New and Good November 2019

What’s New and Good?Sunset in Newport Oregon

Hello from Lake Albert gone! I’m sitting in our sunny dining room on November 21st and it’s a fine morning. Coffee to my left, laptop to my front and a collection of house plants I’ve gathered over the years. I also like collecting glass orbs and have quite a few strewn around the living and dining room.

But that’s not why I’ve gathered you here. Mostly, it’s just to get in the habit of writing more. Less FB posts and one-off newsletters, and more writing writing 🙂  Yes, in preparation for January and February when I intend to do some longer pieces – namely my autobiography! Yes, it’s 11 chapters long and of course includes info about hitching across the country in 1981, a year living on a kibbutz in Israel and my involvement in Habonim which led up to that; 14 years of attending Burning Man into one chapter – we’ll see how that goes. Some of the chapters could probably be books of their own, but this will be an Albert taster. I’ve actually made a deal with myself that I will not attend Burning Man again until I can hand someone either a copy of the book or a thumbdrive of it or digital download code.  Or, the other thing that opens the gates to the playa would be me bringing a giant art piece I have in mind. But that’s a much bigger lift.  We’ll see which wins – but my current plan is to bring some form of the book forth next. I have the free time for this, and the stories – encouragement welcome!

Last night we hosted a Higher Thought Cannabis Game night here. Get your game today! It’s a really fun way to gather with people and share insights and thinking. All sorts of stuff gets discussed.  I’m constantly surprised at what comes up. You may remember my earlier mention of this game in my Cards blog post of last year. Since that time I’ve become part owner (15%) of Higher Thought and I’m also helping Aaron Trotter out with his empire of decks over at Illustrated Playing Cards. I really do think the decks in my post are possible ways for people to move themselves forward. I think it helps people when groups share knowledge. It almost reminds me of the days of yore when we’d sit around the campfire and tell stories. Perhaps it’s time to go back to that practice so that we can get our societies on better footing in preparation for dealing with climate change and other big challenges headed our way. That’s where my mind went to last night, at least.

So, I’m moving. At the end of the year I’m renting a friend’s house for 2 months (Jan and Feb. 2020!) and then I’m not sure what comes after that.  Very likely more Portland. I’ve had this thought lately of starting a “we’re staying” club. No matter how bad the traffic gets. No matter how many noobs from elsewhere come and move in – we’re staying!  We could have buttons and patches. I think there’s a value when we decide to stick it out and not do the typically American thing of moving when things get challenging. We’ll see how that goes. I’ve been here 18 years and there’s also something to be said for more sunshine 🙂  And warmth.  That’s partly what drew me to the PNW – warmth – so I wouldn’t have to brave the East Coast winters. But today’s very unusual sunshine is reminding me that more of that certainly would be nice.

To perturb my life I’m going to fly back East for Thanksgiving (that is the sweet part) and then drive back to Portland via points non-snow-covered in early December. That’s the perturbing part. I did this drive about 20 years ago and I’m excited to give it another whirl. I hope to visit friends in Chicago, Austin, Santa Fe and possibly California.  I definitely want to visit Summer Lake hot springs, too in Eastern Oregon. We’ll see what the weather and various visits have to say about all of this as I get underway around December 2nd.  If you living the middle of the country somewhere and would like a visit, please get in touch!

K, that feels good. Off she goes.  An Albert update!

The Eleven – July 2018

You Bet Your Sweet Bippity – The Eleven – July 2018

Here’s the Eleven for July 2018 – We find ourselves at a crossroads right now. We have an opportunity to make good decisions and save ourselves and future generations (and other species) from living in a complete hot mess or we can choose to move further toward the BBQ. I suggest we take simple and drastic actions to move towards the light and a future of life and comfort. Here are a few thoughts;
Trees : Trees are the lifeblood for us – we should have a worldwide moratorium on any further cutting of any trees – particularly native ones that haven’t been cut or burned in a long time. This especially includes urban trees. How about a worldwide pact that no urban trees are cut moving forward and we attempt to work around them and treasure them as they provide us oxygen without which we cannot live? They also do a lot of other good besides being beautiful to look at – shade, taking in carbon dioxide and water management – all are big pluses in the tree category. Let’s not cut another one down – the simple action is for you to cut no more trees; plant new ones and work on keeping trees standing. Join our effort by clicking here . Thank you.
Second . There are way too many people on this planet . This is the truth. There are simple actions we can all take to ensure a planet with less people on it. Making sex ed available to all ages and making it a priority – will not only give us more intelligent people, but will also lead to people choosing smaller families and to think about when to procreate rather than being mindless about it. Along these lines – making sure that contraception is free an and easily available will go a long way in making healthier societies – it also honors women and will make childbirth less dangerous around the world as we invest heavily in reproductive health across the board. Some have suggested that no one have children at all for a while – which in 5 years would shrink us naturally by one billion people. That would be incredible – imagine a less crowded world. Let’s work towards that.
Between these two issues – prioritizing trees and working towards a smaller population will lead humanity (and perhaps other species) towards a future where the air is still breathable and the planet is still habitable! What small action can you take today to make this happen? And what larger, global actions can we also accelerate? Thanks for playing your part.
Have a great Summer – Albert
PS – Here are some great pics from this year’s Breitenbush Summer Solstice Healing Retreat by Jef Murphy
PPS – see my write up from WDS 2018 and info about my gig on 7.25 in Portland

