Oh, ok-- I know them as 'Little Rascals'. Barely caught any of that
though. You must be a tad older than I or have a thing for older
I'm trying to think of the oldest shows I can recall. I'd say my
favourite as a kid was Gilligan's Island and the 6 Million Dollar Man,
which came later...
You know, looking back, if Steve Austin lifted a car and had no
equally-enhanced line of support from his arm all along his spine to
his bionic legs, he'd probably end up breaking something like his
spine at some point. AFAIK, all he had was two legs, an eye and one
Do some in New York and surrounds speak that way BTW-- "woim"? (Hot-
dog: "Hat Dough-ogg"?)
As circumstances would have it, I happen to be in Little Italy this
afternoon at Starbux. So I've got a bit of the Italian Rico vibe
I'm right here as I type this:
While I abandoned my shipping container focus years ago, I've still
kept it in my periphery, and have come across many designs, although
nothing like the one I had attempted in 2004 (before hard drive
At the same time, and coincidentally, I've also been revisiting
containers in some investigations with earth-bermed/"earthship"/buried
(Might you have some ideas as to how they used to construct and
especially waterproofed earth-bermed homes naturally?)
In the process, I'm also looking at how wooden sailboats are/were
sealed,which apparently includes parrafin wax and bitumen.
(I found that they're redoing the Bluenose II:
Covey Island Boatworks-- one of the outfits that are undertaking the
Bluenose-- is one of my favourites with regard to preferred (classic
wooden) ocean-going sailboats/yachts:
Probably closest to the kind of boat I'd like:
Or maybe a smaller ~35' Farfarer:
What's your interest in shipping containers? Or are you just politely
trying to nudge me on topic? ;)
In any case, of all the container designs I've seen, I still prefer my
old design, but I've thought of burying a couple of conventionally-
stacked ones into the side of a hill.
But the question is about how metal-- aluminum and iron-- works/could
be made to work underground for seasonal thermal storage and against
I know the containers are waterproof as in if they fell overboard into
the ocean, but burying one for decades is a different matter.
I'm looking to relocate to Nova Scotia, so containers would be
accessible, as would proximity to Covey Island Boatworks and Lunenberg
(Bluenose Drive :)
Ken; are you at least getting these kinds of Google pano links?
What about this?
Understood to all of that, thanks.
Containers are just things being mulled over along with many other
things. They seem to also function a bit like legos, so there's some
interesting constraints and flexibilities there.
If you do a search on this forum, maybe roughly circa 2003/4/5, you
might find me/us discussing shipping containers a little.
My inquiries are generally more toward "purist" natural "ultra-local"
building techniques/challenges, though, using nothing imported at all
if possible-- even milling the wood onsite, gathering reeds/straw for
I was reading a book last fall in part about earthen floors too and
they look and probably perform just as good as other kinds of floors.
(If recalled, urine might have been a recommended ingredient for the
floor mix, not to mention dung for some kinds of walls).
You might also recall my mention of reciprocal roofs, which are
supposed to be easy with round logs.
What exactly do you mean by confronts?
/kənˈfrʌnt/ –verb (used with object)
1. to face in hostility or defiance; oppose: The feuding factions
confronted one another.
2. to present for acknowledgment, contradiction, etc.; set face to
face: They confronted him with evidence of his crime.
3. to stand or come in front of; stand or meet facing: The two long-
separated brothers confronted each other speechlessly.
4. to be in one's way: the numerous obstacles that still confronted
5. to bring together for examination or comparison.
Ummm, okay - but what do you mean by confronts? Everything
'confronts' something or other, in some sense of the word, to the
point where it becomes almost meaningless.
If you meant that there are two different motivations at work, well,
yeah - how else could it be? The local source thing is confronting a
falsehood of globalism. It's fine and dandy to have access to cheap
and/or obscure stuff, but it's not okay to reap your savings out of
the backs/mouths/lives of others just because they live somewhere
else. Google "ship breaking" to see what I mean.
Some people seem to forget that no matter how piss poor they are in
North America, there's always somebody worse off. And at least in the
US and Canada, there are all sorts of workplace safety laws and
environmental laws that aim to prevent people from poisoning people
for profit. Yet, we gladly ship our detritus overseas to poison
people on the other side of the planet. To save a buck. Wonderful,
sustainable model, indeed.
