Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Turkish Delight - Eurovision 2008

Turkey may have issues with the European Union but Turkey has participated in Eurovision since 1975.

Turkey Eurovision 2008

Mor Ve Otesi ~ Deli

English Lyrics: Crazy/insane

my soul's owner is being searched
did I fall in the right place?
perpetrator of the passion is resisting
it got angry and became smaller
it is resisting
Bring me up, don't make me cry
where is your love which you are proud of
Bring me up, don't make me cry
don't detain me with fake dreams
it's (my soul's owner) being searched
one part of me is sane the other one is insane
my four directions are sane; one part is is insane
everybody is sane, only me insane
only me insane

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Next Stop, Croatia

Its true I don't get off the Island much. How's that for an excuse to indulge in my once secret passion for Eurovision? Hop on the Eurovision bus for a virtual tour of Europe. I hope you enjoyed visiting Iceland. Next stop, Croatia.

Croatia Eurovision 2008

Romanca ~ Kraljevi Ulice & 75 Cent

Lyrics in English: Romance
Music and Lyrics Miran Hadži Veljković
Score Tomislav Modrić



Life erases our tracks

It lets weird devils into that good night
Every day is bathed in cold sun
And memories are almost faded out

If you asked me I would only know one thing
Colours exist only in this rhyme
Night and day are the remains of some line
They will disappear when our songs fade

Play tonight that romance
Quietly to make me fall ill
The sadness when a nightingale dies
When the soul with the body divorces

Play tonight that romance
Slowly so that everyone hears
Let the guitars play again
'Cos I haven't heard them for a long time


Monday, April 28, 2008

Globalize Your Consciousness

Feeling a bit provincial? Can’t get off the Island? Globalize your consciousness with Eurovision. Europe’s Pop Music contest has been bringing fame to groups like Sweden’s Abba since 1956. Every year countries across Europe select a song and in May the contest is judged by call-in votes. This year’s final competition will be held in Belgrade.

Iceland Eurovision 2008

Euroband ~ This is My Life
Link to: Eurovision

New Works at Waterworks Gallery

Matthew Gray Palmer - abstracted sculpture
Caroline James ~ mixed media paintings
May 3 - 25, 2008

Wood Sketch III ~ Matthew Gray Palmer

Hours: Wednesday ~ Saturday, 10.00 to 5.30 and Sunday 11.00 to 4.00
Waterworks Gallery - 315 spring st

Margaret Longley Award Recipient

Margaret Longley

Margaret Longley of San Juan Island has been awarded the Kathryn W Davis Projects for Peace Award. Margaret, a filmmaker who worked in the Iraqi war zone on the academy award-nominated film, "Iraq in Fragments," will be creating a film on the disenfranchisement of the homeless with her project, "Homelessness and Voting in a Democracy."

Link to article:

New Washington State Vessel Regulations

New 2008 Washington State Vessel Regulations
For Southern Resident Killer Whales
Effective June 12th 2008

DO NOT APPROACH by any means w/in 100 yards of a
Southern Resident Killer Whale
DO NOT cause a vessel or other object to approach w/in
100 yards of a Southern Resident Killer Whale
DO NOT INTERCEPT a Southern Resident Killer Whale
DISENGAGE a vessel that is w/in 100 yards of a
Southern Resident Killer Whale
DO NOT feed a Southern Resident Killer Whale

Week 4: Marine Naturalist Training

Cindy giving instruction on the assemblage of Stinky Bill

At the Whale Museum again for the 4th week of Marine Naturalist Training Cindy went over the differences between toothed whales like Orcas and baleen whales like Stinky Bill the Museum's resident Gray Whale. Nope, we don't keep Stinky Bill in a big tub upstairs in the Museum. Unfortunately Stinky Bill met with an untimely death in his youth. What we have are his bones, which were spread out on the floor for us to put together.

After a lunch break we met again over at the High School where Kari Koski told us about Soundwatch, the Museum program that actively protects whales and other Marine life by educating boaters. Mary Knackstedt gave an overview of the San Juan Marine Resources Committee and Marine protected Areas in San Juan County.

Black Oystercatchers ~ Tony Angell
from Marine Birds and Mammels of Puget Sound

Then a bird who had mystically transformed himself into a man named David Drummond flew into the room. He flitted about feeding our astonished little beaks bits of philosophical wisdom. He showed us pictures of birds and he talked about how adaptable we are recommending that we go outside and just be. I took this to heart as I spend altogether too much time indoors at my computer and the adaptations that result may in fact not be how I truly wish to evolve. He recommended books including: Sacred Balance by David Suzuki, Practice of the Wild by Gary Snyder and The Future of Life by E.O. Wilson.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Danny Schmidt on Lopez

Home on the Grange Concert Series
at Lopez Island Grange
Danny Schmidt ~Sunday May 11th 7:30 PM

Danny Schmidt - Stained Glass

Lopez Island Grange Hall

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Happy Earth Day ~ The Rs

Recycle, Reuse, Reconsider Reproductive Choices
and make a Rain Garden

Link to: Planned Parenthood
Link to: Friday Harbor Health Center
Link to: Rain Gardens

Friday, April 18, 2008

Holy Men Agree ~ No Nukes!

