This ‘n That

This ‘n That  will be a regular feature of this blog-just updates on previously mentioned topics or stuff I think you might like to know about:

  • Well, you may not give a damn, but I just wanted to show off  our very first ripe Stupice tomato of the 2012 growing season: Michael and I shared it on our lunch sandwiches today. And so the cycle continues…

Small is Beautiful

  • C.O.O.P. continues it’s efforts to convince our city council to allow its’ citizens to have a small flock of backyard hens. Last night’s council meeting simply exasperated us. They voted to ‘defer’ voting on the proposed zoning hearing until they understand it better. Here it is councilmen: Keep it simple. Allow JC residents to have 6 freakin’ hens. No roosters. No running at large. We don’t need to change every zoning code in the city. Just change the wording of the CITY CODE. If you’re one of the many that would like to have a small flock of your own, if you see this as a right as valid as having dogs, please support our efforts by planning now to attend the next meeting. I’ll try to let you know with a minimum of 48 hours advance notice, but they’re always on the second and fourth Thursdays of each month. I KNOW you’re busy, so am I. But having chickens in my backyard, providing my gardens with compost and my table with eggs, is a big step in being more food self sufficient and in helping my family be more resilient in the face of looming adversity. I KNOW too, that when I write things like that last sentence it sounds like Chicken Little’s cry of “the sky is falling! the sky is falling!” Well, the term “the sky’s the limit” is sooo 1950’s. Maybe the sky IS falling! (More on “Peak Everything” soon in this blogspace)

  • More Johnson City news: At the same council meeting last night, they approved money to be spent to study the feasibility of constructing a permanent farmer’s market site: http://www.johnsoncitypress.com/News/article.php?id=100366  (But can’t we have chickens and fresh eggs to go along with all those locally grown fruits and veggies?)
  • My beehives are thriving. Even the one that swarmed last month! The queenless hive immediately raised another queen, and they are busy, well, as bees! filling their honey supers. I’ve found the hard way, that the less I mess with them the better off they are. They surely know more than I do about what’s best for them. Now, if we can just get Bayer to withdraw their agricultural chemical, imidacloprid. Read the latest study here about the newly discovered cause of Colony Collapse Disorder: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120405224653.htm   I’m moved enough to find an alternative to Bayer when I get a headache, and I’m going to write the company a letter. Not a love letter either…
  • The Carver Peace Garden has all the available plots spoken for PLUS an extra one that was tilled up to accommodate a nearby family that heard about us at the last minute! I’ve been recently contacted by two different local TV stations that want to do stories on Community Gardens in the TriCities area. I’ll let you know when it will air. Also, word has it that the Tree Streets Community Garden still has a few plots left and you don’t have to be a resident of that area to be part of the fun! Contact Lyn Govette if you’re interested at: lgovette@charter.net The good news about this year’s gardeners is that we are such a diverse bunch. Not so much plain white bread 🙂
  • I’m still trying to practice ‘bread labor’ (see post from April 14th). I get a lot accomplished when I don’t let distractions divert my attention-a lifelong problem for me. There have actually been a couple of days recently that I didn’t feel that I had to devote even that four hours to bread labor because I was caught up enough with that damn to do list to go to the zoo and music festivals, read more and even take a coupla naps. That’s about to change soon though, I’m afraid. More on that later too!
  • After reading my post about ‘Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes’, I have several people helping me fold origami paper cranes to be sent to the Japanese memorial in August. Care to fold a few with us? I’ll teach you-in about 5 minutes.  Let’s have a party! I need 1,000!

This I believe: Small changes in daily life add up to something important and there are thousands of small things we can all do. Are you doing something, no matter how small you think it is, to help society transition to a lower-energy, more localized world? One that runs on trust, cooperation and human power rather than oil? If so, I’d love to hear about it. Post your comments below.


2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Hey Sam, I love your blog! It’s always great to know other like-minded folks live in this area. I’ve recently implemented efforts into my daily life to consciously reduce my environmental impact. First, I quit smoking– cold turkey (ahh!). Second, no soda– so I’ve reduced my waste dramatically (no more big plastic 2 liter bottles and soda cans). I’ve yet to turn on my AC, which I would have usually already have had it one for weeks, running constantly set at 69 or 68 degrees. I’ve decided when I do turn it on, I will stick between 73 to 75 degrees and turn it off when I leave. I’ve switched to an all organic diet, which I plan to rely mainly on the farmers market for food and to only buy from mainstream grocery stores when absolutely necessary.

These small changes are in no way a burden, which I assumed they would be.. But, surprisingly, I enjoy my life so much more without a lot of the things I was doing that harmed the environment and kept me isolated from my community. I feel like there’s a huge breakdown of community in our entire culture, so we no longer feel like we are held accountable to one another.. Which of course leads to all types of adversities for our society and environment. I want to foster and reestablish that rich sense of community just as much as I want to walk on the earth lightly.. In fact, the two go hand in hand.

Cheers, Sam!

Comment by jentherevolutionary

Hi Jen, I’m glad you’re enjoying the blog-it’s my way of trying to establish that ‘rich sense of community’ you speak of. I’m happy to see that you’ve quit smoking. I speak from experience when I say, it CAN be overcome! There’s a concept called The Green Triangle… which basically just says that if you imagine the 3 points of it to be “Environment” “Health” and “Money”, when you make a good choice for one, it invariably means you’re making a good choice for the other two points as well. Like your ditching soda: no waste, no waist, and more money in your pocket. Win win win! I know the AC is a toughie…especially if you live in an apartment. I’m fortunate to live in a well insulated house, so that really helps with keeping the AC off. Fans are my best friends in the summer. But your commitment to eat organically is HUGE! I admire your pluck Jen, and wish you the best with that. I don’t know if I could do that… I eat a lot of organic food, but certainly not exclusively. I try to concentrate on eliminating the dirty dozen at least-they’re the foods that have the highest pest residues on them:
Nectarines– imported
Grapes – imported
Red Pepper
Blueberries– domestic
Kale/collard greens

In good years I’m able to grow everything but nectarines and peaches and try to avoid or wash those really well. But MAN do I love summer peaches!!! Thank you for taking the time to let me know all that you’re doing to help the environment and your health. It is WONDERFUL to hear this! AND thanks for all your work with OCCUPY too!

Comment by simpleintn

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: