Friday, June 27, 2008

Quilt Studio: Before

The second time I toured the house that would become our new home this was the state of the room formerly known as the disturbing doll making studio, presently known as the soon-to-be quilting studio a.k.a. Sarah's Laboratory (pronounced a la Bela Lugosi "lah-BOHR-oh-tohr-ee").
Presently it is more of a blank canvas, though it could be blanker. The sellers left the desk/counter thing and the shelves. I am ambivalent about the counter so it will probably stay put for the time being. Part of me thinks it will be convenient and part of me thinks it will be in the way. Most of the shelves will be going to Goodwill shortly so the wall opposite the door can be clear for my design wall.
The movers allegedly arrive Saturday, so shortly thereafter I hope to have the beginnings of an after picture for you. I'd appreciate any and all suggestions for how to organize my new space. And please post your comment with a vote for or against keeping the counter/desk thingy.

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Thursday, June 26, 2008

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

We Are Ready to Roll!

Color Theory: Q & A Part 6 - Primary Colors

This is a continuation of the Color Theory: Q & A generated by my first Color Theory post.
Q: What are the primary colors?
A: The term "primary colors" refers to the theoretical fundamental, basic, or "parent" hues, from which all colors can be created by mixing.

In elementary art class I was taught that red, blue, and yellow are the true primary colors. Then in physics and film studies I was taught that magenta, yellow, and cyan were the primary colors (Wikipedia covers color motion picture film better than I can handle without traumatic flashbacks). I am apparently, not the only one confused. Over the years, there have been several theories concerning the true primary hues. Some theories propose four primary colors; many have three. Harald Kueppers' color system has six primaries: red, blue, yellow, green, magenta, and cyan.

Discussions of the true primary hues can lead to confusion because the hues from which all colors can be created depend on the medium or the substance that is being mixed. The primary hues in mixing light (like in film and physics) differ from those of paints (like in art class); the primaries for mixing transparent paint and dyes (like the inks used in the Pantone system) differ from those of opaque or heavily applied paints (like those used in the Munsell system).

Traditional printing processes employ magenta, yellow, cyan, and black transparent inks to print full-color images. Magenta, yellow, and cyan thus earned then name "the process colors." Home color printers usually use the process colors plus black inks. To extend the gamut of colors contemporary printers often use the process colors, black, and red, blue, and green ink.

Mixing oil and acrylic paints requires two sets of red, blue, and yellow primaries: a "cool" set and a "warm" set. I don't really understand this and will supplement this answer once I get through the rest of the text in The New Munsell Student Color Set.

In Daren Pitts Redman's dyeing class we mixed dry red dye with dry blue dye to make our purple dye, red and yellow for orange, and blue and yellow for green. She mentioned that some fabric dyers don't like the results of their primary mixing, particularly in the green range. So they'll mix their own oranges and purples, but buy a commercially produced green, which probably uses a green pigment instead of mixing yellow pigment with blue pigment. Until recently, I thought the Fiber Reactive Procion Dyes dyes available from Dharma Trading Co. were pure single pigment, not mixtures of primaries. But if you read the Dharma Trading Co. catalog they warn that all the dyes labeled with a "T" contain #25 Turquoise, and therefore require the same special care required by #25 Turquoise. So some of the dyes you can purchase are not a single pigment, but a mix of pigments. Huh. I'm going to have to look into this dyeing stuff.

Back to the Color Theory Index.

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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Political Parties as Football Teams

It's been suggested that the capitulation of the Democrats in the surveillance bill I've been railing about is to keep the issue off the table for this election cycle. This prevents Republicans from being able to point at the Democrats "enabling the terrorists".

But either the political parties actually represent different principles and approaches to government, or they're effectively two different football teams. Taking issues "off the table" means refusing to assert principle, on the presumption that your football team is more popular as long as there are no meaningful differences between the teams.

One could argue that the Democrats (and the Republicans too, though they're going to be less important) are split into principled ideologues and ambitious pragmatists. (Obviously there's a spectrum, but I theorize a real schism is developing.)

