UR Here: Rethinking the gnat

Gnats, oh gnats

Those pesky clouds of airborne annoyance come around every spring, but they’ve been especially bad this year. Chalk it up to this year’s cool spring and heavy rains, says Patrick O’Malley from the Iowa State University Extension. Mother Nature’s vichyssoise stewed up an extra-heaping helping of the buggers, and then the sudden heat of late May shot them out of our backyard swamps, all at once, faster than you can say “Anton Arcane” (an arcane reference for the Swamp Thing fans out there).

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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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The Eagles of Iowa City

When I relocated to Iowa City, one of my major fears was missing out on the outdoors activities that make the winters bearable (and the make the spring, summer falls even more enjoyable). There’s no downhill skiing, not much ice skating, and the snowcover is usually in a perpetual cycle of melting and freezing, not […]

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UR Here: Visiting Ober

I visited the grave of Ernest Oberholtzer today last month. I was invited to read from my new book of essays Under a Midland Sky (ok, that’s a plug) at the Unitarian Church in Davenport. This was a wonderful occasion to find the resting place of one of my heroes, especially given that Davenport’s Unitarian […]

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