Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Worst. Year. Ever.

I can't even make it to the end.

Even a new, pragmatic, intelligent president can't pull this one up from the bottom.

This is the year I found I can't work anymore. The year I lost my house. The year my pain got much worse. The year the money ran out. Hell, I'm one of the lucky ones.

Could be worse. Could be -3 degrees.

Oh, wait, it is.

Could be worse. Could be giving birth in a tree during a flood.

Good night and good luck.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Organic Kona Coffee Is Back, Talking Story on Hawaii

Back in 1998, when we were living on Maui, I was contacted by an organic Kona coffee farmer about helping him sell his gourmet coffee beans. He was one of my best clients until he sold his farm and retired in 2006. So, I was pleasantly surprised when I heard from Mike Tucker, one of the guys who bought Dr. Faust's farm.

Tucker has been refurbishing the farm, getting organic control of the weeds (cutting them), installing his own processing equipment, starting and planting his own coffee tree seedlings, getting the Hawaiian coffee farm certified organic, and much more. It's an amazing amount of work to farm anything organically, especially coffee.

Great thing about this story is that you can read the entire experience, because Mike kept a journal of the entire organic coffee farm refurbishing story, and it is now his blog. Judging from what is there already, this would be a good blog to subscribe to if you're into organic agriculture at all. All you organic coffee farmers will love it!

Or maybe you just love fresh roasted organic Kona coffee beans showing up ot your front door when there's a foot of snow outside. Like me.

Maybe you're a real coffee nut and you want to home roast your own organic green coffee beans from Hawaii... Mike says you can use an old popcorn air popper!

You don't have to Digg organic Kona coffee in order to Digg the story of organic Kona coffee farming. It's an enticing blog, like the aroma of fresh brewed... Ah, you get the idea! Plus, there are all kinds of great pictures of Hawaii, the big island of the Hawaiian Islands.

The organic Kona coffee from 1500 feet up the side of Mauna Loa near the Hawaiian sanctuary town of Honaunau is back! And it is better than ever!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Interview with the Pakistani Spectator

I was contacted by the Pakistani Spectator for an interview, which was fun. I don't get a lot of interview requests, but when I do, it's always from very interesting corners of the world. This blog is especially interesting, coming from one of the "hottest" places on earth, in terms of instability and terrorism. Of course, Pakistanis are just like everyone else in the world: they're being taken advantage of by rich plutocrats too!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

My Suggestion for Obama's Energy Department

Ever since I was a teenager reading about alternative energy, my hero has been Amory Lovins of the Rocky Mountain Institute. Reading the Freakonomics blog today, there was a little mention of how many readers are suggesting what I had only dared to dream: that we make Amory Lovins Secretary of Energy. Now, this is what I call an Energy Department.

Monday, November 03, 2008

The Electoral College Is Absurd

Anyone who's ever visited my Bush Quotes page knows I hate the Electoral College. I hadn't thought about it much, with Obama so far ahead in the polls, but this little doozy reminded me:

"This system, along with the winner-take-all practice used to allocate most states' electoral votes, creates the potential for an absurd outcome. In the unlikely event that all 213 million eligible voters cast ballots, either John McCain or Barack Obama could win enough states to capture the White House with only 47.8 million strategically located votes. The presidency could be won with just 22 percent of the electorate's support, only 16 percent of the entire population's."

Friday, October 24, 2008

Bombing and Killing for Political Purposes: Terrorism?

According to Sarah Palin, bombing abortion clinics is not "terrorism."

Brian Williams: Is an abortion clinic bomber a terrorist under this definition?

Sarah Palin: (Exasperated sigh.) There’s no question that Bill Ayers by his own admittance was one who thought to destroy our U.S. Capitol and our Pentagon. That is a domestic terrorist. There is no question there. Now others who would want to engage in harming innocent Americans or facilities that it would be unacceptable to, I don’t know if you’re gonna use the word "terrorist" there.

Digg this and follow the link to the story. There's video there.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Organic Gardening And Blogging About It (again)!

