Rita Walker (Blog Twenty-five):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Twenty-five):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

As technology increases so does the opportunity to purchase more water efficient devices.  It’s important to remember that water likes to flow.  So to avoid clogged pipes you might want to occasionally let it flow down the sink drain a bit longer.

https://www.oceannetworks.ca/Haida-Gwaii-earthquake-and-tsunami

https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2014/aug/06/best-domestic-water-saving-gadgets

https://www.homedepot.ca/en/home/ideas-how-to/bath/how-to-choose-a-toilet.html

https://www.nrcan.gc.ca/energy/products/categories/water-heaters/14562

https://reliablewater247.com/apartments-reduce-water-usage/

https://www.greenfieldpaper.com/hemp_paper.asp

https://www.clearbags.com/bags/eco

 

In the morning before her class, Rita watches the news.  An 8.5 magnitude earthquake had sent a tsunami into the Haida Gwaii west shoreline.  She knows the last earthquake to shake Haida Gwaii was in 2012 when a 7.7 magnitude earthquake struck central Moresby Island.  That earthquake didn’t do any damage but this latest one destroyed boats and houses as far back as a hundred meters.  The news tells her that the Queen Charlotte Fault Line is 350 km long and goes from the British Columbian shoreline to the Alaskan shoreline where it’s called the Fairweather Fault System.  Sensors along the Cascadia Trench suggest at least one more earthquake is expected in the near future, one several times stronger.

Rita closes her eyes and breathes in deeply.  The earthquake is a reminder that Kaneki is seeking Rae.  He will be on the surface soon if she can’t get all the students together and she’s still missing Oya’s child of air.

She has red rimmed eyes as she steps up to the lectern at the front of her class.  The devastation to her original home has made her desperate.

“Last week I said we would discuss water usage in the homes.  There are a variety of newer toilets you can use, some have different buttons depending how much water you need to flush.  There are a variety of water heaters, some that run on solar energy.  There’s even a water reservoir tank you can get that holds used shower and bath water that you can use with your garden hose.”  As Rita talks she clicks different images on the screen that show a variety of toilets, water heaters, and bath water reservoir tanks.

“Ultimately rental units are the responsibility of the owners but if you live in an apartment you can point out the cost savings to the owners.  All they have to do is install new toilets, showerheads, and aerated faucets.”

“What about using less shampoo and soap?” she hears Ember shout out.

Rita gives her a stern look for not putting up her hand.  “That’s a good point,” she says curtly.  “Less soap in the water system means less time in the shower to wash it off.  Next week we’re going on a trip to the University of Waterloo’s Biomedical facility where my friend Zsofia Juhász will be showing us the latest technology on recycling medical products such as needles, syringes, and bandages.  Before you go please leave me the homework  I assigned you last week.”  Rita desperately wants to read Kanayago’s paper on where she has or preferably is working.

Kanayago steps forward with a thin sheaf of hemp paper covered in cellulose binding.

Rita Walker (Blog Twenty-four):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Twenty-four):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

If you know of a worldwide organization that does keep tabs on how much food is consumed and forest cut down.  Send us a message.

http://wildfoodsandmedicines.com/salal/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Engineered_wood

https://lingpapers.sites.olt.ubc.ca/files/2018/02/White_2006.pdf

http://www.haidalanguage.org/

Rita sips at the sweet tea made of Salal berries she ordered directly from Haida Gwaii.  The order took six months to arrive.  It reminded her of the goodness of the world.  Laws are now in effect that make the availability of food based on how much there is instead of trying to have it available everywhere all the time.  Crops and livestock are catalogued to make sure there is always abundance in nature.  If someone can’t buy salmon they’ll have to buy another fish.  Wood considered unusable from demolition sites or removed from homes is ground into sawdust and used to create engineered wood.  Stalks from hemp, corn, and bamboo are also used to replace wood so forest can thrive once again.

As she sips the tea and contemplates the safety of forests and other lifeforms she listens to stories and songs in Xaat Kíl, the original Haida Gwaii language.  It reminds her of her mother, father and brother, before darkness overcame her and she fell into the long sleep.

 

She was coated in sweat within her family’s cedar plank house.  The deerskin and woven cedar blanket her mother covered in her lay in a heap beside her.  Her body jolted.

