Poo of the day!

The notice and agenda for the Dairy Manure Technology Feasibility Assessment Meeting on April 7, 2005 has been posted to the ARB website.

To view a copy of this notice/agenda please go to the following website address:
http://www.arb.ca.gov/ag/caf/dairypnl/dmp040705.htm
Maybe they forgot the sales guy?

Not your average test drive

PORT ORCHARD — When Port Orchard Police Sgt. Jan Myers saw a red Ford Mustang zoom down Guy Wetzel Street, he figured something wasn't right.

Aside from the speeding, another tip off was the red balloon attached to the antenna.

Myers went to Bay Ford, figuring the car came from the dealer. Sure enough, it was missing from the lot.

He found the car abandoned a short time later on Arnold Avenue.

Can the Big H save the Planet?

The California Hydrogen Highway Network Blueprint Plan has been transmitted to the Governor and will be available for review on March 30, 2005 at www.HydrogenHighway.ca.gov
Reliving 2003 - One Email Attachment At A time

Back in 2003 I was one of two co-chairs for the GPUS's Accreditation Committee. The role of the committee was to receive applications from state Green Parties that wanted to join the GPUS. Not all of the state Green Party's actually are members of the Green Party of the United States, and it's been somewhat of a long an grueling process. In early 2003, the committee was asked by a steering committee member to come up with the proposal for the process for the 2004 Presidential Nominating Convention. Rather than recreate the wheel, the committee relied heavily and almost (Like 99%) exclusively on the same language that was used at the 2000 Presidential Nominating Convention, and to use a similar delegate formula.

There are 5 key parts to the GPUS organizational structure:

0) The individual Greens who participate in the process as individuals. They don't have much say - because the GPUS is meant to be a representation of state parties.

1) Working Groups and Standing Committees: Made up of individual greens who are there because their state party wants them there.

2) State Parties: They are represented by members of the Coordinating Committee. State representation is based on green participation per congressional districts.

3) Coordinating Committee: This is the state parties' representation. They propose and vote on proposals

4) Steering Committee: A certain number of coordinating committee members are elected to the Steering Committee. Their main purpose is to schedule votes, and handle "little things" that come up between in-person meetings. (they are essentially the face of GPUS) I've seriously simplified what SC members do.

Getting back to the Accreditation's role in developing the 2004 Presidential Nominating Convention delegate rules... We used the 2000 process language for two reasons: As volunteers our time is limited and if language for the process already existed, and was used successfully previously - why not present that as a proposal to the GPUS's Coordinating Committee? 1) Language existed 2) Previously used successfully

We also wanted to get it done and over with early so that we could get delegates focused on the process, and not focused on candidates.

The idea was that we would propose it early because we didn't seriously think it would pass the first time - but we thought that we would actually get feedback on how to improve the process. I don't know if it was because people were excited to see language, or that we were moving forward on the nominating convention - but the proposal passed the first time out the gate. Even with a few, relatively minor changes, I was shocked it passed November 2003.

A few months had passed, state parties had started to turn in their documentation to increase or decrease the number of delegates that would be allotted to them. As the season when on, I stepped back from anything having to do with assigning delegates to the convention. I didn't want to get caught up in any mess, appearance of conflict, or even worse - the subject of an email flame war.

(An aside: no group of people can send flaming emails better than Greens. I admit that I've send a few hot ones before, but I've seen some very nasty stuff said via email - but not dare spoken in person)

I became active in the Cobb for President Campaign because I was excited there was a Green running. I was so excited a Green was running - I looked beyond the rumblings about some "safe" thing. As the months wore on, work started to get busier and busier.

Because times where tight, I knew that I was not going to be able to go to the convention. I knew there was money from the state party to go, but you can't ask the state party to not only pay your air fare, hotel stay AND your car payment, rent, and my huge budget for coffee. Staying behind was the right choice to make. By that time of year, the California delegation of Presidential Nominating Convention delegates was really starting to fill out, and that was all that mattered to me - that CA make a good showing at the nominating convention - regardless of their candidate selection.

But, before GPCA could get to Milwaukee (Yes - that's where the convention was held) - they would need to get out of their own state - presidential nominating convention. And, looking back - I'm glad that I was too poor to go to this either. Maybe I had been blind - not seeing the wave of whatever about to come my way - and impacting the candidate that I had spent so much of my precious free time speaking in support of.

