Monday, June 30, 2008

Power Down

It is time to power down! It is predicted that our energy costs are going up over 40%. For some of us who do not use air conditioning this summer, we may be able to keep our power bills at a minimum. For folks who need the luxury of air conditioning; they will see these costs this summer. Rising power costs are not as frightening in the heat of the summer as they are in the winter. Using power strips can save you money by not allowing appliances with such things as clocks to continuously suck power even when not in use. During an ongoing energy crisis such as predicted with Peak Oil, the power grid could be off line for several days at a time or even indefinitely. It is helpful to begin planning and practicing now for "The Long Emergency". If for some reason Peak Oil doesn't happen, it will still save you dollars by doing a power down and putting your appliances on power strips!

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Sunday, June 29, 2008

Comfest Rain or Shine

Last call for Comfest today if you haven't attended this year. Some of us are hard core Comfesters. We go rain or shine. Hope to see you there!
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Saturday, June 28, 2008

Come to Comfest

If you haven't been to Comfest this weekend, there is still plenty of time to enjoy all the fun. Get there early and see the Pride parade. The slogan for this year is Be The Change.
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Thursday, June 26, 2008

The Silent Running Fallacy

The Silent Running Fallacy: "the mistaken belief that human industrial civilization can survive apart from nature. It’s this fallacy that leads countless well-intentioned people to argue that nature is an amenity, and should be preserved because, basically, it’s cute." It is definitely a dangerous idea and akin to the idea that if an economic need can be defined that somehow nature will meet that demand. The Silent Running Fallacy was appropriately named by John Michael Greer in his blog The Archdruid Report. He goes on to say "Yet nature is not an amenity, and the “practicality” that leads current political and business leaders to ignore the disastrous consequences of their own actions doesn’t deserve the name. If anything, industrial civilization is the amenity, and it’s not particularly cute, either. Nature can survive without industrial humanity, but industrial humanity cannot survive without nature – no matter how hard we pretend otherwise, or how enthusiastically we stuff our brains with science fiction fantasies of electronic reincarnation and the good life in deep space."

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


If you haven't been to Community Festival (Comfest) and you live here in Columbus, then you are missing out on the greatest festival in Columbus. Come join us Fri. Sat. Sun. at Goodale Park.

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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Community Festival

Community Festival is this coming weekend. This is perhaps Columbus Ohio's finest festival. Comfest began in 1972 and is a "party with a purpose". Featuring 6 stages, a large street fair and all sorts of activities from Friday June 27th-Sunday the 29th. This year the featured artist is Michelle Shocked who will be leading a workshop and performing Saturday and Sunday. See Comfest website for further details.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

t h e U N p l a n n i n g J o u r n a l: What IS UNplanning?

I found this interesting map of where all the Walmart Stores in the United States are located. I learned that at any given time there are 350 of them abandoned. It seems that because they refuse to sell their property to their competitors, and because they end up competing with themselves by putting one on every block they create these gigantic asphalt "ghost malls".

In post peak oil times these monstrosity's can be stripped of their valuable scrap metal and perhaps turned into agricultural purposes. Check out
t h e U N p l a n n i n g J o u r n a l: What IS UNplanning?
for more ideas about what to do with these sort of places.
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Future Of Suburbia

What does the future hold for our suburbs? Rising fuel costs are resulting in record high foreclosures and an exodus from the suburbs. Abandoned properties are not only becoming the next eyesores, they are a breeding ground for crime. It is hard to imagine what is next. Suburbia may be our next "ghost towns". Perhaps some homes could be spared making room for self sustaining agriculture. It is more likely that people will just move to where they can walk to work, and everywhere they need to go. In the interim though, suburbia will be a battleground. The safe and secure illusion one used to feel in suburbia is now shattered.
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Thursday, June 19, 2008

Power Lines. A painting by Bonie Bolen

Here is one of the paintings featured this month (June) at Norka Futon. The painting (untitled) is done by Bonie Bolen and is somewhat uncharacteristic of her work. But it smacks of Peak Oil and the changing landscape of our country.
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Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Abandoned Railroads

Here is Chester Creak Branch 16 near Philadelphia abandoned in 1971. It is time to revitalize and modernize our abandoned railroads. It would save money and create jobs.

Revitalizing the railroad system and getting the old passenger trains running again is necessary for a this weakening economy to continue
travel and transport. Strangely enough Washington isn't coming up with that sort of solution. They are going to wait until every drop of oil is extracted from the ground and nothing is moving anywhere before coming to terms with Peak Oil and how to survive without it.

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Monday, June 16, 2008

Exon Oil Wrapping Things Up

This is formerly a Citco Gas Station that was abandoned 4 years ago near Syracuse University. The artist is Jennifer Marsh 27, who got fed up with the price of gas and wanted to create art that reflected her concerns. This project involved 15 countries 2,500 grade school students in 29 states. There are 3000 fiber panels crocheted, knitted, quilted, and stitched together. It was announced this week that Exon will be selling off all their filling stations. It is estimated that there are over 200,000 abandoned gas stations in America right now. I suspect there will be more in the near future.
Jennifer graduated from The Columbus College of Art and Design in 2005 and is now working on her Masters Degree at Syracuse University

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Sunday, June 15, 2008

A Short History of America

One of my favorite links is called A Short History of America which is a series of 12 drawings that shows the changing landscape of America by Robert Crumb. Here is the first and the last one. He ends with What Next. Peak oil may determine the outcome of what the next 12 drawings would look like.