At the bank of the Masset Inlet, sitting on a rotting log she saw Rae facing the water.  Without looking at her Rae lifted her right arm up with the palm of her hand facing up.  Upon her palm a flame appeared that flickered in the wind.  Within the flame was a tiny image of Ailbe Rose.

“Wanda Chéile,” Ailbe Rose called to her, “you must await the time when Kaneki is closest to the surface and the World is in greatest peril.  I will slow your heart rate and those that love you most will think you dead.  They will not burn you in your grandfather’s way but bury you.  Remember them when you awake.  Use not the name I call you by but the one Rae gave you.”  At that moment the flame shot out of Rae’s hand into Rita’s chest.  Rita has no recollection of the centuries that passed only the moment she awoke.  She did not dig through the dirt but merged with it so that she emerged on the surface in the clothes she was buried in.

Rita Walker (Blog Twenty-three):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Twenty-three):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

The federal government of Canada does offer incentives for people to buy electric or hybrid vehicles.  Currently only British Columbia and Quebec offer provincial incentives.  Because WordPress is seen around the World you could check to see if your government offers incentives to buying electric or hybrid vehicles.

https://www.caa.ca/electric-vehicles/government-incentives/

https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-694/usnea

https://carbonengineering.com/

https://www.therecord.com/news-story/9792576-new-industry-develops-around-sucking-carbon-dioxide-out-of-atmosphere/

https://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2018/6/14/17445622/direct-air-capture-air-to-fuels-carbon-dioxide-engineering

After her last lecture Rita tried to research Kanetic Reusable Batteries and whether it has a parent company but to no avail.  She also called Marlo each day to see how he was feeling.  He told her the new girl, Ember, had told him about a dream she had.

In the dream Ember said she saw Rae in the distance sitting by the shore on a washed up log.  As Ember walked closer she noticed Rae was holding an argillite carving of a man with hands and feet that looked unfinished.  Without looking at her Rae pointed towards a tree.  On the tree grew usnea lichen.

From her purse Ember then pulled out a paper bag and offered it to Marlo.  When he opened it he saw the pale greyish-green strands of a plant.  “Rae wants you to eat this.”

He did and has felt much better since.

Before her class begins Rita pulls Kanayago aside.  “It was strange dirt you collected but I can’t return it to you.”  Rita doesn’t explain that she reabsorbed the dirt.

Kanayago’s brow furrows but she doesn’t seem to be overly surprised by what Rita tells her.  “Oh well, thanks for looking into it,” is all she says.

As Rita stands in front of her class she takes in a deep breath.  This lecture is extremely important but could easily be misinterpreted.  “We’re going to discuss Direct Air Capture,” she says.  Trees, as you know, absorb carbon dioxide and give off oxygen.  Vehicles and factories burn gas or coal and give off carbon dioxide.  Too much carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and the Earth will heat up.  Ocean flooding, forest fires, and the melting of glaciers increases.

“Direct Air Capture attempts to pull carbon dioxide out of the air and sell it to greenhouses, turn it into fuel, or bury it as basalt rock.  In the past there were only two companies performing Direct Air Capture:  Carbon Engineering out of Canada, Climeworks out of Switzerland and Iceland.  Carbon Engineering turns the carbon dioxide into fuels by adding it to hydrogen through electrolysis.  Climeworks sells carbon dioxide to greenhouses in Switzerland and creates basalt rock in Iceland.

“These companies are not a solution though.  We still need to decrease the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.  Next week we’ll talk about water usage in the house.  I do have an assignment for you.  Write a five hundred to a thousand word essay on the jobs you are currently doing or have done and what the company you are or did work for is doing to help the environment.”  Rita hopes Kanayago will give her better insight into Kanetic Reusable Batteries.

Book Review of “An Earthling Guide To Outer Space” by Bob McDonald

Astrophysics can be complicated with astronomical formulas to determine distance, speed, mass, gravity and much more.   If you want to know how formulas were used to prove theories in astrophysics you can purchase: On the Shoulders of Giants: The Great Works of Physics and Astronomy edited and with commentary by the British theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking.

On The Shoulders of Giants edited by Stephen Hawking

If you want an overview of space exploration that gives simple experiments to grasp the concepts without the formulas:  An Earthing’s Guide To Outer Space by Bob McDonald is excellent!

