IONTW – October 23, 2016

TODAY, October 23! Book talk at North Bay Letterpress Arts. Alastair Johnston will discuss his book Dreaming on the Edge: Poets and Book Artists in California, which documents 150 years of the book arts in California.

Next Saturday, October 29, Open House at Sonoma County Taiko!

Santa Rosa Pump Track is almost ready to go! Thank you Pump Track Jesus!

For Inktober, Shawn Coss decided to go off the usual prompt and focus on mental illnesses and disorders.

Diversify your swearing.

I remember doing reeely simple paper mache projects in grammar school. These animal sculptures are a whole nother universe of what can be made from newspaper.

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I’m not sure how I didn’t think of this when I was doing the Words of Color, but a piece by Kay Rosen popped it into my head, and being betweenish on all the other projects it seemed like a fun filler/distraction/what have you/ excuse to pick out some wood type and figure out the set up on the Vandercook and SO satisfying when it came together the geometry of it and yay getting things in the right spot and going the right direction although of course a few little adjustments, then the ink little of this little of that turned out to be the color I had in my head, some days are like that so smooth, enjoyed and not to be taken for granted.

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another thing I don’t understand, #250

paying thousands of dollars for a purse (or handbag)

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Bridge Between Continents

Quite possibly I’ve walked from one tectonic plate to another before, but I can now say for sure I’ve done it, with the help of the illustrative Bridge Between Continents on the Reykjanes peninsula. The bridge opened in July 2002. For scale, it’s 18 meters (59 feet) long and about 6 meters (about 20 feet) above the canyon formed by the drifting on the North American and Eurasian plates.

Some cool rocks, but without the Bridge I would have had no way of knowing the significance of the canyon. But that’s often how the world is. Anyway, it keeps things in perspective to think on geological time scales, although the informational signage said the drift is around 2 cm (over 3/4 inch) a year, which is more than I would have guessed. Over my lifetime that’s almost 3 feet!

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Euroadventure 2016! Day 7

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The host parents were otherwise occupied so we were to have a self-guided day today. The night before my sister and I had talked about going in to Reykjavík again. I said I wanted to go to art museums and bookstores, and she said, “sounds good.” Uh OK. I realized I’d been hoping that maybe that wouldn’t sound so interesting and she and WCN would volunteer that they were going to do something else.

No, it’s me needs some alone time. Right, we hadn’t really had a specific discussion about the expectations before hand (note to self?) but hey at least you realized that’s what you need so you can put on the big girl panties and speak up now. Which, I sorta did by getting up and being ready to go before the others are, saying I wanted to do my own thing and heading out.

There was a bit of drizzle but I walked over to the bus stop. It was a nice ride in to Reykjavík, and I got off near Harpa and went over and walked around inside. From there it was a short walk over to Reykjavík Art Museum – Hafnarhús. Turned out the City Library was right next door!

Reykjavík Art Museum has three locations, and you can go to all three on the same admission on the same day. The route I’d mapped out took me along the waterfront and up to Ásmundarsafn next. Just past Harpa there was a couple who looked like they were geocaching. Going this way took me by the Sun Voyager sculpture as well. Although it wasn’t a sunny day it was neat to get an up close view, and perhaps due to the weather it was pretty quiet. There were a few other tourists though, and one woman asked me to take her picture with the sculpture but had forgotten to take her phone off of selfie mode. There was a bit of a language barrier, but we figured it out.

As I was walking along there was the seeping realization that perhaps the shoes I was wearing weren’t completely waterproof. oopsies. Well at least I had a good rain jacket and an umbrella. The rain eased so I was able to enjoy the sculpture garden at Ásmundarsafn. The moisture gave added visual interest to many of the pieces, although I didn’t realize at the time that it also reflected the red of my camera, which turned out to be rather distracting in the pictures. moreoopsies. The inside portion of the museum was also quite lovely.

Next up was Kjarvalsstaðir, the third location of the Reykjavík Art Museum, which I also quite enjoyed. I thought one of the places Brooke recommended checking out was on my way back to downtown and bookstores, but I struck out there. Also struck out on an ice cream place, but there was an awesome bakery on the corner. The sweet looking cinnamon buns lured me in, but then the person in front of me got bread bread with butter and OHIWANTWHATTHEYHAD. The counter person let me pick my bread, and set out the crock of butter with a knife so I could butter! So simple and tasty (I found myself wondering if there’s anywhere that does that in the States?)

Then it was bookstores, with some success, and some not so much, and the day was getting on so I headed back toward the bus stop by Harpa. The bus just leaving, so I went in to use the bathroom and HEY! the ice cream cart was open. Danish licorice!!!

YUM. Again I enjoyed the sights on the bus trip, including seeing a group ride! Cycling, that is. I missed the closest stop to the Bonus market, and shouldn’t have bothered back tracking, since they were already closed. But there was the sweet town park between me and the apartment, so I took a wander through there. Oh and yes, more ice cream. Well, it was soft serve, so that’s another food group, right? A tasty and filling day – both literally and figuratively!

June 20, 2016

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something I think I’d like to know, #286

what’s the difference between a purse and a handbag?

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Bláa lónið

The Blue Lagoon geothermal spa is one of the most visited attractions in Iceland – you see pictures of it in all the guide books and it sorta makes you feel like you have to go. I didn’t actually feel particularly compelled, but I think WCN was interested so it went on the schedule and we were there so what the heck.

The host parents dropped us off and went to play golf. There were numerous busses in the parking lot, and cranes working on a facilities expansion, attesting to the popularity of the site. Despite all that, and the insistence that you must pre-book, it never felt overly crowded. There was the Disneyland maze at the front entrance, but no one was in line. We were a little early, but they went ahead and checked us in.

They had nifty waterproof wristbands that were your admission level identification and the key for your locker. After the usual shower sans swimsuit then suiting up it was off to the lagoon. It was clear but a bit breezy, so getting in the water felt good. There were people from all over the world enjoying the waters.

There were a few deeper spots, but mostly it was a sort of squat to stay submerged, but the mineral content of the water gave some buoyancy, so you could easily bob/dog-paddle around. There was also a sauna and the silica face mask – which I did avail myself of – and swim-up bar and in water massage treatments – which I didn’t. One area had the foam noodles you could float around on. That was pretty relaxing. After a while I started to get pruney though, so got out. Not sure I’d go again, but it was a fun experience as a hey we’re on vacation why not kinda thing.

And! Turns out the geothermal water is power plant effluent. After the superheated water runs turbines to generate electricity it goes through a heat exchanger to provide heat for a municipal water heating system – the lagoon is the third use! Which is pretty cool, in some ways, also perhaps slightly ironic contrast to the blissful nature feeling of all the promotional pictures. (Not that they try to obscure the fact, or make it seem like it’s a naturally occurring hot spring, but it struck me.) On the other hand, the coming up from such depths is apparently what gives it all the restorative minerals.

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