_If_ Obama is generating excitement and support from an ideological base, then cynical moves like this one risk alienating those supporters. In a sense, the Dems might end up with too much electoral success -- if the GOP doesn't provide enough opposition to rally against, the ideologues will become frustrated with the pragmatists effectively becoming GOP proxies.

This is true whether Obama didn't stand up in a meaningful way against this bad law because he is more pragmatic and less principled than I thought, or if he's firmly ideological, but was compelled by the reality of working with the pragmatists in his party.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Color Theory: Q & A Part 5 - Color Wheel

This is a continuation of the Color Theory: Q & A generated by my first Color Theory post.
Q: Does Munsell's hue circle differ from the standard artist's color wheel we all grew up with?
A: Yes, because Albert Munsell chose ten basic hue families instead of the twelve often used on artist's color wheels.

A standard artist's color wheel, like the one shown in the first picture, has twelve colors around the outside. The twelve colors are the three primary colors, red, blue, and yellow (which colors are primary colors is a whole different question), the secondary colors created by mixing the primary colors, orange, green, and violet, and the tertiary colors created by mixing adjacent primary and secondary colors, red-orange, yellow-orange, yellow-green, blue-green, blue-violet, and red-violet.

Munsell based his color system on ten basic hue families, rather than twelve, so that the hues could be further separated into decimals. This system can thereby account for small variations in hue. Also, this allows the system to be extendable to accommodate newly discovered pigments. Each hue family is subdivided into ten more hue families, with the number 5 designating the central hue, or most "true" representation of that hue family, and the number 10 designating the hue family halfway between two adjacent "true" hues. So 5BG is "true" blue-green and 10BG is halfway between "true" blue-green and "true" blue. A hue might even have a designation of 7.3BG
This division into ten rather than twelve basic hue families has some repercussions. First, the ten basic hue families are different from the hues represented on the traditional artist's color wheel. There are five major hue families, red, yellow, green, blue, and purple, and five minor hue families, yellow-red (a.k.a. orange), green-yellow, blue-green, purple-blue, and red-purple. Additionally, Munsell's 5R is more blue than the red on most color wheels. Munsell's 5B is more green than the blue on most color wheels. Perhaps the most radical notion for people raised on the artist's color wheel is that on Munsell's hue circle, 5R is opposite 5BG, which sets different compliments than most color wheels, where red is opposite green.

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Not Good Enough

Obama is better than McCain, but we deserve better than this.

Basically all those links (you can just read the first one, for the executive summary) say two things: there's a horrible bill moving from House to Senate right now (hint: "retroactive immunity"), and Obama says he's ok with it.

Some days, the Democratic Party does not serve my interests, or even support the Constitution I care about. Do they really deserve my devotion, just because they serve my interests more often than the Republicans? I want a party that shares my principles all the time.

At the very least, I want a party that's willing to take a little negative press for being "vindictive" and summons forth the gumption to hold some lawbreaking bastards who have ruined our country accountable. It will not be set right if there are no consequences for putting it wrong. Whether it's big corporations buying their way out of responsibility or the Bush executive ignoring Congressional subpoenas, show me the politicians who won't give those guys a free ride.

Show me those politicians, because they've got my money and my vote. That's the party I want.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Next Food Network Star

So the episode today is annoying Rebecca and I -- so I've decided to share our pain.

First of all, the first challenge is ridiculous. They're simply judged on too many things: show off your expertise on a random technique that you may or may not know. In 1 minute. Engaging with the camera. And demonstrating your authority. Some of the contestants, understandably, didn't know the technique they were asked to demonstrate. So, what are they expected to do? Fake it, apparently. At which point, Tyler Florence tells them how unauthoritative they were.

The annoyances are vast. One subtext is that apparently Food Network Stars regularly are lying to me about how expert they are on the techniques they're faking for us. Another "meta-complaint" is that it seems foolish of the Food Network to bring in their current stars to criticize the contestants in ridiculous challenges. Most of the contestants I'm never going to see again; but next time I flip past Tyler, I'm going to think "oh, that @$$hole" and keep flippin'. (This goes for all the stars, not just Tyler -- I love Alton Brown, but significantly less so since he was the thug last season.)

Going back to the actual challenge, throwing random techniques at them is a mess. Knowing how to cut up a pineapple is not as obscure as cleaning a squid -- and, as Rebecca points out, broken-down squid is how you get it in the supermarket. Nipa was given the squid challenge -- and she's not a seafood cook at all. (Which made the later challenge tough, also.)

She's clearly trying to hit a big gap in the Food Network range -- Indian food. She's not alone in this -- clearly all the contestants are told to define themselves and their potential shows (and ideally, repeat their catchphrase every episode). Why weren't the challenges chosen to be something in each contestant's wheelhouse? Because the producers were lazy, that's why.

We've now watched through the second challenge, and Rebecca has put her bile aside to point out one of the strong features of the show. The judges really provide useful, practical, constructive criticism. They clearly are thinking about what the contestants' shows might be like, and how they envision the star of that show. On the other hand, the judges' comments on, for example, Project Runway, sometimes boil down to "I don't like it", which is less than helpful. (Maybe they offer more useful help that gets edited out, of course.)

Seeing that, in Food Network Star, they are looking for a permanent host, we hope that in addition to good critical comments, the contestants get to see their footage and the judges' reactions to them. They have the opportunity to improve, groom, and train their future host -- to not do so would be a waste of time. And, incidentally, would make for more entertaining contestants for US. :)

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Saturday, June 21, 2008

Color Theory: Q & A Part 4 - Pigments

This is a continuation of the Color Theory: Q & A generated by my first Color Theory post.
Q: Are the colors in opaque paint from established substances?
A: Yes, the hues in opaque paints are unique substances called pigments.

For example, cadmium red paint is cadmium powder mixed with paint medium. It is ever so slightly less orange than cadmium red hue, which is a petroleum derived pigment (i.e., a "new" pigment), which contains no cadmium at all. According to Winsor & Newton, cadmium red is more opaque, has better covering power, and is more expensive, while cadmium red hue is brighter, more transparent, and cheaper. This entire answer is essentially paraphrased from endnote 5 to the Introduction of Color: A Natural History of the Palette by Victoria Finlay. It's a fun read full of the origin stories of pigments. Along the way you'll read a smattering of color theory and art history, but mostly it's a travelogue around the palette.

Back to the Color Theory Index.

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Thursday, June 19, 2008

Color Theory: Q & A Part 3 - Color I.D.

This is a continuation of the Color Theory: Q & A generated by my first Color Theory post.
Q: Are there Munsell codes so I can say I want my widgets to be this particular color of red and my seven subcontractors will all provide me widget parts that are the same color?
A: Yes, that is probably the primary purpose of the Munsell system.

The Munsell system is a color identification and notation system which identifies colors by alphanumerics rather than by name. This prevents confusion and makes communication easier. A Munsell color notation consists of the hue number and letter designation followed by the value number placed over the chroma number. For example, the Munsell color notation for a "pure" red which is medium dark and very strong is 5R 4/14. In this picture, the bottom chip in the far right column is 5R 4/14. If your widget part subcontractors don't have their own Munsell Book of Color to consult, you can send them a sheet of 5R 4/14.

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Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Stop. Veggie Time.

Light week this week because I went too crazy last week and we still have stuff to eat before we move next Wednesday. I'm planning to make a spinach dip with the spinach and onions. Also, salmonella-free tomatoes were too tempting to resist.

