Monday, June 23, 2014


So my boss called me to his office.  On his desk was an overturned mason jar with a small undulating orb floating in the center.  It was glowing and emitting a high frequency but low volume hum.  I looked into the orb and saw my own face but as a child.  I was crying.  “Toby,” he said.  “Can you set up office 225?”


So my boss called me to his office.  His door was shut but I felt a breeze from underneath.  “Steffan,” I called.  “Are you there?”  I thought I heard a response and opened his door. My shoes were instantly stuck in a tawny muck. I reached up and pulled myself up onto a mangrove root.  I was happy sitting there.  I looked up and on the branch above me was my boss. “Toby, have you heard from the vending machine company?”

So my boss called me to his office. He had a question about a bill we received. As he reached for the invoice, a pigeon landed silently on the brick windowsill behind him.  It began smoking a tiny filtered cigarette.  The pigeon blew 3 quick concentric smoke rings.  A 2nd pigeon landed to join the first on the ledge.  It too was smoking a tiny filtered cigarette. “Toby,” my boss said, “do you remember which 650 tenant we had these sunshades installed for?”


So my boss called me to his office. When I arrived he was speaking to someone on the telephone.  As I waited outside for his call to end, I couldn’t help but overhear a phalanx of tiny voices from above, an ebbing sort of helium swell.  They were speaking in a language other than my own but I felt the message had been made clear for me:  DO NOT GIVE INTO ASTONISHMENT.  “Toby,” he said, “Can you come in here?”

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Noted polymath Connor O'Sullivan levitates in Shanghai. February 2011. photo: David Nichols

Friday, February 11, 2011

Sunday, January 9, 2011


1930's Kay Kraft guitar, now passed down 4 generations of my family.

Friday, January 7, 2011


You going to go on a long journey.
You going to travel across the pond
and have plenty of children.
And everything you think about today
is not going to end up being
the way you think of it.
The cross you bear
is the cross you choose to bear.
--Mother Catherine Seals

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


It's that time for year end lists. This one is inspired by the timely arrival of a christmas card from my landlord, who I enjoy greatly. I present to you, out of context, the top 3 sentences of the year 2010 from my landlord LOL

3. share the winnings LOL

2. love you guys! but i'm not sure who is who LOL

1. yes I will be gentle LOL

Sunday, November 28, 2010


pics trazmick 2010 ovtov basics at sonoma mtn estate studios

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


Modoc. Off the map. CTRL F to find its name on the rice paper of history's pages. Salmon eaters, Klamath river folk, the trinity forests, or Indiana, where locals can be heard muttering in an unintelligible french dialect. Shore's garage where they work magic. I was following my friend and architect Luke Davis down the backroads toward the county line where he has a cabin in progress. Turning into an unmarked grass lane at the end of a hayfield and stopping to set my beer on top of the car to open a metal gate which I hastily close so all the cows don't get out of the pasture and eat the alfalfa. Its still a ways from here. For photos, i'll need the daylight. For now, Luke and I are content to drink a whiskey on the big porch and listen to freshly weaned calves bawling for milk.

Throughout the midwest, many doze and burn the decaying barns, outbuildings and corncribs of yesteryear because it's easier and cheaper to raze and rebuild than worth it to fix what's wrong. Seen through different eyes and refashioned; there is a lot of life left. Conceptually, Luke Davis' Rural Reuse Project simply champions utilizing the materials that we have around us. Physically, it began with assessing and acquiring materials and location and drawing plans for the cabin based on the amount of and specific materials he could gather and how it could naturally fit into the landscape. Luke's approach shows value where others see waste. Upon viewing the cabin, you get the idea that applying the same approach to a variable set of materials and location would yield similar successful results but look and feel entirely different.

The material gathered includes well seasoned and rock solid lumber from a corncrib and a haymow; replaned by Davis at the Ball State architectural facilities in Muncie, a cache of leftover telephone poles, and windows and doors salvaged from construction project. Luke baled the straw, which sealed in the adobe within the planed wood walls has an insulation value of R-60, nearly double some states' standards. The width of the bales lends itself to deep wooden window wells. The whole thing has been made possible by the nail gun, which trimmed the three handed job of holding the board, the nail, and the hammer down to a manageable two hands. The cabin is well designed and livable, full of light, unexpected storage, cement countertops and pleasing angles. The location is a site far from view in one of his family's cashrent cattle pastures where the grassed terrain rolls subtly and sways in the first pew of a congregation of shade trees. There are houses within a mile but you cannot see them nor their lights. The telephone poles used to set the cabin were left untopped and fit in seamlessly with the surroundings as if they were just another treetop and from the front, the land gently spills out from under the big porch. Secluded. No light pollution. And you can see all the stars.

items tabled until the next meeting:
bird banjo 002
recap of pork adventure
the blog baby
nashville knives t-shirts
you had your chance
zen ben
is hip hop bigger than the govt?

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


Guests of Guests are not allowed to invite Guests.