Furrer Farms Open House Was A Hit!

The house is complete, the old barn is fully restored and has a new floor. It’s time to party!

Last Saturday night, we held the Furrer Farms open house. Heidi did all of the massive preparations and made all of the food, and she did an awesome job! All of the guests loved the food, beer, and music.

Other than a little snafu with a blue grass band that thought they were Fleetwood Mac and made a bunch of undeliverable demands, everything went off smoothly. Of course, if there is a stage and an audience, the Procrastinators have to play. We had a great time and people enjoyed our set.

Compared to the drudgery of packing boxes and moving, which is what I am doing as I write this, the memories of this event are sweet.

Here are some pictures of the event:

Open House InvitationOpen House Procrastinators
Open House BarnOpen House Bon Fire

Furrer Farms Is Coming Along

It always seems like it is the proverbial “two weeks” away, but the house on the farm is finally seeing the end of construction. Cabinets and counter tops are installed, the Tulikivi mass fireplace is in, most interior painting is done, carpet goes in next week, etc. My new target date for move in is now the end of July, mainly due to us being gone for vacation the middle two weeks of that month.
House Getting There
Farm wise, the old barn has been restored, the big “fun” barn has been enclosed and the recoding studio is nearly finished. We have a huge learning garden planted and our hay has been cut. I have been doing a lot of research about what kinds of crops, animals or services we can grow and provide, but have not made any real decisions about what the business model will be.
Old Barn Remodel
We are going to have an open house 8/2/2008 with a live bluegrass band, Heidi’s Darn Good Burgers, Ninkasi beer, and a short Procrastinators set.

Yahoo Sucks More Everyday

I rarely use any Yahoo services anymore. With the exception of delicious and Flickr, which I barely classify as Yahoo services, I simply do not use their “free” apps or services any more. Back in the day I used MyYahoo everyday, mainly for access to their (still) pretty good financial portfolios and research as well as their web based email, which I considered the first really usable on-line email. I also used Yahoo Maps, and experimented with anything they would come out with. For years, I touted Yahoo’s IM instead of ICQ, but as time progressed it became a bloated mess that wanted to own everything I did. As the family’s defacto IT guy, Yahoo IM became more and more of an issue, so I was happy to finally be able to recommend Meebo as soon as that came out.

Google Mail came out and I never looked back. It became the default for my mail, my family’s mail, and my company’s mail. It was a revolution and it made me trust Google even more. I look forward to new Google services and have found them all to be delightfully functional, but that is not the only reason Google kicked Yahoo out of my life.

Today, I tried to use my Yahoo mail as a throwaway to sign up for a service I was unsure of. When I went to the account that I had not visited for several months, my box was filled with Yahoo spam from all kinds of sources. Of course, at the bottom of every one of the emails they sent me, the little disclaimer is right there:

You received this advertisement from Yahoo! because the information for the account jeff.tunnell indicates that Yahoo! may contact you. If you do not want to receive further commercial mailings from Yahoo!, unsubscribe by clicking here. To learn more about Yahoo!’s use of personal information, including the use of web beacons in HTML-based email, please read our Privacy Policy. Yahoo! is located at 701 First Avenue, Sunnyvale, CA 94089.

So I click unsubscribe, and after an interminable amount of time (Yahoo is incredibly slow), my log-in page comes up (I had just logged in five minutes earlier), and up pops this screen:
Yahoo Sucks

I never, ever gave Yahoo permission to spam with this crap. I find it incredibly lame that they feel the need to “opt” me in to this kind of desperate attempt to make money. If this their new direction that Jerry Yang has been touting as the way to head off Microsoft, they are in deep crap.

Can Voluntary Sustainability Ever Work?

I’m sitting in the Phoenix airport after three days in Las Vegas. Never mind that I flew in a jet to watch Supercross races, that is fodder for a different post regarding my ecological sins.

Low Lake Mead

The amazing thing is that over four million people flew into Vegas last month alone to join the rapidly growing 1.1 million people living in the valley. There is no reason a city should even exist in a desert that barely grows sage brush.

  • I guess it could be argued that they can get all of the electricity from Hoover Dam, but the dam’s output is off 15% from low water levels, and Nevada only gets 4% of its power from the dam. So, what is powering all of those air conditioners?
  • Same with the water. Get it from Lake Mead, but the lake’s level is falling fast. Predictions are that the lake has a 50% chance of going dry by 2021. That seems likely when looking at the lake from the sky.
  • Food is only five hours away in California, but nothing will grow next to LV without massive amounts of water, and even then, the temperature is too high. There is a reason it is called a desert.

I could not help but ponder this the entire time I was visiting, but I was watching people completely oblivious to the problems. Millions of people worried about their tans, fake boobs, tattoos, and winnings. I cannot imagine many of them changing their ways voluntarily.

What does it take to get people to change? Maybe the shock of high energy prices will be enough. As Peak Oil approaches (or is here) prices will rise so much that this propped up fantasy land cannot be maintained, and it will simply collapse under its own weight. Or on a brighter note, maybe everybody will get a clue, conserve, put up massive thermal solar arrays, figure out how to catch every drop of the 3.5″ of annual rainfall, and the world can keep its fantasy land. Or not.


Colleen, Heidi, Tim, Jonathan, Sarah, Allison, Chris, Terry, Norine, and I all went the Portland Bruce Springsteen concert together, all courtesy of us! Due to a screw up trying to buy tickets in person and on-line at the same time, we ended up with 12 tickets. We sold two and gave away the rest.

Don and Mavis Poole came up too, and we all stayed at the Holiday Inn about two blocks from the Rose Garden. Great pre and post function fun!

As the picture above shows, we have “great” (hope you can read sarcasm) seat. The Boss is that little pixel in the middle of the picture below the bright lights.

This is my second Bruce concert, and I have to say that the Rising Tour concert Colleen and I went to in Sacramento 4-5 years ago was better. The sound was better, Bruce was a little more charged up, and Patty was there However, an average Springsteen concert is still an evangelical experience.