cult concept": that of "the job". A "job" sounds like something out of the Bible (Book of Job). All the connotations of slavery, of servitude, of travail, get vested in "job". And yet we want them, desperately. This looks like a job for the Psych department. Calling Erich Fromm.

At least everyone is working though (so relax), employed in a job or not. Non-humans are working too, sometimes very hard (lots of power out, takes nutrients). Work is not about money necessarily, although it may well be about making long term investments. "Wealth is livingry" said Fuller, using a word his "peers" (snicker) refused to adopt, in contrast to "killingry" (their nest egg in many cases -- "peers" who think of "Barfie Doll" [tm] Richard Perle as a role model).

Hey, is it true Mercy Corps is sending recruiters around PDV? Anthropologists maybe. Or was it Medical Teams International? There's already overlap in staffing I'd think, twixt some of these old time volunteers and the Portland-based disaster relief industry (bigger here than Seattle's).

If I were head of UNESCO or UNHCR, I'd be studying Occupation logistics with an eye towards cross-fertilization. These are peacekeeper occupations, unlike #OccupyAfghanistan or #OccupyIraq, more Business Plot endeavors (the business-run Occupations get to use violence as much as they like, is one of the differences, even in contravention of international law).

The vets in #OccupyPortland have a lot of influence on others of recruiting age. Getting to camp out, learn skills, get trained, manage infrastructure, supply food, sanitation, telecomm, education services, fly around the world doing good: would you rather do this in the spirit of #OccupyPortland or #OccupyIraq?

I can see where lots of troops would be willing to jump ship, maybe bringing the Navy with them, as one of the more honorable services. The mercenaries might get left behind. #Glitterbomb Blackwater (yeah, I know, a new LLC these days, shares sold by wimpy Wall Street no doubt).

I couldn't find Time or Newsweek at Freddie's either.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Thoughts of Dad

This is the anniversary of my parents' terrible car accident on the highway from Maseru to Bloemfontein, in the Orange Free State, in the year 2000.

Jack was a fantastic dad, showed me the world, and a way of living in it. I'm not a clone or even a close copy, but some of the character traits I like best about myself I attribute to his example and parenting. Our whole family was impressed with this man, and were very sorry to lose him so suddenly that day.

We are grateful mom survived the accident and thrived in future chapters.

We thank the rescue medics and health care providers of Bloemfontein for their professionalism.

The engineering community building the dam in Maseru, the diplomatic community, Quakers, friends of the family, all provided support as Julie and I helped with Carol's recovery.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Intuition and Science


The blend of an OMSI Science Pub at the Bagdad with an ISEPP lecture by Dr. Lisa Randall at the Schnitzer was quite "kick ass" I must say.

The three at OMSI were / are Oregon-based innovators: an ocean wave energy specialist, a graphic artist and war zone journalist, and an intuitive genius cook. Dr. Randall is a particle physicist teaching at Harvard.

Their stories were each fascinating (marquee below) and gave a sense of how following one's passion can be soooo the right thing to do (not talking about "crimes of").

This OMSI Pub was a co-production with Portland Monthly magazine, which provided the interviewer (a pretty good one). And of course McMenamins is involved.

Dr. Randall of Harvard was likewise spectacular. She was calm and respectful, yet happy to live up to her role of "smartest person in the room".

At the dinner after, I had two questions, a more popular one and a more philosophical one. I ran them by Tara and we agreed they were both interesting.

I led with the crowd pleaser: so what would really happen were an individual to walk through the 27 kilometer tunnel during a time of peak energy operation? What would be the biological phenomena we might expect? To Lisa's credit, she forthrightly admitted to holes in her knowledge, with zero defensiveness, and was immediately inquisitive herself. Here was a mind cut out for science: pure curiosity and a willingness to continually confront one's own ignorance, as an opportunity. Certainly her chosen field, high energy particle physics, is fraught with uncertainty and speculation, and also suspense, as the new machine (LHC) is more precise and more powerful than ever before.

