Saturday Linkages: Yaks, an M16 Lamp and Hog Farm Explosions

An urban homestead meltdown in Arcata involving yaks, 24 foot meditation towers and unhappy neighbors:

M16 lamp –

And . . a lamp made out of used coffee filters: 

The Apocalypse will be a lot like flying coach:

Mysterious hog farm explosions stump scientists

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  1. That yak man story is quite sad, for a few reasons. It’s interesting how the neighbors wax poetic about the garden that used to grace the backyard, calling its current appearance “a bog drenched in animal waste.” Luckily there’s a picture… which looks like a pasture to me. Now, I can understand not wanting to live next to a pasture, which I suppose is why we have zoning laws, but this is a zoning question not a case of unimaginable inhuman squalor. If you ask me, daffodils are nice but so are pastures, and since I eat meat and drink milk I appreciate the existence of the latter. As for the inside, I have no appreciation at all for hardwood floors, and as my own house has occasionally been “strewn with straw, feces, and urine” (well, substitute pine bedding and chicken droppings as appropriate) I can’t condemn the homeowners for that.

    Of course, a little courtesy with neighbors goes a long way, and I’d never suggest vandalizing a foreclosed home; but in the circumstances I think I can understand. The worst I’ll say about these folks is that they make the rest of us suburban farmers and crazy people look bad.

  2. Once the govt has the power to tell your neighbor how to live…then he can tell “you” how to live.

    The hog farm may be our new energy supply. If we could all have a hog farm in our back yard and harness that methane gas…we’d no longer be dependant on the Middle East..sounds as good to me as algae.

  3. With all due respect, the story about the yak man is not so much a story about an urban homestead as it is a sad story about some individuals with other problems who happened to be keeping livestock. This type of story only serves to reinforce negative stereotypes and does not demonstrate the values of responsible stewardship of the earth and living things, which true urban homesteaders should aspire to.

  4. After living in Arcata for 10 years, all I can say is “That’s Arcata fer ya.” Actually, this is the place where I learned a lot about permaculture, alternative energy, and farming, but it is also magnet for hypocritical eccentricity, far too many a nervous breakdown, and belligerence. But, maybe it’s just the flouride in the water.

  5. Cindy, do you have other information about the story beyond the article? I mean, sure those folks are crazy, but their stewardship seems to me to have been well better than that of nine tenths of the farms in America. I didn’t get the impression that even their critical neighbors suggested that their animals were being mistreated, just their hardwood floors and daffodils.

    Now, stewardship of the neighborhood is something else, but sometimes neighbors are just impossible to please. If we always listened to ours we’d never change anything! But you’re right, a little accommodation goes a long way, and sometimes they do come around. As we heard recently, “at first I thought your new fence was horrible, but now I think it looks ok.”

  6. As much as I love homesteading and animals, if those idiots tried that crap next to my house, they would have mysteriously woken up in a real pasture several hours outside of town. Stealing property like that, no matter what the reason, is wrong.

  7. We have prayer flags in our chicken coop but we do not consider the chickens “blessed envoys from Tibet.” Hmmm… maybe they are! I should ask them!

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