Archive for April, 2010

trash trawling

Thursday, April 29th, 2010

America loves plastic because it lasts a long long time and it doesn’t cut our feet if it falls on the floor.

China loves plastic because they make it and sell it to us.

Petroleum plastic, a material designed to last forever, yet used for products that we then throw away. This throwaway mentality is a relatively recent phenomenon. Just a generation ago, we packaged our stuff in glass, metals, and paper, and designed products that would last. Today, our landfills and beaches are awash in plastic packaging.

much of it remains “unaccounted for”, lost in the environment where it ultimately washes out to sea.

Sunlight and wave action cause these floating plastics to fragment, breaking into increasingly smaller particles, but never completely disappearing.

coupled with wind and the earth’s rotation, create “ocean gyres”, massive, slow rotating whirlpools in which plastic trash accumulates are being researched.

Plastic pollution is not a benign material in the ocean. Scientists are studying whether these persistent pollutants, transfer to the marine organisms that mistakingly consume them.

consider borrowing a  small research trawl from Algalita Marine Research Center  to collect scientific samples. Our new “Suitcase Manta Trawl” and “Winged Trawl” include easy protocols, which can be used by anyone to get valuable data. The objectives and methods are simple:

Step 1. We send you a trawl with easy instructions
Step 2. You sail, collect samples and dry them out according to our protocols
Step 3. You mail the trawl to the next sailor somewhere in the world
Step 4. We process the samples and import data to

PR Inquiries

Zan Dubin Scott
(310) 392-1130

Website Inquiries

Brennan Novak
(503) 662-2442

So next time you’re out sailing about, perhaps you could help these people with their research and do some trash trawling.  I only have a kayak that I use in the bays, rivers, and back waters down here in Florida.  When I see floating plastic stuff I try to fish it out of the water and dispose of it after I get home.  Sometimes there is just too much to bring it all home and sometimes I celebrate just being able to enjoy my paddle without encountering trash. Can you imagine walking, biking or paddling and not finding trash?

please visit their site at –>


goldman sucks

Monday, April 26th, 2010

I was trying to understand why Goldman Sachs is in so much trouble with the government.  I found an article in the New York Times at…

Mr. Levin said, referring to testimony given by Mr. Blankfein in January. “They were self-interested promoters of risky and complicated financial schemes that were a major part of the 2008 crisis. They bundled toxic and dubious mortgages into complex financial instruments, got the credit-rating agencies to label them as AAA safe securities, sold them to investors, magnifying and spreading risk throughout the financial system, and all too often betting against the financial instruments that they sold, and profiting at the expense of their clients.” 

They bet against what they sold!?  That is legal?! Is this what we are trying to stop in this financial regulations bill?  If America is a giant casino and we are the players, does Goldman Sachs (et al) own the casino?  Are you investor types out there OK with that?

The more I read about this the more confused I get.  I think, well they must not have understood the huge impact this betting would cause us out here in the trenches.  Then I think, no, they are amazingly intelligent people, they knew, they just didn’t care; and they never will.  We can’t ever expect the casino to do what is right for us, they will always do what makes them money.   We can’t even shake our pointy fingers at them because we have admired them this whole time for their wealth and power while they plotted our demise. Half of us still admire them,  and those are the ones arranging a filibuster right now in the senate.

So we need to pay attention to what our senators are paying attention to.


Thursday, April 22nd, 2010


eco-aqua-apocalyptic-phobia (the sudden, overwhelming sense that the world is coming to an end because every once-tranquil biosphere where land meets water has been developed or drilled or trashed).

Where do you go when trying to escape ecoaqua-Apocalyptic-phobia; the Gulf, the Arctic, where?




Wednesday, April 21st, 2010




Do you think otherworldly influences try to message us?   Earthquakes, Tsunami’s, Hurricanes and volcanoes.  Remember the Iceland Volcano that caused flights all over the world to stop.    Religious extremists said that bad things were happening because of our heathen ways. 

Scientists disagree about the causes of these anomalies according to what corporation is paying them to say what. 

George Carlin said the earth is going to shake us off like a bad case of fleas. 

I look at this photo of the Iceland Volcano that disrupted air traffic for weeks and think maybe the message is  —   we need to stop —  for awhile and hang out on cots and talk about stuff with strangers in large rooms.












 While millions lamented their misfortune a few military families were able to keep Dad home a few more days because of the volcanic ash and flight cancellations.






   It can be a wonderfully mysterious world eh?

“I’ll be Mary and you be Rhoda”

Sunday, April 18th, 2010

So what is the criteria for being a real American?

I'm the Mary and you're the Rhoda

Some TV personalities refer to themselves as “real Americans”.  What is a real American?  I was born on a military base and lived the first four years of my life in Germany and many subsequent years in England.  I was in the sixth grade when we moved to America, I felt like I was exploring a world I had only known from television.  I’m guessing most of the world has a warped view of what America is, including many Americans.

Visiting New York City is considered by some as the ultimate American experience.  I was afraid of New York City until I went there with a New Yorker.  The driver who took us from La Guardia to our hotel in Manhattan negotiated the New York traffic at breakneck speed.  It rivaled any ride I had ever been on at any amusement park.  I shook his hand and thanked him for delivering us alive.  He laughed.   Thank God America has New York.

Friends from Philadelphia have a way of making you feel like if you aren’t from Philadelphia you aren’t really a true American.  They have an infectious passion for life and love and the party.  What fun, fun people Philly people are.  thank God America has them.

