July 31, 2021

Not Extinct Yet


That is what I felt when I heard the distinctive call of a common nighthawk overhead. 


I looked up, and there it was, catching insects as it flew above me. 

It looked lonely, perhaps only because I know that the species has been in decline for decades.

A few days later in the same place I saw three nighthawks hunting and buzz diving together. 

Elation times three.

"Not extinct yet," I thought with a smile.

Numbers of common nighthawk over southern Canada have fallen about 70% since 1970.

This could be why.  

The insect apocalypse: ‘Our world will grind to a halt without them’


"Few people seem to realise how devastating this is, not only for human wellbeing – we need insects to pollinate our crops, recycle dung, leaves and corpses, keep the soil healthy, control pests, and much more – but for larger animals, such as birds, fish and frogs, which rely on insects for food. Wildflowers rely on them for pollination. As insects become more scarce, our world will slowly grind to a halt, for it cannot function without them."

No insects, no things that need insects to survive.

If the bottom of the food chain breaks down, eventually everything above that critical foundation will also fall.

All the way up to us.

And yet, there are the nighthawks, calling and soaring and insect-eating right above me.

It is possible, like the common nighthawks, that humanity might hold strong against current tendencies toward extinction, and survive until conditions on Earth improve for all life.

It may be unlikely, but it is one possibility.

The birds overhead give me hope that we will find our wings soon, and as a species take flight toward the better world we know is possible.

One that has room for nighthawks.

Status of the Common Nighthawk 

Status history: Designated Threatened in April 2007. Status re-examined and designated Special Concern in April 2018.

The species is ranked as Not at Risk globally (G5), Apparently Secure (N4B) in Canada and Secure (N5B) in the United States. However, it is considered as Critically Imperilled (S1), Imperilled (S2), or Vulnerable (S3) in 14 of 48 states and nine of 13 provinces and territories in which it occurs. In the remaining provinces (British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Ontario) it is ranked Apparently Secure (S4) or Secure (S5).

Threats and Limiting Factors

Widespread threats that may have an important impact include reduced abundance of aerial insects due to effects of agricultural and other pesticides, changes in precipitation and hydrological regimes, changes in temperature regimes, and increasing frequency of severe or extreme weather events. Several other threats have been proposed, but appear to be less severe or affect only a small proportion of the population.

On The Tip Of The Nose

Most consumer things have no value, and yet they have a great price. 

Things you can't buy usually have great value, but no price.

What we need to find can not be bought. It is not "out there" anywhere. 

We can't fly to the answer. It does not come in a box, or on wheels. No one can deliver it to our homes.

We are more likely to find what we need sitting alone in a quiet, sparse room with nothing but our thoughts.

Then no thoughts. 

Then personal change. 

Then global change.

All free.

No one that benefits from conspicuous consumerism will acknowledge this, making them a dangerous impediment to continued human evolution.

They won't sell us anything that will help us realize we don't need them. 

Those answers will be found on the tip of the nose.

July 26, 2021

Refurbish And Repair Old Shoes

Repaired and refurbished new old shoes live to walk another day.

Repair has always been one of my favourite R-words. 

Now I am adding refurbish to my top 3.

It means "to make clean, bright, or fresh again". 


Old boots too worn and soft for most uses. Good for gardening.

Newer boots too hard and stiff for anything other than heavy work or hikes.

Solution: get something in between for general duty use.

Next Problem: Don't want to have to buy anything, or have to go (shudder) shopping.


1) Fish old pair of light hiking shoes from back of closet. They went back there when the sole of one shoe released. 

That was... years ago? Yes, years ago.

Time is no longer flying. As I have been experiencing things over the last few years, and especially the last year, it is now rocketing.

2) Find my tube of Shoe Goo (that's really what it is called). 

Shoe Goo was invented in 1972 by a person that "was dissatisfied with the durability of the soles of his tennis shoes, and sought a method to extend their life by repairing them." 

Smart person, and thank you.

3) Take the time to refurbish and repair old shoes. 

First I cleaned up the shoes inside and out. The glue works best on clean surfaces.

This stuff is amazing for shoe repair, just don't get any on your skin - it has a nasty composition. 

4) Enjoy my new old shoes, and the fact that they did not cost me any extra money, nor require me to (shudder again) go shopping.

Problems solved.

July 25, 2021

Sticking Close To Home

The voyage of the HMS Beagle.

In the early 1830s Charles Darwin spent five years on an epic voyage across the globe. But what did he do after that?

