Call me a day late and a dollar short. Or maybe behind-the-times with respect to Facebook. But I completely missed the posting blitz where Facebook fans used the "urban homesteading" term as many times as they possibly could in a single day. In fact, I learned about the posting blitz via our Transition U.S. newsletter, which, when I opened my email, at first shocked me with the brazenly open use of the term.
I'd heard about the urban homesteading controversy itself, of course. Much of it is unfolding in my own hometown, the greater L.A. area.
The county Office of Emergency Management room looked official and serious. It was packed with tables covered with laptop computers and communications equipment and a large county map on the wall. I visualized a busy urgent hubbub in the event of an earthquake — every station staffed and lots of phone and internet calls going on.
I bought a new pair of shoes lately. All my friends gleefully applauded my purchase, and my husband was very pleased too.
You see, about three weeks ago, while on the construction site for the new community garden we're building in my neighborhood, I sprained my ankle pretty badly. Limping awkwardly, I discovered very quickly that I simply didn't have the right kind of footwear. City shoes, even "practical" shoes with just a little bit of heel don't work with an injury, and you can't grip a slide-style shoe when you're sporting an ace bandage.
That got me thinking about Transition footwear.
September 24, 2010. This evening we taped footage at the Sustainable Wallingford Community Kitchen in Seattle. This is not a place, it's a monthly event run by volunteers.
August 30, 2010. I've read Yes! quarterly magazine for more than two decades. It's one of my informational mainstays, often inspiring me with topics for Peak Moment shows. We taped a conversation with executive editor Sarah van Gelder in 2006 on "Yes! Building a Just, Sustainable, and Compassionate World."
Cheery, charismatic, creative, constructive ... There are many “C” words which describe the Transition movement, its basic ideas, and the way this movement is manifesting itself in hundreds if not thousands of communities worldwide. In a recent piece, Carolyn Baker complains that many members of Transition are unwilling to use what seems to be her favorite “C” word: collapse.
Frankly, I don’t see the point of it. I do occasionally use the word “collapse,” although I’m much more likely to modify a bit and use the word “contraction,” particularly with respect to economics (as in, “economic contraction,” getting smaller, pulling inward). It has been plenty adequate to get the point across.
To me, collapse goes hand in hand with chaos. Baker is adamant that we put collapse at center stage. And to that I say: You’ve got the wrong movement, sister.
At a recent church convention I saw a t-shirt that quoted Robin Williams as saying. “No matter what you believe, there's bound to be at least one other Episcopalian who agrees with you.” The same might be said of the role of spirituality or the sacred in the Transition Movement.