Bob McDonald hosts CBC’s Quirks and Quarks

Outer Space with Bob McDonald

It’s an easy and good read that talks about how space travel came about, what it’s like to blast off in a rocket and live on a space station, and the effects living space has on the body.  He also talks about planet movement, event horizons, and what the sun is made of.  I’ve simplified what’s in the book so you can enjoy what I haven’t mentioned.

 

Rita Walker (Blog Twenty-two):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Twenty-two):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

I made an open bin with plywood to throw in food scraps, dog poop and occasionally leaves.  Every so often I throw soil on top.  Over the years when I turned the mixture over with a shovel I found it full of earthworms and that the mixture had turned into soil.

https://www.intechopen.com/books/sustainability-of-agroecosystems/activity-and-variety-of-soil-microorganisms-depending-on-the-diversity-of-the-soil-tillage-systemhttp://www.fao.org/3/a0100e/a0100e05.htmhttps://www.gardenmyths.com/what-is-humus/https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0140196313002176

https://askabiologist.asu.edu/explore/desert-microbes

http://mgeldorado.ucanr.edu/files/170168.pdf

The classroom has a new student, the girl who lit the candle without a match or lighter.  The one who was arguing in the woods with Kanayago.  She’s sitting to the right of Marlo who looks much better.  Meanwhile Kanayago is sitting at the desk on the other side of Marlo.  It’s interesting that all the elementals are sitting beside each other.  On Kanayago’s desk she notices a small cardboard box.  She looks for any reaction in Kanayago’s face that she knew it was her as the rat and then the chipmunk but the girl shows no curiosity.

“Can you tell us your name?” Rita says to the new girl.

“Ember,” the girl replies in a tired voice.

“Today’s lecture is on microorganisms,” Rita begins.  She clicks on the projector where the screen is partitioned into five sections.  Each section has a picture and a heading for the images of bacteria, fungi, viruses, protozoa, and algae.  “Bacteria and fungi are the main microorganisms that ingest the dead material.

“All these microorganisms,” Rita continues, “break down dead organisms into CO2 and minerals.  I’m condensing this so you’ll need to read about how complex this is.  What remains is called humus.   Humus is carbon based and can hold up to ninety percent of its weight in water.  Because it’s negatively charged it attracts ammonium and minerals such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorous and others.

“In deserts the main microorganism are cyanobacteria.   Cyanobacteria can desiccate so that it only contains 1-2% water.  It will remain inactive until there is more rain.  It is extremely important to get soil testing done before fertilizing.  Phosphate, Potassium, and Nitrogen have to be added carefully so that an excess of salt isn’t created which will damage microorganisms.  Next week’s lecture is on carbon engineering.”

Rita holds her breath as Kanayago walks up to her holding the box.

“I know we’re done talking about waste matter but I had a weird experience this weekend,” Kanayago tells her as she sets the box down on Rita’s lectern.   “I captured a strange looking rat.  I went to get something to keep it in.  When I came back the rat was gone and I thought I saw a chipmunk running away.  I guess the rat was so scared it defecated enough to escape.  I was just wondering if you could analyze the droppings.  Maybe I thought I saw a rat but it was actually a chipmunk.  Both looked–.”  Rita holds her breath as Kanayago searches for the right words.  “Familiar.”

Rita can’t stop herself from gulping.  “I’ll get it analyzed for you and let you know.”  She picks up the box very carefully.  The contents are a part of her.

Audio Interview with Bob Godglick of Considerate Done: Vintage Clock Repairs

Enjoy this Audio Interview with Bob Godlick as he discusses how he got into vintage clock repair and the different types of clocks he has worked on so far.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

Rita Walker (Blog Twenty-one):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Twenty-one):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Each country if not city, town, village has sacred places.  I’ve been reading Bob McDonald’s An Earthling’s Guide To Outer Space.  McDonald hosts CBC’s Quirks & Quarks.  In the book he explains that astronauts and cosmonauts really miss feeling the wind and nature’s surroundings.  Next time you walk through the woods reflect on how important that presence is.