Pope Benedict XVI ~ XIV Dalai Lama

Pope Benedict XVI arrived in New York this week and spoke at the United Nations. Last week the XIV Dalai Lama spoke to crowds in Seattle at the Seeds of Compassion Conference. Both spiritual leaders called for Nuclear Disarmament. Ground Zero Center for Nonviolent Action has carried on a program of nonviolent action resisting nuclear weapons since 1977. On Saturday May 10th 2008 Ground Zero is organizing an annual Mothers Day vigil and nonviolent direct action at the gates of the naval base Kitsap Bangor. For more information call 377-2465 or email

Ground Zero Center For Non Violent Action

link to: Ground Zero

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Green Tara, Swift Liberator

Green Tara ~ Painting by Kungchang Lama, Nepal

I have been following the troubles in Tibet and the Dalai Lama's visit to Seattle with great interest partly because I am a Buddhist in the Tibetan tradition myself. Tibetans have suffered horribly in occupied Tibet and as refugees. And yet, these people are unique refugees in what they bring to the rest of the world. I very grateful for the Tibetan teachings that I have had the opportunity to benefit from at our Tibetan Buddhist center right here on San Juan Island. I became a Buddhist in 2002. I took refuge (became a Buddhist) with Lama Jetsun Kushok who took a snip of my hair with special little scissors and gave me the Tibetan name Yeshe Wangmo. How could I resist a wise female Tibetan Lama with an affection for Green Tara. Green Tara is the Female Buddha of wisdom and compassion. Tara was born out of the tears of compassion of the bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara. It is said that he wept as he looked upon the world of suffering beings, and his tears formed a lake in which a lotus sprung up. When the lotus opened, the goddess Tara was revealed.

Green Tara Mantra
Om Tara Tuttare Ture Svaha
Om swift one who removes fear, liberator, svaha

Porch of the Sakya Kachod Choling Tibetan Buddhist Center on San Juan Island

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The Righteous' Wealth is in His Holy Place

Barack Obama has been catching flack for saying that the rural working poor are bitter and clinging to religion. They say he is talking down to us. But I disagree. I felt understood. Yes, I cling to my religion with sweating palms and white knuckles. It is how I keep the bitter taste of poverty at bay living here in this million dollar condo town. You might catch me at South Beach saying my mantras or pulled over in my Toyota by the Valley Church for a quick prayer and a word with the ancestors before I go to work. Obama said perhaps he could have chosen better words to say what he said and that may be true. Bob Marley said like this.....

"The rich man's wealth is in his city;
The righteous' wealth is in his Holy Place."

Bob Marley - Stiff Necked Fools

Sunday, April 13, 2008

April Flowers

April Flowers ~ photo Margaret Bell

The Sun was warm but the wind was chill.
You know how it is with an April day.
When the sun is out and the wind is still,
You’re one month on in the month of May.
But if you so much as dare to speak,
a cloud come over the sunlit arch,
And wind comes off a frozen peak,
And you’re two months back in the middle of March.

~ Robert Frost

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Week 3: Marine Naturalist Training

Greg Hertel shows us examples of local geology

The third Marine Naturalist Training today was a field to Lime Kiln Park and then to Cattle Point. Greg Hertel pointed out local geology and explained the difference between subduction zone volcanoes, the kind we have here that are full of churned debris, gas and are highly explosive and hot spot volcanoes like they have in Hawaii that calmly spew out liquid lava. The Northwest's Mt St Helen’s and Italy's Mt Vesuvius (that caught the people of Pompeii by surprise) are subduction zone volcanoes.

Subduction Zone Volcano ~ Hot Spot Volcano

Our nearest subduction zone volcano, Mt Baker, was especially resplendent today flanked with plenty of gleaming snow. Luckily for us Mt Baker remains calm..... for now.

Taking notes above South Beach

At Cattle Point Pema Kitaeff gave us a short introduction to what we may find in the intertidal zone. She explained that when it comes to “starfish” scientists prefer the name “sea star” because starfish are not really fish. Scientists are so literal! And, I was not the only one to be surprised to learn that octopus are mollusks and barnacles like crabs, are arthropods.


Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Whales and Wildflowers!

Exploring Nature Through The Eyes of an Artist
Friday April 11th at 7:00 PM

Whales at Cattle Pass ~ Nancy Spaulding

Please join us at the Whale Museum to view new and favorite works by beloved Island artist Nancy Spaulding. Nancy will share some of the inspirations behind her compositions as she discusses her work and shares commentary with nature writer and friend Susan Vernon. The two have shared many forays around the San Juan’s exploring the natural world and sharing the pleasures of discovery from their differing perspectives. As spring brings a new season of wonders, come and share their enthusiasm for the landscape and the natural history of the San Juan’s. Light refreshments will be served.