At the GPCA convention in Sacramento (Equally as fab as Milwaukee) there was concerns about the process that the GPUS was going to be using to nominate delegates. I didn't hear about this until I read the meeting minutes. Even though the entire CA delegation had voted in support of the GPUS Presidential Nominating Convention delegate process and formula, all the sudden there was show-stopping language in it. Blind-sided wasn't the word - dumbstruck is probably more proper.

I started to get requests from GPUS-CC delegates for copies of the original proposal (Still available on the web) and the delegate formula. During this time, I was also moving across town with Alex - and internet access was spotty. My turnaround time on email went from 15 minutes to 1 day and people freaked out!

Because of the new turn around time, emails started to surface saying that I was hiding the information. I started to see emails that I had developed this flawed system on purpose for the candidate that I was supporting. Then, I started to see emails that Greens were paying the way for other Greens to attend the GPUS convention. Then, emails of Democrats paying the way for Greens to attend the GPUS convention. I still wonder if anyone made the connection that I wasn't a delegate at the convention (either GPCA or GPUS) because I was too poor to go? And - if there were Greens, Democrats, rich people out there willing to pay my way because I was a sure bet Cobb supporter...wouldn't they have called me? I never got a call, Although the GPCA treasurer did tell me there was still money available for my airfare, hotel and meals.

Then, I started to see my name associated with some rumor that had gotten totally out of control. There are folks who are responsible for spreading that rumor, and they seem to relish in the fact they never apologized for, what can only be defined as - lies.

Why do I bring this up? There are two issues in the GPCA that can be defined as show stoppers - they have nothing to do with Bush or the Governator. They have to do with 2004 and the unwillingness of one person to take responsibility for his own actions.

Bad things happened in 2004 - voter fraud in Ohio, the Bush reelection, thousands of people needlessly died, homelessness rates are skyrocketing, more children today are without heath care than ever....

Yet, I still get email demands for the spreadsheet of the delegate formula from a proposal approve overwhelmingly in 2003.

I'm not on the Accreditation Committee anymore. I'm not on any GPCA or GPUS committee. I manage many Green Party listserves, and I often serve as a bunching bag for those who still think I somehow "threw" the GPUS Presidential Nominating Convention of 2004. I wish they wouldn't believe half the lies, misinterpretations, gossip they've been told. I wish they wouldn't send me flame email. I wish they could see, that even though the come forward with this anger, frustration - based on what isn't the truth, there are real, honest, truthful things to be upset with.

Helpful References:
(The Proposal) http://green.gpus.org/vote/displayproposal.php?proposalId=55
(The Shot Across the Bow) http://www.sf-frontlines.com/modules.php?op=modload&name=News&file=article&sid=727&POSTNUKESID=87438b63946c50b4b5266ec3b48ff0d0

And, before things got nasty:
http://la.indymedia.org/calendar/event_display_detail.php?event_id=319
(Who paid $300 for the only Camejo/Warren yard signs in Southern California? We can save that for another posting)
When I lived on the westside, I lived right off one of the Rapid stops. For those who are outside of Los Angeles, the Rapid bus is much like a regular bus line, except the buses are bigger and the stops are further apart. I would drive my car into work on Monday, take the bus to and from work the rest of the week, then drive my car home on Friday. For about $50 a month I could rely on the Rapid line to take me to work.

I figured that when I moved to downtown, that would be end of driving my car anywhere. I was excited about not driving, I was looking forward to taking the DASH to Union Station, then transfer to the Gold Line to get to work in Pasadena. I did that for about three months. I could afford to do this until September.

I called my car insurance to let them know that I was still taking the bus to work. Once they found out my car was going to be parked for extended periods of time in an outdoor parking lot, my rates went up! I crunched the numbers and figured out that driving to work was cheaper than leaving the car at home and taking the transit.

The numbers, without numbers:

Driving Public Transit
Parking $75 $75
Insurance $110 $250
Bus Pass $58
Car Wear $30 $30
Gas $120 $80

Totals $335 $493


How could I bring these prices down:

1) Look around for other insurance agencies. Did that!
2) Parking: Who says the mob doesn't exist in Los Angeles
3) Bus Pass: I need the EZ Pass because I go from DASH to MTA. Although, I've seen the regular MTA pass used
4) Car wear: Car wash one month, oil changes, maintenance
5) Gas: I already use the cheap gas and fill up during the week.

