Friday, June 19, 2015

This Old Favorite



The original remodeling show just broadcast the final episode of work building a disability-friendly rural home for a veteran of a recent Middle Eastern conflict. The staff unanimously declared the project their favorite ever. The segment is beautifully edited, with the sound in a couple of passages high art.

Nothing I can say will equal taking the time to view this work.

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More after the jump.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Resignation


When David Miliband left office after the recent British election, he spoke from a podium set in front of monumental wood paneling. To my eye, the stuff was milled from huge, ancient trees, the planks book-sawn, about twenty inches wide each, and mounted in pairs. No doubt there’s a story behind the building in which the space is located.

One of the many well-researched books about the English country home that I read in the Eighties and Nineties told a story about estate management. The paneling in a principal room of a big house needed replacing, and the person responsible for the repair went to the official carpenter to ask for help. The man said, “We planted the replacement trees three hundred years ago and have been waiting for you to ask.”

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More after the jump.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

In The End, Nothing Was Too Big For A Bear


Living with an archaeologist leaves time for morning chats like a recent one about the wisdom of building a traditional pit house in the front garden. The gist of the conversation was that there is no wisdom in bringing back the pit house. Getting to the conclusion involved a series of interrogatories that taught me much about paleolithic architecture.

The conversation veered toward food storage at one point. I learned that the tribes built stout little houses on stilts, just like nineteenth-century rural northern Europeans. Other food caches were secured under piles of boulders that would at least inconvenience large, furry shoppers.

The current food distribution system of Tukwila wholesaler, supermarket, and personal cooling device echoes the old way of keeping ever-diminishing quanties of stores ever closer to the cooking area.

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More after the jump.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Boooks and Bucks


There is more to the economics of the book than a grubby paperback sitting on a put and take. When congratulated on completion of the handwritten and illustrated St. John’s bible, English scribe Donald Jackson commented, “If I’d known it would cost seven million dollars, I’d have thought twice about accepting the commission.”

As a budding scribe, I was told that in the Middle Ages, “a little nun” wrote out a bible and used the proceeds to buy a farm.

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More after the jump.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Brain Dead And Wandering Around The House



This is an effective management technique, akin to the athlete’s “just show up”. I had a couple of days of stunned pause of unknown origin probably related to running out of coffee, the good stuff. Simply meandering and slapping sticky notes on this and that was enough to break the sled free of the ice.

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More after the jump.