Peter harvested the avocados the hard way today. He called it the fun way.
Peter harvested the avocados the hard way today. He called it the fun way.
Three potato plants in various growth stages that were planted in the first above ground compost site. The site was ready for planting earlier than expected (6-8 weeks). Potato seeds were then place at bottom of 9″ deep holes & barely covered with soil. Lower left – new sprout. Lower right – dirt filled in to ground level. Background – hilled up. For those not familiar with growing potatoes, covering the stem (hilling- up) with soil or organic material as the plant grows provides medium for roots to spread out, spuds to form and protects spuds from sunlight.
Re: composting. Now that a significant red wiggler population has established itself in each of the above ground compost sites, I’ve begun transplanting some of the wigglers (and their composting allies) into the new compost sites. Let’s see if that enhances the composting process.
Founder of the Skilled Veterans Corps in Japan, Yastel gave a series of talks in the LA area last summer on the Fukushima clean-up crisis. The Skilled Veterans Corps is an association of nearly 1,000 Japanese seniors committed to putting their own lives on the line for the clean-up effort to spare shortening the lives of younger people from the dangerous work that will need to continue for years to come. Here’s the link with subtitles: http://www.SocialUplift.org Please pass along to as many as you can. This is a wake-up call, too, for our own dangerous situation with nuclear power plants and earthquakes.
This article, “The Power of Strangers,” is from OdeWire: News for Intelligent Optimists and has some interesting things to say about meetups, community and health, the Fellowship for Intentional Community, and the Global Ecovillage Network. Read on…
I started another above ground compost pile today. Inspired by Yuki’s seed-saving blogpost, I decided to record the process.
At least at the end of the day, I cover with a layer of soil to discourage critters. When dry leaves are not available to alternate with the “green” waste, I use another layer of wet cardboard.
Keep the pile moist. For one thing, worms need moisture.
I plan to close this pile when it’s about 9 – 12″ high & let it decompose for a few months before planting directly into it. I’m hoping that the pile I just closed will be ready for potato planting by Jan / Feb.
We were honored to give State Senator Leland Yee a tour of LA Eco-Village in early February. In this photo, Eco-Villager Ianne Lavigne shows him the nearly completed eco art studio she has been creating. The Senator was particularly interested in our integrated approach to permaculture and is considering holding a Senate hearing on the subject. Senator Yee represents the 8th District which includes San Francisco and San Mateo counties.
For New Year’s Day I headed up to the San Fernando Valley to check out two new bike lane segments. Bike lanes striped recently:
On September 22-23 2011, Dutch bicycle facility designers came to L.A. and worked with Angelenos to create great designs. The ThinkBike event was covered at LADOT, and L.A. Streetsblog, but the coverage didn’t include too much in the way of sharing actual designs, like S.F. Streetsblog coverage of their ThinkBike did. I figured that I would do a series of three posts (1 – Downtown, 2 – Pacoima, 3 – South L.A.) showing off more of the great work. The designs are posted at LADOT, but they’re big pdfs, difficult to search, find, and share. I’ve broken them out into place-specific entries and tried to run a lot of images and text, to make this excellent work more findable. In addition, I’ve done a fourth blog post about the overall process, which I did find a bit disappointing.
THINKBIKE 4 of 4 – OVERALL PROCESS
When a Dutch bicycle experts come to L.A. and preach the bike gospel, it’s a great thing. Orange 20, LADOT, LACBC and L.A. Streetsblog loved it. I loved it. The designs are awesome, and I hope that any and all of them get built. Then why did BikeSide, L.A. Weekly, CityWatch, and The Engaged Observer express concern over folks not being included in the process? Why wasn’t this an unqualified success that brought together L.A. bicyclists and inspired us all?
I think that some of ThinkBike’s critics focusing a bit much on fairly small detail. Caltrans’ local bike point-person Dale Benson and Rock Miller (engineer who designed many of Long Beach‘s awesome bike facilities) were sent out of the room during the design sessions. The sending off is not a good thing, but I think it’s more of symptom. In my opinion, the more fundamental issue is that ThinkBike was done in a way that has been divisive to L.A. bike communities.
As soon as I read the ThinkBike announcement, I could see it was an exclusive event. The public was invited to the opening and closing sessions only. Immediately I antcipated that this would be a contentious event that would sow divisions in the bike community.
