Blog Action Day

Bloggers unite. Today is blog action day, when we write about ‘the environment’ in order to ‘save it’. Oh yeah.

Tom Worthington calls for less emails; but I concur with Paul Kingsnorth, and say: smash your computer and lock on to the nearest airport check-in counter!

(I might say that, but I’m more inclined to sit in the shade under a tree, sewing my shirt and knowing the touch of the wind. Bring on the prelude!)

Fake World DOES Contain Humans

All has gone well, since my last post, with my intra-office carlessness. My announcement (“I don’t go in cars; don’t ask me to.”) has been met with near universal acceptance (or silence), to my great relief. I had wondered whether the conversations in the tea-room about various cars’ power-ratings and other such motorcar trivia would mean some expression of distain towards one who rejects all that. But no, nothing has come of it. They’re nice chaps, and I needn’t have worried.

So, with that bit of excitement out of the way, I’m left pondering the far-off hills and wishing that I could be in the workshop, at my bench, and writing in ink and not at a keyboard. The computer-reality is basically two-dimensional: we, the IT people, strive to make everything the same. Documents can never show age; photos must be as bright forever as they day they were taken; we care only for content, and never for context or media. A rotten state of affairs! I want my pages to yellow and my photos to fade! A world in which nothing is old gives us nothing at all — despite what Wikipedia would have us believe.

But I wont go on about that. I can’t bear to think about it, not here, in this place.

This office has begun to pall my spirits, now the novelties of The Commute and Being A Man have worn thin. I just want to run! (Well, run for a little ways, and then sit and sew my shirt, or write in my Moleskine…). I can’t dream about my workshop.

How CGDNs might help build a sense of belonging.

My brain is feeling pretty groggy at the moment, so excuse any pointlessness in this post. Not that there’s ever any point to my posts, but that’s beside the point. I’m at work, almost thinking that the afternoon’s nearly half-gone and so, well, what’s the point of doing any more work…

There are, in Australia, these new things called Community Geographic Domain Names, or CGDNs. They are domain names like ‘lyneham.act.au’ — that is, they are domain names in which every component is geographically localising. This is fantastic! I think that having a place online for one’s locality, a place that is easily discernable for new people or new places, has got great potential to act as repository for local stories, knowledge, history, and whatever else people want to use it for. Imagine moving to a new town, and finding the town’s entire history (well, a bit of it anyway) available for browsing, and writen by the very people in it. Like a hiking hut’s register (the book that hikers leave messages in on tracks like the Bibbulmun) but for a whole suburb, town, or region.

I am vaguely thinking about seeing what sort of support there is in the food co-op community for us registering acton.act.au. But maybe I should wait until I feel a little more dedicated to a place — which is actually what I find so interesting about this idea: that it might help people feel more attached to where they live and the people around them. That’s got to be a good thing.

Placeblogging

I learnt a new word today: placeblog. (By saying that, I may be showing myself up to be rather behind the times; if that’s the case, then I guess I am behind the times. Oh well.)

Placeblogging is blogging about place (suprisingly), and generally about a place to which one feels a particular connection. It’s hyperlocal blogging: not going far, but going deep. Exploring where one lives. Blogging about a place to which one has a connection, yes, and also blogging in order to build that connection. In so many ways, each of us building a better relationship with where we live is of vital importance.

A few links:

so cold

Why oh why does Tilley’s not open until nine o’clock?! Doesn’t anyone in Lyneham understand the joys of escaping first thing in the morning to a nice warm café, a good book, and the ignoring of everything one’s supposed to be doing for a few hours?! I mean, really!

I do have plans, of course, to be more comfortable—no, I mean less cold—at home. A desk in the Spare Oom, a small lectric heater, once I get a better wireless card that can make it through the monocrete walls; for now I alternate huddling and running down the hill to Tilley’s.

Where, yesterday, I was reveling in the lovely comfort of reading history: so good, so very reassuring, to read about The Past! I cease to feel so alone, so much like everything is too hard to figure out, when I know that billions of other people have come before me. It is so very good to know the stories of the past, to feel some sense of the context of one’s life. I’m not just this drifting, isolated blip in the universe: I am actually, very really and dependably, just one of millions of billions of little blips in the universe. And so there’s nothing to worry about.

My very own garden plot

Map showing location of my garden plot.I’ve got a community garden plot at the COGS O’Connor garden. It’s 9×5 metres, on an old tennis court, and has nothing but weeds growing on it at the moment (because I only picked up the key yesterday). A. and M. have also got plots there; we’re all neighbours in the north-east corner, and hooray for that! :-) [For some reason, I hesitate putting people’s names on this blog, they mightn’t like it y’know.]

I have a number of rather peculiar ideas about what I’m going to do with this plot (peculiar to some ways of thinking about the thing, of course; but then everything’s peculiar to some way of thinking isn’t it?). I want to plant beans, to follow in Thoreau’s tread, learn how he “came to love my rows, my beans, though so many more than I wanted. They attached me to the earth, and so I got strength like Antaeus. But why should I raise them? Only Heaven knows.” It’s what inspired me when I was eighteen, and nothing much has changed… it’s just that I’ve not done much since then. I’ve an idea to have a morning seat in the garden, a place to sit, a place to write—prehaps even to have tea—and tend to the garden. I’m sure I’ll be laughed at, I usually think I will be…

I’ll get the camera working again, record (visually) what’s going on, but really I think I’d be better off sticking to text.

Triple Gripe

Eighteen buckets of water for A.’s garden. A cycle over to my new community garden plot in O’Connor. And now much grief caused by our bothersome host.

It’s fun carrying buckets, when one doesn’t have to worry about getting sunburnt. I’m oh-so-excited about digging my new plot! If you’re in the market, don’t, whatever you do, host with deasoft.com—I’ve never had to submit so many support tickets for anything.