Monday, April 7, 2008

One World One Dream ~ Free Tibet

Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco

Eiffel Tower, Paris

Westminster Bridge, London

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Week 2: Marine Naturalist Training

Binoculars ~ On the Ferry

As someone who rarely leaves Friday Harbor it was a treat to go to Orcas today for the second session of this spring’s Marine Naturalist Training. At the Orcas library our first lecturer Joe Gaydos cleared up a long-standing confusion of mine by explaining the difference between river otters and sea otters. River otters are smaller with long tails and they come out of the water. They travel in salt water, fresh water and on land. Never mind that we don’t have rivers around here we do have river otters. We have sea otters too. Sea otters are bigger, have short tails, stay in the sea and strike that iconic otter pose floating on their backs nibbling on sea urchins (or some other specialty). River otters prefer fish and eat right side up.

Speaker Kathy Fletcher from People for Puget Sound made the point that Puget Sound has just as complex an ecosystem as the more typically glamorized tropical rainforests and that ours is an invertebrate rich ecosystem. I thought she had the quote of the day with, “Invertebrates are the backbone of the ecosystem.” In a discussion about how to get people engaged in environmental issues one woman mentioned that she liked the approach of including humans in the equation as part of the ecosystem. I asked quietly, but not quietly enough for Cindy to miss, “aren’t we one of those invasive species that needs to be eradicated?” Science charts agree; as human population goes up, biodiversity goes down. Using your canvas shopping bag is all well and good but beware the pitter-patter of little carbon footprints. When it comes to motherhood and apple pie, just stick with the pie.

Mike O’Connell ~ Long Live the Kings ~ Orcas

We ended this week’s training with Mike O’Connell giving us a tour of Glenwood Springs Salmon Hatchery. Ideally situated where a creek empties into a bay the hatchery carefully mimics natural systems. The hatchery is a partnered with Long Live the Kings a private, nonprofit organization committed to restoring wild salmon to the Pacific Northwest.

A Girl and Her ipod ~ On the Ferry

Friday, April 4, 2008

Remembering Dr. Martin Luther King

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated 40 years ago today.

Excerpts from a Sermon delivered at the
Ebenezer Baptist Church on April 30, 1967.

Link to text of entire speech.
Link to Real Audio file of entire speech.

Griffin Responds

Sketch of Belle Vue Farm 1859 by James Madison Alden ~ National Park Service

Just prior to the Pig incident Charles Griffin, overseer of Belle View Farm for the British corporation Hudson’s Bay Co, was already exasperated by the increasing presence of American homesteaders. Griffin was raising sheep and the “Yankee Squatters” were setting up camp on Griffin's sheep runs.

Island Sheep

In his Belle Vue journal Griffin wrote, “An American shot one of my pigs for trespassing!!!” Cutlar came to Griffin and offered to pay for the pig. According to Griffin this was, “a remuneration which was so insignificant it only adds insult to injury, and likewise used the most insulting and threatening language and openly declared that he would shoot my cattle if they trespassed near his place.” From Griffin's point of view it was the Americans who were trespassing on British soil.

Belle Vue Sheep Farm painting by Richard Schlecht ~ National Park Service

reference: Vouri, The Pig War: Standoff at Griffin Bay

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Sam Green, Poet Laureate at the Library

Washington’s First Poet Laureate
Samuel Green
Friday April 4th at 6:30pm

Come to the Library on Friday April 4th to hear Sam Green read his poetry and talk about his experiences as a Waldron Island poet, editor of Brooding Heron Press, and Seattle University’s Northwest Writer-in-Residence.

As Washington’s first poet laureate, Sam will serve a two year term, during which he will visit communities across the state building awareness and an appreciation of poetry through readings, workshops, and lectures. In conjunction with Griffin Bay Bookstore, the San Juan Island Library was able to schedule an event with Sam Green, and is graciously sponsored by the Friends of the Library.

Sam Green has authored ten collections of poetry, and his most recent is “The Grace of Necessity”, available now at the Library, and local bookstores. For more information on Sam, visit: ~ San Juan Island Library

Tulip Field, MacLean Road, Skagit Valley
by Sam Green

If there were a single word
for the color of these tulips,
it would have to contain
the bright swirl of my mother´s favorite
skirt. She square-danced in it for years until
some inner joy faded faster than the fabric.
It would need to have the scarlet
of a single maple leaf
caught in a spider´s web between
two trees in the orchard
my wife & I planted
together. And the splendor of an apple
polished on the wool of a Pendleton
shirt my grandfather left
a little wear in before he died.

I say red & want to hold it
with my tongue longer than teeth
& gums will let me –
skirt & leaf, apple & shirt –
and no lexicon to help me.