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Saturday, March 8, 2014


Travel is said to give a person a different perspective on things. I must admit that back home I live in a bubble of my own making. Living in the woods isolates me from so much.

Sailing gave me a different perspective, but not as different as one might think. A sailboat is it's own little world. No matter where we went, we always had our own boat to sleep on at night. We were in a little slice of our own reality.

The real culture shock has been hanging with my dad. Like many older retired folks, he watches a lot of TV -really loud. EVEN THOUGH HE'S NOT DEAF. Everyone else mumbles. There is no escaping the never ending stream of commercials. How do people up up with that crap day in and day out?

Then there's the world of endless strip development. You Americans know what I mean. The roads are lined with car dealerships, fast food places, pawn shops, store front churches and sex shops. The mix might vary a bit by region, but the look is much the same. For some reason that monument to capitalist excess and bad zoning laws bummed me out.

The whole house of cards rests on cheap imports of fuel and goods. There is no way most of those places could stay open without relatively cheap and abundant energy. Maybe fracking has extended the day reckoning for such places. A bit more fossil energy made it into the system, but at huge financial and environmental costs.

I don't want to sound too much like Howard Kunstler here, but he has a point. This lifestyle is not sustainable.

I've no illusion that my little bubbles of isolation will be unaffected by major upsets. At best, I think that my choices may mitigate the damage. Perhaps things will only get bad instead of horrid. If nothing else, at least I don't mistake the world on TV as the real world.



  1. I feel for the folks that take all their news and views from the God of television. My mom lives for the phone and the t.v. and whatever she hears from either one MUST be the truth.

    Luckily I have pretty much weened myself from Network news and the box! I find a good book to be a lot less annoying.

    1. It's a comfort that I have a house full of good books to read.

  2. Computers and the web seems to be just as great of an addiction...with the endless, mindless games.
    We seem to think the endless supply of crappy computers which only last 2-3 years is okay...
    I long for the day of face to face being the mode once again.

    1. That's one reason I've got so many actual real physical books.

      The Internet does have an endless supply of mindless things, but it's a huge source of useful information for those who look.

      I've got a couple old computers running Linux that keep chugging along. I'm not afraid to pop the covers and fix them.

  3. A little time in the "real" world can make our "bubbles" all the more enjoyable.

  4. What? You mean there is a real world out there?

    1. Don't worry Dizzy, I don't think it can find you.

  5. My hubby and I are retired and my hubs is at the library all the time and on the internet playing games, I must walk for my type 2 diabetes each day, it rains about 200 plus days a year here, I refuse to be chained in our home, we have one car, I don't drive, but ride a bike to get to anyplace the area is over developed and ridiculous when we got our tiny home 36 years ago in sept. of 2014 it will be 36 years one could see all over that came to a big hault now it is not friendly to many who want a home, a couple who fixed a home the same design as ours stayed not even 13months fixed it up about $34,000 worth of sweat equity, the walkway a path to selling meth and dope, they left, baby is now 18 months old the fellow a top electrician hvac foreman, built a new home on 15 acres way way out, he did not want his only child and only wife subjected to the crap that the kids thought they could put on the homeowners, there is a group who hired unemployed veterans to man that walkway the kids are gone and the fellows and one woman appreciate the money! All in the name of only went to that high school and graduated one day and in 3 days from the junior college and then 3 degrees from the university she got a ton of money to attend, that was the last time they had real teachers ,they were our age and they retired with great pensions and never looked back..It is shameful teachers are afraid of the student body now..oh, my goodness how times have changed, I would have never considered speaking to teachers from what I have heard walking 2 miles a day to keep healthy at the highschool, no wonder many do their two or three years and then drop out to work at other jobs not in teaching...shameful, love your blog, I would love to live on a boat and I mean all the time, only thing of it is my hubs hates to go on boats, so it would only be me and that would not bode well for our soon to be 40 years marriage in may 2014!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. Congratulations on your long marriage. You must be doing something right.

      I think we'd have better teachers if their hands weren't tied by all the silly rules. I lasted 2 weeks as a sub. They gave me the worse kids, but we got along. The administration, on the other hand . . .

  6. Living here in Alberta, we are in a bubble of money from the energy business. Fort McMurray is paving the streets with gold thanks to the demand for oil in the U.S.
    When oil heads towards $100, it's boom times all over again.
    The problems within the pipeline industry and the inability to move the oil fast enough or in sufficient volumes has pushed rail transport to the forefront of shipping oil to U.S. customers.
    After recent bad publicity over rail tank car safety and the public demands for tank cars to be kept away from high population areas, shippers are now building new tankers hiden inside sea-can containers so that they will not be visable to the public and therefore escape the concerns over safety. Dirty just got dirtier.
    There are many Canadians who are very thankful for Neil Young's support of First Nations who are trying to block further development of the oil sands.
    Meanwhile reports are now stating that the development of alternate enery will see oil prices drop to the $70 range which will hopefully put the brakes on the stupidity of the Province of Alberta.
    That little word you used, "sustainability" is the key.
    Around here it's been trampled into the mud and paved over to make those streets of gold.

    1. Thanks for the heads up on those rail shipments. I hadn't heard about the containers. Tricky . . . and dirty.

      When the bubble bursts, all you've have is polluted water and ghost towns. Of course, it's going to boom forever, right?