Color Theory: Q & A Part 2 - Chroma

This is a continuation of the Color Theory: Q & A generated by my first Color Theory post. While I'm moving to California, I thought I'd post a series of these scheduled to appear every other day. Discuss amongst yourself until I return to the Wiemanomiconosphere.
Q: Aren't "chroma" and "saturation" the same thing?
A: Yes and no.
Chroma is the strength or intensity of a color. More specifically, it is the amount of departure of a color from a gray of the same value. Munsell believed that "saturation" was used to indicate a combination of value and chroma. From page 7 in the New Munsell Student Color Set:

Albert Munsell's way of thinking about saturation parallels the definition of saturation in chemistry -- when a liquid cannot absorb more of a substance, it has become saturated. The term "saturation" is often used by painters to indicated the relative proportion of pigment to filler, or medium, in a paint. When the term saturation is used with this meaning, a pure black is a saturated color. This is entirely different from what is meant by chroma. Black is a neutral color, it has no chroma. On the other hand, when used to mean the strength of a color, saturation becomes a synonym for chroma. In this case, a saturated color is one with strong chroma. Once again the way words referring to color are used in everyday conversation leads to confusion. Because of the misunderstandings caused by all the terms used to indicated the same attribute of color, Munsell chose to use the word "chroma."
The following picture is of the 7/ row of the Hue: 5YR color chart. All of these chips are the same hue, 5 YR (a.k.a. orange), and have the same value, 7/. The variation among these chips is chroma.From left to right the chips' chromas are /2, /4, /6, /8, /10, and /12. The color of the chip on the far left does not depart much from a gray of the same value, so it has weak or low chroma. The chip on the far right departs a lot from a gray of the same value, so it has strong or high chroma.

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Saturday, June 14, 2008

Not Not Martha

I'm a big fan of the blog Not Martha. She frequently collects links to things she digs and that's her post. I have mixed feelings about that approach to blogging. So I'm going to try it and see what you think.

Sealable glass reusable containers blogged at Re-Nest.

Hilarious Hulk movie review. "This is dedication to a motif." - Bob

Small scale mobile chicken coop like the one described in Michael Pollan's Omnivore's Dilemma, but on a backyard scale via Re-Nest.

The prettiest post about Amy Ruppel's hand printed fabric on design*sponge.

Preston goes shopping.

Dadaist quilting philosophy genius at Spirit Cloth.

Another high in depriving liberty: 7.2 million under CJ control at Prof. Berman's Sentencing Law and Policy blog.

The Colorspire colour schemer via Sharon B's In a Minute Ago.

Vickie's new dye studio at Field Trips in Fiber. Dear Bob & Rebecca, please do this in your basement before my next visit. Love, Sarah

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Friday, June 13, 2008

McCain on Women's Health Issues

Do you think Senator John McCain is moderate on women's health issues or know someone who does? Watch Planned Parenthood's short video and spread the word. The video contains a number of facts about McCain's positions on women's health issues including the fact I mentioned before that McCain said, "I do not support Roe versus Wade. It should be overturned." Even if one does not care about presidential politics, combine McCain's position on Roe v. Wade with the power to appoint judges and you've got a persuasive argument to vote for Obama, rather than not vote, or vote for a third-party candidate.

A Question for the Group

A tidbit from Frank Rich's editorial in the Sunday New York Times has stuck in my craw. I thought I might put it before the group and ask you for your interpretation.

Mr. Obama isn’t flawless. But it’s hard to see him hitching up with Mrs. Clinton, who would contradict his message, unite the right, and pass along her husband’s still unpacked post-presidency baggage.
What is Bill Clinton's post-presidency baggage?

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Kids These Days

I offer this claim: "young people are skeptical of the traditional political ideologies, and even more skeptical of ideological claims and arguments." Not only do I believe it, I believe it ties together many of the insights offered here, which I will shamelessly plagiarize forthwith. Seriously -- if you don't read the posts over there then you're an accomplice.

Obama's not a radical, and therefore pundits seem confused as to what the young people see in him. But "young people" aren't hippies or beatniks or yuppies or neocons anymore -- they've seen (or heard about) those "isms" and have no desire to be the victim of still more broken promises. Most recently, they've seen huge deficits, violations of civil liberties, and an unprovoked war passed off as "conservative" and they ain't buyin' whatever the next snake oil
guy is sellin'. (Or as Dr. S put it, they [and we] are starved for the truth.)

