Monday, December 27, 2010

destination: grandmother's house

the ever consistant grandmother's house at christmas was experienced again. over the years, actual time spent at grandmother's house on christmas day has shortened and shortened. this year could possibly have beaten all records. in at 11am, gifts unwrapped at noon, eating at 1:30pm, and out the door at 3pm. (we're pros at this.)

1. complaining about when food will be served. check
2. ham. check.
3. the story about uncle b. hitting maxwell (a cat) with tennis balls. told.
4. grandmother accusing everyone of stealing everything. check.
5. me totally loving that i can spend time with my family on christmas. yes.

Monday, December 20, 2010

action adventure : the mystery of marriage

on december 18th, dear friends and family gathered by the lake to coordinate and celebrate love, grilled meats, the great outdoors, pretty dresses, teamwork, and the future.

notable moments:
1. sharing zombie apocalypse plans with will.
2. participating in my first wedding.
3. discovering a new great carbonated water.
4. watching g + n smile.

weddings are a nice thing to do.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

books : maps

books are maps that unfold inside our imaginations and contain paths that are lit by little set fires. one of my favorite maps can be found here.


Tuesday, November 30, 2010

south of the river : making a difference

it was a november saturday and the handsome man (omega) and i had a spilling over box of donated food, collected from austin's fair scarlet woman lodge, to take south of the river. want to know why the capital area food bank of texas matters?

  • according to the most recent census data, 307,296 texans in CAFB's service territory live in poverty. one in six texans is food insecure and has difficulty meeting basic nutritional needs.
  • 34% of food bank recipients report having to choose between buying medicine or medical service and buying food.
  • CAFB provides more than 17 million pounds of food and grocery products each year. these items serve more than 350 non-profit human and social service partner agencies - including soup kitchens, church food pantries, neighborhood centers, halfway houses, family crisis shelters and low-income daycare facilities.

action adventure: san antonio

sunday evening found the five of us curled into a honda bound for san antonio and a gnostic mass that had not graced that city in two years. lessons learned:

1. adults should not expect to sit three to any backseat.
2. necessity is the mother of invention.
3. crazy misogynists are unreformable.
4. f. makes delish cookies and pours a damn fine glass of wine.
5. family roadtrips on thanksgiving holiday are most spirit fulfilling.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

coming home

'since we each possess our own version of ithaca, our arrival there is predestined.'

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Monday, October 18, 2010

the corps of discovery

i have been enjoying our wild america.

On the acquisition of Louisiana, in the year 1803, the attention of the government of the United States, was early directed towards exploring and improving the new territory.
- Meriwether Lewis -

Friday, October 15, 2010

mayfield park

bright october weather and birthday auspices found the consort and me among the sabal mexicana palms and wild birds. exploring the perimeter lead to the discovery of a narrow path, shaded by cedars and quite intriguing. eagle scout kiosks marked the slope of the path down to the river where, under spanish moss, contemplation arose on the curious nature of living on the river and the troublesome aspects of having a boat of one's own.

Monday, September 27, 2010

benediktbeuern, bavaria

this past saturday's adventure studies brought omega and myself to 13th century bavaria, where, while not speaking the local dialects and unsure of parking availability, we were welcomed, provided with club soda with lime, and amused by dancing boys. twas magical. highlights included the trombone section, socialite spotting, dapper children, and renewed inspiration to challenge physical and creative limits.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

the museum of natural + artificial ephemerata

last saturday : a magical journey underground!

'This Museum exhibition is an earthquake that rends the ground to expose the UNDERGROUND. A hole opens up, and we are walking down into the damp dark unknown. Descend into our show-cave through normally hidden strata! Beneath our city is a crowded metropolis of graves, pipes, cables, tunnels, sewers, and landfills, and as we travel down past the aquifer, a glowing lake of magma! The mysterious corridors of our subterranean journey branch off into political undergrounds, the subconscious, and the Underworld -- lair of monsters, land of the dead. By spelunking through these passages, we come to learn that humans are strange creatures like earthworms, ceaselessly dedicated to the circulation of vast undergrounds! The earthquake of industrialized humans has reversed the strata of land and sky such that what was underground has become our atmosphere. Please watch your head for low-hanging rocks.'

