Hi all! Tomorrow I leave for a month in Nicaragua - no phone, no internet, no tv, no hot showers, no CrossFit, no family or friends. Just me and a backpack, in a small town, learning Spanish. This image from Keri Smith (left) says it all. See you in February! One last post before I peace out for a while:

Listening to: Joshua Foer: Step Outside Your Comfort Zone and Study Yourself Failing


Yes! Love Vanessa Davis!

Liked this design*sponge interview about Portlandia ("artisinal knots, pickling") And, just because: Portlandia: Dream of the 90s ("I gave up clowning years ago!" "Well, in Portland you don't have to.")

As more and more friends "settle down" and I continue to plan my life in one year and two year stints, the pull between staying in one place and continuing to jump around becomes stronger. So there was a lot I could relate to here: A Place to Lay My Heart. I want community and stability, but I also want adventure, to see new places, to have new experiences, to not wait around for something....ah, who knows.

And....related! "The capacity to be alone is the capacity to love. It may look paradoxical to you, but it is not. It is an existential truth: only those people who are capable of being alone are capable of love, of sharing, of going into the deepest core of the other person - without possessing the other, without becoming dependent on the other, without reducing the other to a thing, and without becoming addicted to the other. They allow the other absolute freedom, because they know that if the other leaves, they will be as happy as they are now. Their happiness cannot be taken by the other, because it is not given by the other." - Osho

Wow. My Guantánamo Nightmare.

From TAL this week: Mr. Daisey and the Apple Factory: "Mike Daisey was a self-described "worshipper in the cult of Mac. Then he saw some photos from a new iPhone, taken by workers at the factory where it was made. Mike wondered: Who makes all my crap? He traveled to China to find out."

"Accept yourself / so deeply / that you are not afraid to let go / of what is not you." source.

Let's Celebrate by Mandy Coe

the moments
where nothing happens.
The moments
that fill our lives.
Not the field bright with poppies, but
the times you walked, seeing
no leaves, no sky, only one foot
after another.

We are sleeping
(it's not midnight and
there is no dream).
We enter a room - no one is in it.
We run a tap,
queue to buy a stamp.

These are the straw moments
that give substance
to our astonishments;
moments the homesick dream of;
the bereaved, the diagnosed.


Despite my waning love for Jordan, Jesse, Go! and my disappointment with their support of Adam Carolla, I'm still going to check out the newest Maximum Fun release, a pop-culture podcast called Bullseye.

Yikes. The Law School Bubble: How Long Will It Last if Law Grads Can’t Pay Bills?

Both too familiar, hilarious, and actually useful: Ask a Clean Person: Tackling a Major Clean-up

Image: source.

Another inspiring life: Robert L. Carter, an Architect of School Desegregation, Dies at 94 (thanks, nk)

So beautiful. Can you imagine what this would mean to you as a kid? "With the aim of touching the hearts of 45 children in a homeless shelter in the bronx, student Samia Kallidis designed a personalized art kit that includes a coloring book and art supplies currently needed at the shelter."

“Being a leftist is a calling, not a career; it’s a vocation, not a profession. It means you are concerned about structural violence, you are concerned about exploitation at the work place, you are concerned about institutionalized contempt against gay brothers and lesbian sisters, hatred against peoples of color, and the subordination of women. It means that you are willing to fight against, and to try to understand the sources of social misery at the structural and institutional levels, as well as at the existential and personal levels. That’s what it means to be a leftist; that’s why we choose to be certain kinds of human beings.” - Cornel West


Woody Guthrie’s New Year’s Resolution List, 1942

1. Work more and better
2. Work by a schedule
3. Wash teeth if any
4. Shave
5. Take bath
6. Eat good — fruit — vegetables — milk
7. Drink very scant if any
8. Write a song a day
9. Wear clean clothes — look good
10. Shine shoes
11. Change socks
12. Change bed cloths often
13. Read lots good books
14. Listen to radio a lot
15. Learn people better
16. Keep rancho clean
17. Dont get lonesome
18. Stay glad
19. Keep hoping machine running
20. Dream good
21. Bank all extra money
22. Save dough
23. Have company but dont waste time
24. Send Mary and kids money
25. Play and sing good
26. Dance better
27. Help win war — beat fascism
28. Love mama
29. Love papa
30. Love Pete
31. Love everybody
32. Make up your mind
33. Wake up and fight
A great obituary from The Economist: George Whitman: A bibliophile in Paris

Yay! They've officially announced the dates for CASA’S 9th Annual Ride Through Paradise. "CASA's Ride is one of the Northwest's premier cycling events... The event features four courses (13-mile, 30-mile, 62-mile and 100-mile) through beautiful Klamath County, Oregon." This was the first century (100 mi ride) I did last year and I loved it. It was definitely brutally hot (the last time I will ever make the mistake of not wearing sun screen just because it's not hot when I start at 7am....), but it's not a super hilly course, and the support crew was so nice.

New addition to the podcast rotation: Romantic Friendship.

Book updates: Just finished The Redbreast by Jo Nesbø. At the risk of sounding stupid, I will admit that I was often confused by this book, as it jumped between three related stories, with various characters (some of whom use various names...I think?) Overall, not as impressed by Nesbo
as I expect to be, given the rave reviews. Now devouring The Lost City of Z: A Tale of Deadly Obsession in the Amazon by David Grann. It's just the sort of non-fiction book I love (like "Devil In The White City" and, to a lesser extent, "Hellhound on His Trail") - a rollicking story with lots of entertaining quotes from primary and secondary sources on a variety of topics (Victorian mores, the early 20th century, the history of archeology and anthropology), and a modern day tale interwoven with one from the past.


To the New Year
by W.S. Merwin

With what stillness at last
you appear in the valley
your first sunlight reaching down
to touch the tips of a few
high leaves that do not stir
as though they had not noticed
and did not know you at all
then the voice of a dove calls
from far away in itself
to the hush of the morning

so this is the sound of you
here and now whether or not
anyone hears it this is
where we have come with our age
our knowledge such as it is
and our hopes such as they are
invisible before us
untouched and still possible