Spring Gillard

What’s in Your Fridge?

A colleague of mine sent out a link to an artist’s website that show’s how powerful the message can be when art and food combine. Mark Menjivar does photographic essays on a variety of subjects including food related topics. In You Are What You Eat he takes a series of photographs of the inside of […]

The Compost Module

In 1992, I formed a group called Kids Compost BC to bid on a contract with the BC Ministry of Environment. The job was to produce a module on composting that would be added to their existing Eco Education Program. The program’s Green Team toured the province conducting workshops on recycling and other environmental themes. […]

What a Gas!

I slept sitting up Monday night, propped up by pillows. The sleep was not great, but it kept me from coughing my head off completely. I developed this dry, hacking cough a week ago on the heels of my new patio door install. At least the cough is dry during the night, in the morning […]

Something to Celebrate

Back in the early 1990s, my environmentalist side was just being kindled. I had just started recycling, no easy feat as it was well before blue box years. I was living in Winnipeg at the time and my garden consisted of a few pots of pansies on my balcony. I came across my “environment” file […]

The Film Files

The file sorting continues. I was astonished at the number of film projects I had undertaken, or rather film proposals I have written. During my years at City Farmer, I was hell bent on getting a TV series or documentary on urban agriculture off the ground. There were many titles and formats: City Farmers (1995, […]

Heavenly Harvest

I was at a meditation retreat outside of Portland on the weekend. It was held at Queen of Angels Monastery. The Benedictine Sisters who call this place home, are engaged in a number of ministries including an on-site shelter that houses and feeds homeless people. They also support their work by making their own monastery […]

Petroleum Pledge

In early 1991, some friends of mine from California started a campaign to conserve oil. It was a response to the Persian Gulf War. As the pledge sheet said, whether you were for or against the conflict, it was clear that the need for oil was a central cause. The premise was that by reducing […]

Ball Girl

I’ve had some pretty funny jobs in my day. I worked at a cannery, sorting apricots on the conveyor belt and cleaning the rotten, mushy ones out of the slop tray. I was then promoted to the exciting job of pitting, where I fed one apricot at a time into a machine for eight hours. […]

Secondhand Blues

My neighbour across the hall smokes like a chimney. The smoke wafts out into the hallway, stinking it up and on particularly heavy days, creating a wall of blue. It also seeps under my door and into my suite. Since the balconies have been torn off, she’s taken to smoking on the back steps, where […]

Beluga Release

We took my nephews to the Vancouver Aquarium on Saturday. They loved it of course. The displays of brightly coloured fish and undersea life are breathtaking. The Aquarium lived up to its promise of: Engage. Amaze. Inspire. Except for the beluga whale show. We waited and waited for the show to begin, even the adults […]