Thursday, January 29, 2009

My Greatest Skill

Thoreau said, "My greatest skill has been to want but little."
This is profound.
When we chalk up our lives, we look at all our accomplishments: play an instrument, cook fantastic meals, sing gorgeous songs, build wonderful structures, teach school, write books.
We think of doctors, lawyers, nurses and politicians. Investors, painters, web designers.

But, Thoreau felt his skill of minimalism, his satisfaction with voluntary simplicity, to be his greatest. No doubt his carbon footprint hardly registered at all.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Its Cold out There!

"Live in each season as it passes; breathe the air; drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influence of each.Be blown on by all the winds. Open all your pores and bathe in all the tides of nature, in all her streams, and oceans, at all seasons." H. D Thoreau

This guy knew there is no place with perfect weather all the time. So, I walk in the woods, in rain, sleet, and snow. I drink from the spring that is now flowing, after 3 years being dry from the draught. The pine needles are crisp, but I haven't tasted anything else this winter. Its cold out there!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

We Crave Reality

"Be it life or death, we crave only reality. If we are really dying, let us hear the rattle in our throats and feel cold in the extremities; if we are alive, let us go about our business." H.D. T

The best friends are real with us. Time is too precious, life too short to waste it pretending.

We finally have a real family in the White House. They can understand our concerns. I think we're going to hear the hard brutal truth about the state of our country. We crave reality, so we can deal with it effectively.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

A Taste of Fresh Snow

I went hiking this morning in fresh fallen snow. The mountain laurel leaves had about an inch on them, so I decided to taste the pureness. Like a morsel of fluffy dew, it melted in my mouth.

Up in these N. E Georgia Mountains, there's still greenery, a bird flitting here and there, a squirrel bounding from one tree to the next.

I have the trail to myself, and its pure joy. All these benefits, and it cost me nothing.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Price Of Gas

I'm just thrilled how the price of gasoline has fallen. Not that the government helped. Bush begged OPEC to increase production, candidates proposed a Gas Tax holiday. A cry to regulate market speculators went up. Or how about get automakers to come up with electric cars? Nothing ever got done, all just talk.

It was us, the people. We enjoy "stay cations", use bikes or walk, carpool, combine trips. Billions less miles driven in 2008. Demand is down.We're buying less stuff made with petroleum.

Hopefully, we won't ever forget $4 gas, the pain at the pump. Don't get tricked into buying that truck or SUV. Don't let some bargain now rob you later. I love it. We the people, for the people, by the people.

Friday, January 16, 2009


I've insulated and paneled the studio, laid a vinyl floor covering, and found an area rug. The curtains are from a thrift store, as is the furniture. All told, this living space of nearly 200 square feet cost less than $4,000.
"Consider how slight a shelter is absolutely necessary."--H.D.Thoreau

My Studio

My studio is a 12 x 16 metal cabin with four windows and a regular door. It has steel stud construction, bought unfinished inside, with a pressure treated floor. I added a porch by first cutting a bunch of wood to build a woodpile, then laid a chunk of plywood on that to form a table/work surface. With scrap lumber, I built a frame for the porch roof, and secured it to the underside of the studio's roof. Finally, I topped it off with a 10x12 Wal-mart tarp and anchored it with guy lines and tent stakes.
This set up has withstood years of storms in N.E. Georgia mountains.

I Went To The Woods


I think it is time to revisit H.D Thoreau's Walden Pond. The father of minimalism, he wrote "I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived." This in 1854.

How appropriate for 2009, with our free falling economy and fallacious government experts. How long will this recession last? For me, its time to live deliberately, discover the essentials, and find I have, after all, truly lived.

Hey, just my two cents.