One of several carved pieces by Lyonel Grant for the Evergreen Longhouse Weavers’ Studio, Olympia, WA
I flew to Seattle for a number of reasons: alternative doctor diagnosis and treatment, work with Sue on a button robe, meet up with my niece and fellow artist to discuss our exhibit next year, and check out the Maori/Coast Salish carvings for the planned “Weavers’ Studio” at the Evergreen Longhouse campus in Olympia, Washington.
Maori carving by New Zealand’s number one Maori carver, Lyonel Grant
These carvings were designed and created by the top New Zealand Maori carver, Lyonel Grant. You may check out his website at: www.lyonelgrant.com
Collaborative piece carved by Maori carver Lyonel Grant and Coast Salish carver Peter Boome
Detail carving of Coast Salish artist Peter Boome and Maori artist Lyonel Grant
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Hillary Rodham Clinton is outlining a sweeping plan to hold down the rising cost of prescription drugs and target drug companies that flood the airwaves with ads.
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Just two months after Minnesota launched its medical marijuana program, some patients turned off by high costs say they are back to buying the drug illegally because it's the only way they can afford it.
James EngelhardtWhen we told people that we were going to move to Fairbanks, my wife and I received two distinct responses that have stayed with me. The first response came from our pediatrician who said he’d lived in Fairbanks for a few years and loved it. “But you have to get outside,” he said, “or you’ll go crazy.” The second response came from a neighbor whose friend had moved here for about six months. She said that her friend told her that he couldn’t stand being indoors for half the year.
It was clear that getting outdoors was important. And when we arrived, we learned that it was not enough simply to get outdoors. We found a celebration of the outdoors and landscape. Alaskans have a drive to get out into the wilderness and engage the natural world on its own terms.
An inevitable consequence of people going outdoors and engaging the landscape is that sooner or later someone is going to want to write about it. And a lot of people want to write a memoir.
Memoir is a compelling genre, and I’ve read my fair share. Over the years I’ve heard a lot of pitches and read quite a few manuscripts, and I’ve noticed a peculiar tendency in Alaska memoirs: People resist writing about themselves. Many of the prospective memoirists frame their complaint by saying that they hate “navel gazing” memoirs, particularly memoirs that should be about landscape and wilderness.
This attitude points to some interesting aspects of both wilderness and memoir. I’ll start by noting that there is no wilderness without humans. You have to have humans to have wilderness. Otherwise, it’s just planet. Once we have human settlements, then we have wilderness. The two are inextricably linked. Further, we live in an era when humans have been everywhere and influenced everything on the planet. We don’t have pure wilderness any more. Not exactly a happy thought.
But we do have stories. It was Muriel Rukeyser who said that the universe is made of stories, and her observation is important to keep in mind. Story thrives on conflict. Readers need to see goals that are thwarted. They want to see characters striving to reach something beyond themselves.
Now, I want to pivot a bit.
When our daughter was still getting rolled around in a stroller, she would nod and smile at people, dogs, squirrels, whatever. But if she saw another small kid, her attention would immediately lock on. The same thing happens with our house cats. Birds, squirrels, dogs (dogs and squirrels are everywhere) capture a lot of attention, but let another cat stroll through the yard and my cats go completely still. What I drew from these lessons is that animals are profoundly fascinated by other members of their species. Humans are no exception. Now, back to stories. The stories people are drawn to are the stories of other people. Bears are good. Wilderness is good. But we really want to know about that other person, what their struggles were, what conflicts they negotiated, what goals they had that were thwarted—or that they achieved.
Memoir has an inevitable self-obsession and navel-gazing quality to it. But the extraordinary leap memoirists make is to understand that they’re the main character, and readers really, really want to know the stories that make up that character’s universe. Even out in the backwoods, up in the mountains, or floating on some isolated water, we take ourselves with us. Many of us try to escape the self by going to those places, and that’s a laudable goal. But the self that comes back with us, that is the self that readers want to engage.
As it turns out, I worked hard to take the pediatrician’s advice. And I like reading about why other people stay in this place.
There is an X-Country race on Saturday, September 26 at Sandy Beach. This will likely impact the flow of traffic in and out of the rink parking lot.
Runners will be on the road, crossing the Treadwell Arena parking lot and will have the right-of-way.
PLEASE NOTE: There will be flaggers that will likely be stopping cars as runner cross. Please give yourself additional time to get to the rink.
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Hillary Rodham Clinton on Monday hailed President Barack Obama's health care law for reducing the rate of uninsured Americans and vowed to defend it against Republican opposition if she wins the White House.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Vowing to build upon President Barack Obama's signature health law, Hillary Rodham Clinton is unveiling a sweeping plan to hold down the rising cost of prescription drugs and target pharmaceutical companies that flood the airwaves with ads.
Researchers studying a degenerative disease in former athletes say 11 of 12 brains of deceased former NFL players tested over the past year showed signs of chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, continuing a trend they've been tracking.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Add another item to lawmakers' busy fall agenda: Congress must decide whether to do battle again with first lady Michelle Obama over school lunches with more whole grains and less salt.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Hillary Rodham Clinton is laying out a new plan to rein in the rising cost of prescription drugs, seeking to build upon President Barack Obama's health care law.