One of the biggest problems we have here in New Hampshire is the cold weather which causes everyone to hibernate like muskrats for a good six months. The streets are generally deserted, stores have to put everything on sale and events are cancelled left and right because no one wants to go out in the cold. Really, after the December holidays, everything is downhill. The snow goes from being picturesque to oppressive, and people’s moods go from bad to worse. I’m here to tell you things aren’t hopeless in the face of this damn cold. I’m here to present a solution to this problem which is as old as the first settlement at Odiorne Point.
My solution is simple: let global warming happen. Let the basement furnaces blaze, pumping greenhouse gasses into our atmosphere. What could go wrong? The more greenhouse gasses we produce, the warmer our climate will be. We won’t have to worry about seasonal affective disorders among our population or the cancelling of schools due to snow and frigid temperatures. The only thing school might be cancelled for would be too much fun. I hear they have that in Florida. On especially nice days, everyone skips school or work for the beach, and according to Google searches, they all seem to be doing great.
An increase in global temperatures would have economic benefits too. We’d have a year-round growing season just like California. With some small improvements to our rocky soil, we could keep our economy local and, if we succeed at that, could broaden our markets to sell to other colder places like Canada and the arctic research facilities. They certainly need oranges and pineapples in places like that where citrus is rare.
I admit that if we go through with my plan, sea levels will rise due to the melting glaciers, so some of our seacoast will be uninhabitable. But we have so much undeveloped land in the White Mountain National Forest, that shouldn’t be an issue. There’s no reason why we couldn’t develop that land to adjust for the displaced population at the seacoast. Besides, we only have nine miles of coastline, so our issues will be small compared to our neighboring states Massachusetts and Maine. Come a 20 degree increase in temperatures, residents of those states will be flocking here.
Move South? No! Why would you uproot your family, your friendships, and your livelihood when there is an easy solution. The plan will be not be difficult to execute, but it requires action on everyone’s part. Turn up your thermostats pronto and forget your woodstoves. You can use your already chopped wood to make abstract art. Ignore all bids to increase public transportation and bike lanes. You probably have a car anyways so keep driving it as much as possible. Take that trip down to Boston. Make the haul up the auto road to the top of Mount Washington. In twenty years, it’ll be covered in condominiums if all goes well, so you’ve got to see it while it’s still public land. Buy a new iPhone every year, flush the toilet twice after every use, and last but not least, please leave all your lights on, even when you’re sleeping. They have eye masks for the sensitive sleepers among us. It’s the little things that count.
I implore you, dear people, if you want to live in the brightest and happiest state in the nation and get us out of this deplorable mess we call winter, take a stand and let off the fumes so we can warm New Hampshire up.
I found DIY photocopied comic books appearing around campus. When I tracked down the artist and asked how he made his little books, he replied, “Just experiment. The library has free printing.”
Fast forward three years. I’ve graduated, served an AmeriCorps term, and returned to my hometown. I make magazines.
There was a moment before the first Sound-Bites Release party this March when I thought no one would show up. Something in my gut told me to put up the decorations anyways, to lay out my magazines on the table in front of the T.V.
So many people came to my party. I was in love.
Fast forward three months. Submissions sent in from around New Hampshire and the Midwest. I have a box of Sound-Bites magazines on my kitchen table. This is the 9th edition, and each one is 24 pages and full color.
Sound-Bites is my passion project. It’s an independent magazine featuring the work of artists, photographers, and writers. It focuses on the practice of listening and taking time to process the noisy world around us through making art.
Now published on a quarterly basis, Sound-Bites is a community-focused project. Anyone can submit their creations, and submissions come in all sizes and shapes. They center around a theme each quarter. Past themes have included Sounds of Love, Sounds of the Road, and Sounds of Red.
Thursday, June 29th, the 9th edition of the magazine will be released at the Wayfarer Coffee Roasters on Main Street in downtown Laconia. The release party will feature live music from the Sensitive Men of Concord. They are three guys who talk about their feelings and play music. Also featured: magazine contributors presenting their work, magazines for sale, and wine!
Attendees are encouraged to come wearing their finest vintage ensembles. Why? The theme of this issue is Sounds of the Past. All submissions to the magazine were created with a wholesome helping of nostalgia and an electric look back at each artist’s personal history.
Sound-Bites invites all of us (even those who claim their art sucks) to pay close attention to our environment. Making things is a way to pay homage, to be present, and to make connections to the other people who share in our everyday experience. If you’re up for an after-work art adventure in the Lakes Region, come to the Sound-Bites release party! Everyone’s welcome to attend.