Here’s my Summer Schedule – I’d love your company

  1. July 11-15 – Oregon Country Fair, yes, of course 🙂 For OCF, I’ll be part of Booth L12,Wileyware
  2. July 19-22 – Northwest String Summit – I’d love company for this 🙂 (I have tix) – I really think this is going to be a fun time this year. Many who would normally attend will be shaking their tushes off at the Gorge (Phish) – so, I anticipate a smaller crowd and the line up is spectacular. Come and camp with me!
  3. July 25th – Come Sing Along with me at the Tiny Caravan Hotel on Alberta Street – I’ll be doing some songs by Ben Bochner and there will be s’mores!
  4. Picnic & Singalong with Albert @ Taborspace – Wednesday night August 1st – 6-8
  5. Pickathon – August 3-5 – Maybe (up for company!)
  6. Beloved, August 10-13 – yes! Year 11 – how could I not? – I have tickets, come!
  7. Singing Alive – August 24-27 (very likely)
if anything above strikes you and you’re interested in joining me – please write and let me know!
Albert @ SSHR 2018
Summer Solstice Healing Retreat this year at Breitenbush. Such a lovely time with family and friends! Photo by Jef Murphy. This is a picture of me facing the setting sun on the summer solstice!

Making More Music

After years of attending PSGW I’m finally feeling the umph to organize an Oregon Guitar Camp. And, one in Maui, too. If you’d like to get alerts as these are organized (or better yet, help organize them with me 🙂 Click here .
I’m convinced that playing music together is one of the best ways to change the world. I hardly ever feel as optimistic and moved as when music is involved. Join me!
Maui Beach

 

15 Years in Portland

I moved to Portland, Oregon 15 years ago in 2002 – right after Folklife and around the time of the Breitenbush Summer Solstice Healing Retreat – SSHR – which I’ve been attending serially since 1995 (thank you, Shelley Glendenning).

Aloha!
Yes, it’s true, I’m back on Maui! I’ve taken to highlighting sections on my calendar where there are open spaces – this time the invitation by my friend Jenny to return to Maui was offered and I decided to come back for another round. This trip has been very different from my time here in March – more reading/beach and less touring/social/business – oriented. I needed to find this book on happiness, for instance.
The lanai
Speaking of Maui, Jenny’s place is for rent 6.1-26 – comes with a car – click here for more info.

Birthday Wish

The birthday wishes on FB are sweet, but so impermanent. If you’d like to take a moment and leave a review either on Yelp! or my Albertideation  Facebook page – I’ll be able to keep them forever! Thank you!