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Saturday, June 14, 2008

Geography of Nowhere

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Several weeks ago (May 23rd) I made reference to "The Geography of Nowhere" and today I found the links to that book by the same author James H. Kunstler. I am delighted that on one of his websites he features eyesores of the month. We have quite a few of those here in Columbus Ohio. I may send him some pictures of our Convention Center. I am certain he will agree that it is an ugly building deserving of his column! I am happy to learn that he is a painter. This is one of his paintings.
Thanks to Dina from Peak Oil Group for reacquainting me with this talented man!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Not a new idea

Rain barrels are not a new idea at all. As you can see in this old photograph from the early 1900s, they were just part of life. It is odd how something as simple as catching the rain has to be researched these days. In less than 100 years rain barrels have gone out of style and out of use. We have had plenty of rain the last few days. Our rain barrels are full. Check out our new web site Got Rain? Please note that drinking rain water does not cause your
head to be enlarged!

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Thursday, June 12, 2008

1st Delivery

Here is our very first rain barrel customer Pedro! He has been in the antique business in Columbus Ohio for over 20 years. His shop on High Street is called Euro Classics Fine Antique Furniture. Pedro is enthusiastic about catching the rain and about our rain barrel business. We feature him on our options page at got rain?
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Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Got Rain Barrels?

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Today we are making our first delivery and sale of two rain barrels. I installed a hit counter on the website got rain? I am having fun with it. Even a weather gadget thrown in for good measure works well on a site that has everything to do with weather. I finally met the neighbor who has 3 rain barrels on his property (see Wednesday May 21 blog). Maybe with all this preparation there won't be any drought this year. Even if there is drought we are ready and catching the rain. Check out the new site if you haven't

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Got Rain?

We are officially going into the rain barrel business. I set up a separate website called got rain? All the details are not in place yet. Right now all our barrels are spoken for. I can't think of a better way to prepare for Peak Oil, make money, and help others than to offer rain barrels to the masses.
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Monday, June 9, 2008

Does Columbus desire streetcars?

Mayor Mike Coleman has proposed a new streetcar system for downtown Columbus. Up until now he has not gotten the support for the 103 million dollar project that will cost 4 million a year to maintain. What looked to be frivolous a few months ago now looks like the project might not be big enough. The proposed rail is to be a stretch of only of 2.8 miles long.

The project has about 50 percent approval rate. I can imagine this week folks are more receptive to the idea, as gas prices continue to rise. I know that I personally would use the system. It just seems like it should be a system that can be expanded to other parts of the city. Blogroll Me!
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Sunday, June 8, 2008

Ready to Drum

I am getting ready to haul my drum to Comfest 2008. It is my understanding the Columbus Women's Drum Chorus will be performing. Check out the Comfest Website for the schedule and times of our performance. Hope to see ya there!

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Saturday, June 7, 2008

The Murals of Bonie Bolen

I get to share gallery space this month with Bonie Bolen who paints murals and back drops. We will be showing our art at Norka Futon for the month of June beginning tonight Saturday June 7th at Gallery Hop. If you make it to gallery hop you can also listen to the music of Roscoe and Wahru as well as The Columbus Community Drummers.
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Thursday, June 5, 2008

Cat Nip

This is one of my bowls from several years ago. Lori painted the vine on with an under glaze. After the bisque fire, I spray glazed it for its final firing. The nice thing about giving my friends bowls upon occasion, is I get to visit them. DD has a healthy crop of Cat Nip as a nice back drop for this photo. That cat nip would be eaten right down to the stalk if it were in our yard.

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Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Water Catchment 101

We have procured 6 more rain barrels by posting an ad on Crag's List. As might be expected these are all spoken for; our friends and family want them. Catchment systems will become more important to everyone as we realize "peak oil" and it's logical conclusions. When gas prices hit all time highs more people will be trying to conserve and save all things. Food shortages are a logical outcome of high gas prices as more and more truck drivers will not be able to afford to transport food from the great distances it is coming from these days. As the infrastructure begins to break down and everything becomes scarce, even water will become a precious commodity. We believe that we need to prepare and practice conserving water. These blue barrels once held soy sauce. So we know they are food safe. In order to make our rain water drinkable more steps to filter it will be necessary. I will be writing more about that in the near future. For now we need to concentrate on using rain water to water our garden. Our gardens will be the next step to prepare for food shortages. If you have not checked out the prepare pages at the Peak Oil site, there may still be time.

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Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Farewell to Bo

Bo Diddley died yesterday. He will be missed by many. His influence on Rock and Roll can not be assessed.

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Monday, June 2, 2008

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Everything is Broken

The Story of Stuff is a 30 minute Video that reveals planned and perceived obsolescence. If you ever wondered why your old antique item still works, but the modern equivalent breaks soon after you purchase it; this is your video. It is not your imagination that everything that you buy these days seems to have a short life.

This short and "sweet" video can teach you everything you need to know to begin countering this enormous problem. Annie Leonard's award winning video in 3 parts is a must see for every environmentalist. Please check it out and pass it on.Blogroll Me!