Book Review: The Blood of the Earth: An Essay on Magic and Peak Oil

...responses to peak oil. Part of this is understanding behavior and propaganda in magical terms. To do this, Greer offers a quick, intriguing primer on Western magic. Magic, according to Greer, has nothing to do with stage magic, or the fictional magic practiced by Harry Potter and his friends.  It is a discipline of the mind, with a strong relationship to psychology. One definition is “the art and science of causing change in consciousness i...

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Joshua Tree Earthen Oven Class

...rd is teaching another class in November. Our oven turned out great and was amazingly inexpensive (just the cost of sand). Kurt is a great teacher and if you’d like to build your own oven while learning the art of adobe, this class is not to be missed. Here’s info on the class: Joshua Tree Earthen Oven Class November 2–4, 2012 Earthen ovens are inexpensive to build, fun to use, and provide baking environment impossible to recreate in...

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Bushcraft Video

...sh to know he has groupies in LA. I’d recommend: Meet the Bushcrafters: Here he’s telling the story of how he got into this stuff. Shelter and Fire in the Rain — mostly because the invisible Nick is funny in this one. Fan quote: “Drip. Drip.” Making The Shoveaxe Bush Tool: He makes this incredible axe/shovel hybrid. It looks like a work of art. It looks like Thor’s hammer. This video is the actual making, step...

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Picture Sundays: A Handy Handyman

Kelly found a soggy flyer on a sidewalk near our house. The front showed a picture of a man with a mullet hairstyle holding a trophy below a headline “Best Handyman.” On the back said handyman promised the services you can see above. I laughed, then realized that it was my exact jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none set of skills. Well, except for “hydrophany” and gutters. And you’ll have to go to Ke...

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A Homemade Mattress?

...ss tick . (They call the tick a “fabric sheet pouch.”) Yup, glued seams. To hold in great quantities of pressurized wool which is under external stress from heavy human bodies. Yeah, that will work out well. I swear, their articles should be labeled “For Entertainment Purposes Only.” 5) Here’s an article from the Seattle Times about mattresses in landfills and the problem of recycling conventional mattresses. It will...

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Saturday Linkages: Whole Systems, Critters and the Most Beautiful Garden in the World

Art by Casey Cripe Casey Cripe’s “whole systems” collages and illustrations: http://boingboing.net/2013/02/27/casey-cripes-whole-systems.html … Turn Down the City Lights and Make Streets Safer http://bloom.bg/XuXeCi  Coping with Critters http://www.motherearthnews.com/Modern-Homesteading/Protect-Your-Home-From-Critters.aspx … Is Antibacterial Soap Bad For You? (Part 1) http://shar.es/jrPgV  Jeffrey Bale’...

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When the Crate’s Better Than the Chair

Steve Badgett of the design/art/architecture collective Simparch tipped me off to Dutch furniture designer and architect Gerrit Rietveld’s set of chairs built out of crates, done back in the 1930s. As Rietveld put it, “A piece of furniture made of high-grade wood and manufactured completely according to traditional production methods is transported in a crate to avoid damage…no one has ever ascertained that such a chest embodi...

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The Strange World of Artificial Plants

...ten-shredded drapes. Viewed from a distance Ikea’s plastic plants were realistic, though seemingly outside of any known plant genus. I found myself pondering the question of what permacultural context in which these plastic plants would be an appropriate design solution. I couldn’t answer my own question. More plastic and less living things in our lives is probably not a good idea. But I am willing to consider a very limited use of ar...

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We’re Car Free

Street art by Skullphone. Well, at least temporarily. Some idiot piloting a SUV sturdy enough to patrol the streets of Kabul rear-ended me last week. He was probably busy posting a Yelp review on his smart phone.  I’m still in pain and our car is totaled, but I’m thankful I’m alive. In the meantime Kelly and I have no car. Normally this isn’t much of an issue as I can get around by bike/public transit....

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World’s Skinniest Farm Planted in Brookline, MA

...mmuter garden in Brookline, Massachusetts. Our hope is to add some beauty and delight to a very everyday stretch of sidewalk and chain-link fence. It’s also our hope to remind people that healthy vegetables can be grown in all sorts of environments, not just farms or big yards or community garden plots. The 200 Foot Garden is also a way to bring together neighbors in a project designed to share good things with the people around us. The pro...

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