Overall - if I decided to get rid of the car, then I could save a bunch of money. But, until downtown gets a grocery store, Dodger stadium gets a practical public transit station, and there are more restaurants that are open past 7 p.m. that I don't have to be half naked to get into...I'm keeping the car.
Only Water and Ice Cream

Saturday I had my long awaited appointment with the Aveda saloon so that I could get a new hair do. But, since I woke up Friday morning with a sore throat - I thought that maybe I would have to cancel my hair appointment. But, I bought $6 worth of chloraseptic and headed out the door.

I warned my stylist that I wasn't feeling so good and that I would not be able to offer much guidance. Then, half way through my cut I took off out off my seat and ran to the bathroom and promptly lost my breakfast and sore throat spray. I called Alex to come get me, and made my way to the shampoo area and promptly passed out into my seat.

Needless to say I went to the emergency room, ruined Alex's weekend. So, I've got this massive strep throat, along with no voice. My only way to communicate is with a pad of paper, Instant messaging, or this.....

Oh...the upside is that I can't say that I've never got a shot in the butt before. Rather than have to struggle to swallow the meds, the nice nurse just got me with a shot on the behind side. It's not as bad as I thought it was going to be. Although, I'm not going to be the first on the list to recommend it.
I don't feel good tonight. I think I'm coming down with a cold. Go figure. I've never worked so hard, and for such a long time in my entire life. Weekends are spent catching up on sleep, the week days are busy with busy work. I don't feel like working out, but I know that when I do I feel much better.

I think I've now described how the majority of us feel.

Anyway, there have been more good days than mediocre work days lately. We have some new people on the team at work - no names needed. :-) I'm really liking their energy, the experience they bring to the table, and I'm looking forward to what we will look like in a couple of weeks.

Which brings me to today! There are some days that I wish that I could spend more time talking about the work that I do. I would if I wasn't so paranoid about who actually reads my blog. Although, I think I can speak in hypotheticals.

If you are reading this you know that I went to a predominately to-the-right kind of grad school. I felt like I spent two years of my life becoming much stronger in my convictions, but also spent two years saying - publicly funded pre-school, health care are important. And, in turn hearing so - how are you going to fund it? Were we that dumb in grad school to think that no one would fund these programs? I guess so.

Ya, I'm really not feeling good - I'm making no sense.

Dodger season starts soon.

TESC is hosting their first So-Cal event.

My datebook is a total mess.

My computer @ work is trashed.

It's almost the end of the month and I have a handful of renewals outstanding.

My car is dirty.

I had ice cream tonight, and it was yuuuuuuuuummy.

One of the freaky neighbors was evicted and moved out today.

That means there's only one more freaky neighbor, and one loud neighbor left on our floor

I talked to a friend today who is starting her new job soon. When we spoke she said she was heading out to the desert so that she could wake up with the flowers - then she might head to Vegas.

Matt Pickshisnose called me back today to tell me he's preapproved for a home loan. A home loan! Can you believe it? A home loan!

There's something good to talk about....Matt Pickshisnose is one of my closest friends. He was the first person I met when I started college, we both took this amazing class together - with Doc Seavy, Imy and Daniel. Then, there was the trip to Europe! That was a blast. I keep meaning to turn those pictures into an electronic format. After the trip, we tried to keep in touch. But, we did a much better job during the year I was in Americorps. Then, I went joyriding to Malibu.

There's a really good story about Matt that I'll tell when I feel better. It's not so much about Matt, rather a night 4 people spent cruising around Poulsbo - and when I lost my engagement ring for the last time. (Heard it here first - lost that ring more than once.)

My nose is starting to run now....
The Jealousy


Barista brews her way to top

By Judith Blake
Seattle Times staff reporter

A sage-flavored espresso drink has helped a Clark County barista steam her way to coffee-brewing fame.

Phuong Tran is the new U.S. champion barista after brewing up her signature drink, Crimson Sage, and two other coffee concoctions yesterday in national competition in Seattle.

Tran is not the first from latte-loving Washington to take the national title. Last year's winner was Bronwen Serna, a barista at Hines Public Market Coffee in Seattle.

