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Looking (Way) Back

Working on a book on the '60s now. Looking back at my photos from then (and before) is like opening boxes of memories, or viewing grainy old movies. Fun! This is me in 1952 at age 17 at Lowell High School, which was in the Haight-Ashbury district. 

Blue Whale Lunge Feeding

A drone was used to capture a blue whale swimming in Monterey Bay. Unique shots of whale taking mouthfuls of water.
Check out the photographer: https://www.slatermoore.photography


Fabulous 1923 silent movie with Ramon Navarro and Alice Terry on TCM tonight, stunning B&W. Who needs color? Who needs words?

Letter From a Prisoner

A letter like this makes it all seem worthwhile. This is from a prisoner at a multi-security prison in New Hampshire. We sent him 3 building books. (We have a long-standing policy of sending free books to any inmates that request them.)

I apologize for the delay in responding to your last letter. It's just that you left me in a state of shock, so all I can say is: THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU!

It is easy to become dehumanized in this place. After a while we all buy into the rhetoric about how useless we are, So when someone comes along and does something that reminds us that we are still human and worth something (if only in the hearts of a few), it can be disorienting.

Thank you for disorienting me!

I have finished with all three books, and they have now been donated to our library. I have an entire composition book full of notes and designs based on these books.With the present status of my case, I have no idea when I am getting out. However, when I do get out, I will have a plan, and your books will have been a significant contributor to that plan. Who knows, maybe I'll build something that will eventually appear in one of your future books.

Anyway thank you! Not only for helping me, but for creating a ray of hope for others in this place.

Shalom aleichem,


Local fishing boats tonight

Godfrey Stephens' New Sculpture

Godfrey just sent this photo. After 2 day's work. What a fucking genius! He's getting better.

His combination of Kwakwaka'wakw training and artistic sensibilities from the depths of his soul produce powerful art. He's in Builders of the Pacific Coast and throughout this blog and has been in my life for over 50 years.

He's more of an artist—wild, productive, joyous—than the world-famous rich artists out there getting all the attention. He's a Picasso under the radar.


Camping Out, Circa 1918

From Minor Wilson in today's mail

Friday Morning Fish Fry

Every once in a while, S.F. Chronicle columnist Herb Cain would put together a column of bits and pieces, so-called 3-dot journalism,  and he would call it "Friday Morning Fish Fry." I'm still unscrambling things from my month on the road, so here's an interim bunch of disconnected facts:
It's an iPhone world I live in a small-town. Most days I only see a few people. Spending weeks in the cities among 1000s of people, it struck me how everyone is connected via smartphones. I'm not into that level of communication, so the extent of phone calling, texting, googling, is um, awesome. It's the way the world is out there -- yow!
AirBnB I guess I really don't get out much in the world. What I didn't realize re AirBnB is that many of these are rooms in homes where it's like you have a roommate. Shared bathroom, kitchen, living room. My 2 AirBnB experiences were very good, but I think I lucked out. A lot of those rooms on the website look pretty grim.
Dylan fans The Bootleg Series, Volume 12, a 6-CD set is a whole new level. Shows how the '65-'66 songs were constructed. They'd do 14 takes. Listening to disc 6 today lifted me out of my weeks-old funk. Oh mama, can this really be the end…
Skateboarding Yesterday I thought: realistically, at age 82, I can't afford any more accidents. This shoulder operation wasn't due to skating, but the other shoulder and the broken arm were. Plus they're have been a lot of close calls. I'm thinking of hanging it up, or at least drastically cutting down the frequency. Is that mature or what?
My book on the '60s I'm fiddling with it, to see if it seems a go. Scanning some of my photos from the '60s is like stepping back in time. I've never seen (i.e. printed) many of these.

At left, The Lovin' Spoonful, John Sebastian on right, at Cafe Wha' in NYC, Fall, 1965, shot during my month-long hitchhiking trip across the country

I've got a different take on what went on then, as opposed to the frenzy of "Summer of Love" TV shows, articles, museum exhibits.