But Obama's not offering suspect promises -- he's offering "a voice for the truth." Young people (maybe us too?) want to get off the fruitless swinging pendulum and do indeed yearn for normalcy. The pundits have not realized (and some may not be able to) that this is the new radicalism.

Of course, there's a hidden ideology in what you think "normal" is. And in this sense Obama's vision (as articulated by LTG) of a "post-racial, post-conflict America at peace" is indeed pretty radical, and I think precisely in line with what "the young people" think of as the ideal "normal".

But it's not a particularly political ideology -- there isn't some broad ideal scheme for how we should get from here to there. Instead, there are plenty of "obvious" incremental steps toward that particular utopia. Elect a black president. Base diplomacy on something more than macho posturing. Get the heck out of Iraq. Stop torturing people.

It is perhaps sad that we have sunk so low that there's a long list of obvious problems (maybe a presidential term's worth) that can be fixed before you run out of low-hanging fruit and actually have to consult an overarching political perspective to guide your next move. But it does give us the rare opportunity to try the radical experiment of "rationality" for a while.

Or, alternatively, we could elect McCain.

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Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Best news article ever

You have to read this. It's so cute, I can hardly stand it.

Wednesday's with R.J.

For the past five weeks or so I have had a weekly lunch date with a fascinating woman I met at the Bloomington Quilt Guild named Rosemary Trubitt. She's an art quilter whose work is available at The Wandering Turtle Art Gallery. And she's a pretty amazing person to boot.

Here's Rosemary with some of her quilts. On the right you might be able to just make out a few of her mathematical quilts. Specifically they're equilateral spirals approximated using Fibonacci proportions. Prior to these Fibonacci spirals, she made a series of four different mathematical quilts inspired by Mathematical Quilts: No Sewing Required by Diana Venters and Elaine Krajenke Ellison. Her four quilts were then supplemented by five more quilts by BQG members and are now available in the Monroe County School District for teachers to use.

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Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Terribly exciting pictures of an empty house

If you have a snapfish account (or are willing to give them an email address), you can check out some pictures of our house, now that it's really ours but we're not moved in and it's totally empty.

Check them out.

So hot all I want to do is veg

Oodles of cucumbers today. I got 4 different varieties. The striped one is Armenian and the other long nubbly one is Japanese. We had a cucumber salad with vinegar, sugar and salt. Yummy. We also had the kale cooked with some of the fancy bacon from the local butcher that we got as a house warming gift from our realtor. I went for arugula and basil today. Both smell great - haven't decided what to do with them yet.

I also went 'off csa' and bought some fruit and potatoes. There are other vendors at the farmer's market. I couldn't resist the idea of a rhubarb strawberry crisp and a blueberry peach pie. I feel that when I just eat vegetables for dinner, dessert is ok :)

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Dyeing with Daren

Today I took my last class at Shiisa Quilts. And what a way to go! Dyeing with Daren was awesome! The instructor, Daren Pitts Redman, is an art quilter from neighboring Brown County, Indiana. She uses her own and other folks' hand dyed fabric to make her quilts. And I have to say, she's really enthusiastic, positive, and fun in the classroom. She taught us a low immersion microwave dyeing method, which is quick and easy.

Here's another view with the sun shining through the fabric. We dyed the blue first, then the red, then the yellow, which ran counter to my Easter egg dyeing training, where you always started with the lightest color. But since we weren't layering colors, I guess it didn't matter so much. Apparently when Daren dyes at home she does all red on one day then she'll have a blue day and so on. This makes a lot of sense because after you dye the fabric and set the dye (either via microwave, sun, or time), you have to run it through the washer's rinse cycle a couple of times to get the excess dye out. And at that point you really need to have only one color in the washer at a time, or you run the risk of getting muddy colors.
Here's a close up of just the purple half yard. Check out the mottling. Lots of folks in the class did neat tie dye effects, but I was really looking to see what I could do with just plain dyeing, as I already took a class on the tie dye effects at IQF Chicago with Diane Ricks. But the most interesting thing about the tie dyes was with the secondary colors, at least one of the primary colors seemed to have more capillary action. So even though you only put it in one dye bath, the blue would migrate farther into the undyed areas, so it looks like you've got purple and blue.

