Hi everyone. I'm a little out of sorts after being chomped by an exotic, long-necked Gruiform and getting a tetanus shot, which has made me rather sleepy over the past 24 hours, so I'll check in with you all a bit later on. On top of this, I am annoyed about the fact that this blog (from what I hear) keeps getting traffic from online porn sites (!!!) If you are scanning through this blog in search of online pornographic stuff, you have come to the wrong place, my friend. Nothing all that racy here, unless you're turned on by pictures of cookies, wildflowers, scenery, etc.
Also, if you are out there just setting off on the Pacific Crest Trail, heading northward down in Southern California, here is some second-hand advice, pulled straight from the pages of my first book. (when I say 'second hand,' I mean to say that I didn't come up with this advice myself. It was told to me before I started out on the trail, and I thought about it every day.)
-- Don't quit the trail when you've got bad blisters. Only consider quitting when they heal completely.
--Don't even think about quitting the trail during a rainy, muddy, blecchy, two-week stretch of bad weather. Only consider quitting on a sunny day when the weather is mild and everything is going just the way it should.
-- Never quit during an ugly, dried-out, scorched-earth day on the trail.
--Obviously, there are very legitimate reasons to stop doing the trail (getting injured, for example, or an unavoidable life conflict, or getting timed out or running out of money completely, or realizing it would make sense to just do it section-by-section, or maybe the trail just isn't for you. But don't just up and quit because you're a little achey or impatient or not going as quickly as you wanted to go, or other people are bagging more miles than you can, or the trail doesn't conform to each and every one of your expectations. As they say, it gets better.
- Don't make a mad rush to Canada (unless, of course, you're coming up against snowfall or some other practical consideration). There's nothing in Manning Park!
-- So long for at least a couple of weeks or so, and if you're so inclined, I'm still occasionally beeping out updates on Twitter. And if you are out on the trail and feel like sending an update into this blog, feel free to do so. Happy walking. Oh, and one more thing -- as limitless as the trail might seen, in the scheme of things it is very short indeed, so try to enjoy yourselves!
Thursday, May 23, 2013
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
If you're so inclined, here is my Twitter feed. I'm a latecomer to this thing because my blog posts are so short anyway that it felt kind of redundant. Some of you have complained that you can't figure out how to get onto my Twitter feed. Will try to figure out a way to make it scroll across the top of the blog like a news alert. Far from having figured that out just yet.
Here it is.
Here it is.
Wednesday, May 08, 2013
The other day I had an hourlong phone conversation with one of my favorite creative nonfiction authors, Lawrence Weschler. We talked about everything from the "uncanny valley" of digital animation to the grisly fate of the legendary Cameroonian stink ant (see above) and the creative interplay between the artists Robert Irwin and David Hockney. It felt more like a real conversation than an interview, and that's what I liked about it. Anyhow, you'll get to read all about it in the upcoming issue of Catamaran. As a matter of fact, I just might publish a few outtakes from the talk (the original transcription came in at more than 6,000 words (!!) at some future date. There were some gems that wound up in the cast-off box. I don't want to suppress them for too long.
In other news, I am taking a wilderness survival course this weekend at UCSC in preparation for a camping experiment. I am a bit nervous about it but the experiment must proceed.
In honor of Mother's Day this Sunday, Amy Ettinger agreed to be a guest on Lead Free SF's web forum, speaking to San Francisco parents on a "mom to mom" level about the dangers of lead paint. (Don't expect SF landlords to come clean about their lead situations. Our chatterbox of a landlord could not stop crowing about the apartment's history and every element of its construction, but he somehow 'forgot' to mention there was no lead abatement whatsoever...) The second we realized there was a problem, we hired up a moving truck and cleared out of SF. Fortunately, Santa Cruz was waiting for us! Here is that link.