https://www.shape.com/healthy-eating/healthy-drinks/oat-milk-nutrition-dairy-free-milk

https://www.quakeroats.com/cooking-and-recipes/how-to-prepare-oats#

https://www.livescience.com/22427-stonehenge-facts.html

https://sacredland.org/sacred-groves-of-ghana-ghana/

https://www.google.com/search?q=silfra&oq=Silfra&aqs=chrome.0.0l8.1490j0j8&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

Leaving a part of herself inside the factory to become a chipmunk has drained Rita.  She barely made it home because she was shaking so bad.  Not just from the loss of body mass but from the terror of almost being caged indefinitely.  In her apartment she engorges oatmeal mixed with oat milk and prunes.  Lumbering towards her bed she is drawn towards the weeping willow.  She touches one of the long leaves before plunking onto her bed.

She feels tremendous pressure, as if the Earth is pressing down on her shoulders, and so hot!  Sweat pours down her body as she stares at a titan sized man bound inside a cavern the colour of iron.  His metallic gray eyes stare upwards and his mouth is open.  With each breath he exhales heavy metals spew out reminding her of videos of volcanic eruptions.  His muscular arms are stretched out… his hands are jagged junks of metal.  She sees lower that his feet are also made of misshaped metal.  He’s straddling the cavern.  His right hand punches higher up the cavern wall sending iron ore flying below where a molten fire burns.  She realizes Kaneki is trying to reach the surface!

Now she’s on the surface.  What she sees shouldn’t make sense but it does.  Ailbe Rose is standing in the centre of Stonehenge with her arms and hands pointed towards the ground.  A hole forms just in front of her toes.  Oya is standing within a groove of Nyame Dua trees near the Asuo Akosua stream with arms raised above her head.   Rán is kneeling at the shore of the Sifra Rift with her hands in the cool water.  But Rae is not to be found and without her Kaneki cannot be stopped.

Rita wakes shivering.  Her clothes, sheets and pillow are soaked. 

 

Rita Walker (Blog Twenty):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Twenty):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

The idea of neutering or spaying is to stop overpopulation.  The ethical matter is the lack of choice.  The worldwide concern is the possibility of wiping out an entire breed.  Reversible birth control would be a better idea but I cannot find any information on this.

https://www.ctriver.org/they-can-swim-really/

https://www.grandriver.ca/en/our-watershed/Water-quality-data.aspx

Rita scurries towards a drain hole in the floor.  She presses her feet into the floor to slow down when she feels the brush of the broom push her against the base of a metal cage that protects a motor.  She smells metal burning and turns to look up.  Two strands of the cage’s metal welded wire bend around her.  She watches in terror as Kanayago squats down and stares at her.

“You’re a strange looking rodent,” Kanayago says to her.   “And familiar somehow.”  Kanayago stands up.  “There aren’t more of you are there?  I’ll need to find something to keep you for now,” she hears Kanayago say as she walks away.

Rita’s heart is pounding so hard she can feel it push her ribs out.  It’s not good to change without any dirt around but she doesn’t have a choice.  Her body is riddled with spasms now.  She shrinks as her excess body turns to wet earth.  Her tiny ears listen intently for Kanayago or any other movement as she hops towards the grate where Marlo is waiting.  As her long fluffy tail stands straight up she runs at full speed towards the grate.

“How did a chipmunk get in here?” she hears Kanayago say from far behind.

She falls into water.  Scrambling she reaches the surface and dog paddles at the concrete ledge where Marlo is waiting.  With blurry eyes she sees him staring down at her in confusion.  He scoops her up and holds her up to his face.  Shivering she sakes water from her fur and nods her head numerous times.

“I hope this is you Rita,” he says with a cough.  In an instant she riding atop viscous water that flows against the river’s current.

Back on the shore Marlo changes into his human form and starts coughing.  “That factory is contaminating the river,” he says through gasps.  “I’ll wait until your human again then I need to rest,” he tells her as he sets her onto the bank.

 

In her car she rests her head back.  That short time having the welded wire that looked more like thick bars to her changed form has her thinking of all the animals locked in cages.  She tries to keep her composure but knowing now how terrifying it is she can’t keep the sobs in.  Humans caging themselves, and caging other life.  She clenches her fist as she brushes the tears away with her forearm.  And they neuter other humans and animals.  Who is keeping track off all this she wonders?  Neutering should be reversible.  An entire species of dogs or cats could be wiped out.