L.A. is a big place. There are lots of great bike groups. Not everyone can be in the room at the same time… so there should have been some sort of transparent, open process by which participants were selected/invited. To this day, I still don’t know who picked whom. Was it the Dutch? the Mayor? the LADOT? the LACBC? I don’t know. (more…)
Are you tired of those same tensions playing out at every meeting? Is your organization or board loosing momentum?
Unresolved tension between co-workers, board members or board and staff gets in the way of productive meetings, wastes valuable time and energy and creates unpleasant office environments. These tensions often come from stress, misunderstanding, lack of communication or follow up, differences of perspectives, changes in leadership, and/or interpersonal resentments.
Oftentimes when facilitating retreats, some tension arises between participants. As a facilitator, one can manage any conflict that arises within a group but in order to truly transform the conflict, it is recommended that parties in conflict work to resolve their differences outside of a retreat during a mediation session.
Sometimes conflicts cannot be avoided. The challenge is how to transform them in an effective, creative and positive way to strengthen important relationships.
Mediation helps resolve disagreements or conflicts in a constructive and empowering way without having to go to court and before they become crises thus enhancing the productivity of your organization, generating more problem solving strategies, saving you money and time while also creating a more harmonious day-to-day work or meeting atmosphere. Mediation facilitates better communication and lasting resolution especially among parties with ongoing working relationships and where personal feelings may be getting in the way of a resolution.
How does mediation work?
The Mediation process is completely confidential and offers individuals an opportunity to work out acceptable solutions with the help of an unbiased third party or mediator. The mediator’s role is not to offer legal or professional advice or decide on outcome, but to provide guidance in identifying the issues and voicing negative feelings in a productive way. The mediator also helps to clarify misunderstandings and priorities, find points of agreement, explore new areas of compromise and collaboration, and negotiate an agreement.
I think that maybe bikes have finally arrived in Los Angeles! Of course, they’ve been here all along.
It’s not just that there are so many folks bicycling in our streets – especially Latino L.A. youth on fixies (fixed gear bicycles), but also all kinds of youth, working class immigrants, elderly Korean women, businessmen, environmentalists, moms, hipsters, y mas y mas.
It’s not just that the city is actually beginning to up its game on bike facility implementation and putting some bike lanes in some central city corridors where folks actually ride a lot.
Sometimes I think that bike culture has caught on here not in spite of, but, because of a lack of bike facilities. Maybe our youth look out at the sadly overly car-centric streets and rebel against them.
What I found this week was a new acknowledgement of bicycling in the street language of Los Angeles. It may have been out there for a long time, and I just finally got around to understanding it. It used to be that, in Spanish, bicycle was a four-syllable word: bicicleta (bee-see-CLET-uh.) When we use a word so much, four syllables is just too long. On the streets today, canvassing for CicLAvia (seek-law-VEE-uh), I’ve been hearing Spanish-speakers talk about bikas – singular bika (BUY-kuh.) (more…)
Within the past day or two, city of Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT) crews striped new bike lanes on First Street in Boyle Heights. The bike lanes are 1.6 miles long, extending from Boyle Avenue to Lorena Street. The actually connect two landmarks: Mariachi Plaza (1st and Boyle) and Evergreen Cemetery (bounded by Lorena, 1st, Evergreen, and Chavez.) The lanes connect with the Metro Gold Line stations at Soto and at Mariachi Plaza.
Here’s a map showing the location of the new lanes:
Here’s a very long post analyzing some of the bikeway mileage numbers reported by the city of Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT.) Here are some quick summaries:
While the 13.5 miles of bike lane implemented in FY2010-11 wasn’t as high as reported, it does represent a significant step in the right direction. It’s actually triple what the city’s annual average had been for the prior 5 years. Using the figures above, the average from 2005-2010 was 4.3 miles/year = (34.93mi – 13.5mi) / 5yrs.
The gory tldr details follow… (more…)
While I was exploring the new 7th Street bike lanes, I came across this:
It’s another example (see this earlier post) of the sorry state of bike parking in Los Angeles. It’s the back side of a tall office building with its front on Wilshire Boulevard. Seven bikes parked on a fence. Note on the upper left corner: a multi-story parking garage… which probably cost, oh, six or seven orders of magnitude more than this fence did. (more…)
Watch this video and share it with drivers who think that bicyclists should wear a helmet.
I used to wear a helmet most of the time, but, over time, I’ve been wearing it less and less. I think that, as Colville-Andersen states, the more that bicycling is perceived to be easy and fun and safe, the more folks will ride. And the more folks riding, the safer it becomes. I think it’s important that folks see riding as something that we do in regular clothes (kinda like driving, walking, riding the bus, etc.) – no special shoes, no special lycra outfits, and no special headgear.