My other question would have been a run through of my "particle physics as grammar" analogy, the one I ran by Dr. Robert Laughlin, just to get her comments. She'd been talking about this question of Agency, whether something external could perturb events without itself being a subject of scientific scrutiny (God would have to get in line under the microscope, just like everyone else). However, I'm more thinking of "agency within" with a more Ouija Board like synergy. No one feels in control because no one is: everybody is.

I didn't get to ask it though. Dr. Randall was timing her Q&A for the intervals between courses, so she could get some rest right after dinner, not stay late. When she got up a second time and saw my hand go up again, she said "you already asked one; who else has a question who hasn't asked one before." That was fair (I was more just being an ice breaker if needed) and I stopped putting up my hand after that, concentrating on the excellent wine and her witty responses to others' probing queries.

Back to OMSI Science Pub: it was great to meet Nirel's friend Patrick, who had been trying to deliver something to the Occupy Portland crowd when he was waylayed by some species of bigot-thug. He got into a fight, had this shiner. Dondi and Don were also present (we're all Wanderers).

I again saw Nate the videographer at the ISEPP lecture (we seem to be following one another around), Trish the teacher and gardener, Jessica (with her boy), Flextegrity Sam, Rick the engineer, Jon the musician, Jim the eclipse chaser, Lynne the artist, math guy Steve, Glenn with beads, David the applied mathematician, Joe the psychiatrist, Pat the realtor and Rhonda with Airstream and many others (this was the first of the 2011-2012 Pauling Memorial Lectures, so a kind of reunion in some ways).

Tara did a good job at the special table inside the Schnitzer, for people who had filled out the Portland Energy Strategies survey questionnaire, for a promise of free tickets. ISEPP made good on that promise, with Tara exchanging printed vouchers for tickets. Dr. Randall sat behind us (this was before showtime) being pleasant with people and signing copies of her new book.

Teacher / engineer: Annette von Jouanne – Electrical Engineer and Professor at Oregon State University, Pioneer in wave energy technology

Journalist / artist: Joe Sacco – Journalist & Cartoonist, Author of Palestine, Safe Area Gorazde, and Footnotes in Gaza

Restaurateur / cook: Naomi Pomeroy – Owner of Beast, Award-wining chef

Saturday, October 08, 2011

At WhereCampPDX

WhereCampPDX 2011
:: wherecamppdx ::

This geography focused unconference has been made all the more real by the fact that Metro is missing a valued coworker, Mark Bosworth. He went missing in Riddle, Oregon when volunteering for Cycle Oregon. He's a cancer survivor, about my age (a gray). Lance Armstrong is paying attention, per Twitter.

Given a building full of geographers, mapmakers and so on, you would expect them to be thinking of how to support search and rescue, or finding missing persons. How could our tools play a stronger role?

Zooming back, making the story become more generic, it's not always a given that someone missing wants to be found. Finding people is a chief function of police, and paranoia runs high around tools for "keeping track".

The Wall Street Journal was recently talking up the FBI's ability to track cell phones, whether in use or not. TV is packed with fictionalized superpowers that only adds to people's confusion about what's real (quite deliberately in some cases -- it's a lot less expensive to have people believe they're being spied on than to actually do the work, which may be impractical in many cases).

In the case of missing persons, with worried / anxious friends and family in the background, there's a lot of pressure to make "finding" easier, but that pushes against other scenarios wherein people are evading detection for one reason or another. Perhaps they're being stalked, spied on, followed in some way?

Privacy, in the sense of going off the grid, being hard if not impossible to find, is a valued freedom many strive to defend. The antithesis of a free country is one wherein you cannot hide, are under continuous surveillance. On the other hand, some people relish a voyeur's access, why they called it Keyhole (KH) originally.

I mostly didn't say much in the session on this topic, until the end, when I pointed to my cuffka and suggested these could be pre-equipped with sensors and handed out to volunteers during those kinds of search and rescue operations when you want to leave a clear trace of who went where.

A core frustration here at Metro is not having any place to aggregate data about all the searches that have happened to date. Handing out devices, and collecting them later for downloading data and recharging small batteries, would take the emphasis off of personal phones.

Cuffkas might also be worn by hikers, other people wanting their positions to show up on an LCD somewhere.

