instant gramming

April 30, 2008


Today I registered to submit artwork in the Bike+Art=Show on May 17th at Junctionview Studios. I'm hoping to create some bike-inspired artwork to sell, make some scrill, and buy my girl some fine things. Anything left might go towards buying some bike stuff. Check out the site--I will be uploading images in the next few weeks. Junctionview Studios is an impressive studio space that serves as headquarters for a larger number of Columbus' premier artists and craft-ers... More to come!

Quote of the day:
Happiness depends upon ourselves.

Greek critic, philosopher, physicist, & zoologist (384 BC - 322 BC)

April 27, 2008

No mow!

Just mowed the back lawn. Not sure why. Obviously, it was an effort to comply (at the eleventh hour) with the lawn laws of our municipality. As I was mowing, I was thinking one thing: "mowed lawns are terrible and ugly." Compared to the scattered clumps of uneven grass, dandelions, and common violets, a mowed lawn is a lifeless carpet; a barren desert. It offers no habitat, no food, and no refuge for almost all native Ohio wildlife. I say "almost all" because I realize there are some invertebrates at the interface of topsoil and atmosphere, protected in the dense forests of turf grass, and in the tangled mats of roots there. Dandelions [interesting note: the name comes from the French phrase, dents de lion, or "teeth of the lion"] offer nourishment for bees and other insects and are well adapted for frequently mowed lawns that don't have frequent applications of pounds of herbicide.
The other evil half of mowed lawns is the air pollution caused by conventional gas-powered mowers. Supposedly, 54 million Americans mow their lawns each weekend and use 800 million gallons of gas annually (Source). Can you imagine how much air pollution that equals? Good, because I don't want to figure it out. It would only depress me. As a new homeowner, I was pressed to purchase lawn equipment to manicure my first suburban yard. After reading many mixed reviews about human-powered reel-mowers, I settled on a $20 gas-powered option found on Craigslist. Since last July, our lawn has been mowed maybe 5 times. That sucks. I hope that C and I will gradually replace most of our lawn with native-plant garden space (a.k.a. wildlife habitat and smörgåsbord). I imagine the front yard bordered with prairie flowers; the back yard, with...more prairie flowers? And vegetables!
Anyways, this rant won't be very conclusive. I wanted to vent my disdain towards mowed lawns, and the bitterness I feel toward out-dated suburban tradition...

In other news: I lost my phone on a bike ride! (Call me so I can add your number to my contact list!) Also, we are finally plugging plants into our gardens. Currently, the tomatoes seem to be settling in, a few pepper plants have claimed a spot, and yellow summer squash have been given copious space to stretch out and soak up the sun. A ton of strawberries plants now have flowers and I'm excited to think of all the fruits we'll be able to use in smoothies, ice-cream, and yogurt.

April 9, 2008

Run = done

Well, it's about time I write this overdue entry about the marathon. This past Sunday, C and I, together, finished the full Athens Marathon in just over 5 hours. Here's a photo of proof: C was pretty miserable throughout the last 21.2 miles, but I'm proud that she stuck with it and am impressed with how strong she finished. I'm glad I ran with her too: first, she was my inspiration to run; second, I was worried about her either being in too much pain to finish and/or not finishing and being disappointed with herself; and third, I had a stronger desire to run with C and share the experience with her and to act as a motivator for her than I did to find out my best finishing time. Overall, we finished 192nd and 193rd of 213 full-marathon runners.

My recovery has been better than I expected, although I must have twisted my ankle when I was hobbling around after the race, 'cause now it's killing me.

I think this is ridiculous, but I will admit, I kinda' want to run another one. But seriously, the training sucked. Rather, it sucked up all my time. But honestly, I don't think I've ever been as healthy as I've been during the past several months of running 4 days a week. I hope I will keep running, often, and with some long runs every now and again.


In other news, Spring has sprung in all its conspicuousness around our home. The big shrubby tree is flowering beautiful white and good-smelling flowers. Small bulbs have busted out of the ground and flowers have appeared there too. For as much as I like plants, I really don't know anything about ornamentals. Alden is really digging this weather too, and it's fun to lay in the grass with him on these sunny afternoons. I've transplanted some strawberries to a pot and the tomatoes in the basement are really pushing for a bigger container. Now that the race is over my mind is turning to road bikes and skateboards. I really hope to build a good road bike, up from a frame I recently acquired. Stay tuned for that project...