June 29, 2022

Dumb Stuff Of The Month





Today I am launching a new feature that I plan to make a monthly thing. This is the very first of new monthly posts called Dumb Stuff of the Month, and I warn you, this first one is dumb to the extreme.

For our inaugural Dumb Stuff post I present to you one of the most vacant consumer offerings I have seen not only this month, but of all time. 

Yes, it is the nuclear-powered flying hotel that can "stay in the air for years".

This airship crew will be looking for 5,000 questionable consumers that will spend anything to prove they are wealthy enough to entertain the idea of falling for extremely dumb, wasteful stuff and services.

The for now concept-only "sky cruiser", if anyone is lacking in brain cells enough to actually build it, would offer a shopping mall, fitness centre, swimming pools, restaurants, playgrounds, movie theatres, and wedding halls.

It's as if some engineer (that knows nothing of aerodynamics) woke from a bad design dream and during their nightmare hangover decided to try crossing the Hindenburg airship with the Titanic cruise ship.

With that much dumb, what could go possibly go wrong?


June 26, 2022

Wrong Planet





Stop this thing and let me off. I think I'm on the wrong planet. Ever feel that way? I have, like forever.

George Harrison, after the Beatles, said, 

"Sometimes I feel like I'm actually on the wrong planet. It's great when I'm in my garden but the minute I go out the gate I think, 'What the hell am I doing here?'"

He found his own tribe, and it wasn't "out there" in the material-obsessed world.

I have found parts of my own tribe in unlikely places. Other countries, the backcountry, and in the club of people who have never joined clubs.


“What about those of us who just don’t fit in, who feel as if we were born on the Wrong Planet, or in the wrong time period? 
Where did we come from? Is this a whole counter-culture that’s new to the planet, moving us forward? Have we finally reached the Age of Aquarius? Is it now?
Is the moon in the seventh house? Has Jupiter finally aligned with Mars? And are we right now getting ready to see mystic crystal revelation where love will steer the stars? 

Afraid not. 
There have always been people who see the world differently from everyone else. And there always will be. 
If you’re one of the ‘chosen ones’ then you come from a long line of Gypsies, tramps and thieves, of rebels and revolutionaries, of pagans, infidels and sceptics. 
This is your heritage, and you have much to be proud of.”  


I happily found more precious tribe members when I started blogging in this space. 

Thank you to everyone that has made this such an amazing experience for Linda and I. We are grateful for what you have added to our lives.

Going forward into this perpetual state of emergency it is going to be important to know your tribe. 

Who are the people you can ride out these tumultuous times with together? That will enhance your surroundings with joy, music, dance, and laughter? 

Also, food and support when the going gets tough.

How is the search for your tribe going?


 

June 25, 2022

Dawn Of The Living

Screenshot from planetary alignment beginning of June.



It's a natural phenom that is happening at dawn right now. It is an alignment of the planets

Like a string of festive lights strung across the early morning sky, the planets (and moon for now) are revealing an astronomical message for those still living. 

The theme song we have been hearing in our heads is Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In, from the movie Hair. 

A conjunction is when three planets line up, and they are common. An alignment is a rarer humongously beautiful bit of nature. One as is occurring now last happened in 2003 and won't happen again until 2040. 

Will I even be around in 2040? Will anyone?

The alignment might get more press except that humanity has been busy looking down at its bumbling feet for a long time now. 

I had a 10 year old primary school student that was looking up, and thinking about it as well. He came to me one day with a heavy existential problem. Yes, children can have those, too. 

This philosophical little person was troubled to tears. Why? 

"I don't even know if space ends or not!" he cried in despair.

He was so perplexed that he gave up his recess (many student's favourite part of school) to bring me this little nugget of human experience. It is one I will never forget.

Whether space ends, or not, it is the planets that are the stars in the morning sky right now. 

We have been watching this dawn show since the beginning of June. The screenshot above is from then. The shot below is what it looked like last night.

Our bedroom is situated so that we can see the horizon and a bit of the sky on clear nights. From bed. 

We live in a rural area close to a designated Dark Sky region, and the nightly light show is mind-boggling on any cloudless night, but especially so now. 

So. Many. Stars. Space is so... vast. And me? So... teeny, tiny. A speck on a speck on a speck. 

I wish I could talk to that young philosopher today. 

"Humanity", I would say, "should be looking up at the night sky to help put our puny, solvable problems into perspective. 

The Universe is a big, beautiful (infinite?) place. Why think so petty, limited, and small?"


Screenshot from planetary alignment June 25, 2022.



June 18, 2022

But, Flowers!





Shortages.


But, flowers!





Collapse.


But, flowers!






Political turmoil.



But, flowers!







Worry.


Flowers!


Doubt.


Flowers!


Flowers, flowers, flowers!








June 15, 2022

The Smart Thing To Do Right Now





It is said that you could line up all the economists in the world end to end and they still wouldn't reach a conclusion. 

However, more of them agree that a return to simplicity is the only way to deal with the multi-levered machine required to keep modern consumer economies functioning. 

They understand that the world has run out of the cheap, easy energy that created the complex consumer experiment. 