Back in the cave man days of the internet, I created one of the world's first organic gardening web sites. We lived in the mountains north of Los Angeles, and I had a great backyard garden. Then we moved to Hawaii for a year, and we had a banana tree and a small tropical garden. Then we moved back to LA, and for over 10 years I just didn't have enough room or soil to grow anything but a few flowers. So, I got a little out of practice.

Because of my recent disability retirement from the stagehand world, we moved to upstate NY, and now I'm gardening again, blogging about it in the Organic Gardening News Blog, and loving it. The fall garden of greens, peas, lettuce, spinach, and, of course, arugula for election night are all doing great, despite the four frosts we've had already. Every day is another day of fresh, local, solar powered food before a long winter.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Maui Hawaii Home Sharing Friend

My friend Cherie is the owner and operator of the Hale Hookipa Inn Maui Bed and Breakfast. She was one of my first internet marketing clients. When she told me she wanted to start a blog, I was happy to hear it. Not only could I use the work right now, but I look forward to reading what she has to say. She has been deeply involved in the Maui community for years. She is a business owner who works hard to keep her head above water. She is an environmentalist. I'm sure she has a lot to say.

Her new blog is Ho'okipa Aikane, or, roughly, home sharing friend. I asked her to explain who she is and why she's doing this. Here's her reply:

I am a long time resident of Hawaii, I moved here as a teenager who loved the ocean and warm weather.

After raising my family, I found myself on my own on the island of Maui. In 1994, I purchased an old run down Portuguese family home in Upcountry Maui. This gem was built in 1924, and I cried when I first saw it. I wondered what happened to the original family....? It was a beautiful craftsman style home in some MAJOR disrepair, but the bones were good. In my usual optimistic approach, I figured, why not? I can do this.

It's been an amazing journey...with a laughable budget, I have managed to restore and give new life to my home. It is now Hale Ho'okipa Inn.

I hope to share stories, and life in upcountry Maui and Hawaii Nei with anyone who wants to peek in.

A hui ho...until later!!

Be sure to subscribe to her feed. It will be worth it.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

We Are New Yorkers Now!

I haven't posted in months because we were moving, looking for a house to rent for months, and then moving in. We packed up and left Los Angeles after I was diagnosed with osteoarthritis and told not to lift over 20 pounds ever again. That put an end to the stagehand career, so I won't be reporting from backstage anymore. I still have a lot of stagehand friends from all over the world, and I will post when I get good second hand info on that long plastic hallway, as Hunter Thompson referred to the entertainment business.

We got some great pictures from our trip. I've posted the first of those, from Yosemite National Park, over at the computer backgrounds photo blog. There are plenty more. Robin took a whole bunch of her abstract photos, including some great ones of Reno. We have some great road shots from some beautiful backroads in Wyoming. We loved Mount Rushmore and got some great pictures from there, where it snowed big, flaky snow...

We stopped for deep dish pizza on the south side of Chicago (Obama's neighborhood) and really lucked out thanks to a local man who sent us to the perfect place (Pizza Nova on 43rd). We ate that delicious pizza while we sat on the shore of Lake Michigan, in Marquette Park, near Gary, Indiana. We'll be putting those pictures up soon.

We're moved in to our new home, near Cooperstown, New York. Now that I'm out of the stage business, I'm looking for web site work. So, if you need, or know someone who needs, higher search engine rankings, please get in touch!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Open the Pod Bay Doors, Please HAL

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic."--Arthur C. Clarke, 1917-2008

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Updated Dreams of Kauai

This time of year, our friends and relatives in colder environs like to at least dream about a getaway bungalow on a Hawaiian beach. It's a cheap way to warm the mind: download a few pictures of a beach just on the other side of a nice lawn, with plenty of room for a family football game.

Of course, in the case of this particular island getaway, it's not as expensive as you'd think. While there is no shortage of luxury villas for rent in Hawaii, there are precious few Hawaii beach rentals available to the middle class family that saved all their lives for a trip to Hawaii.

Now that the home equity loans aren't there to finance your Hawaii vacation, it's time to look into the affordable side of Hawaii, which could really use some tourists right now. When the recession comes, the first thing people cut back on is travel. But if you do it right, you can still enjoy paradise on a budget. Sometimes, it's the best way to really see a place.