manifesto of the day

April 1st, 2016 § 2 comments § permalink

Its been a long two years of recoiling, recovery, and preparation. I feel more panic than tranquility most days. Then, while prepping a fajita dinner, a vision appears and my life plan boils down to the following: Mark Twain is my spirit animal, and this is the source code:

time marches

February 7th, 2016 § 0 comments § permalink

It’s coming up on my birthday, and over these past few years I have been feeling my age a lot more. When I get zoomed in on an issue, there is usually a vision board not far behind:


Why, when there are so many examples of women achieving, styling, and laughing their way through middle age and beyond, do I let fine lines and joint pain tell me I am past my prime?

Traveling allows me the experience of seeing how the ages (all ages, not just “the old”) are treated quite differently around the world. However, traveling also propels me deeper into this extended adolescence, where my age-peers are by now well settled with kids, cars and careers.  This tension – the perceived one between what I am doing and what I “should” be doing – is something I am trying to set down.

Maybe you can identify? If so, I recommend heading over to This Chair Rocks, the blog of my friend Ashton Applewhite. It is a one-stop-shop of all you need to combat ageism in your own mind and beyond. She has a book that is on the verge of being available, so watch that space!

how to be alive

January 3rd, 2016 § 0 comments § permalink

I have a few heroes that I keep in mind as I try to get my writing tuned in. One of them is Colin Beavan, of No Impact Man fame. He spent a year trying to live in NYC with “no impact” on the environment, while raising a family and participating in society (not on a commune off the grid). There was a blog, a book, and a documentary. During his research phase, he came to me for a briefing on compost and “zero waste” living. At that time, I was elbow deep in the North Brooklyn Compost Project, and so we stood around my jacuzzi-sized worm bin in Brooklyn’s McCarren Park, parsing the finer points of rotting kitchen scraps.

After a while, he paused and asked me, “What is your spiritual practice?” So we became friends!

Last year, I was happy to receive a call from him while I was elbow deep in a refit of the liveaboard sailboat Tranquility that I share with my husband. I was happy to have an excuse to take a break from whatever itchy job I was doing at that moment, but also because he wanted to talk about the compost project again. It is magical to look back on completed past projects when you are feeling like your current one is rather impossible.

So I crawled into the V-berth and from there, he interviewed me for his new book, How to Be Alive: A Guide to the Kind of Happiness That Helps the World. You see, during his experience as No Impact Man, he encountered some interesting ideas about how caring for yourself and your community (and less about your stuff) actually brings joy into your life. It’s a wonderful notion, and right on time.


And he finished the book! See why he is one of my heroes? It is available now, and can be pre-ordered here. Perhaps you know someone who could benefit from a bit more joy?

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