Igal gave a great talk on virtual realities and their associated geographies, pulling from a wide range of anime, manga and computer games. Some were light hearted and fun, like the replica of Venice on Mars, with girl gondola guides. Others were dark and twisted (more gothic and/or demented), with themes of madness and the more surreal side of life (some'd say "bizarre", others "weird").

The audience, for the most part highly media savvy, was quite responsive to this talk and quick to throw out other examples of virtual worlds (Narnia for example). "All realities are virtual" used to be my sig, back when I was posting from pdx4d@teleport.com.

One of the realities was based on an old German town, down to rather small details. Another reality involved French fighter jets. This was geography gone wild (geography on steroids).

During one of the breaks, I showed Igal the faux socialist realist memes I've been weaving into my Pythonic Andragogy, complete with Tractor Art. Given he reads Cyrillic, we slowed down and zoomed in on some of my slides. I gave him the whole presentation in under three minutes, including the Cult of Athena slide at the end.

Good practice for my next lightning talk opportunity.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

At Ikea

A lot of ruckus was raised today, at Occupy Portland. Per my earlier chat with Melody, I'd be spending the evening in a slightly ironic setting: out by PDX (the airport), shopping with my daughter at Ikea.

The experience is apropos however, as I was discussing with Tara over coffee and other sundries: is it Swedish efficiency and smooth civilian operations that we're fighting, or just corrupt, overly weaponized, lazy / cowardly capitalism, as practiced by the wimps on Wall Street? A rhetorical question, obviously, as I'm defending Ikea to some degree, also Costco.

What's obscene about the business practices that run rampant in the US, a weakly governed territory held together with a rather weak glue, is the ugly lifestyles it engenders, the ostentatiousness that's synonymous with poor taste and a lack of standards.

The squandering of fuel oil in pursuit of pseudo-dreams and fantasies, as nurtured by screenwriters for TV, is especially symptomatic. The people have been reduced to wretchedness, in logistical support of such ugliness, and they're tired of it.

If the global idiocracy can think of nothing better to do than engage in war for sport and profit, then sure, the job is to topple such a fragile house of cards. That'd be the patriotic, not to mention intelligent thing to do.

Not that the October Occupation is over at the time of this writing. When I left, FNB was taking up a position to offer sustenance and morale, even as riot cops were amassing in the side streets.

There's always a chance the cops might spaz out and start firing tear gas etc., even though Portlanders are generally pretty good at handling themselves these days and the organizers are fierce about keeping this a sober if festive event with a minimal footprint in terms of damage to infrastructure. No pooping elephants or horses. The Rose Festival (which permits sidewalk camping) makes a bigger mess, with its Fun Center.

I'll check in with them later, after closing time.

Pee Wee's at Ikea

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

At Red Square

Correct Russian

I wiped out on the bike again last night, coming down the driveway too fast and putting all my weight on the front fork, leaning forward, accelerating (slowing down real quick). First Person Physics.

I suspect a feedback loop at work (a vicious circle) wherein the bending wheel caused the brakes to further seize, resulting in more forceful velocity change than ever.

The event was highly reminiscent of the "parking episode", wherein my front wheel dipped into the sidewalk tree's square of dirt right as I was braking. I turned that wheel into a tortured ovoid. Last night, I repeated the feat.

Safe to say, given the higher inertias, I went over the handle bars and landed on my back, first time out in my new paramilitary black field jacket from Andy & Bax (matches the black helmet). Officer Urner strikes [the pavement] again.

Two weeks ago, it was train tracks.

The bike shop on Belmont knows me by name. Red Square, a coffee shop, is across the street. I'm wearing my "Kremlin Kuffka" (with Nirel Foundation branding), a kind of homage to Shepard Fairey. This morning, I registered for the WhereCampPDX @ Metro.

Embossed Cuffka

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

An Asynchronous Summit

These postings to the Wittgenstein forum have many points of interest in this Halloween season. [1][2]

Likewise this thread at the Math Forum.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Equinox Retreat

Alpha Helix

I've been dovetailing worlds today, the opposite of worlds in collision. Smoothly meshing gears.

