Visiting day

Today has been a busy one.

I cut down two of the trees o the eastern boundary, and got them cleared away.
I was about to drop a third when Owen Woods called by.
After Owen left I went in for a drink, then Paul McGahan called in for a chat.
As Paul left, Tony and Gloria Hewitt from Waitakaruru called in with their granddaughter Monique, and stayed for dinner.
Then Will arrived home with Trond.
At that point I decided to pack the saws away, and abandoned all thought of further tree felling.
A good social evening was had.

I had a tree felling day yesterday too.
Started out just clearing up and cutting into firewood sized pieces a couple of trees I had felled a week or two back on the south side of the house. When I got them cleaned up, the one that had been of most concern to me (which was overhanging the house and on quite a lean, became accessible. After an hour or so’s contemplation, I attached one big wire strop through another tree and onto one car, to remove any chance of it falling onto the house. Then I put the big nylon rope (3/4″) a bit higher up and attached that to the Toyota 4WD. Then took out a big wedge cut, and made a very precise back cut. After walking clear quietly, I stood beside her as Ailsa drove off in low,low in the 4WD, and pulled the tree over – landing exactly where I planned it to. A very satisfying job done.

Not many recent posts:

Question of the Day January 3, 2011

In general, how was 2010 for you?

2010 was the strangest year of my life to date (and that is saying something).
Being told I had only a few months to live from untreatable cancer was not at all on my plan.
Still being alive 8 months later, and symptom free has been quite a journey.
Being a strict vegan for 7 months was not something I had ever envisaged possible.
I’m getting used to it.
The cravings for meat and cheese and sugar and chocolate and coffee and salt have almost disappeared.

It is possible to make the change it just takes an appropriate incentive structure.

I am now very confident (99%+) that it is possible to extend lifespans indefinitely and have all people live lives of abundance and choice and freedom – within the limits basically outlined in the UN Declaration of Human Rights.

All that remains is to do it!

So – all in all – 2010 was a year of transitions, of facing death, and creating another possibility.

Comment on Question of the Day December 30, 2010

Hundreds of thousands of us worked on the Y2K issue. I spent months of time working through systems and fixing up issues that would have crashed systems.

Many others did likewise in thousands of far more critical systems.

I made sure that I had a generator and 3 months worth of fuel and food, just in case. So many systems, so tightly integrated. It was a close thing, and there was also a lot of hype and a lot of money made by shysters on the bandwagon.

The problem now is far deeper, at every level. Centralisation and integration mixed with just in time production have almost eliminated redundancy. Our civilisation now rests on a knife edge, and we are all vulnerable. We have to make it work – failure is not an option (though very deep systemic change may be).

Perhaps it is time to dissolve the myth of money.

Scientific results lose their vigor

It seems to me that mostly it is an indication that very few people have a deep appreciation of statistics, or the depth, complexity and interrelatedness of the systems they are studying.

One of the first things my stats lecturer drummed into me was – correlation does not imply causation.

It is never sufficient simply to find a correlation. That is sufficient only to warrant further investigation. Sufficiency is only satisfied when a mechanism is fully delineated and understood in its full context.

Often times such things are not simple, as there are many different factors involved, sometimes thousands of them, all with contributing probability functions across a range of dimensions.

About Ted Howard NZ

Seems like I might be a cancer survivor. Thinking about the systemic incentives within the world we find ourselves in, and how we might adjust them to provide an environment that supports everyone (no exceptions) - see
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3 Responses to Visiting day

  1. holessence says:

    Ted – It sounds like GRAND CENTRAL STATION with all of the company you had coming and going, whew!


    • Hi Laurie
      The late afternoon got very social 😉
      Fortunately I had got a good amount of work done before then.

      Huia managed to run off and seeming found someone’s compost bin, and found herself locked in doggy purgatory out on the deck when she did eventually decide to come home.
      We had to get up to let her out twice during the night – she is not a very happy looking doggess this morning.

      We have finally got some moisture for these parched lands – the first reasonable rain this morning in over a month – not a lot yet, but promise of more during the day.
      We’ve had a couple of days in the last month where we’ve had less than 1/4″, but it has evaporated again by the end of the day, with temperatures in the high 90s most days.


  2. holessence says:

    Ted – Compost to Huia is like French perfume – Ooh la la! I’m sure she thought she smelled fantastic!

    Recently when I was in California, the state practically slid off into the ocean from too much rain. We could easily have shared with you guys!


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