MAKING PROGRESS

I moved to Portland, Oregon in 2002 about this time of year. That makes it my 15th year anniversary. During that time I’ve been involved in so many projects and ideas. I was thinking it might be fun to take a gander at these in a free-style gonzo-journalism approach and see what I come up with.  Here goes.
Farm My Yard – my DIY project for bringing together urban farmers and people with yards they wish to farm. That got started 5 years ago – about the same time as The Birthday Garden – a community garden a bunch of us started 5 years ago at 3rd and Hancock, NE. Well, The Birthday Garden transitioned into home for a few tiny houses and many of us who were involved moved away from the area – so, that’s no longer a community garden. Farm My Yard? It’s got an email list of 450 people/a website/a FB and Twitter presence. I still get asked about it a lot – and it still remains a place where people come for information about how to connect with their neighbors – overall, I think it’s been a good thing, but I’ve never really pushed it forward in the way I had envisioned – by buying a bunch of signs and handing them out at farmers’ markets and helping it to happen big time in a neighborhood – and then repeating that if it worked. So, I feel a little frustrated about this one.
Freecycle: I gave the Freecycle Network a push in 2003 after coming back from my 3rd Burning Man and starting Freecycle Portland (and then many Freecycle groups around the world). That seems to be going very well, these days, and I’m not involved at all. I did get a free t-shirt, but it was an XL and I’m not wearing those anymore, so I think I passed it along!
Progressive politics. Well, that’s a big one. I still feel that I’m participating in bringing forth progressive policies and candidates. It’s hard to really feel that positive about this during the time of impending impeachment at the national level, but in the last many years we’ve managed to do a lot of great work at the state and local level – preventing fluoridation of Portland’s water; legalizing cannabis in Oregon; preventing LNG/Oil/Coal terminals in the area – pushing back against many of these, successfully. And there have been lots of losses, too – I’m sure I’m not the only one that wishes measure 97 had passed – this would have forced OR state corporations to pay more of their fair share of taxes – it was close but we lost. Then, there’s GMO-labeling – which also was close – but we were outspent by Monsanto and friends, heavily, and that effort seems stalled at the moment.
Then there’s Bernie. Like many of my progressive friends, I really wanted Bernie to win the nomination. At least it would have been a good thing had he been put on the ticket as VP – I’m still not sure why Hillary and Co. didn’t think of/do that. Anyway, now we’ve got the hand that we were dealt on the national level and my main hope is that we will all focus on making sure people all over the country have the right and easy access to vote. If everyone could vote by mail like we do in Oregon, this country would get on a better track, quickly. I’m sure of it.
Population issues. We’re at 7.5 billion people. More than double when I was born in 1961. We add 75 million people a year. In my reading of the situation everything related to climate change comes back to our human numbers increasing. I keep trying to add that commentary into every conversation I have with people about climate change. Here on Maui I just heard a great talk by a guy who studies climate science – and learned a new phrase – nuisance flooding. That nagging flooding that comes once in a while – it doesn’t wipe everything out, but it sure is a nuisance. There are a lot of great people working on climate change and I wish they would all start mentioning the elephant in the room – population growth.  If we could bring our numbers down we’d have a chance (as would other species). If not, I don’t think all the windmills and solar panels in the world will do enough because we’ll keep needing more and more of everything. Feel free to join me – and learn about and donate to Population Connection in DC – doing the great work of lobbying Congress and informing people about this issue since it was called ZPG (Zero Population Growth) many years ago. Through PopConnect I’ve traveled to DC many times to lobby my congresspeople. Luckily, these days, the Oregon delegation is fantastic on the issues minus the Republican schmuck, Greg Walden, from Eastern Oregon.
Then there are some local things I’ve been working on:
  • Organizing a group of tree enthusiasts who are trying to adjust the Portland tree code to save more tall old trees as they are threatened by development. This has led to an email list and FB group for organizing.
  • A neighborhood effort to find a grocery store replacement for Zupan’s which moved out of their Belmont Street location
  • Trying to encourage the fabulous social media site, Nextdoor.com to add a ride share category to their site – this would be such a huge and excellent addition to their site. On a side note – I’ve joined Nextdoor.com here in Maui and I’m trying to encourage local folks to use it. I imagine the impact in a spread out local community like Ha’aiku could be incredible.
  • Supporting artists/musicians/friends – I have a bunch of friends who’ve been raising money to support their music and I’ve been mentoring some to use various tools and approaches that I’ve learned over the years.

So, that’s a random sampling of some of the things I’ve been up to in the 15 years of living in Portland (heavily weighted to recent times). Plus throwing a few great parties at Hollywood Vintage; helping a bunch of trees get planted; etc. One of the reasons I’m listing all of this is that I’m going through a thought process right now trying to figure out my personal direction(s) for the future. I recognize that I’m a bit spread thin and this is leading me to have a huge network but perhaps not as much depth as I’d like. It’s kind of how my social life is built, too, and I want to change that. I’ve recently found myself deleting myself as an admin on various FB pages where I don’t have a major role (BRCPO, you may be next!) and I’ll probably continue down this path of tidying until I get to the point where when I pick something up I’m either feeling joy, or discarding!

Being in Maui has been great for my mood. And now I’m feeling ready to be back on the mainland and I’m looking forward to a great Summer filled with connection; gardening; some awesome client work; and further refining what I’m doing with my time.

I hope life/work/love is treating you perfectly.

Mahalo (thank you) for being my friend and ally,

Albert

Albert Adventures

Introducing Albert Adventures.

I like adventures (lately I’ve been calling them rambles). Friends have often remarked that hanging out with me and wandering Portland (or Black Rock City) is fun because of the various twists and turns things take. No adventure is the same. There is not a point A and a point B. You may meet new people and make new friends.  You’ll come away with stories and memories.

Do you have friends or family members in town who have some free time and are curious to see the sites with a unique guide?

Contact me @ albert@albertideation.com and let me know your time frame and let’s see what magic we can make happen!

Price negotiable. Kid friendly – NO Pets.

Albert Kaufman December 2016 Working Together

Join My Newsletter
to receive my marketing checklist. Click here to discover what's further downriver (other news) 
Sign Me Up!
Not right now...
close-link