There are still signs in my garden that tell of the once prolific abundance of food that grew there this summer. The long stalk of my black beauty zucchini, a four-foot long green boa constrictor with leafy appendages some reaching two feet across, displays dozens of stump scars where I severed the pulpy fruits from the plant's hearty rope of vine. I still harvest from it, a small anemic club here and there, but it's glory days are over. Like the tomatoes, the peppers, the green beans, the potatoes, everything is slowing down and pulling back towards the earth.More...
Don't forget to vote on Tuesday, November 4! It's particularly important because mid-term elections—the kind without any presidential candidates and all the attendant hoopla—tend to favor more radically partisan candidates. Essentially, the fanatics all turn out to vote, and the moderate voters all stay home. Some great candidates this year are running for local, state and federal offices. They really need you to vote for them. Also on this year's ballot: Vote to renew ZAP funding.More...
Colorful, joyful, plucky little hens. The human-chicken relationship is an ancient coexistence, thought to have begun nearly 10,000 years ago. Across cultures and through the eons, chickens have been symbols of virility, mothering and fertility (as well as the national symbol of France). Roman armies used them as tellers of fortune: A hungry chicken assured victory.More...
If you ever visited CATALYST during the 12 years we had our office downtown on Broadway, you've met Spalding. He and his brother, Wilson, were our official greeters. Their names were on the masthead. They even received mail, addressed to Spalding Wilson, sports editor. I had found them both, in my neighbor Margaret's backyard in the spring of 1995, when they were wild babies the size of tennis balls, hence their names. Wilson met an unfortunate end many years ago. Spalding became known as the Catalyst cat. And after we left that office, he became John deJong's cat, always sleeping on his bed, always eager for the "ear noogies" that John delivered so well.More...
A true survivalist needs only five things to live. She needs a cutting tool for splitting firewood or gutting fish; combustion to start a fire; cover, a simple plastic bag or emergency blanket, to keep warm and dry; a container for water, to remain hydrated; and cordage—rope can be an amazing tool. The survivalist C's, a list created by Dave Canterbury of the Pathfinder School, is deceptively simple, for, without the special knowledge and training required to effectively use these tools for survival in the wilderness, their presence is nearly worthless.More...
The black cherry tomatoes are climbing the trellis of branches, growing an archway over the white wooden gate. The corn stalks are turning the color of the red rock slabs nearby that fit together with jigsaw puzzle perfection forming a snaking bench down the line of the street. The Swiss chard, half harvested, adds color and shape between the raised rock patios and solidly balanced stone coffee table tops. Lovingly crafted, Timmi Cruz's urban garden and community gathering space on the parking strip around his home two block from the CATALYST office was just coming into perfection in June when a complaint was lodged with the city about activities on the parking strip.More...
Since leading NASA scientist James Hansen warned in 2008 that we need to reduce the amount of CO2 in the Earth's atmosphere to 350 parts per million (ppm) in order to preserve life on Earth, little has been done to get us there. It's getting late. If we're going to preserve a livable Earth, we, the global grassroots, must do more than mitigate global warming. We must reverse it. How? Hint number one: not by politely asking out-of-control corporations and politicians to please stop destroying the planet.More...
With the exception of the Wasatch Front, where we get an average annual 16 inches of rainfall, Utah is a true desert with an annual average rainfall of 10 inches. This puts the state in a continual zero-sum tug-of-war with the powers of nature, more specifically the power of osmosis. The 1902 Reclamation Act guaranteed Utah farmers cheap, subsidized water, no matter what the cost to the American taxpayer. Those costs are high and going up. Alfalfa, the state's traditional crop of choice, is a stark example. An acre of alfalfa needs somewhere between slightly less than three acre-feet of water per crop (with an average three crops per year) to over six acre-feet, depending on what irrigation system is used. The cost of this water to the American taxpayer is greater than the return to Utah farmers.More...
The planets continue to align in dynamic and turbulent patterns this week, and the regular routines of daily life reflect the astral intensity. Expect very little to be normal—as if normal exists anymore—and also anticipate moods to swing high and low as many of us struggle to maintain balance in the midst of these erratic rhythms. Some moments are sure to feel sluggish, if only because they require paying attention to the details. But other moments flash by at the speed of light, making it hard to remember exactly what happened. Try not to get stuck at either extreme—molasses or hyperspace. And while there is no "one size fits all" formula to insure safety from these extremes, mindfulness could prove a valuable tool, if only because it will keep you solidly in the moment.
The planets dial up the heat for the next several weeks and as their celestial fire intensifies the already too intense terrestrial landscape, attitudes turn adamant about almost everything, and as a consequence, petty concerns could suddenly transform into significant situations. This planetary fervor easily translates into a need to act on behalf of all the things that matter to you, as well as those you love, those you don't even know, and those you will never know. Several political and collective agendas could burn out of control, and personal and individual desires and demands could boil over.
The planets are writing unusual messages across the sky this week, and as they do, life on Earth runs the risk of becoming even more confusing, conflicted, confrontational, and seriously unconventional. And that's not because the celestial interactions are all negative—some are actually positive. But we live in strange times, and although it's hard to imagine daily life becoming weirder, it would be wise to prepare yourself for anomalies to become normal.
Not that the rest of the fall season won't be ripe with opportunities to accomplish various goals, but Mercury Retrograde begins on October 4 and lasts until October 25, which means that the entire month of October will be strewn with communication and travel delays and detours. This is the month to put your ideas in motion so that they can gather momentum before the October obstacle course.
B.K.S. Iyengar: What is his legacy, and what will be yours?
—by Charlotte Bell
Southeastern Utah Music and Songwriting Workshops.
—by Charlotte Bell
What's new around town.
—by Katherine Pioli
Environmental news from around the state and the West.
—by Amy Brunvand
Radio Hour Episode 9: Grimm
—by Matthew Ivan Bennett
Throughout my life I have felt a special connection with nature, and being outdoors inspires me to create.
—by Phil Lewis
It's a busy month. Are you ready for the Grand Fire Trine?
—by Suzanne Wagner
Funny you asked.
—by Dennis Hinkamp