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Monday, June 09, 2008

Free Obama Stickers! is giving away free Obama stickers here. They take 4 to 6 weeks to arrive, so order yours now.

If you're on Facebook, add the group "Join this group to get a free Obama bumper sticker from MoveOn" and then invite all your friends. It's one of the fastest-growing groups on all of Facebook right now:

If you want to pay money for a really pretty Obama sticker, you could, if you felt so inclined, check out the selection at Wonderful World: Obamaphernalia. I hear the profits get donated to the Obama campaign, but that's just a rumor. :) They take less than 4 to 6 weeks to arrive. Not sure how much less.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Under the Weather

These were our attempts to show the amount of water in our backyard during the intense thunderstorm on June 4th after a week of rain. You can make out the cement patio on the bottom left, everything to right is water. The water was almost up to the floor of the car (which was a rental as ours is in the shop). And just to put this in perspective, we're uphill from most of our neighbors. But the water was actually flowing from the northeast corner of the lot through to the driveway at the southwest corner of the lot. The gravel driveway was washed out. Usually our basement gets a little trickle of water from the northwest corner to the floor drain.

We weren't so lucky this time. Water came in through the windows and
actually appeared to flow through the walls. Normally all of our
stuff in the basement is up off the floor, so it wouldn't have had
much of an impact, but since we're packing, there were packed boxes on
the floor and lots of our good packing boxes. So we quickly hauled
everything that we could upstairs. Only one or two empty boxes were
destroyed. There were a few stacks of boxes of my books that we
couldn't get upstairs, so the bottom box of each of those were
ruined. Eventually the sump pump and floor drain did their thing, so
there's no standing water left. But the carpeted area is saturated.
We're hoping the dehumidifier and fans will help until the landlord's wet basement cleanup specialist comes on Monday or Tuesday. Meanwhile, I'm going to run
all my quilting fabric and whatever bedding we stored downstairs
through the dryer right before packing so it doesn't mold hopefully. The gravel
driveway is washed out to the extent that the drain pipes are exposed.
Luckily our car was at the garage for a major tune up, so we don't
have to worry about getting it down the driveway. We'll just park on
the street for the next two weeks. Glad it's not our house. Just
wish it could have held off for another two weeks.
Apparently all of Bloomington was hit hard. Cars downtown were
floating in parking lots and bumping into one another. Pavement
washed away along the edges of roads. The governor has declared Monroe County a disaster area.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Front Page News

Late Tuesday night I was reading the comments on the Jack and Jill Politics post regarding Senator Obama being the nominee because JJP is made of awesome and all, and, in the context of discussing how to commemorate this historic occasion, one of the commentors posted this neat little link to the Newseum's collection of front pages of the day.

I hope they archive today's. An African-American presidential candidate in a country where he could not have been a citizen just 140 years ago,1 where the government and public accommodations could legally discriminate against him just 44 years ago,2 and where his right to vote was openly compromised until just 43 years ago.3

1.1868 - Ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment.(back)
2.1964 - Civil Rights Act signed, when Senator Obama was about three years old.(back)
3.1965 - Voting Rights Act signed, when Senator Obama was about four years old.(back)

Justice Clinton

From the NYTimes LiveBlog of Tuesday Night:

He said that [Senator Clinton] was “ambivalent” about the vice presidency, tempted because she is worried about the Supreme Court becoming more conservative under a Republican administration.
Or worried that by accepting the vice presidency, she could be losing out on a spot on the Supreme Court? Can we start a petition for Clinton for Supreme Court Justice?

Yet another secret blog

In case you didn't know, I'm a geek. I figured out something in Blogger (hence the sudden appearance of "expandable" posts), sent an email to someone about it, and they suggested I post about it on my blog.

