Saturday, February 14, 2009

Summer in February

I can't wait for this school term to be over. I'm not just talking about the age-old-desire to be free of the deadline mill, though I look forward to the end of that, too. I want this term to be over because I am looking forward to our adventure. The famous bus: Just a plain, old, ugly, white half-school bus with all it's insides ripped out and intermittent battery problems. Right now, we use it to take the dog up to the tip of the peninsula, and to deliver newspapers on Thursdays. It is a bus that is not living up to its potential. Soon, however, we will be meeting with Perry, the oil conversion genius, who is going to turn this diesel guzzling monster into a veggie oil chugging clean-machine. We already have seven buckets of grease lingering in the back of this bus, waiting for their glory moment. After what I perceive as the Big Fix, we will be free to imagine more mundane ones. The reliance on diesel is the worst aspect of this big machine. It is expensive, stinky, and it kills things. I foresee a relieved conscience after we are able to convert it to run on WASTE vegetable oil. After the bus is ready to run on WVO (and after we have learnt how to filter and clean the dirty french fry bits out of the WVO), we will start building living arrangements around the fuel system. My favourite part of living, is eating, so naturally, how to cook while on the road is something that is important to me. Paul did the bulk of the work to find out about rocket stoves and solar ovens. This solar oven is made with about $5 worth of materials, and can reach 130º C, or 266º F (don't worry, we wont be cooking any meat). There are a million different kinds out there, though. The Fun-Panel Rocket stoves are nifty little things, too. We already have a few of the materials needed to make one (Paul found a design where we don't have to mix, shape and kiln our own bricks. Thank goodness!) Once the eating part of the adventure is taken care of, the Internet will be the next priority. We want to record Podcasts and keep posting blogs while we are on our trip. Maybe we'll try video posts and photo essays. Paul might start up a short-story sharing website. Whatever we decide, we will need power... SOLAR POWER! This part is a bit tougher to figure out. (and pay for) But we can dream!

Thursday, February 05, 2009

If you judge it visually, I deserve an A+
It is 4:18 am. What a dead time. It is the only time when you can meet the world in peace and quiet, though, and peace an quiet are what I need to write stupid essays I don't care about. I would like to think that if I were writing something that had more of my heart in it, I would be able to focus on it despite the thrills and clamour of daily life. As it is, I had to find a space outside of life to complete this task: 3 to 5 am. In this house, hopefully even 3 to 6. I need these hours. Deadline approaches. I am writing an essay about a book about writing novels. Cruel punishment, to make someone write dry boring academic constructions about the full, satisfying life of an artist. As much as I dislike the novelist book, I am more sympathetic to it than I am to my essay. I suppose I should have given myself more time. I always say that: truth is, I just don't care about the homework enough to give it more time. I have other homeworks and other professors that I want to work for. Even sleep was more important yesterday. I should never try to work at night. I should always set my alarm for 3 am and take advantage of dead time. I should never feel guilty about going to bed at 9 pm. I should give up the pretense of trying to string words together after my brain has shut down, after my sympathies are halfway to dreamland.