Solar Ricardo

Solar Ricardo

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Blue-Collar Bodhisattva of the Month: Joe Rogan!

Comedian and no-neck philosopher Joe Rogan is a true blue-collar bodhisattva. His podcast, “The Joe Rogan Experience” is a rambling, weed-induced journey into science and pseudo-science, the arts (including mixed martial arts), current events, pop culture and techno-wierdness.

Rogan is a master of geek machismo. He is an unapologetic bro and addresses his podcast listeners as “you dirty bitches”. He refers to violent historical figures as “totally gangster”. Yet, he quotes Terrance McKenna as easily as he quotes Anderson Silva's UFC stats, and is probably the nations most high profile advocate for the psychedelic experience. 

From each of his weekly podcast guests, he extracts knowledge– not just a talking head interview, but digging deep and grokking their experiences and stories. He attacks learning with the same spirit that he pursues physical fitness- with focus, but with a playful attitude and an open mind. He is one part Timothy Leary and one part Jesse Ventura.

Later this month, Rogan launches a new TV series on the SyFy Network called “Joe Rogan Questions Everything”, in which he will dig into some of the old pseudo-science standbys like UFOs, Bigfoot and Conspiracy Theories. It is my hope that his inclusion of fellow comics and a healthy does of altered reality will allow this series to transcend other  tinfoil-hat TV shows. I'm not sure basic cable producers are ready to let Rogan go as far down the rabbit hole as he does on his podcast, but it should be fun none-the-less.

So here's to you, Joe Rogan! Our first Blue-Collar Bodhisattva of the Month!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

It's that time of the year- Dumpster-Diver Gardening!!

from ObMag#1...

We began dumpster-diver gardening sometime in the early 90's, when we came across a vendor at the Brooklyn Terminal Market tossing flats of slightly wilted bedding plants into the trash. Neither Wildgirl nor I were strangers to dumpster diving (a proud trash-picking tradition that is now fashionably know as "Freeganism"), and W.G. immediately hatched a plan for me to distract the shop owner by buying a bag of peat moss while she filled the trunk of her '74 Valiant with rescued greenery. "It wasn't so much about wanting the plants," she recalls- "It was about the waste. It was about the disposable society."

Fast-forward 10 years. We no longer live in New York. We have a small organic farm, and grow a lot of our own stuff. On a blistering July afternoon in Coralville, Iowa, I noticed one of the seasonal garden centers set up in a grocery store parking lot was breaking down for the season and again, they were dumpster-izing flat after flat of sad, leggy, brown and bolting tomato plants, squash, peppers, herbs, and flowers. A lot of the higher-priced organic and heirloom stuff was left behind. I took as much as the old Subaru GL would hold. What I have discovered in the last few years that throughout the Midwest (indeed, much of the country), is that huge numbers of plants get dumped, given away or sold for next to nothing sometime in the last part of June to first week of July. If timed properly, a pickup truck can be filled with blueberry bushes, roses, prairie plants, perennials, and lots and lots of vegetable plants for less than twenty bucks- often for nothing more than the price of gas. If you are a non-driver and really hard-core, you can do it with a cargo bike, shopping cart, hand truck, wheelbarrow or travois. The keys to success are timing, speed, and a modicum of stealth. Despite the fact that the stuff is being jettisoned, employees, particularly middle managers, can tend to flex-out on people who want their trash. In most cases, though, if you time your arrival properly, the peons who got exiled to the sweltering parking lot to haul the stuff to the dumpster are more than happy to have you lighten their load.