Here’s an article profiling yours truly. It’s by UCI Journalism Student Christina Lam. (I’ve added links and images and fixed a couple very tiny very minor things that nobody else would have noticed.)
Feature Article June 8 2011
by Christina Lam
Joe Linton is a gardener, an activist, and a artist. Another label important to him is something that most people would overlook: Linton is also a resident. He is a resident of Los Angeles, and that influences where he gardens, who he fights for, and what he draws. For most of his adult life, Linton has felt a calling for an activist’s life. Linton is often in combat with government officials and city planners over something in his city he lives to protect. Sometimes he comes out like a hero, and other times he is a non-profit nuisance. When he’s not busy saving the gray, drab urban spaces of LA, Linton is the model neighbor anyone would want—warm, inviting and helpful. (more…)
Sat., May 7, 2011 from 6 pm to midnight at L.A. Eco-Village
Music! Music! Music! Different kinds. Some loud! Some soft!
Bands Single performers Duos
Electronic. Amplified. Acoustic
Some you’ve heard of; some not.
Fundraiser for L.A. Eco-Villagers’ and Friends’ Burning Man Cafe
$5 to $20 sliding scale.
Cafe Negro at Burning Man provides FREE Cafecito Organico coffee and musical entertainment to Burning Man attendees.
Please help us do it again this year, and support local businesses and fair trade organic coffee!
6 to 9 pm: BBQ
8 pm to midnight: Music:
The Atomic Bomb Audition, The Shirley Rolls, fitter, Thiago Winterstein, Dust4ngel, Astronovazz, Telematique and more
Dunkelbunt Brewery Beer available by donation.
No reservations required.
I dropped by the Bici Libre space yesterday afternoon and did a couple of interviews. Bici Libre is the latest name for what was called the Bike Wrangler after it was previously called the Bike Acquisition Czar. The space is somewhat similar to the Bicycle Kitchen (if you’re completely unfamliar with the L.A. bike co-ops watch this Streetfilm), which started at L.A. Eco-Village… though Bici Libre has a specific mission to recover abandoned/donated bikes and make them available to low-income folks at risk for obesity.
Bici Libre run by two of the silliest eco-villagers: Jonny Green and Bobby Gadda. They work for the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, in a program of the 6+ bike organization County Cycling Collaborative, which is a part of the County Public Health RENEW initiative.
Above is a brief interview with Gil Maldonado, a Bici Libre volunteer who was fixing up a bike today (sorry for my poor Spanish, and even poorer sub-titling.) Below is an interview with Bobby and Jonny.
Los Angeles Eco-Village’s intersection mural and adjacent bench-planters were inspired by the work of Portland’s City Repair. Thanks to Next American City, I came across the above video (and a short interview here) which gives a beautiful look into City Repair, and highlights one individual Michael Cook, who’s one of the leaders there. (more…)
On 10-10-10 about 60,000 Angelenos came out to ride bikes and walk on a route between Hollenbeck Park in Boyle Heights and the Bicycle District in East Hollywood. CicLAvia closed 7.5 miles of LA’s famously car-choked streets, and filled our roads with smiles instead. That sounds cheesy, but man, there were a lot of smiles! If you attended I hope you got swept up in the good feeling. I’m smiling just remembering it.
After all the pictures had been taken and the all the hands were shaken, we thought about where to hang the beautiful award we’d received. The eco-village lobby seemed like a natural choice, because this place has not only been the site of many of our meetings, its social network played an integral part in bringing an event like CicLAvia to Los Angeles.
The very first time I visited the eco-village, back in June 2008, I spoke with Lois Arkin about my interest in the ciclovía in Bogotá, Colombia. She gave me the contact info of someone in Bogotá who then gave me the contact info for Jaime Ortiz Mariño, the founder of the ciclovía. I met with Jaime in Bogotá in August 2008, along with Bobby Gadda, another eco-villager and CicLAvia organizer, and he inspired both of us to work on getting this event started in LA when we returned that fall.
So, on Friday morning, I came home on the subway with the award in my hands, and of course the first thing I did was take a picture of it with my cat Borrego, who is a native eco-villager found in the courtyard last spring.
Now the award is out in the lobby.
I’m happy to report that the eco-village has again played a role in incubating progressive bike work in Los Angeles. Thank you!