I finally joined the #pdxpython channel on Freenode, long overdue. I'm using Chatzilla.

I introduced myself (to people who know me from PPUG already) and my agenda: to get back into the IRC groove in anticipation of #pdxfnb drawing some traffic.

Maria Droujkova of Math Future popped up on Gchat and kindly checked my "business cards" for spelling (she found a problem with the punctuation).

Then, at the cook site, St. David of Wales, I took some of the fresh vegan soup and added it to containers for bringing to the Linus Pauling House by bike trailer.

FNB meets Pauling House.

Food Not Bombs

Friday, September 09, 2011

Chapter Change

Labyrinth / Belmont

I explained to Satya this morning that I thought Lindsey really did her homework getting to know Friends, myself included, and that proved a strong basis for anchoring Thursday's kitchen for a year's worth of fresh vegan Food Not Bombs meals.

I'm not ready to promote anyone else to her position, as trusted key holder, from within the ranks at this time. Now that Organics to You has moved to N. Williams, we thought this would be the right time to drop our weekly gig.

We both remain interested in the logistics of increasing participation in these kinds of intelligent operations. Neither of us plans to come off as over-zealous however. As a street musician these days, she's in no position to preach. I'm more a back office boob myself, am no Alex Jones with a bullhorn.

This disconnecting of our Multnomah Friends kitchen doesn't mean OTY can't continue to help feeding the hungry in southeast, as both OTY and the northeast chapter have made abundantly clear. Indeed, several of our regulars hail from northerly zip codes and could replace Lindsey as haulers (she was thinking of Jay in particular).

She enjoys hauling herself, leaving the meetinghouse today with an humongous train of trailers, after visiting OTY and bidding them adieu for the time being.

In this next chapter, we may find ourselves performing new roles.

Even the meetinghouse, a kind of learning center, will remain on-line in some ways. We continue with our various social concerns and campaigns (testimonies).

#pdxfnb on freenode

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Friendly Discussion

I joined Multnomah Adults' Discussion (SMAD) for an engaging reading this morning. Gary has scraped some ostensibly "satanic" stuff off the Internet, about six pages, which we passed around, taking turns reading.

In this version, the angelic host is merely exercising the privileges of selfhood against a jealous Demiurge that would keep them servile. Some of their number get involved in human relationships, starting with Eve. They basically encourage the study of STEM subjects against the know-nothing boot lickers who wait upon the Demiurge, a jealous jerk.

We had some insightful discussion, treating our text as science fiction. Indeed, Gary said much of it had been written as recently as 1991. One of our discussants and been raised in a Satanic cult. She advised us that the taxonomy among Satanists was ramified (not unlike among Xtians) and this text we were reading had little if anything in common with the protocols she'd been reared on.

I spoke with John Wish afterward who extolled Gary for his intelligence, and quality walking sticks (Gary has a Lord of the Rings air about him, would probably thrive in New Zealand).

Meeting for Worship was a lot about community. Our delegation from Jubilee House had returned. I used some of the time to study a book entitled Puritan Boston and Quaker Philadelphia by Edward Baltzell. He was writing in the turbulent 1960s, comparing it to the 1600s in some dimensions. Quakers as proto-hippies?

Eve Menger was present today. We know each other from Wanderers as well, lots of history. I mentioned having just come across her father's story again, in "some esoteric philosophy I've been reading". I was talking about this book Alex found at Powell's and is letting me read: Wittgenstein: From Mysticism to Ordinary Language by Russell Nieli.

These latest two SUNY Press books have felt more alive and contemporary to Alex and myself, we think because Wittgenstein is finally getting more recognition as a shaman (to sound ethnographic about it). Kimberly, in The Jew of Linz called him a magician. Of course these are not academic categories and such terms are easily confused with metaphysician. Perhaps "alchemist" is better.

In any case, the many references to George Fox and Quakers, by Nieli, a Princeton quasi-contemporary (we had some of the same teachers) is helping me shrink my world. That may sound like a bad thing ("shrink") but in the vernacular I'm using, it's more like "more with less".

