Friday, June 22, 2007

Illich and My Garden

I found an archive of writing by Ivan Illich. I love his analysis of the number of hours put into owning and operating a car in a year, and the mileage gotten out of it. Divide the miles by the hours and you get about five miles per hour. Might as well walk!

This summer I have been resorting to a lot of powered and packaged conveniences in hopes of completing a renovation project quickly, before winter comes swirling in through the gaping hole that will soon be cut in the house wall. Ultimately that hole should let in a lot of sunlight and help keep the house warm, but only after a lot of framing and roofing and installing of windows and such. I'm in a hurry, and Dad has the tools, so I'm using them.

But I couldn't give up my garden, not even for one season. This winter I tried out the Ecological Footprint Calculator and realized that the environmental impact of food transportation is even larger than I thought. So I garden, stubbornly. There are some pictures over at my garden blog. I used to call it The Daily Bed, but now it's The Occasional Bed - still just as many beds, but less time talking.

8 comments:

Madcap said...

I love Ivan Illych's "Rivers North of the Future". I heard an Ideas interview of him on CBC radio a few years ago, my first exposure, which sent me to the library. He and the interviewer were hitting the wine bottle pretty hard, and the interview went on into the wee hours. Severely edited timewise for the program, of course.

arcolaura said...

Oh, there's so much to read! I keep coming across must-read authors, and forgetting them, or in this case, forgetting whole sides of them. "Rivers North of the Future" sounds fascinating - I had forgotten about the whole spiritual aspect of Illich's work, and he was a priest!

Granny said...

Dropping in to say hi and how are you doing.

arcolaura said...

Thanks Granny! Very busy, and working a lot harder than I'm accustomed to, so I go to bed aching and wake up tired. But I will toughen up, and I have a lot of mental energy these days, I guess because I am excited to be finally started on the house renovation. Thanks for stopping by!

(And others be warned - if you stop by physically, I might hand you a shovel or a hammer!)

Lynn@ZelleBlog said...

Renovations are tough, but hopefully the sunshine helps and its worth it.

Yes, we sure do use alot of resources moving food around, here in America especially with the many trucks on the road.

arcolaura said...

Hi Lynn - thanks for the good wishes! We poured some concrete today, and I am going to go fall into bed now. Had a beautiful day for it though, no rain (at last) and not too hot.

the Contrary Goddess said...

Illych has some great quotes about institutional schooling. He and Holt were buds, evidently.

arcolaura said...

Uh-oh - who is Holt? More stuff to read? (grin)