Darwin, one of the early explorers and travellers of modern times, ended up settling in London after his research trip on the HMS Beagle. 

When the big city became too stressful, Darwin and his family moved to the quiet of the countryside. 

For the last 40 years of his life, other than rare trips to London, Darwin spent all his time close to Down House, in Downe, UK.

His wanderlust satiated, Darwin enjoyed daily strolls on his "thinking path" out in his garden next to a row of tall trees. 

It was in this house and garden that he worked out his theories of evolution by natural selection.

You may not hear as much about it, but Darwin was never to set foot on a ship again.

While not so popular today, we can also give in to our nesting instinct.

It is alright to pull a Darwin, quit travel and stick close to home.  

Anyone would benefit from more time to enjoy treading their own thinking path. 

Many revolutionary ideas would result, and maybe even could end up producing a book, or books, that would change the world.

July 23, 2021

Nothing To Say, Or Saying Nothing?

“Always ask yourself: "What will happen if I say nothing?” 

― Kamand Kojouri  


For this post I asked myself what would happen if I said nothing.

I decided that it would (probably) not be the end of the world.


So, I'm going to try it, and not say anything. 


But I am listening. 


What's on your mind today? 



July 20, 2021

Billionaire Space Race Ushers In Peak Consumerism

Is it the ultimate phallic symbol, or a giant middle finger to all the suckers that will not be able to escape to another planet when this one is done? 

When it comes to the white guy billionaire space race, it could be either one. Or both. 

The shine has come off their image in recent years, and they need some way to show that they really are the saviours of the planet they have been busy destroying.

And they are going to save us with... wait for it... space tourism. 

Now that a few "ordinary" people have been to the edge of space for a few seconds, travel pumpers touting the Ultimate (brief) Adventure are predicting an $8 billion dollar space tourism market by 2030. 

This is the project that the richest men on Earth have chosen to take on. Make commercial space travel a reality, and watch their accounts swell. 

Is it also childish defiance, to flip the bird at the rest of humanity?

"It is my money, and I can do what I want."

Yes, even if it is a wasteful, self-aggrandizing feat of desperation while searching for some reason, even one, to justify unprecedented and dangerous concentrations of personal wealth.

Fitting that they are off-loading to the planet named after the Roman god of war.  It has been an ongoing war - them vs us and the planet. And they are winning. 

To the edge of space, and beyond! 

Upward and onward to the lofty heights of  future robber trillionaires that will live boring lives of austere luxury in the lifeless surroundings of Mars. 

They will sit around a stark plastic table sucking Tang and champagne out of foil packages, wheeling and dealing for whole planets as they reach Peak Consumerism.

If they ever get back, they will see Earth with space weary eyes. It will appear as a miracle, and the paradise that it is. 

Or was, and could be again.

July 16, 2021

Travel: The Great Escape?

 "At this point in the summer - and the pandemic -," a recent New York Times article begins, "the desire to escape to a far away place might be overwhelming." 

It is common for the travel industry to use an escape narrative to sell their products and services. 

Everything from cars to cruises are sold as a way for you, the prisoner of your boring, ho-hum life, to escape to greener pastures, toward the idilic utopia of your dreams.

So engrained in our thinking is this notion of having to run, flee and hide that it has led us to want to escape our very own planet. 

Billionaires are lining up to be the first to leave the planet in one of the most ridiculous escape stories of all time. 

There is no green in space, and no escape from the infinite vacuum that expands in all directions. 

Your back yard is more attractive than any singular spot of the black void. 

Over the last couple of decades Linda and I have been working on building a life that is so good that we don't feel the need to "get away" to anywhere else.

What is it that the travel industry thinks we need to escape? Our own boring lives? Being confined to our jobs and our cars? Our bosses? Our selves? 

The only thing people need to escape is a crappy system that first makes us miserable with work and busyness, then takes advantage of that feeling to sell us crappy holidays that are supposed to make us feel better.

We're not buying that. Our story is right here in our own neighbourhood.

Leaving consumerism is the ultimate escape. No flights or travel agents required.

July 13, 2021


The Goldfish, 1912 by Henri Matisse


“We’ve got to DO SOMETHING!"


"Why no. 

No you do not. 

Please, please please 

don’t do anything!

Sit quietly in a quiet room. 

Listen to birds, or the trickle of water, or waves on a beach. 

Hear the sounds of silence.


Stare at goldfish in a bowl for hours.


Please remember this.

