Observe

Place
Boundaries Issue #6 - In The Field The clouds are low and long and perpetual, tufted and thick as down. It will snow soon and for a good while. This is welcome news, for even though we are breaking trail, ...
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Looking Closely
Unforgotten Issue #18 - Faulkner I am attending a new seminar with Mark Scarbrough, this time up in Salisbury Connecticut, a town in the northwest corner of the state. The ride is another half hour beyond Washington (where we read ...
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People
Searching, Searching, Searching, Issue #19 - Connections It happened again. Out of the blue, I heard from a friend who had been gone from my life for decades. Pam and I lived in the same neighborhood from the third grade ...
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Time and Distance
We are used to measuring and marking distance with anything handy – foot, hand, thumb, stick, string – along with other secondary or abstracted references (like Marathon), displaying and understanding the inherently arbitrary assignment of length. It is true even ...
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Mustard and Meat
I have been watching the Netflix series Rasa, Rasoi aur Kahaniyan, which translates to Kings, Kitchens and their Stories. The series is about the astoundingly varied cuisines of India. The filmmakers weave a beautiful tapestry out of India’s regional histories ...
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The Artist's Eye-Hand-Heart
A few weeks ago we took Printha to Vermont, a Birthday in Brattleboro excursion. The premier event was a Domino toppling extravaganza at the local museum (BMAC). When Printha was younger she and Bruce used to build domino constructions just ...
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Smooth and Rough and Smooth
The Big Island’s people are a great collection of ethnicities: Polynesian, Chinese, Japanese, Filipino, Vietnamese, Portuguese, and Thai. Having lived in the multicultural Northeast for almost thirty years, we felt comfortable in the mix, readily absorbing new-to-us flavors. Locals were ...
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Blue Hawai'i
No doubt the first thing you notice in the video is how blue everything is, with only flashes of yellow and white. Where are the brilliant colors of captive tropical fish? Some distortion can be blamed on phone camera optics, ...
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The Big Island
Of course we did explore Hawai’i in a visitor’s way, too, getting to know all of its landscapes, along with many other attractions. But before you even ask, we did not dance the hula, or watch anyone else do so; ...
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humuhumunukunuku'āpua'a
There are three languages spoken on the islands: English, Hawai’ian and Pidgin. One is an imposition, another a reclamation, and the third is an invention. Here is the text of the recorded greeting and farewell that plays every half-hour at ...
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Hawai’ian Pidgin is just as much fun, and even more widely spoken, although we overheard it more than it was spoken to us. While called “Pidgin”, linguistically it is considered a creole language. Pidgin is an anglicized approximation of the ...
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Nēnē
The payment system at the Wildlife Rescue Center was slow to process our transaction (very much so), so I took the opportunity to talk more with Marie, the staff member who welcomed visitors. She already had given us a good ...
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Searching, Searching, Searching,
It happened again. Out of the blue, I heard from a friend who had been gone from my life for decades. Pam and I lived in the same neighborhood from the third grade through high school, and had been friends ...
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What I Do (& Don't)
DIET I eat very little sugar (including alcohol), (and no artificial sweeteners) to prevent insulin resistance/metabolic syndrome, obesity, and to promote good gut bacteria I have celiac disease, so I have eliminated gluten from my diet. But I DO NOT ...
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Emotional Labor
A while ago a friend sent me a link to a forum of women discussing and sharing thoughts about emotional labor. I clicked and within a few seconds of scanning the table of contents I almost lost it. My heart ...
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Fan_of_KathyFan
Matt, I have been lurking on OT for several years, and lately following you daily. I appreciate so many of your contributions, they spark a lot of reflection and dialogue. Right now I have many ideas and responses piling up ...
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Creative Work
With all of the work this past year launching MUSE, establishing writing as a daily practice AND getting all of my backlogged ideas and products out in the world, I haven’t spent as much time making art as I used ...
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Landscape
Desert Landscapes Issue #6 - In The Field see also MIRROR PARK - Design for Change Issue #11 - Collage Bay City Issue #5 - Community ...
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Memoir
In The Field Issue #6 - In The Field I. I am asleep in the desert. I am dreaming this world and yet another. In which I am impossibly tall, resolutely female. My vision extends to the horizon. I see ...
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More Essays
Kin Issue # 2 - Family When I was in Iceland with my husband we stayed mostly in the west and north. Bruce and I met few others as we traveled the island, taking in the small and the grand, ...
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Emily and Me, part II
The Emily Dickinson seminar - The Incredible Brightness of Being (given by Mark Scarbrough, at the Gunn Memorial Library in Washington, Connecticut) - is over now, and there is so much still to ponder, to appreciate and revel in. Bits ...