In Wisconsin you’ll find beauty, cheese, farmers and milk.  The people are tall in Wisconsin.  I felt very short the whole time I was there.  They love their football teams.  You can find an entire town at a Friday night game.  Many are descendants of Sweden, Norway and Germany.  They love snowmobiles, ice fishing, potato pancakes and Brandy.  Makes you proud to be an American.

We flew in to Seattle as tourists experiencing our own country, rented a car and drove to Monterey along the Oregon coast.  This is an American experience I highly recommend;  wild whales, the greatest coffee on earth, gigantic flowers, heavenly seascapes, and very distant people.  The whole time I was on that coast no one got my jokes, the Pacific Northwest is full of  serious people, but, thank God America has them.

While living in the Ozarks, I met people that didn’t like going into the next county because it was full of foreigners.  A co-worker used to bring in the best beans and corn bread on the planet, everyone brought in eggs to share, and they added syllables to words. They build houses where there is no land, on the sides of cliffs. I miss them and thank God America has them.

We took a trip to the Grand Canyon on a whim.  The Grand Canyon is otherworldly.  What can describe America better than the Grand Canyon and it’s American Indians, Mexican Americans, Ranchers, Artists, and Sedona.  One of the most fulfilling whims I ever had.  Americas Grand Canyon is a must see.

So, how can any one person state representation of “real Americans”.  Diversity is America.  Thank God.

the one with the fanciest horse?

Wednesday, April 7th, 2010

“Rich people give poor people jobs. Plain and simple. With out rich people, poor people won’t have jobs. See all the liberals want the government to take away all the rich peoples money, but don’t ever give any of there own.” This is a quote from an apparent Republican to his liberal facebook friend.

When did this happen?  The rich paying for the poor?  Define poor.  Do you think the richest Indian was the one with the fanciest horse?  Or was the bravest Indian the one with the fanciest horse?

I was extremely impressed with a Missouri gentleman that built our kayak from strips of wood.  He explained the procedure and that his boats would withstand some of the wildest rivers in Missouri and Arkansas.  It took about 4 months for it to be completed and now it is a gorgeous lightweight kayak that is durable, usable art .  I suppose some of the glues, and paints may have had Chinese roots or came from a factory owned by a wealthy corporation, but, for the most part our beloved vessel was handmade by an American. He had a home, a car, a workshop, diabetes and a smoking habit.   He made his own way in his own shop living a free American life that many of us might envy.

Insurance would have been impossible for him to obtain if it hadn’t been for medicare.  He qualified for socialized medicine because he lived long enough too.  Prior to that I think he plucked chickens in a factory or something like that so he would be insured. Why is our society set up like this? Because the guys that own the chicken factories don’t want us to be free.  If we are free and don’t need the insurance they provide, we may leave and start an organic chicken farm that would compete with them.  We would be poor, but, we would be free and insured.

“Another word for freedom is nothing left to lose”  I so miss the days when everything I owned fit in my car and I traveled about, working at random restaurants, taking ballet classes and teaching ballet classes.  I never broke a body part or had a kidney stone or appendicitis.  I never thought about healthcare or health insurance.  If I had needed healthcare back in those days I would have been financially screwed.  I guess I was poor, but, I didn’t feel poor, I felt  free.

Life happened.  Husband, kids, and a job that provided health insurance for us all.  There went my freedom.  I don’t think it should have to be that way.  I think we should be able to make things, grow things, be brave and ride a fine horse.  I think we should have the choice to be free and at the same time be responsible.  I don’t think providing healthcare for all is the rich paying for the poor.  I think it is all of us pitching in for all of us.

Healthcare in America

Friday, April 2nd, 2010




 If you’re an uninsured person with a kidney stone or breast cancer or a gallbladder attack your finances and maybe even your life are at risk. No American should ever experience the devastation involved in being turned away from a Doctors office or ER because they don’t have insurance or enough money to be seen.

Americans over 65 or disabled have been taken care of by taxpaying Americans for many years after a hard fought fight.   Now, (after another long hard fight)  we will also provide insurance for the working class; which is the last hurdle intended when Medicare was signed in to law in 1965 by the Johnson administration. Yes, medicare was signed in as a law by the Johnson administration and all of us have benefited from it since then.  Before medicare our Moms and Dads and grandpas and grandmas were dying in our homes.  Now they are living to help take care of us and our kids. 

The stumbling and glitches of high insurance fees are still encumbering the middle class from obtaining affordable insurance.  People are still dying prematurely because they can’t afford insurance.  As long as insurance exists poor people will die prematurely, but, we are headed for healthcare for all here is America.  It’s just taking more time than it should.

Misfortune is an inevitable part of being alive.  There are boardrooms full of MBA’s devising ways of profiting from those misfortunes.  I see health care reform as a way of rallying together to help each other prepare for those inevitable misfortunes.  While others are figuring out ways of profiting from those misfortunes.  Which camp do you belong to? 

We are our brothers keepers (according to what Jesus said) so lets be grateful that  healthcare for all has happened in some countries and maybe someday will happen in ours.  I just don’t understand the culture that opposes healthcare for all. Who is not wanting healthcare to be available for everyone?  We are the wealthiest country on this planet.  Poorer countries are pulling it off.  Maybe we should stop being the wealthiest and start being the healthiest.

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