“Be positive, Rita,” she tells herself.   She’ll have to investigate the ethics of neutering and if modern operations are reversible.  Right now she’s worried about Marlo.  He didn’t look good as he headed for his car.  How polluted is the river water she wonders.

Rita Walker (Blog Nineteen):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Nineteen):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Cadmium is toxic or poisonous in small quantities.  In industry it is used for insecticides, electroplating, batteries and more.  It can cause renal dysfunction, bone degeneration, and liver problems.  It is not essential to biological functions.  In batteries cadmium can be recycled.  Perhaps there should be a separate recycling container for batteries.

https://books.google.ca/books?id=hS5IwFBkaX0C&pg=PA23&lpg=PA23&dq=K%27algyaa+kongaas&source=bl&ots=kCdTLyZHU7&sig=ACfU3U3-JnurN1RLfTfMX0ShEQdoqalO7A&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwj8lp7ZrrbmAhUDVt8KHYnrCugQ6AEwA3oECAoQAQ#v=onepage&q=K’algyaa%20kongaas&f=false

http://www.ratbehavior.org/perception.htm

https://www.cadmium.org/cadmium-applications/nickelcadmium-batteries

https://www.call2recycle.ca/tag/nickel-cadmium/

https://www.popularmechanics.com/science/energy/a28555278/rust-electricity/

 

The K’algyaa kongaas moon is three-quarters full as she steps inside a bush.  She can hear the footsteps of Marlo as he moves beside the oak tree.  Her beady eyes gaze through the twigs towards him.  He starts whistling a soft tune that she doesn’t recognize.

Lifting her long hairless tail she scurries out of the bush towards him.  He looks down at her and she halts.  This the moment of truth.  He could stomp on her or in disbelief leave.  Instead he crouches down and places his right hand palm up on the ground.  Diligently she steps onto his palm.

She feels his caress as he strokes her head then her back.  Tenderly he walks her towards the river.

“I hope you can hear me,” he says in his deep melodic voice.  “I’ll put you on the bank and change.  Water likes to be in constant motion.  I could change into a fish or beaver but I think its best if I just become fluid.  When you see an unusual ripple step onto it.

Rita watches from the bank, amazed, as Marlo steps into the shallow part of the river.  In a moment he’s no longer standing there.  She squints at the water and see tiny, unusual ripples in the water.  Now that there is little time she holds her breath and steps forward.

A strange tingling feeling runs up her pink toes as she moves towards the grate that will take her into the Kanetic Reusable Batteries factory.  As they slip through the bars of the grate Rita sees shades of grey.  Under the building there are concrete ledges.  Higher up on the ceiling she sees a drainage grate.  She jumps onto the concrete ledge.

In a moment Marlo is standing on the ledge in his human form.   He scoops her up and holds her so she can slip through the bars of the floor grate above.  Standing on the floor above she gazes down at him.  “I’ll wait here as long as I can,” he whispers to her.  “If that doesn’t work I’ll have to try to come back later.”

Rita scurries close to the wall as her keen nose sniffs.  There are two scents that cause her to halt and sniff more intently.  The smell of iron mixed with Kanayago’s particular scent.  Because Marlo changed into water his entire body weight came with him so he could change back to his human form.  Most of Rita’s weight is in a pile as dirt within the bush by the oak tree.  Everything is enormous.  She follows her nose towards Kanayago’s scent.

As she scurries past the legs and bases of machines she sees a woman with her hair tied back wearing a lab coat and safety glasses.  There doesn’t seem to be anyone else in the room.

“They think I’ve created energy from iron,” the young woman is saying to herself as she places her palm on a pile of rust.  “But the energy is coming from me and I’m burning out.  Ember could help me but she says the technology is being developed so why bother.  I thought she was joking when she lit the candle just by looking at it.  I shouldn’t have shown her that I can bend the fork with my mind.  I knew something was wrong when the snow fell.”

For a while Rita only hears silence then Kanayago starts talking to herself again.

“Ember can’t be right.  Surely Kanetic isn’t simply dumping excess Cadmium into the Grand River.”

Now Rita knows what’s wrong with this factory.  She turns around but hears rapid footsteps behind her.  Scurrying away she looks back and sees Kanayago coming at her with a push broom.