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One of my favorite corners of the internet is a little place that used to be know as ‘Fake plastic Fish’, but now is more easily identified as ‘My Plastic Free Life’.  The blog’s author Beth Terry shares her adventures in living without plastic.  My favorite part is that she is not messing around.

She really means no plastic.  She takes her own reusable containers to the butcher and she has even discussed how to floss plastic free, well almost.  While I barely think about the millions of tons that I am solely responsible for, I enjoy checking in on her  blog and listening to her ideas.  We can’t all be saints.

To learn more about plastics, and living without them, check out the blog My Plastic Free Life.

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The End of Men – The Atlantic.

This is an interesting read about about a trend that I am seeing, women seem to be taking over the world.  Share your thoughts.

From my phone

Some people say the best way to keep up with a blog is to post from your phone.  In the spirit of posting more, here is some love from Flagstaff AZ

 

Breaking up with Zoho

I have been using Zoho for my email, just the free version, ever since my gmail was hacked.  The hacking was quite extensive, even bleeding into Facebook.  The hackers were chatting live with old friends, they contacted my boss, and everyone else, asking for money and telling them that I had been mugged and was now stranded.

This was not a fun experience.  Add that to Google reading my mail and sending my private information to the highest bidder, i mean advertiser, and I decided it was time to change.

Enter Zoho.  The only problem is that Google really might be better.  I need access to online documents, which zoho has too, but not as good.  I want my calendar to sync with my phone, and zoho can do that, but not as good.  The mail is nice, but is it as good?  Not always.  Then the other day my zoho mail crashed for a few hours.

The last straw?  For some reason I haven’t been able to break things off, yet.  Changing your email, yet again, is a royal pain in the a*.  It might be worse now days than changing your physical address.  All the sights and services that are sending me mail will have to be updated.

Do you ever find that you are tired of Google and are looking for a replacement?  Or maybe your like me, thinking about coming back to the old bag.

If you don’t have the resources to conduct a poll yourself, there is a way to gather accurate data on social trends. Maxwell McCombs recommends using “social indicator reporting” by using data gathered by public agencies.

Monthly, quarterly, or annual reports or statistics. Marriage, divorce, bankruptcy, death, crime, and building permit statistics are some examples.

Apply some analysis, and you are good to go.

Writing in Scenes

The cinematographic qualities of writing add life to a piece, but easier said than done right? Here are a few pointers on the art:

Using dialogue, and if you are good, accents, style and speed of speech, colloquialisms.

Quotes.

Sensory details. Smell is a good place to start.

Concrete facts. Real details. Specifics.

Gather the thoughts and motives of the subject. Share the motives and fears with your reader.

Look for a beginning, middle, and end. Problem and solution. The journey of the characters.

Write from real life, real people, and if possible from the present.

Intimate Journalism

“The simple goal of intimate journalism should be to describe and evoke how people live and what they value. That short phrase encompasses the full range of our lives–work, children, faith, anything that we do or that we believe important, everything ordinary and everything extraordinary in our lives. I’m talking about a kind of story that rises and falls on narrative structure, the reporting of physical detail, the reporting of human emotion, on evocative tone and pulling of thematic threads through the course of the story. It’s a journalism rooted in descriptive journalism.”
-Walter Harrington

I like this quote, because it explains so concisely what I feel to be important in any good story. How people live and what they value. National Geographic photographer, Steve McCurry said it in another way, “I am sustained by the rhythms of everyday life…. Where do humans sleep? How do we feed ourselves? How do we keep warm?

I feel I am constantly trying to lasso the heart of an idea, the theme and meaning of our abundant human communication; in order to understand it better, in order to do it better. Our shared human experience binds us unapologetically to one another and it is through our sweat and stink and brief moments of peace that we find any sort of common ground at all. These ideas connect us. And that is what makes them important.