Saturday, November 23, 2013

Remembering GENERATE

My GENERATE day was cool and bright from morning to night, an adventure for edging ahead. Its true start was the bridge walk, a brisk excursion after the drive. My aim was to log a letterbox and I did. I also enjoyed a second fortuitous find, a sign left behind. Then I was off to the Andross entry.

"Accidental collisions," Adam Burk said, and my note taking began. It was TEDxDirigo Sunday and I sat self-satisfied.




The first talk was excellent: Voot Yin of MDIBL and Novo Biosciences Inc focused on tissue regeneration with ZF143 (ZF for zebra fish, which regrow a clipped tail at an astonishing rate; ZF143 for "a nontoxic drug that rescues defects in regeneration"). Might humans effectively regenerate damaged tissue with such a drug? That's what he hopes to find out. Along the way, I assume there'll be scads of "induced amputations" among sacrificial subjects: fishes, salamanders, and other lesser creatures.

Three cheers for Alicia Eggert, speaker two, who weaves subtle surprise into clever sculptures. Her videos were fun to watch, though Pulse Machine made me wonder how many parts will get replaced before the paired elements clock their last beat. I appreciated her Strunk-and-White-ish goal to "communicate as clearly and concisely as possible."

Local Maina Handmaker promoted her laudable quest to repurpose ancient freight barns into a year-round farmer's market, Jenny Ryan experimented with the TED format to press a point about design, and Rafael Grossman hyped Google Glass. Then Chas Lester vocally percussed at us up to the break.



After lunch, but before lunch was over, I went back to the presentation hall and found Apparatus Dance Company on the ropes. It was the right kind of unexpected. They opened Session Two with a performance and an explanation of how they created the back wall art while practicing, making "maps of where the dance has been" for reperformance or revision. (I had thought the art was a preschool's contribution.)

video

Insert #hashtag video here, followed by David Buchanan telling of Clarence Thurlow and the Fletcher Sweet, Mohamed Nur saying while living here he has "never experienced peace," Liz Neely remarking on paper while wearing a dress to start a chain reaction, Eli Mellen (the next link) pointing me at mainemakers.me, and gkisedtanamoogk unwittingly completing the apparel trifecta. The elder draped a wampum belt over his left hand while addressing truth and reconciliation and leading me to consider "What does it mean to acknowledge we live on the homelands of Indian country?"

The tiramisu line at break didn't abate till nearly too late, but I got a tasty little bowl to take back in. I sat next to the knitter in the glow zone and started a tweet.

Adam said, "This dot is a cool elevator" and I now knew why. TED's red circle centers attention, gives a lift.

Next up on the crimson disk was Yona Belfort putting hoarder and minimalist on opposite sides of the value threshold and equating shopping with gambling. And what was it urchin eater Graham Morehead was saying about discovering simple solutions through complex systems?

Nancy Andrews kept me off balance for a bit. She was inhabiting delirium once upon a time and works out her post-ICU Syndrome in gently unsettling art. In an abrupt shift, Serena Galleshaw brightly reviewed how she and her friends created their own reasons to stay (and as their neighbor I'm grateful they did). John Coleman said do nothing. He also said stay toiling. Then Bianca Fresh (Abdalla) got us to stomp and clap and slap thighs in a 500-hand hambone. She and Chas went playfully head to head to end it.


I did a little post-intensity wandering over the old mill floor, stabbing at a couple of chats as the crowd thinned, but that was a wrap. It was five and almost night, a chilly march back to the car. After one wrong turn I just aimed at twilight to find home.




Friday, April 19, 2013

XW-1 Output Power



Pretty sure it was 120 at 0135, but got caught by a fade. Wrote TUT. Probably AUT.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

It's Not About the Tea

Bag Ladies Tea claims to be a specialty tea company, but their tea is not special. It's the packaging that counts. Their 17 offerings appear to differ only in the design of the box or tin they come in and the tags attached to their tea bag strings. "English breakfast" is as far as the website goes to describe the tea itself, which at $12.50 for 24 bags ought to be a premium selection. If you're looking for a cute gift go ahead and order a box, but if you're looking for tea keep searching.