Sponsored by the Specialty Coffee Association of America, the contest drew more than 40 competitors from around the country, with six of them surviving a series of preliminary events to reach yesterday's finals.

While seven judges watched sternly and took notes on their clipboards, each competitor had 15 minutes to prepare three coffee drinks — a cappucino, an espresso and a "signature" drink of his or her own creation. An audience of several hundred whooped and clapped at key moments, such as when a barista created an artful design in foam atop a cappucino.

Tran later admitted she felt plenty of stress.

"I was really nervous, but people said I looked calm," she said.

Part of her winning turn at the espresso machine involved creating her signature drink, which features espresso, sugar-cane juice, a pinch of white ground pepper and a topping of sage-infused steamed milk.

"It's very unusual," said Tran, who owns a coffee house, Lava Java, in Ridgefield, Clark County, near Portland. She also works for Seattle's Zoka Coffee Roaster & Tea, where she trains retailers in coffee handling.

What makes a top-notch barista?

"I think it's when it comes from the heart, when you have passion and you love what you do," Tran said.

Competitors were judged partly on their drinks' quality — including temperature, consistency of the foam and appearance — as well as proper service to the four "sensory" judges.

The remaining three judges evaluated technical matters, such as control of espresso-shot times, cleanliness and attention to detail.

Six of the judges came from other states. The head judge, John Sanders, co-owns Hines Public Market Coffee in Seattle.

Many of the baristas participating in the weekend's competition or watching from the audience appeared to be in their 20s or their early 30s.

That's not always the case in other countries. The average age of baristas in Italy, for example, is 38, said Mike Ferguson, a spokesman for the specialty-coffee association. There, he said, being a barista is often a long-term career much like bartending.

"We're not there yet [in terms of career longevity], but the young people here for this event will help make it that way," Ferguson said.

At 34, Tran says she plans to make coffee a life-long career.

Meanwhile, she has a more short-term goal: preparing for the World Barista Championship, which will also take place in Seattle.

That competition, at which Tran will represent the United States, will be held in conjunction with the specialty-coffee association's annual conference and exhibition April 15-18 at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center.

Ferguson expects the conference will draw about 10,000 participants from some 50 countries.

There’s laundry to do, a mayor’s race to watch, and a purse to clean out. Rather than do all or any of that, I wanted to update my blog. Work has been so super busy, I haven’t had a chance to gossip online! I was readying about how someone wrote this book called the “Encylopedia about Everything” or something like that. Anyway - they defiined the phrase “I’ve been busy” as trying to make yourself sound more important than you really are.

I’m here to say that I’m not so important that my day is completely busy with busy work.

But - it is.

My day is busy with phone calls in, phone calls out, emails in, emails out, people at my desk, my at other people’s desk, web searches, and somewhere in there Lunch.

Man, the laundry is getting cold and the wrinkles are going to set in soon. :-(

So, what’s the big news:

Trudi and Randy have moved into their first home!
Sounds cool. Yes, if you have more than 2 kids, it’s probably a good idea to buy a home. They have three kids.

I got pictures of my brother’s kids
Casey, Tyler’s wife, sent along a picture of their 4 kids.

We are moving to Pacific Electric Lofts soon.
Yes, we just had our housewarming in December. But, when you’ve got one neighbor who reminds you of the frathouse you lived next to in college, and the other neighbor who should be on lithium...packing up the kitchen again seems like fun!

Alex Gets To Work Election Night!
I thought it would be so cool to work at a precinct, but, if you know me, you know that I’m a chatter box, and that not talking politics on election day isn’t my nature. Alex is a highlight worker! He gets to highlight ballots to confirm they’ve been counted. I could do that! But...he gets to!

Lattes for the Lord works!
This is probably the funniest story I have to tell right now....

A few weeks ago Alex came home from a church committee meeting. He asked me if I was interested in making lattes for coffee hour at church. I said it would be a good idea, although my machine didn’t have the capacity to make lattes for the entire congregation. So, we joined up with a few other people from the Young Adult group - called The Bridge - to have a machine available for steaming milk, and one for pulling the espresso shots. It worked, and it was a freaking hit!

The funniest bit is that some people gave up caffiene for Lent. What do you do when caffiene follows you to church...apparently - there must be a “safe” spot at church during Lent.

Coffee sounds good right now...