Oregon joins states where roadkill can be harvested for food

From Anonymous

Free Brand New Car

When I was on the road, I heard Warren Buffet say this on TV (I'm starting to unscramble notes from my trip):

When I was sixteen, I had just two things on my mind - girls and cars. I wasn't very good with girls. So I thought about cars. I thought about girls, too, but I had more luck with cars.

Let's say that when I turned sixteen, a genie had appeared to me. And that genie said, 'Warren, I'm going to give you the car of your choice. It'll be here tomorrow morning with a big bow tied on it. Brand-new. And it's all yours.'

Having heard all the genie stories, I would say, 'What's the catch?' And the genie would answer, 'There's only one catch. This is the last car you're ever going to get in your life. So it's got to last a lifetime.' If that had happened, I would have picked out that car.

But, can you imagine, knowing it had to last a lifetime, what I would do with it? I would read the manual about five times. I would always keep it garaged. If there was the least little dent or scratch, I'd have it fixed right away because I wouldn't want it rusting. I would baby that car, because it would have to last a lifetime.

That's exactly the position you are in concerning your mind and body. You only get one mind and one body. And it's got to last a lifetime. Now, it's very easy to let them ride for many years. But if you don't take care of that mind and that body, they'll be a wreck forty years later, just life the car would be. It's what you do right now, today, that determines how your mind and body will operate ten, twenty, and thirty years from now.

Bella Coola Gnar Segment (from INTO THE MIND)

From Godfrey Stephens. I'm pretty sure I posted this before, but I saw it again last month at Godfrey's and was struck by the power of the music and imagery. The band is A Tribe Called Red, according to Wikipedia: "…a Canadian electronic music group, who blend instrumental hip hop, reggae, moombahton and dubstep-influenced dance music with elements of First Nations music, particularly vocal chanting and drumming. Based in Ottawa, Ontario, the group consists of three DJs: Ian "DJ NDN" Campeau (of the Nipissing First Nation), Tim "2oolman" Hill (Mohawk, of the Six Nations of the Grand River), and Ehren "Bear Witness" Thomas (of the Cayuga First Nation).…"

Sophie and Marc's Homestead of Recycled Materials in Quebec

I just got this email from Sophie and Marc, whose home is covered on pages 116-119 of Small Homes -- after we sent them 2 books:

Hey Lloyd,
thanks from my heart
I brought Small Homes to the video store in small town in Quebec.
what a hit!
Might be orders flying in from QC Cool
Wish to meet you some day.

Hugs from Val Morin

If you have the book, you can check out this lively and joyous family in this video made last year (in French, but you hardly need to know the language to get what's going on with them). 

Somebody Stole My Gal, Jim Kweskin Jug Band, early '60s

I'm over the worst of the pain, recovering from a very robust shoulder operation, listening to my first music in a week. I've been putting this operation  off for months, so good to be on the uphill side of it. There's light at the end of this long tunnel.

Going through my old B&W photos, still trying to determine if I have a cohesive book on the '60s to write. It's going to take me a week to get through the notes from my 1-month trip.              

Something Happened Here, But You Still Don't Know What It Is, Do You Mr Jones?

I hitchhiked across the USA in Fall, 1965, to figure out what I wanted to do with my life. I was an insurance broker in San Francisco, and the '60s were exploding around me. I had smoked pot -- at age 28. (Think about it -- 28 years before encountering alternate universes.)

 On my way back to NYC from visiting my cousin Mike in Provincetown, I got picked up by some students from The Rhode Island School of Design. They said I could crash at their loft in Providence, Rhode Island, and they were going to a Bob Dylan concert that night, did I want to go?

$3.50 to get in and I told the cops I was a newspaper reporter, and I got to roam in front of the stage. 