You don't have to do anything."

July 10, 2021

Doing One's Part For Climate Change

"Decades of pretence are coming to a close. Rapid changes in our climate are waking us up to the reality that we and the Earth are one system. 

The wasted years mean we are woefully unprepared for the consequences of our actions. 

Our civilization of separation is finished."

—Jem Bendell

Climate Change Emergency

Estimated impact: 

- 5 million deaths per year from intense heat and cold alone, and this emergency is not going anywhere.

General Response:

"I am hesitant to make any lifestyle changes because the science is wrong, politicians just want our tax dollars, and what one person does won't make a difference anyway."

Coronavirus Emergency

Estimated impact: 4 million deaths so far over a year and a half, and the pandemic is coming to a close.

General Response:

"The science is indisputable, and anyone that says any different is spreading dangerous misinformation. 

The facts cannot be questioned, even by experts.

The entirety of humanity must stop all economic and social activity, and get a jab at Warp Speed. 

Those who fail to comply will be sanctioned for their selfish inaction."

Recent Headline: 

COVID vaccines create 9 new billionaires with combined wealth greater than cost of vaccinating world’s poorest countries

"Remember", they say, "we are all in this together."

July 7, 2021

Surrender and Accept

Surrender and accept. 

If that sounds somewhat ominous, blame it on the times in which we are living.

In a political context the statement is a well known command, and a very dangerous one at that.

Seen through a spiritual lens, the same statement is an invitation. 

It offers a way to find peace in this very moment. 

Surrender should not be confused with giving up. 

I like this explanation of the difference: 

"To give up, is to stop believing. It is admitting you do not care about the outcome. 
Surrendering is caring about the outcome, while acknowledging you do not control the process, and ceasing your resistance."

We can accept what is, and still fight to change it. 

Surrendering to and accepting life is a prerequisite to understanding and compassionate action. 

Experiencing peace in the moment allows us to do things for the self, loved ones, and for strangers.

Surrender and accept life for what it is, what it is, what it is - for living a healthy and happy life.

First peace. 

Then change.

"Surrender and serenity are synonymous; you can't experience one without the other. So if it's serenity you're searching for, it's close by.


All you have to do is resign as General Manager of the Universe.


Choose to trust that there is a greater plan for you and that if you surrender, it will be unfolded in time. 

Surrender is a gift that you can give yourself. It's an act of faith. It's saying that even though I can't see where this river is flowing, I trust it will take me in the right direction.” 


- Debbie Ford

July 5, 2021

Backward To Go Forward

My neighbour's fully restored 1940s farm tractor cutting hay.

Since 1961 the American ecological footprint has increased by 160%.

To what end? 

Is life 160% better? Are people 160% happier?

If that 160% increase in resource consumption hasn't made us any happier, then let us cut it out and see what happens.

It is mostly waste for the sole purpose of private profit, and much to the detriment of people and the planet.

I am imagining a situation where the people care so much about our unique and stunningly beautiful planet that they are willing to cut the waste from their lives in order to honour Earth's sacred designation as the giver and sustainer of life itself.

Like all indigenous people do. And like we all used to do not so long ago. 

We are going to have to go backward to those roots if we are to go forward with any success. 

One planet living is the goal, and it can be  done. 

Because we love this planet.

Don't we?

July 3, 2021

Plan For Today

Art by: Lisa Davis

Drink water

Make food/eat food




Be in Nature

Care for Linda

Wash my bowl


That's all

Optional: anything else.

July 1, 2021

Eat Real Food

Fast-food culture has produced a population with widespread chronic illness and is a primary reason that health care costs are taking a devastating toll on society.

"The standard American diet -- in which 62 percent of calories come from processed foods, 25 percent from animal products and only 5 percent from fruits and vegetables -- is nothing less than a health travesty." 

Over the last year people have died of covid-19. The vast majority of them had pre-existing conditions, many of which are preventable.

One of the best things one can do for one's health is eat real food, and stay far, far away from fast and processed food.

"Do you have to be a strict vegetarian to enjoy the considerable health benefits of a vegetarian diet? No, you do not."

The food-like meals served at places like the golden arches and other joints, is literally deadly. The past year highlights this fact more than ever. 

It is hard to fight disease if you are medically compromised by the effects of modern consumer society.

"What's important is to eat a plant-strong diet, with a high percentage of your calories coming from whole foods such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains, and a low percentage coming from processed foods, sugars, unhealthy fats and animal products."


- John Robbins