Archive for December 2010


hello 2011

Wishing everyone a inspiring, radiant and transformational new year!

Photo by minato.

Posted at 12pm on 12/31/10 | 2 comments | Filed Under: photography | read on


household tip

I never realized that more soap doesn’t necessarily mean you’re getting a cleaner wash! Such a simple little change we’ve made (thanks to my Dad who forwarded this article to me) and its really made a difference. Not only are our drinking glasses less filmy, but our towels and clothes are less stiff. Bonus that we’re saving money. (And I would imagine that if millions of people do the same, it’s probably better for the environment, even if you’re already using eco-friendly detergent.)

Go Easy on the Detergent

Here is Mr. Schmidt’s test to determine if you’re oversoaping. Take four to six clean bath towels, put them in your front-loading washing machine (one towel for a top loader). Don’t add any detergent or fabric softener. Switch to the hot water setting and medium wash and run it for about five minutes.

Check for soap suds. If you don’t see any suds right away, turn off the machine and see if there is any soapy residue. If you see suds or residue, it is soap coming out of your clothes from the last wash.

“I’ve had customers that had to run their towels through as many as eight times to get the soap out,” Mr. Schmidt said, who lives in Indiana. […]

Too much soap is also a problem in dishwashers and can cause dishes and glasses to look filmy. Again, check the detergent container for recommended amounts — you definitely don’t have to fill up the entire soap container in the dishwasher.

*Sidenote: a few years ago, a friend of mine who worked at an environmental health research group at Columbia University informed me of the dangers of dryer sheets (they contain phthalates, which are especially dangerous for children.) Liquid fabric softener is the worst.

Posted at 4pm on 12/22/10 | 1 comment | Filed Under: do something!, environment | read on



Laura Failyau.

Posted at 5pm on 12/15/10 | 1 comment | Filed Under: music, photography | read on



Posted at 4pm on 12/15/10 | 1 comment | Filed Under: my photos | read on


nature and grace

Finally the trailer for Terrance Malick’s new movie, The Tree of Life. I’ve been faithfully checking the status of this film since his last one, The New World (2007), blew me away — not only did it awaken a desire within me to connect to nature on a deeper level, but also motivated me to learn more about indigenous forms of spirituality (where connecting to the Divine through nature was a way of life.) Ever since, I’ve been anticipating Malick’s next film, hoping for more transformative revelations :) The trailer certainly gives me the chills. Even the first line – “there are two ways through life, the way of nature and the way of grace” – connects to an ongoing, recent conversation with friends about the ‘universal law of grace’ and how it operates. Grace is a subject close to my heart, as is the tree of life, so I’m beyond excited to see what personal revelations Malick has to offer us about these two sacred subjects…

Posted at 4pm on 12/15/10 | 3 comments | Filed Under: film, trailers | read on




Posted at 12am on 12/10/10 | no comments; | Filed Under: art & artists | read on


nature’s fingerprints

Just came across these cool little tables made by Holmes Wilson (found on Style Files.) Even cooler are their concrete panels. I can totally envision these lining a foyer, or a spectacular bathroom, or a recessed in a library, lit up like a fossilized archeological treasure. The trick is in the stain and what kind of patina and texture they create. The larger leaf imprints are particularly stunning.

Posted at 7pm on 12/9/10 | no comments; | Filed Under: art & artists, home | read on


keep it straight, yo

In general, I’m obsessed with historical radicalness and tipping points, which is why I am so fixated on this Wikileaks phenomenon. It feels like such a HUGE deal and I can’t stop thinking about it (though, I’m sure plenty of people out there could care less.) However, for those who do care, check out this super short summary that speaks for itself: The BFD of The Wikileaks Era. Also love this excellent piece (The Crux of the Wikileak’s Debate) detailing how the lies surrounding the Wikileaks phenom are becoming ‘fact’ –as much as Saddam’s WMDs. Whatever your opinions on the Wikileaks phenomenon, even if you don’t really care, at least keep the fundamental facts straight.


LIE #1: Wikileaks “dumped a quarter of a million” cables for general public consumption.
FACT: Only 960 cables have been released, about 2% of the total cache.


LIE #2: Wikileaks “indiscriminately” released cables that provide no value other than satisfying people’s “prurient” interest.

FACT: These 960 cables were selected via a collaborative editorial process that included some of the world’s most respected news organizations: The Guardian (w/ The New York Times), El Pais, Le Monde and Der Speigel. Cables were chosen that specifically *corresponded to stories already released* by these major papers – i.e. cables determined to be newsworthy by managing editors.


LIE #3: Wikileaks “carelessly” put innocent people in danger.

FACT: All the above newspapers published the cables *before* Wikileaks. Additionally, once Wikileaks finally did make the 960 cables available on their website, ALL redactions suggested by editors of said newspapers were applied to protect identities.


Just had to put this out there after mentioning these facts to a few friends who were under the impression that Wikileaks posted 250,000 random cables on their website “just because they could.” The Wikileaks process is not perfected, and there is much refining to be done, but it’s not the “random dump” of information that mainstream media is reporting.

Posted at 4pm on 12/9/10 | 1 comment | Filed Under: the shift (of ages) | read on


tree of life

Cutest illustration for The Tree of Life: Charles Darwin. Love Peter Sis!

Posted at 4pm on 12/8/10 | 2 comments | Filed Under: art & artists, books & writing | read on



A few months ago I posted how I’d no idea that the Niger Delta “has endured the equivalent of the Exxon Valdez spill every year for 50 years by some estimates.” Today’s cable leaks highlighted by The Guardian show how Shell Oil has systematically infiltrated the Nigerian government. I pray this gives some environmental legal activists out there a sound basis for taking decisive action against Shell. Or are these oil giants untouchable?

WikiLeaks cables: Shell’s grip on Nigerian state revealed

The company’s top executive in Nigeria told US diplomats that Shell had seconded employees to every relevant department and so knew “everything that was being done in those ministries”. She boasted that the Nigerian government had “forgotten” about the extent of Shell’s infiltration and was unaware of how much the company knew about its deliberations.

The cache of secret dispatches from Washington’s embassies in Africa also revealed that the Anglo-Dutch oil firm swapped intelligence with the US, in one case providing US diplomats with the names of Nigerian politicians it suspected of supporting militant activity, and requesting information from the US on whether the militants had acquired anti-aircraft missiles.

Posted at 4pm on 12/8/10 | no comments; | Filed Under: environment, the shift (of ages) | read on

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