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February 28, 2008

BP4 - natural vandal

If I were torn away from the architecture program I would form my own organization: PETE.

People for the Ethical Treatment of the Environment.

I would vandalize the face of the earth with renewable resources.


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Here I would play the roll of Johnny Appleseed, planting an insane amount of trees in a pattern that can only be legible from outer space.
What harm is there in planting more trees? That's what I thought, NONE!


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This would only be possible in winter. What I would do is write messages in soil on a frozen lake. When the ice melts the soil falls to the bottom of the lake, doing no damage to the lakes ecosystem.

February 27, 2008

HnH 2/27/08

Up in the computer lab. Not one kid came up to use the lab. Pretty slow day.

February 20, 2008

BP3

The UN Millennium Development Goal that I am focusing on is #8 – Develop a Global Partnership for Development.

I feel the need to stay away from songs such as Michael Jackson's "Heal the World" and The Youngbloods' "Get Together". These songs seem much too happy and their message might be lost because of the fuzzy feelings they give you.

Propagandhi - A Public Disservice Announcement from Shell

Propagandhi - Resisting Tyrannical Government

Let it be known that I don't support the killing of elected officials as a viable option for social change.

Billy Bragg – Waiting for the Great Leap Forward

A great quote from Billy Bragg in this song:
“In the former Soviet Union the citizens demand
To know why they are still the target of strategic air command
And they shake their fists in anger and respectfully suggest
We take the money from our missiles and spend it on our hospitals instead?

bolivianboyrocks.jpg
Image credit: Flickr
One aspect of goal #8 is to develop decent and productive work for the youth, in cooperation with the developing countries. In 2003 youth unemployment rates were highest in the Middle East and in Northern Africa - 26% of the youth were unemployed. The next lowest region was Sub-Saharan Africa.
To achieve these goals work needs to be done, why not utilize and empower the people of these countries in the education and development process?

HnH 2/20/08

Our last day of training. We went around and asked the children and mentors what they liked most about homework ‘n hoops. Most of the kids said that they really liked to play the games and liked the free time, but a few said they liked to get their homework done before going home. The mentors said that they liked to help the children and be a role model.

February 19, 2008

sl 2/13/08

Last Wednesday we got to go in and get our training done with Maurie at Homework n Hoops. I am going to be up in the computer lab helping kids with any problems they might have up there. We were taught a system in which we are to speak with the children. The three main ways we learned to guide conduct were:

reinforce
redmind
redirect

more later...

February 14, 2008

BP2 - out of home, out of body

Imagine you are 50 years old. You and your spouse have a nice home and a cabin you visit on the weekends. Your children are grown and are out living their lives. Pretty great, huh?
Now imagine you are 80 years old. Your spouse has died, and you are living in your home all by yourself. You slipped in the kitchen a month ago and broke your hip. Sitting in a wheelchair not being able to navigate your house, your children found it best for you to live in a nursing home. You are taken from your home of 50+ years and forced to share a small bedroom with a person you don't know. A staff member wakes you up and puts you to bed every day at the same time. Your freedom is the first thing to go. Next stop dignity. Sporting a Depends you are checked every few hours to see if you have gone to the bathroom. If you have, great! Now you get to be changed like a baby.

Does that sound like a way you would like your parents to spend their final years, let alone yours?

Yes there are other alternatives to nursing homes, but not everyone can afford those solutions. My girlfriend works at an assisted living home. The going rate there is $9,000 a month. That boils down to over $100,000 a year. It is a really nice place, recently remodeled. Hell, I would even like to live there! Right now there is only one resident. Staff to resident ratio is 1:1, but this is not your average nursing home. Some nursing home ratios are 1:15, or worse. The staff isn’t going to be able to stay on top of every resident at all times so there is naturally going to be some neglect every now and then.

There are the obvious ways that design could better improve this situation for the elderly by giving them their own rooms, giving them more privacy and thus allowing them to become more comfortable. But where else can design step in to help, or are we once again enslaved to the greenbacks?

February 8, 2008

because i can

one of my favorite songs and videos

February 6, 2008

BP1 - flow city, flow

Can a city flow? Yes. What flows in a city? The people moving in and out.

Monday 8a.m. hits - the suburbs drain. Slowly and steadily the fanned out population condenses on the interstates and flows like a vein to the heart of the city.

time lapse.jpg

The city has reached it's zenith. Skyscrapers brimming with people - making money, spending money. Soon the opposite will happen. The buildings drain. Bikes, cars, buses, and trains all join forces on the roads and disperse into the periphery.

tide.jpg

This reminds me of the scene shown above in "Rivers and Tides". The people are the ocean and the egg is the skyscraper. The cracks between the rocks are filled with water much like the building being full of workers. When the tide goes out the work is done. Slowly draining from head to toe, only to be completely filled the next day (tide).