Friday, September 02, 2011

Message Traffic (rad math)

From:Kirby Urner
Date:Fri, Sep 2, 2011 at 2:21 PM
Subject:Re: SE chapter: starting Thurs Sept 1 prep

Our new cook, just finding work, was glad to get Corrina's bike,
pulled Satya's trailer to the park.


( bike in basement, plus lock, with David's replacement knives --
unopened boxes)

He was eager for updates on our SE comic strip (silly sit com, PG-13)
as he'd been away for days.

Lindsey announced her no-gossip-about-others policy while proceeding
to gossip about herself at great liberty.

I was glad Satya came by and reminded me about adding vinegar and/or
lemon to lentils.

We must have had over 200 red peppers to play with. Expect to see
some today (they're in prime condition -- thanks OTY).

I have this dynamite recipe I'm hoping to use for FnB one day, but
don't mind sharing ahead of time:


The molasses would be too sweet for some of our associates, and the
onion verboten.

However it does have sour ingredients. Thumbs up. Not my invention
(not taking credit).

I might just make it a side dish instead of an entre.

We were semi-silently marking one year of service where Multnomah
Friends are concerned.
I saw David's new flyer, verbose / micro-print, took it off to my
perch (where I sometimes go when on duty).

Again, we all have active imaginations so if you have a different idea
of PR, shake your booty.

I've got my daughter Tara, recently returned from Managua, advising me
on aesthetic possibilities (and/or traps to avoid).

- Hide quoted text -

On Thu, Sep 1, 2011 at 3:16 PM, kirby urner wrote:
> Opening 3:30 today. Heading over...
> See ya'll.
> http://worldgame.blogspot.com/2011/09/quaker-doings.html
> Kirby

Sunday, August 21, 2011


I was yakking with Steve at Horse Brass about how Quakers (Friends) have traditionally gotten along with military personnel.

The rank and file wanted to draft George Fox as a commanding officer of some kind, or at least that's the rumor (scholars welcome to chime in -- on Facebook maybe?). Annis Bleeke (FWCC General Secretary, Ret.) confirmed the elements of this story during social hour just today (I was showing off my new bike helmet, looks kind of German or Darth Vadery).

In my own case, this heritage has translated into wardrobe concerns. I've been eyeing abandoned US military bases and military surplus stores, as campus and prop inventory respectively, when writing my "girl scout math" curriculum (some boyz allowed), a kind of interactive theater.

We just visited Portland's top military surplus store yesterday, to stock up. One of our household is heading out of the country (no, not for Pycon / Cuba). She's in Houston right now.

Steve suggested "extra-military" rather than "para-military" would be more the label I'd wish for -- less controversial. I'm easy with either, as a Friend.

Brand names such as Fox and Coyote have already been deployed.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Doing Hard

"Doing hard" is in contrast to "doing easy", taking me back to that funny movie from Laughing Horse Books and Video, based on a short story by William Burroughs.

I've asked David to come sit next to me in my office so we could surf the net and shop for the knives and case I managed to lose for him off the back of my bicycle. I want him to come out ahead.

We had way too much food, got started late, were lugging a piano (toy Casio), didn't get much help. Thanks to Betsey Kenworthy for taking the compost. She was there for the Nicaragua delegation meeting.

Here's what I posted to the Riseup pdxfnb list:

Alas, one of my worst FnB days ever.

I found David's chef knives (velcro roll) left behind at the
meetinghouse and stupidly put them on my bike rack, not well secured.

They didn't make it to the park.

I am committed to replacing every last one of them.

If anyone sees a nifty knife set appearing on Craig's List -- I'll buy
it back, oyster knives and all, no questions asked.

Dropped somewhere between 43rd and Stark and SE Taylor and 34th....

Also, I think starting our OTY pickup at 3 pm, when food prep starts
at 3:30 is just nuts.

We used to do our pickup at like 11:30 am.

Toting a battery powered piano slows things down, need extra time for that too.

Glad Elise came buy to give me a hug. Tre was kind to me at the park.

David is taking it well too, though clearly upset and disappointed.
I'm really sorry guy.