Thursday, December 15, 2011

V515x8: Personal Project Parade 3 and some Parting Thoughts

Personal Project Parade 3 and Some Parting Thoughts

It’s hard to really describe how this class, and these projects, have helped me to develop as an advocate of sustainable living and planning practices, given that my involvement in Occupy Bloomington really took-off in the middle of the semester, catapulting my activism and involvement to unexpected and unprecedented levels.

But, I like to think that all of these -- being introduced into the co-op subculture, taking this course in sustainable communities, undertaking active personal projects, and getting involved in the local occupation -- all of these were meant to come together, right at this time in my life...and, in fact, I never was more ready than I am now.

Bloomington CO-Operates

The co-op of co-ops -- raising Bloomington awareness about the International Year of the Cooperative and of it's vibrant co-op subculture -- is well on its way to being more fully developed.  After the NASCO/Detroit trip, I largely departed from tabling at the Farmers Market...choosing, instead, to put more time into the leg-work and face-time of social-networking among the various co-ops...which I was glad to do, given that, through this process, I discovered several more co-ops, bringing the Bloomington Total to 20. 

However, just this past Saturday, I stopped by the Winter Market to grab the paperwork necessary to have an information table.  I had never been to the Harmony School and never been to the Winter Market; however, I was excited to get back to tabling and I'm happy to announce that the UN has approved BCOOP for official, public use of the IYC Logo & Tagline...which will definitely bring a different atmosphere to the tabling.

The co-op conference hasn't yet panned-out, mostly because of people's scheduling conflicts, but the new year - the year of cooperatives - is almost here, and it would be just as (if not more) appropriate to have the kick-off event in January.

Indoor Composting

This has been a delightful joy, since it has been successful, replicable, and devoid of the many pitfalls I've heard and read about. 

Laura's addition of the red-wiggler worms made a huge difference in the processing speed of the compost-bin, and they're reproducing so there's plenty to share.
BCL never showed much interest in creating a composting collective, but there's time to work on that, for the new year, and I now have enough months of demonstrable, working proof, that I'd feel more comfortable pushing it.  Still, as a Holiday gift, I'm constructing compost-kits for the other apartments in my house...a double-box, bag of shredded paper, a cup of red-wigglers, and a cup of moisture-control soil...what every lady wants for Christmas.

Local Food

The kombucha project - and effort to eat locally - has also been largely successful.  So far, I've produced 5 gallons of kombucha, passing much along to friends and sipping as wontonly as I desire.

However, taking the effort a step further, I've bought a hydroponics kit for starting leafy-greens indoors, and have invested in a DIY sprouting kit, as well.

The food tastes better with love.

1 comment:

  1. Yes, Ryan, you seem to have achieved some sort of sustainability peak experience this semester. The sheer volume of your writing and reflection would be enough to impress, but the quality and depth have also been amazing and you took us all to Occupy Bloomington.

    Thanks for your contributions to our learning experience. Keep doing what you are doing.