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Livin’ La Vida Local

October 31, 2016

Day of the Dead in Tucson

Day of the Dead in Tucson



My city is the best place to live, or to be dead. Tucson celebrates Dia de los Muertos in a very big way.  I love the festive, colorful death party that is our own home-grown version of the Mexican All Souls Day.  My own parents are in the cemetery not very far from downtown, so I am sure they will take part again this year.  My hound dog now joins her grandparents in the festivities.  She is scattered at the pet cemetery across town, but space and time are no longer an issue for her, and she loves to party.  They will be in the ghostly part of the procession.

My friends joke with me about my extreme localism.  My business jurisdiction (where I spend my money) is as tight as I can make it. I am a true believer in supporting the small business efforts of my neighborhood establishments.  I love to discover local providers of all kinds.  This week I discovered two new ways to fulfill my dream of finding and frequenting local enterprises.  At TenWest I met Aaron Gopp, creator of a new app, Localoop.  He is enthusiastic about his new service, locating businesses that meet a strict locally owned and operated criteria for people like me.  It was a lucky break that he stopped to chat at our table.  His directory was created for my very picky and specific needs. It will also help businesses discover and reach potential clients in the area.   I have downloaded it and already have found a couple of places near home of which I was unaware.  As he develops this I look forward to the guidance it will provide to consumers as well as to businesses.  My neighborhood could use some economic development.

While I was out biking around town with my homies I stopped at the Local First Arizona booth.  Aaron credits this group with helping him and giving him good guidelines to follow for defining what is local.  This non-profit foundation exists to support local small business.  It has membership and benefits, like a chamber of commerce.  They have created a system of locating local food sources called Good Food Finder  This page lists local providers, restaurants, farms, markets, and aggregators.  There is even information about local food assistance programs. This is a major service to society.  Both the food finding and the local looping will make me very happy, and upgrade the economy around me.  Do you like to shop local, gentle reader?  What are your best ways to discover new places in your area?

Gradual Decline

January 29, 2013 1 Comment

The people who have gone through natural disasters and survived can tell us change is never what we expect. The people who languish in unhappy circumstances often believe that fate has trapped them without options.  The appearance of permanence is a mind boggler. The sensory world seems permanent and meaningless, virtually everything it is not. You are an element of change, weather you acknowledge it or not. Some folks imagine they are preserving the world, others think they are destroying, ruling, or upgrading it. If sudden events alter the world around you, you will both adopt new ways of coping and adapt new skills. This is true for gradual change as well.

The median income in the U.S. of all but the top 10% of earners has remained relatively flat since 1967. Not all family groups, but most, own less than they owned three years ago. A small increase in household income is enjoyed by the top 5 percent of earners, but the middle class has lost income since the big crash of 2008. The adaptation to this reality does not look like healthy acceptance and appropriate response. The concept that the future is always better casts a dark economic cloud over real budgets. Spending as if there is no tomorrow usually results in a future of gloom. Paying the piper is inevitable in terms of karmic as well as financial debt. At both a personal and a national level new skills and perspectives are needed to break the cycle of gradual decline.

Consumption as Culture

December 3, 2012 2 Comments

Who is in charge of the decisions you make about consumption? Do your values ever influence what you buy?

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