***See the original version of this blog post at Stay Work Play NH.
Yesterday I tried to run 18 miles. Usually I run with my friend, but she was in Vermont for the weekend, and I wanted to stick to my training plan from Hal Higden. I was running in Franklin, NH on the Northern Rail Trail Route. It was absolutely refreshing to be making my way through a tunnel of brilliant green new leaves. I’ve been running on this trail for the past month, and it’s been fascinating to watch the color progress to it’s current intensity.
The sun beamed down on me, and I felt great in my intergalactic blue leggings and black sports bra (small note of success: I finally found the Livi Active which provides adequate support). At mile 8 I was feeling energized and thinking positively about running. I listened to my music, I whisked away the miles. I thought about my upcoming trip to Minnesota, friends there, friends here, my zine. I ate gels every four miles, and kept sipping on my waters that I carry on my belt. At one point I was even dancing, but it probably didn’t look like dancing to anyone around me. More mental dancing. The trail followed the old railroad leading West toward Lebanon, and beyond that, Vermont. The river on one side, a small lake on the other, little farm houses in the woods, a dam on the river, a sign about the old mill that used to be here.
Unfortunately, by mile 10 all my enthusiasm had sweated off. By mile 11 I was walking and by miles 13-16 I was hobbling back to my car. The pain in the arches of both my feet was unbearable. A few tears were shed in the writing of this blog entry because running some days can be really damn difficult.
It feels like every time I’m mentally in the right place to run, my body is not there. Or conversely, when my body is there, my mind’s not. And so we go around in circles.
Even if I don’t end up competing in the race, I’ve run further than I ever have in my life this year. Sixteen miles is no small feat! I’ve now know how to fuel my body for an endurance sport, and I’ve been able to push myself to confront some inner mental barriers, mainly that my body is bigger than a lot of other running bodies. And I maintain very hairy armpits. I used to think these things mattered.
I used to think I could let cultural norms determine how I perceive and access my own power. Now I know my power is there. I can access it whenever I want.
- deliberate, glad, solitary
- Isn’t this the time now to start following what I know to be true?
- covered with pink now
- just too crazy
- Desolation, Desolation, I owe so much to Desolation
- mad raging sunsets in seafoams of cloud
- people are utterly free
- Buddhaland splendor
- my knowing was the knowing that the substance of my bones and their bones and the bones of dead men in the earth of rain at night is the common individual substance that is everlastingly tranquil and blissful?
- home again
- Oh ever youthful, O ever weeping
- Ain’t you kinda old to be a college student?
- worked incessantly
- unbelievable horizons
- I picked myself
- I was as nutty as a fruitcake and happier
- wild lyrical drizzling rain
- the taste of rain
- everybody knows everything
- God, I love you
- Though the flesh be bugged, the circumstances of existence are pretty glorious
So…..if you can’t already tell, I’ve been reading Kerouc. These are all snippets of his book Dharma Bums. If he were alive, I would totally be one of the girls who followed him around and tried to sleep with him. He’s dapper, dark-haired, and emotionally unavailable…a true man of mystery.
Last week I learned that I need different shoes to run on the road than I do on the trails. Since mid-January, I had been training for my marathon on the roads because the trails were covered in snow, and ice, mud, and then more snow, then back to mud again. I was wearing new trail runners. When my achilles began to hurt on both heels, advice from more seasoned runners was BUY NEW SHOES! I hemmed and hawed. A pair of new shoes would be half my paycheck! I stopped running for two weeks.
After reconnecting with a few dear friends one weekend, I remembered my commitment to myself. Run the race. Run the race. Run the race. You can run the race! This afternoon I trotted a hilly seven miles, and I’ll get up to ten this weekend. I want to test out a new dirt road in Sandwich that was featured in Runner’s World. It’s supposed to be quiet, and long.
The farrier comes and he talks about North Korea, nuclear bombs,
and a possible war with China that’s blowing around on the news.
He’s holding the hooves of the horses,
the big black draft leans his weight onto him.
We’re talking at least 150lbs of horse haunch
that the farrier supports with his two tattooed arms
while he trims a quarter inch of dead material from the base of the hoof.
The farrier complains he’s getting old but I see he can still hold his own here,
even with these massive animals, even in the middle of what we fear may be
World War Three.
It is something real and far on the horizon,
an approaching jeep on a desert highway.
Heat waves rising up from pavement, blend with engine exhaust,
but the sound of acceleration cannot be mistaken.
Behind the barn, I can hear the dog
gnawing on the cast-off shards of hoof walls.
***Creds for the art included go to a wonderful library patron who collaged with me last Friday, age 8! Words in the collage are by Rumi.