SUSTAINABLE LA

ST. ELMO’S FIRE

LIFE & TIMES had a segment on Friday highlighting a local LA treasure called St. Elmo’s Village. I’ve posted a few lines from the transcript of the show which are insightful and motivating….

Vicki Curry ( L & T reporter)>> We’d like to take you to a place that has put art at the heart of everything. It’s a small community off the beaten path, so chances are you haven’t heard of it. But if you’d ever been there, you’d never forget it. It’s called St. Elmo Village in the mid-city section of Los Angeles.

…. Roderick Sykes (co-founder of St. Elmo’s Village>> So for thirty-four years, this is what we’ve been doing. Using what we have, where we are, not waiting until we move or get into that gallery or this place or that place, but making the best of what you have now.

…. My grandfather was a handyman. He would bring home an old sink thinking he was going to use it for somebody else’s house and my grandmother would plant flowers in it. She would plant flowers in his old boots that had holes in them. Anything that would hold dirt. So my history and my uncle’s history and my family is that you do something. You don’t wait to blame the landlord. You live there. As my uncle used to say, it’s your leaf, you take care of your leaf.

…. Well, you know, so that you don’t think about, well, it would be better over there, you do those things where you are and this is a blank canvas.

…. Vicki Curry>> And it says over there, “If it is to be, it is up to me.”

Roderick Sykes>> That’s it. That’s it. We have to do it. Too often we’re waiting and blaming somebody for our circumstances and we are not taking responsibility, and the village is about taking responsibility for your life and your dream and how you want to be living it.

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Just goes to show that the grass may be greener on the other side, but what are we doing to take care of our own grass to make it green?

CALIFORNIA BURNING

When Nature’s Dragons AwakeLA Times

“Here in California, we spend much time and money trying to perfect our relationship with nature, to find balance between conservation and development. Being the arrogant creatures we are, we portray ourselves as caretakers of the wilderness, stewards of the land, protecting it from our own imperfect selves…

And so we are astonished when the roles reverse, when we are faced with forces beyond our control. A century after the Industrial Revolution and still there are larger things than other humans with their germs and evil intentions that threaten us. Still there are dragons in the mountains, and when they are truly wakened, it is hard not to believe that the end is near.

… How difficult it is for us, citizens of the city of the 21st century with the world wired to our fingertips, to be humbled. How difficult not to see it as a sign of the end of civilization. Through the smoke and the heat, not only the landscape is changed, the entire world looks different, incomprehensible, uncontrollable. ”

Weather Report: Cooler!  Hopefully, good news for the fires!

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