Black and white Tri-X film on a Nikon. I didn't know much about Dylan. I was a Beatles and Stones fan. The first half was solo acoustic folk music. The second half was rock and roll! A lot of folkie fans walked out at intermission, but I had stumbled into the early part of Dylan's 2 years of brilliance.

I looked at the photos 40 years later. Jeez, that's Robbie Robertson! I ain't gonna work on Maggie's farm no more…

What is this? Holy shit!

 I've just been looking at these photos, after they've been 42 years in the archives.

I came back to San Francisco and quit my job and went to work as a carpenter -- 1965.

All this to preface:

1. I'm recuperating from almost a month on the road.

2. I'm working on a book of the '60s, from my own point of view. I'm a native San Franciscan, went to high school in Haight Ashbury district, was 10 years older than the movers and shakers of the cultural revolution. I had a quite different experience in the '60s than I see talked about in the media regarding the -- ugh -- Summer of Love. I'm still in the stages of seeing if the book is going to work. 

3. Getting shoulder operated on tomorrow. Long recovery period.

A new octave coming up.

See ya when I can see see ya…

The brilliance of #chickens. Amongst other skills, they eat every grain of leftover rice, every apple peel, every bit of spoiled cheese -- and volia -- they it all turn into eggs (and meat).


Home in Cabbagetown, Toronto

 I was told (to my surprise) that the bricks in all these handsome buildings are a facade, i.e. the external cladding of wood frame houses. Coulda fooled me.

Goin Home…

I've been on the road for 26 days now. 6 flights, 5 hotels, 2 airbnb's, 2 radio interviews, one TV interview, 3 sleepovers at friends' houses (including Bruno's boat); taxis, Supershuttle, subway and bus rides, miles and miles of walking, all for the sake of 8 bookstore presentations for Small Homes.

The good part is that it's good to get out and meet people, to get outside the California bubble, and hopefully to promote sales of the new book. The down side is so much time away from home. I'm homesick.

Following is all pretty obvious to seasoned travelers. (I'm just killing time at the airport here.)

Giant Graffiti Bushwick Brooklyn

That's a real live kid standing on the sidewalk (where the painting continues).

The Art of Gabrielle Garland

I finally met Gabrielle Garland, whose whimsical paintings of homes I've admired since discovering them a year ago. Here are a couple on the wall of her studio/home in Brooklyn. For 100s of her paintings and drawings, see:

A Plethora of Media

I’m in kind of a communications muddle right now.
• Worked on high school newspaper 1952
• Ran US Air Force base newspaper in Germany 1958-60
• Shelter editor of Whole Earth Catalog 1969-73
• Published Domebook One in 1970, Domebook 2 in 1971
• Published Shelter in 1973
• 1973-present day, published series of various books, mostly on building and fitness
• Interspersed between: a series of magazine articles, pamphlets, brochures, flyers, posters, hand-crafted, hand-lettered scrapbooks (print runs of two (2), panoramic photo collages, a few videos, and stretching software (StretchWare). All extracurricular.
•Started a blog in 2010. Why not? I gave it a whirl and liked it. (Thanks, Eszter!) Some 5,000 posts later, I realized it was taking a lot of time, and no income. I backed off and so did my readers (see graph):

•At that point I started with Instagram. Photo-oriented, whereas my blog was word-oriented. I liked being able to record something (iPhone photo) and get it up there right away. I liked the age group using it. All my Instagram posts automatically go up on my Twitter account and blog, but it’s not a great solution. The formats don’t transfer very well. Hmmm… So here I am.

Well, OK!

#washingtonsquarepark thronged with people enjoying sun, music, good vibes...

#washingtonsquarepark sunny skies late Friday afternoon after light rain

Grilled chicken #Vietnamese #sandwich at Saigon Kitchen, 114 McDougal St., 2 blocks south of #washingtonsquarepark $7.00. Cash only (gladly!). Great food.

Poster for "Goth Postpunk Deathrock Event" at Mercury Lounge NYC June 10th