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The Living Building Challenge

From Building Green:

Skip Backus, executive director of the Omega Institute for Holistic Studies, discovered something in the process of researching materials for the new building on campus. “We don’t make anything in this country anymore,” he said. Many building materials are still made in the U.S., but simple things like nails and screws are difficult to find. For an ordinary building, that wouldn’t be much of a problem. But Backus is pursuing certification of the building through the Living Building Challenge, which requires all materials to come from within a certain radius of the building site.

Thanks Bryce.

MP3: Girls – Lust For Life (Thanks Cannibal Chearleader)

September 25, 2008 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 1 }

Momma, There Are (Dead) Wolves In The House

We all know this already, but man oh man, what a goddamn shame.

Phosphorescent – Wolves (Thanks Captain Obvious)

An explanation is probably long overdue

September 23, 2008 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 0 }

ike, follow up

Despite what you may (or may not) hear, the damage was done.

Stunning photos HERE.

MP3: Normanoak – Our Place in the Sky

September 15, 2008 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 0 }


MP3: Glen Campbell – Galveston

September 12, 2008 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 0 }

Eddie + Laird

We’ve always been suckers for Eddie Vedder. Dude somehow did a bunch of things right, because let’s be honest, he shouldn’t be significant anymore. And maybe he’s not, but holy fuck is he cool. Hate him? Well, if you’ve ever seen Pearl Jam live, you wouldn’t. That band puts on an effortless rock show, every song’s a hit, and Eddie Vedder doesn’t miss a goddamn step.

Last night we saw Eddie and Laird Hamilton’s Iconoclasts on The Sundance Channel for the second time. The first time we saw it, we were overwhelmed by how annoyingly IN YOUR FACE Laird Hamilton seemed. But after watching it again, we think we have it all wrong. There’s some real cheese in the fifty minute long program, but there’s a moment where Eddie Vedder is painting a picture of Laird and he’s talking about how he’s the first guy to put in real perspective how big an ocean wave is. “He’s adding a human element to it, he’s giving it scale.” The point might be simple, and Riding Giants tries to make it over and over, but because of Eddie’s lack of drama and his extreme simplicity, you can’t help but to finally “get” why Laird is the way he is. Seems obvious, and I guess it’s ironic that we’re the idiots, not Laird, but if Laird wasn’t the way he is, he wouldn’t do the things he did. Seems like it’s the only personality you could possibly have to ride the waves he does.

Point: Those two together are way cooler than the sum of their parts.

MP3: Pearl Jam – Given To Fly (Clearly the producer’s favorite Pearl Jam song)

MP3: Pearl Jam – Grievance

July 31, 2008 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 0 }

Sunrise Earth

That’s a sunrise in a place where the opportunity to see a real sunrise is quite a commodity…even if it’s just blocks away.  Thankfully, for people like us, those folks at the Discovery channel figured out a way to make it a little bit easier to ease into a day that demands a sunrise.

It’s called Sunrise Earth, and it only really makes sense if you turn on your TV tomorrow morning and meet the day with a backdrop of fishermen on a lake in China, or Polar Bears crossing icebergs or a fire-rimmed peak in the Alps.  It just works.  The imagination can do wonders.

Maybe it’s a sad commentary on the life of a city-dweller – turning to TV for a sunrise.  But hey, whatever gets you up in the morning.

Clips here.

MP3: Neil Young – Till the Morning Comes

July 18, 2008 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 3 }

A letter to our (next) president

Several years back, McSweeney’s held a contest asking people to write a note offering advice, to the first-term GWB.

A friend of ours won that first contest with a plea for principle and reason, especially concerning our environment.  When we stumbled onto that letter in a conversation last week, we thought it might be worth re-reading and passing along to our future Mr. President.

Here’s hoping that this one will be the letter reading type.

McSweeney’s Dear Mr. President Letters (the first one, signed a concerned citizen).

MP3: Talking Heads – Born Under Punches

July 13, 2008 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 2 }


We need to do better.

MP3: Corey Harris – Fish Aint Bitin

July 9, 2008 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 0 }

ideas worth spreading: mycelium

A friend recently came back from the TED conference out West and sent along a lecture called 6 Ways Mushrooms Can Save the World. “This guy stole the show,” he said. Despite the fact that the last time we heard someone proclaim that mushrooms could save the world, we were singing You Enjoy Myself during an epic trampoline jam, we thought better and realized that TED would be above Fungi jokes and lame Phish references.

All prejudgments aside, we have to tell you that this 17 minute lecture is not only worth every second, it should be longer. It’s hard to compress the history of an organism that predates plants by several hundred million years into a few short minutes.

In that Inconvenient Truth sort of way, Paul Stamets takes the science of mycelium and prototaxites and explains their epic story in terms that inspire us to consider a world where mushrooms absorb toxins from the earth, restore habitats, cure the flu, reinvent pesticides, neutralize carbon and grow old growth forests from cardboard boxes. In short, ‘engaging mycelium can help save the world.’

The stuff is real and it’s powerful, and believe us it’s worth your time.

“Once you’ve heard ‘renaissance mycologist’ Paul Stamets talk about mushrooms, you’ll never look at the world — not to mention your backyard — in the same way again.” Linda Baker,

Paul Stamets: 6 ways mushrooms can save the world [VIDEO]


May 19, 2008 | The World Is On Fire! | Continue Reading | Comments { 1 }