The cheap, easily accessed oil is gone, and it's not coming back.

No easy energy means no complex economies. They run on oil, and lots of it - 96 million barrels per day globally.

The following excerpt is from an article by an economist that is catching on to the power of simple (emphasis mine).

"The huge quantities of surplus energy involved explains why a large part of the population of western states have enjoyed a standard of living which would be the envy of kings, and, indeed, why we are ruled over by a handful of godzillionaires whose wealth is so vast as to make the Gods of Olympus jealous.

 

This is something of a problem because the world recently passed peak exergy (the amount left over after we have obtained the energy to begin with).


We will, of course, continue to extract ever more difficult and expensive fossil fuels, but their extraction will remorselessly consume an ever-greater part of the exergy previously available to the wider economy.  Which, in turn, means that the wider economy is going to shrink… and we have no economic theory to explain how we are going to handle this.


From this viewpoint, the smart thing to do today would be to simplify our way of life – and write-off a large part of the monetary claims on future exergy growth which will not be arriving – in order to bring our economies into line with the declining surplus energy available to us. 

The difference – at least for those who see the economy as primarily an energy rather than a monetary system – is that we have the necessary knowledge to avoid our complexity trap if only we are prepared to actively simplify away from an economy based on mass consumption in favour of one based around material simplicity…  I’m not holding my breath though."

There it is. 

Material simplicity is the only way, whether we like it or not. It has always been this way, and will always be this way.

Like I have been saying for over 10 years on this blog with stupefying repetitiveness,

     "Simplify now and avoid the rush".

Forward looking economists agree that it is the smart thing to do right now.

It also happens to be a lovely way to live.





June 14, 2022

The Influencer





If Jesus walked the Earth today would he be a social media star? An influencer? 

Would he be on Tik Tok, Twitter, and Facebook?

"Hi. I am the Saviour. Like my take on life? Follow me." 

If you like my miracles hit that like button and share my posts with others. 

I live-stream new miracles on Mondays and Fridays, and have Zoom get-togethers every Sunday. 

Hit the bell symbol to set an alert and you will be notified when I have the water and fish ready, and the sick and lame lined up.

PM me 24/7 and we can connect for a higher purpose."

Note: In case you doubt my cred, please see who my dad is. Check him out at:


The fact checkers would say, "Beware! That influencer isn't Jesus returned, nor is that God's website. It's Russian disinformation".



June 13, 2022

The 10 Laws Of Stuff




The 10 Laws Of Stuff

1. Stuff grows. The more you have the more you acquire.

2. Useless stuff crowds out useful stuff.

3. Dust, bugs, and moisture all will attack your stuff and tear it down.

4. Stuff at rest tends to stay at rest.

5. Stuff expands to fit the space available. The more space you have, the more stuff you feel you need.

6. Over time stuff becomes invisible – after living with stuff we tend not to see the clutter it causes.

7. Stuff costs money that is better put to other uses. 

8. Stuff has a powerful effect on your state of mind. Useless stuff is a burden – it weighs us down.

9. Stuff only has value when it is used, and most of it is rarely used.

10. Stuff may make you contented, but only for a short while. Then you will need more stuff.



 

June 8, 2022

The Simple Scythe



"To the earnest love that laid the swale in rows, Not without feeble-pointed spikes of flowers (Pale orchises), and scared a bright green snake. 
The fact is the sweetest dream that labour knows. My long scythe whispered and left the hay to make."

- From "Mowing" by Robert Frost

The original mowers were not machines. They were people. People wielding scythes.

With record high gas prices making things like mowing the lawn prohibitively expensive, people may soon be looking for low-tech, affordable ways of doing things.

Therefore, the scythe, an ancient instrument use to cut grass and grain, may be making a comeback.

Actually, it has never gone away. 

The scythe has been in continuous use around the world since its invention in Roman times.

Nor would you expect an efficient, effective, and sustainable device that has been around so long to ever be replaced. 

Like the simple mouse trap, you just can't improve on the scythe.

The First World energy intensive industrial/consumer lifestyle is on permanent backorder.

Soon it will be canceled outright due to a permanent lack of everything. 

Best to be prepared with the simple, effective, and sustainable tools we left behind in our rush toward modernity. 

Like scythes. 

They will give "mowing the lawn" a whole new meaning, and make the process a completely different experience.

And we will all be better for it.




June 3, 2022

A Billion Coins Of Dew

"Moonlight Over Hay Bales" by Paul McMillan



Ryushu Shutaku (1308 - 1388) was a Japanese Zen priest and poet of Nanzen-ji Temple in Kyoto.

I enjoyed a poem by Shutaku today in which he highlighted a point that resonates across the ages: there are many things that no amount of money can buy.

Inspired, I ran with that to express my own experience using the creative scaffolding of his piece.

I wrote the following: 

For all these years,
My certain simplicity:
Neither the consumer or consumerism exist.
All my possessions neat within a box,
My walking shoes by the door,
I lie in bed bathed in a full moon
Or, hearing peepers in the woods, 
I sit up: none can 
purchase pleasure such as this:
Spread across the field of hay, a billion
coins of dew!