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Dr. Star's Astrology Forecast: May 2009

FOR EVERYONE: Bittersweet change. Permanent, irreversible change will come to all of us this month. Events will partly force us and partly allow us to break out of an old, limiting situation and into a new one with much greater promise. Some will have to abandon old expectations for new ones. But the changes will […]

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Eco Ridin'

As of 2009, there is only one Bicycle Friendly Business (BFB) in the state of Iowa, and it is located in our very own Iowa City. The League of American Bicyclists named the Broken Spoke as a bronze level BFB last March. According to the League, which has 300,000 members, only 47 total businesses in the […]

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Closing Arguments

Superintendent Lane Plugge’s office on Dubuque Street is in the three-story brick building that used to be Henry Sabin Elementary School. The elementary school closed in 1979. Now it’s the Iowa City Community School District’s administration building, and site of increasingly fractious school board meetings on the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month. Plugge […]

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Living in a Disposable World

I sit with John Solow, an associate professor of economics, to chat about DVD players. Five years ago, his broke. It was a hulking, silver box, a relic of early-era digital technology. Motors whirled in an eh-eh-eh sputter, but, try as he did, Solow couldn’t get the disc tray to open. Where I would have reached […]

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Fitness, meet food

The Obama’s are doing it, so shouldn’t we do it too? In case you’re in the dark and missed the First Lady digging around on the White House lawn in March, gardening is in the spotlight this year. Of all the reasons to grow your own food, health of the environment and your own body […]

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Deconstructing the Iowa Barn

The Johnsons kept eight or 10 milk cows in the barn. They sometimes kept pigs, too, but cows suited the barn best. They milked the animals by hand. Later, they skimmed the cream and sent it to the local creamery for butter or ice cream, saving the remaining milk for the hogs. That was 1950. […]

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Life After Gang Lu

Miya Rodolfo-Sioson was given a second chance at life. She was chosen for a purpose. Miya was the lucky one. The odds had turned against her in an instant but reversed course just as quickly again. Your faith tells you which of the above statements you believe, but the facts tell you this: Miya Rodolfo-Sioson […]

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Health: On the Run

I have lived in Iowa City for three years now. Each end of April brings the River Run 5K. This is the third year that I have sworn that I would do it. But unlike those other two years, this year I’m actually doing it. I have goals, a plan, and this is the year […]

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Health: Easy Riders

My thighs burned as I pushed the pedals up another asphalt-covered hill. Each climb was harder than the last and a personal battle, which was to be followed by a spectacular view of snow-patched cornfields as far as the eye could see–-and a nice long coast. These rolling hills of Iowa guide the joyrides for […]

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UR Here: Nature's Economy

As the global economy crumbles around us, I have been writing about relocalization as a way toward sustainability, last month expanding on the concept of abundance as the foundation upon which it could work. One more important fundamental concept for a sustainable economy is looking to the natural world as a model, so I’d like […]

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Designing Woman

For UI President Sally Mason and others, the outfit may not make the woman, but it matters. Pragmatism may soon skirt the runway as more people struggle with employment and basic needs. But still, fashion parlance ought to remain, albeit for a serious purpose: business. Such is Sally Mason’s wardrobe. Business first, pleasure second. And […]

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