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

strategic interaction

developed by john nash, and having applicability within his game theory, is the 'nash equilibrium.' it is defined by a set conditions that players in a game must meet in order to achieve a maximum beneficial payoff as prescribed by the game. when the nash equilibrium conditions are met, utility, expression, or stability may be reached.

a. The players all will do their utmost to maximize their expected payoff as described by the game.
b. The players are flawless in execution.
c. The players have sufficient intelligence to deduce the solution.
d. The players know the planned equilibrium strategy of all of the other players.
e. The players believe that a deviation in their own strategy will not cause deviations by any other players.
f. There is common knowledge that all players meet these conditions, including this one.

so, not only must each player know the other players meet the conditions, but also they must know that they all know that they meet them, and know that they know that they know that they meet them, and so on.

the conditions suppose that the players have answers to a variety of questions when entering the game.

what is your expected payoff? in what specific ways can it be maximized?
what is your 'solution?' what is the intended end result of the game?
how can your actions in the game and your understanding of the motivations of other players bring you closer to your maximized and expected payoff?
are there elements in play in your game that are being ignored, and therefore may disrupt this equilibrium?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


the blueprints have been drawn up and spread out for the "ideal day / ideal living" project. it does seem impossible to achieve what one wants out of a situation or out of life when that want isn't understood or fleshed out, or fully realized. in mapping out what i want, both in written and pictorial form, i have found over the past couple of weeks that i misunderstood many of my desires and goals, wholly or in part. perhaps methods of attainment hadn't been accounted for, or upon conceiving a desire realized, understood that it was misplaced. -maybe one day i would like to spend my time building a business that would provide sustenance and pride instead of spending that time obtaining a loan on a sailboat that i might tour with around the mediterranean, but, knowing myself, would tire of. the form will define itself as it is examined.

the content in the schematics seems to be fairly cumulative. i can design additions. i may construct a second story or repair a crack in the foundations or dig for a pool or landscape the grounds, but i'm not tearing down anything completely. transformed uses for old things perhaps. -the elements of my being that bring me the most joy continue to do so in my "ideal day" and my "ideal life." they are however, elaborated on and embellished and refined.

today my afternoon cup of tea will be made epic.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

valeriana officinalis

valerian is used medicinally as an alternative to benzodiazepines. while used as a sedative, in some individuals, valerian may cause night terrors. oddly, valerian essential oil acts as a rat attractant and in some renderings of the story, the pied piper of hamelin employed both his pipes and valerian to attract his rats. the possible use of valerian in this story is creepy when juxtaposed with one of the hypotheses for the origin of the legend.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

field research: goodwill blue hanger outlet

i have patronized many goodwills in my day, but none of them compared to this. huge warehouse, long rows of deep bins piled high with layers of miscellaneous kipple, sticky floors, children left to their own devises, and very, very focused bargain archaeologists.

it's really the kind of place that you go to not having any clue of what you're looking for. people who pick a bin and start digging through tossed out picture frames, turn tables, date books from three years ago, cracked china, books about kittens, curio cabinets, rusted pots, etc., are not looking for any specific item. they don't need anything. but what is being hunted is that elusive and covetous moment of ah-ha when, deep in the stacks, something is spied. it is not broken (or else it can be repaired,) it does not have any unidentified goo on it, its utility is only realized when gazed upon by the finder, and, it is less than two dollars.

the spoils of my venture: a. a charming wooden box with drawers (only one of the handles is broken.), b. a framed sketch of the michigan capitol building, c. a polka record, and d. a book about kittens.

total: $13.00

Monday, July 26, 2010


i have been thinking quite a lot lately on intentional wayfinding. - that is to say, being aware of and making choices to manipulate those ways that i orient and navigate from place to place or from state to state. shifting focus to transmute pre-existing signage in unique ways that is specific to the personal life experience that i want to have. -being truly aware of our individual "user experience" includes recognizing and understanding what is compelling us to choose a certain path. when the signs pointing us down a certain path are decoded, then new chosen and distinctive markers can be placed.

defined and illustrated personal process.

if all the ways i have been along were marked on a map and joined up with a line, it might represent a minotaur. - pablo picasso

Saturday, July 24, 2010

a garden in positano

on the other side of the topiary hedges i spotted a baby goat munching on some olive leaves. i followed her over a nearby hill and that's when i:

a.) purchased some new art supplies. (stamp, red ink, sketch book, notebook to house my game pieces.)

b.) stopped by a thrift store for a couple books and a darling little silver bowl and chalice.

c.) got gussied for a special night with friends.

fine as china.

Friday, July 23, 2010


i pretended to be somebody i wanted to be until finally i became that person.
or he became me.
- cary grant.

the map is not the territory

however, this weekend's map has been carefully constructed. fresh fish, berries, and pesto pasta, yoga, altar building, swimming, a whores of babalon party, calendarizing, and a fair amount of open-ended time for nothing.

i spent yesterday evening making new process game pieces for the weekend as well. -these four new game pieces illustrate the story, intent, and flow of the weekend and will be used to better explore the territory and its inhabitants.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

hypericum perforatum

st. john's wort can be recognized by yellow five petaled flowers. the plant got its common name from the day that it was traditionally harvested, june 24th, st. john's day, when the flowers were hung over doorways to ward off evil. the first recorded medicinal use of hypericum dates back to ancient greece.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

necessary evil.

hello, my name's fin. i'm going to the vet today and i'm going to yowl and yowl and yowl very loudly and scramble around until some stranger calls animal cops on my mom and i can go live in a cat haven where i'm not starved and beaten.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Libra (September 23-October 22)

In the upcoming science fiction movie The Adjustment Bureau, Matt Damon plays a politician with big ambitions. Everything's going his way until he falls in love with a dancer. Then the representatives of a mysterious group intervene in his life, warning him that he'll never achieve his dreams if he stays with her. "We are the people who make sure things happen according to plan," they say. "We monitor the entire world." I'm happy to inform you, Libra, that this scenario is utterly make-believe. There is no "Adjustment Bureau," on earth or in heaven. It is true, however, that if you don't have a master plan, then your destiny is more likely to be shaped by your conditioning and by other people's master plans. So get working! This is an excellent time to either formulate a master plan or refine the one you have.