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Prisoners
Theater – as all the narrative arts do – realizes an outward existence of our internal dramas, enabling us to see them clearly, and to meaningfully experience the feelings we have about our own like struggles. The very purpose of ...
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The Play's The Thing
The epitome of storytelling genres is The Theater, where words, objects, persons, art, and music are fashioned into a sense-engulfing parade-display-embodiment of narrative, sign, symbol, and meaning. I find it always a delicious treat. At its most exalted theater is ...
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Selfie
I have had moments of self-recognition prompted by the sharing of someone else’s experience, just like Katherine May, the author of The Electricity of Every Living Thing. While hers came as she listened to an interview on the radio, mine ...
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Hypotheosis II
One distinct and prominent feature of human language (and so human thought) is that of recursion - which is simply understood as a nesting of ideas, one within another. Recursion is expressed in language by subordinate clauses, which can be ...
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Imagine
Circus Acanthus Untitled Pliny's Villa ...
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On the Road
Grand Tetons Kansas ...
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Hypotheosis
I wonder about everything, and search for patterns and relationships restlessly. Here are a few ideas I am curious about ... GEOLOGY Do Earth’s magnetic reversals correlate with Ice Ages or other climate changes in the geological record? Do Ice ...
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Public Space in the New American City
Here is a recreation of my prize-winning submission for the design competition Public Space in the New American City, held in Atlanta, Georgia in 1994. The original entry for site C comprised a site model and boards, which no longer ...
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Dialectable
DIALECTABLE Just for fun, here's a British English accent/dialect gradient I noticed, by watching British crime dramas …. Shetland - Shetland Islands George Gently - Northumberland Happy Valley - Yorkshire Life on Mars - Manchester Hinterland - Wales Inspector Morse ...
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INTJ-A
The Architect INTJ-A is the Myers-Briggs (MBTI™) personality classification that comes up consistently for me, as a result of online questionnaires. The Introvert/INtuitive/Thinking/Judgement - Assertive classification resonates the most with my self understanding and identification, but I find myself in ...
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Portraits
To The Strangers I Have Drawn On A Train Perhaps you will find my portraiture an encroachment, a violation of privacy, and perhaps you even think it unflattering in its realism. To the first I say yes, because portrayal of ...
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Learning Styles
I was never comfortable in school, though I was a good student and loved learning. Here are the characteristics of four primary thinking styles, charted by Kathleen A. Butler, Ph.D.Butler, Kathleen A., LEARNING AND TEACHING STYLE: IN THEORY AND PRACTICE ...
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To Tell a Story
Most undergraduate science coursework focuses on the nuts and bolts, the facts already known, the frameworks already accepted. Really you are simply learning the litany, the catechism, and the methods. Which, for a synthetic thinker, can be rather boring. Geology ...
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Because
I was rigorously trained as a scientist years ago, and I am a divergent thinker. So I like to ponder, wonder, and hypothesize about all nature of things, but I am exacting in my process. People - including reporters, writers, ...
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The Genius of a Place
Bruce has been lamenting something for quite a long while - the loss of the local. He remembers vividly the differences encountered town to town, as a boy in Denora, Pennsylvania; Holden, West Virginia; and Mayfield, Ohio. The stories of ...
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Aviary
Visitors to my back yard ...
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Stanley's Yard
The design of our back yard is never done. There is always a new idea or an improvement to make, but still, many features are old. The Norway maples at the edges have likely been there sixty years or more, ...
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Kin
When I was in Iceland with my husband we stayed mostly in the west and north. Bruce and I met few others as we traveled the island, taking in the small and the grand, the elegant and the banal, the ...
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Family Final 4
I have a really good friend - a lifelong friend, if I start counting from my twenties - and I can say this even though we had almost no contact for over thirty years. Because Katie is family. I know ...
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Love Letter
Bruce and I don’t have children. It was a decision we made for ourselves, by default when we were young, and consciously, deliberately when we were older and up against the hard deadline of biology. We don’t question our choice; ...
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In The Field  (audio version)
On "the Easy Chair" hosted by Laura Hurwitz; Episode 140 This week: “In the Field." Returning guest author Deborah Zervas reads three vignettes about time spent in remote places. Her experience of the wild's simultaneous profound connectivity and separation inform ...
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Native Speaker
I know a woman from Colombia whose first name - Betty - is also a common English name a diminutive of Elizabeth, from the Hebrew Elisheba. In Spanish Betty is also a diminutive of Beatriz. Betty is very dissatisfied with ...
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