Saturday, April 06, 2013

Name That Poet

His "How I became a poet" was the first catch. Whose definition, why someone writes? It's a wound that needs healing.

Let a poem be itself. Ya gotta be smart enough to ask what it wants to do. (What is this about instructive direction?) Poems don't care. They have a loving nature. "You never get it right on the first draft."

Size 14 shoes as a boy. Today he wears comfortably broken walking shoes. Then New Hampshire, now Maine. "Rains then quick thaws that so transform the world."

He read The Abandonment and I thought of Stafford reading I Had a Brother.

Giving form to the darkness. Who said "God damns every time he is asked"?

It.

On Water.

And a pantoum.

Name that poet.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Mad Hat Tea

Gift teas two: Irish Breakfast and Makaibari Estate Darjeeling, both from Mad Hat, A Tea Company. Both recommended, though neither emphatically. Sure, if this tea "palace" was close by, rather than in downtown Tacoma, I'd be happy to stop in for a taste. But no cross-country ordering has been inspired by an Irish Breakfast that is much like most others in my experience or a tea type that's never been a fave. The autumnal flush organic darjeeling, with a more pronounced flavor than other darjeelings I've tried, was perhaps the most enjoyable such tea in my slim history. That bodes well if by chance I find myself at 1130 Commerce.

Why Mad Hat has been compelled to make controvertible "duh" statements en fran├žais on its packets, I haven't the foggiest. The Irish Breakfast specified Ceci n'est pas un Donkey.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Nemo on Knox

Inside for the morning, we watched a kind neighbor snowthrow the mountain at the end of the driveway. That still left plenty for me. Nemo dropped an unprecedented single-storm snowfall, I'd say, at least for our 13 years here. Blowing and drifting make an estimate unwise, but I can't resist stating 25 inches.* I've seen taller piles once or twice, but this time we went from near-bare ground to waist-deep drifts overnight. It's hard to get shovel leverage with snow that high. 2+ days digging and there's still no route to the compost pile, or out the back door, for that matter.

The weather station recorded only one gust above 30 mph, so no blizzard here, but it was nonetheless breezy. Sustained winds in the teens.
2/8 2118 29mph 44deg
2/8 2310 29 36
2/9 0249 28 37
2/9 0909 30 348

The weather station reported -3.1 temperature and -35 wind chill for 2pm on the 9th. Seems that has to be a glitch, but it was definitely cold and windy out there.

Kept birds fed and Friday through Sunday detected 23 species. The Field Sparrow continues, but has been present only briefly in the morning. Our second redpoll of the winter appeared for a few minutes Saturday morning. A Red-bellied Woodpecker, just the 4th for our yard, was at the suet this afternoon (earlier encounters were May 2007 and September-October 2012, with another just down the street in May 2010). Carolina Wren. Robins and starlings. A single white-throat, down from the usual few.

* The National Weather Service spotter network reported Berwick atop the list for York County.
BERWICK 32.0 1221 PM 2/09
2 NE KENNEBUNK 29.0 250 PM 2/09
2 NNW SACO 27.0 1053 AM 2/09
SACO 25.0 354 PM 2/09
HOLLIS 24.5 800 AM 2/10
CAPE NEDDICK 24.1 700 AM 2/10
5 N YORK 24.1 700 AM 2/10
4 SW WELLS 23.5 800 AM 2/09
1 SSW CORNISH 23.0 547 PM 2/09
5 NW HOLLIS CENTER 22.0 700 AM 2/09
4 NE PARSONSFIELD 18.5 800 AM 2/10

Monday, January 21, 2013

Red Claws versus Armor, January 12, 2013

Gift of tickets to Maine Red Claws versus Springfield Armor sent four of us to Portland, three for our third and one for her first time courtside. Good Saturday night crowd and tight game with the finish in our favor. Dajuan Summers, Micah Downs, and Shelvin Mack caught my home-team eye, while Christian Polk and Ben Uzoh were the Armor threats I most noticed.

We recommend not sitting in the cheap corner seats.