-rob brezsny and free will astrology.


i do believe i have the fundamental structure and utility of the "elle operations manual" complete. with a solid framework in place, adventure, spontaneity, chaos, big waves, and dynamism can flourish, in a way that not only doesn't interfere with my work, but actually aids in its achievement.

below is a basic model that i employed in constructing the operations manual.

1. organization - daily operations.

2. marketing and sales - the ways i present and promote myself.

3. individuals - all contact and handling info regarding friends, family, co-workers.

4. technology - information on resources for how i get things done (lists, personal systems, etc.)

5. capital - all finances and budgeting.

and now that the manual's been assembled, it will be added to my toolbox.

Monday, July 19, 2010

field research: grassyville, texas

so on friday, omega and i headed towards bastrop on an adventure travel escapade, armed with a vague map, a gps device, a cooler filled with baby carrots and coconut water, and the goal of locating the ghost town of grassyville, tx and its historic cemetery.

grassyville was settled by german immigrants in 1856, in 1933, there were ten residents. the cemetery is small and down a red dirt road. it's kept after by a stately orange cow, contains all german names, mostly couples buried together, and a handful of confederate soldiers.

photographs to come soon.

le cru et le cuit (III)

saturday marked the third and final day of my impromptu raw food fast. i contemplated lessons learned over a delicious and cooked (yay) breakfast taco.

i definitely would raw fast again, however next time it will be healthier and more enjoyable to meal plan ahead of time. - more creative and sustainable options. the absolute best thing i ate was banana "ice cream." -idea came from a raw food website, the name escapes me, but it was fabu. frozen banana blended in a food processor takes on this soft-serve ice cream like consistency, who knew? -everyone should try it, it's amazing. overall, due to my sometimes extreme competitive tendencies, the three days left me feeling like i had won a game that i was in with myself. accomplished. -although, let's be fair, eating raw food isn't the most difficult thing on the planet to do. interestingly, but also not surprising, even though i did jones for cooked food items periodically, i also enjoyed the simplicity that came from being presented with fewer food options. in addition to being competitive i can also be very indecisive, so while the experiment added fuel to my must-be-a-winner-at-all-cost-ness fire, it soothed some of the stress that comes with constantly having to weigh options. wow i managed to balance thoughts about balance. go libra!

so, initial future thoughts: more salsa and avocados lettuce wraps, sushi joints for fish, incorporation of more dried fruits including tomato, oh, and i'm definitely buying a spiral slicer.

Friday, July 16, 2010


multitasking should not involve using giant work scissors to trim bangs at your desk.

le cru et le cuit (II)

a.) avocados are surely divine.

b.) nutritional yeast continues to gild everything it touches.

c.) pineapple for breakfast makes me feel like i'm on vacation.

d.) a juicer would be peachy.

e.) valerian root gives me strange dreams.

in other news. treasure hunt adventure weekend unfolds ahead and includes gps systems, possible out-of-town-ness, swimming, a meeting, a study group, a gnostic mass, lots of friends, art making, and comfort zone challenges. i will remain a pillar of calm in the face of a schedule and erratic social anxiety.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

le cru et le cuit (I)

raw food experiment day one of three. over the next three days i will not be eating cooked things. i will also not be eating a healthy diet or setting a proper example of true raw foodist behavior. -no delicious sprouted breads, no cashew "cheesecakes," no cauliflower "rice." i just don't have time right now for that. so, it is fruits and vegetables and juice and some blended soup, i'm thinking gazpacho. and for today, carrots, banana, apple juice, cucumber, orange, wheatgrass, salads.

i have obviously not thought this through. whatever, it's an experiment.*

*i'm still drinking coffee.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

bastille day

the pro and con list has always been one of my list technology favorites. i use it for weighing options in meal choices, relationships, entertainment possibilities, and in risk assessment. so i can also apply the p-c list to today, wednesday, july 14th.

the cons: posing for staff photo in a burnt orange polo shirt, morning headache, painfully slow computer, forgetting to pack my lunch and having to eat at quizno's, and wearing a skirt that blows up in the wind revealing panties.

the pros: breakfast coconut water, getting mass practice time finalized, the promise of kisses and sleep over, hearing french all day long, scheduling the vet appointment for fin, successfully setting up a new geeky time-theft device.

fairly good day so far. the kisses and the coconut water put it over the edge.

poster board

testing : material