This blog isn't really about techy stuff like how Blogger works, so I spawned yet another blog: Halfwit Geek, where notes about sneaky programming tricks I find out about will go, as well as venting of the "why won't X do what I want??" variety.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

10:15 p.m. | The Moment:

“Tonight, I can stand here and say that I will be the Democratic nominee for president of the United States of America.” - Barack Obama

More Below the Fold

He and Michelle did a little fist tap before he got on stage and he thanked his grandmother. I'm so happy I'm crying.

. . . if we are willing to work for it, and fight for it, and believe in it, then I am absolutely certain that generations from now, we will be able to look back and tell our children that this was the moment when we began to provide care for the sick and good jobs to the jobless; this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal; this was the moment when we ended a war and secured our nation and restored our image as the last, best hope on Earth. This was the moment – this was the time – when we came together to remake this great nation so that it may always reflect our very best selves, and our highest ideals.

From the Farm to My Belly

Favorite new item: the army of baby cauliflowers. Also, we got some butter lettuce for lettuce wraps (with grilled chicken and corn and avocado.)

We are digging the radishes and the beets. Sadly, this week is the end of the peas.

Update: Loyalty Oath

Back on May 15th I shared People for the American Way's call to action regarding an instructor fired for refusing to sign a loyalty oath. The Chronicle of Higher Education (which has a subscription only site) reported today that Cal State-Fullerton and the lecturer reached an agreement over the state loyalty oath. The instructor, a Quaker and pacifist, had been fired for refusing to sign the oath as written. She and the university have negotiated the language in an explanatory statement that will allow her to sign the oath.

David, of course, forwarded this from the Chronicle to me, but refused to post it himself on religious grounds.

Portents at Kinkos

I was going to title this post "Signs at Kinkos" but that was too much like an ad for their banner making services.

Anywhoodle, I could not make this up if I tried. Today we signed all the closing documents for our house in Fullerton, California. On our way to Kinkos to copy them and FedEx them back to our escrow agent, we drove through a torrential downpour. As we parked we heard tornado watch sirens. We ran into Kinkos, found the copier located farthest from the windows, and started photocopying. What song started playing on the sound system? Albert Hammond's "It Never Rains in Southern California."


Listening Suggestion: Today's Broadcast of Fresh Air

Jenna Fischer, a.k.a. Pam from The Office, is on Fresh Air today. We just listened to the last fifteen minutes of her interview. It was hilarious.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

CSA Farm Visit

The weather cooperated and we had a great afternoon visit to the farm where our beautiful veggies are grown. It really is only about an acre of land and it's very densely planted. I overheard Charlie, the farmer, mention that he might start a mentoring program for people who want to start community gardens. That would be cool. Ok - on to the pictures. You have to vote for your two favorites because we can enter them to win $100 off next years membership.

Overviews of the plantings.

Rainbow of greens

Delicious Peas




Not sure - something starting to grow...

Breakfast radishes #1

Eggplant bloom

Cucumber. (these have been remarkably good)

A little friend


Lightening bug


Watering can view

Breakfast radishes #2

A bigger friend.

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When in England, watch golf

So, we're moving, and while going through some books in the process of packing, we found some notes Rebecca took so we'd properly remember one of the momentous moments of our living-in-England experience.

England marches to a different drummer when it comes to sports (excuse me, "sport"). It is ALL about entertaining the spectator. Oh, forget it -- me trying to explain it is completely inadequate. It must be experienced.

So, during the 2004 Masters tournament, these are a selection from the BBC commentary:

"He hit that from his belly button."

"He hit that in the dingly dell."

" opposed to those aggressive shared-ball sports -- the worst you can do here is niggle your opponent's brainbox."

and the one that made us decide we needed to record them:

"He has a roly-poly walk, a just back from the sea walk, as opposed to Mickelson, who looks like he's going for a totter in the lower acres to see how the lambing is going."