Saturday, October 30, 2004

A Little Overshoot

Sometimes I go too far. But how can you know that you are at "just right" unless you try "too far" and "not far enough." Sometimes mistakes are just what was required. Sometimes being wrong is all right. I'm not trying for perfection, I'm just playing it by ear.

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Where'd you go?

I can't make you see what you're already looking at. I can't make you hear what you listen to each day. I can't make you feel what you are already experiencing. Only you can move your frame. The images are talking to you. The music is saying something. Everything is speaking to you in your bones. Nothing new here. Just playing peek-a-boo with reality.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Earn some Respect

The things that you own end up owning you.
You are what you love.
I hope that you’re at least honest with yourself.

If that is the respect you show your girlfriend why should I expect any different?
If that is the respect you show your body why should you expect any different?
Have you learned anything that had the effect of changing who you were?

If only we cared about life on this planet one tenth as much as you care for your insert brand here.
Are you aware that you are regurgitating someone else’s thoughts.
Don’t try to impress me with anything other than your own fidelity.

There will always be someone down the street with a little more than you.
You are never going to find satisfaction on the outside.
Earn some respect.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Delicious Strawberries

I had a discussion with a friend/co-worker today regarding being at peace with how things are. I said that things are as they are meant to be. He wanted to know what I meant by meant. He brought up the old argument of free-will vs. determinism and really demanded that I tell him what I was saying. I got confused and befuddled. I didn’t understand why at the time. In talking with him I had lost my connection to that thing that I was trying to express; that internal conception that can never be perfectly verbalized. I felt defensive. I allowed myself to be limited by the framework offered by my friend. When asked if I meant A or B I forgot about none of the above and all of the above. I wanted to have the answer and be able to explain it. I wanted to understand what I meant. I got lost in thought whereas knowing that things are as they should be, as they must be, as they are, is not a thought. I forget how much easier it is to speak and act from the heart.

Monday, October 18, 2004

Stale Thoughts

A while back I talked about the idea of building something beautiful, that that was the only worthwhile thing one could do in life. The fact is, that is life. If it looks ugly you probably aren’t looking at the right scale.

I did a report on image processing on one of my coop placements in Uni. I came across the idea of wavelet compression techniques that took advantage of self similarity across different perspectives of scale. I wonder how that’s going.

So I’m constantly thinking about what to do with myself. I tell people that I am looking to find something meaningful to dedicate myself to. The truth is, I already have. I am building something beautiful. It’s just not quite as tangible as one might want. This isn’t psychobabble, this isn’t philosophy, this isn’t spiritual mumbo-jumbo, this is pure unadulterated truth; constant dedication to personal growth is beauty. All things beautiful are derivative of this.

In theory it’s pretty easy; just pay attention.

I remember this lyric from a mushroom jazz CD I listen to every now and again that goes “Everything you use must be fresh.” There are more things in life that go stale than just bread. Have you?

Sunday, October 17, 2004

Tuesday, October 12, 2004


It takes all kinds, all but the kinds that wish to eliminate all others. People, ideas, thoughts, cultures, political systems, points of view, species, ecosystems. Universally applicable. I think this may be one of the roots of the problem. If one should come to prominence let it be through merit than by ability to subdue and destroy.

Monday, October 11, 2004

Matters of Culture

Are you aware of our culture? Do you believe that if everyone just did things the way we do that the world would be better off? One culture. A culture of progress? A culture of technology. A culture of ownership. A culture of cut throat competition. A culture of appearances. A culture of manipulation. A culture of lies. A culture of control. A culture of hypocrisy. A culture of disordered priorities. A culture of us and them. A culture of conformity. A culture of disrespect. A culture disconnected from the natural world. The real world. One big stinking culture.

If you took a pill that made you sick would you ever think that maybe if you took two of them things might get better?

Do you always believe what you are told? Who do you trust and why do you trust them?

Do you know what it means to think for yourself? Have you ever had an original thought?

Have you ever been wrong? Very wrong? Completely wrong? Would you admit it if you had? Would you admit it to yourself even?

Do you feel that you need to justify your existence? How do you justify your existence?

Nothing much matters but everything.

Friday, October 08, 2004

Why Organic?

This is not a simple question to answer, not because it is difficult to come up with good reasons but mostly because it is difficult to express them all at the same time. Perhaps an explanation of what I believe the word organic signifies will be the best way to express its value.

Organic is not a process, it is not a particular way of doing things, it is not a set of standards to be followed, it is a holistic philosophy of food production and distribution.

The common way of doing things these days focuses on a limited and often backwards sense of value. Appearance, shelf life, global uniformity, monetary cost, and productivity factors are valued above nutritional value, health risks, and environmental and social impact. This backwards mentality produces farms with animals living lives any reasonable human would call inhumane in the name of cutting costs, plants that have been selectively bred or genetically engineered to produce more edible product per plant yet that are incapable of living or reproducing themselves without human intervention, plants that grow prettier fruit with fewer vitamins, chickens grown for meat that are physically incapable of supporting their own weight after a certain age, chemical fertilizers and pesticides that destroy the delicate balance of life in and above the soil, pollute the local water tables, runoff into nearby rivers and lakes, and make their way into the food we eat. This mentality treats animals, plants, and the soil itself as exploitable resources to be consumed without end. The results of this mentality are soil erosion, species extinction of both plant and animal life, the destruction of local economies and ways of life. These things cannot be replaced. Soil is built up inch by inch over thousands of years. Species and cultures once destroyed are gone forever.

Organic is trying to operate using true value, to work with nature rather than against her, to look at a bigger picture of sustainability rather than a narrow one of profit. Diversity is and has been the key to survival of life on this planet since the beginning of time. An intimate connection with the land has been the key to successful sustainable agriculture in the past.

Large global corporations are working against diversity and are attempting to sever the connection between consumption and production of food. They manipulate the media, government, and education in an attempt to control public policy and influence public opinion. They do not give this world what it needs but prefer to try to brainwash the world into believing that it needs what they have to give it.

The only way to fight against this is to become informed. Question everything you read, get both sides of a story, form your own conclusions and think for yourself. This all requires a different mentality and can be quite hard. With organic becoming a marketing label rather than a philosophy it is even harder. You have to question everything, read labels, research companies, find local suppliers, and sometimes go without some of the things you are used to eating. It's not easy but it is certainly rewarding to exercise another form of democracy: choosing where to spend your money.

Monday, October 04, 2004


Do you always realize a major milestone of your life as is passes or does its significance require a certain amount of reflection after the fact to reveal its impact. Isn't all understanding of your life actually after the fact? I often find myself crippled by the desire to know in the now to the detriment of being in the now. Like an experimenter who is distracted trying to make sense of the data he has while the experiment is still in progress. At least I'm still trying to gather new data I guess.

Living in a rural area and working outdoors has allowed me to start getting reconnected to some of the natural cycles of the universe. I watch the movement of the moon, planets, sun and stars in the sky rather than on the calendar. I feel the wind, pressure, temperature, and precipitation each day rather than hearing about them in the news. I smell the change of season. I taste the current harvest. I see and hear the migration of birds.

How difficult is it to pay attention to my own cycles? Of mood, digestion, hydration, hunger, temperature, heart rate, breathing, and sleep. To experience them. To know them not with a desire to control them but with a wish to know them for what they truly are. To know the universe and I are one and the same. The line I draw between them is arbitrary and self inflicted.

Don't believe me, just try to pay a little better attention. Stop pre-defining your experience of this world. Open. At least draw the line in pencil.