You can pound a lot of crazy edible stuff into flour and make your own
pasta. Milk a goat or cow; make cheese and you'll likely have noodles
coming out of your ears if you want. Sell your surplus to Kraft.
That's only true if you define economical purely in financial terms.
You would not be who you are, live where you live, nor do what you do,
if money was your sole criteria. Life quality trumps a dollar sign
every time, for everybody. Some people don't realize that, and some
people think that you can buy satisfaction, which is patently untrue.
What sort of cheese did you make?
Currently, our economic system, according to many accounts is
"uneconomic", given that, for one, it is based on infinite "growth" on
a finite planet, speaking of limits, and idiocy.
By comparison, you could say that all other species are more
intelligent with their time and resources. (and have possibly a lot
more "leisure" time too)
If you suspect that I'm beginning to rethink our species' relative
intelligence, then you're correct.
The job and income currently seem like illusions of a sort, such as if
they make life-- and not just for us or at this time in human
history-- more difficult or problematic than they would otherwise be.
The whole point of income and jobs would seem to be to make life
better, not worse. But if you look around you, that doesn't appear to
be the case. Life looks worse, or is shaping up to get there big-time.
If you think it's better, perhaps it is, but I argue that it is in a
sense an illusion, because it is on "borrowed" or "stolen" time.
There appears a growing consensus that we're working too long and hard
for too little-- and worse, such as for environmental destruction--
and that most of us dislike our jobs.
Some notions of 'hard work' seem ill-advised. Much hard work is not
...I sell you that wall-to-wall carpeting lifestyle in part in order
to create another necessity in the form of a vacuum cleaner (and the
"cash-cow" dirt/filter bags that you use with it).
...Your boat has a leak, so, and maybe unbeknownst to you, I drill out
a hole in another part of the same boat and sell you that plug of wood
that you happily pay for (with your so-called hard-earned money) and
use to plug the leak.
So the ideas go...
Your Kraft dinner you like to mention, by the way, doesn't come out of
nowhere, or without added cost, even if, to you, it seems cheap:
Anyone with his head half out of his ass could tell you, for one, that
the box and the plastic the macaroni and cheese powder come in come
from somewhere, and have to go somewhere after.
"Mollison: ...In 1974, I built gardens that I thought were pretty good
and I independently evolved deep mulching systems, I say
independently, because about 7 seven years after that, about 1982, an
American came by and said, 'Oh you're using Ruth Stout's method' and
I'd never heard of Ruth Stout and it was many years before I actually
got her book, closer to the 90s.
Vlaun: That was one of the first garden books I ever read back in the
70s . . .'the No Work Garden Book'.
Mollison: Ah, great.
Vlaun: . . . her book and the Nearings' 'Living the Good Life' They
were the two people I read back then.
Mollison: I remember reading a book rather like the Nearings'. It was
made in England . . . I've forgotten the guy who did it . . . and I
thought it was a lesson in rotten hard work for very little result. It
was sort of like a ground-down peasant primer. (laughs heartily) Just
what I didn't want. I grew up like that, I grew up on farms on which
you worked 18-hour days, hard work, and I thought, there's got to a
better way. I ignored this in Scott Nearing and John Seymour. He wrote
a book, in which you're trying to do everything. He called it
First of all, I think that's a terrible concept: self-sufficiency. You
make your own cheese; you skin your own pig; you make your own gloves
from the pig's ears, you know, it's a shocking idea. We are absolutely
interdependent. I want somebody else to be making my boots while I
feed them, you know. And somebody else again to make my fishing rod,
car, bike. Self-sufficiency is a stupid idea. You can go a long way to
feeding yourself or perhaps all the way, but beyond that, it's pretty
stupid really. You have to have something to make money: photography,
writing books. Me, I write books. That's my income. But I can easily
Funnily enough, I have one of Seymour's self sufficiency books sitting
next to the toilet...errr...in my office annex. Just picked it up
yesterday. Good info for the most part, glosses over some things and
is really heavy into others.
His idea of self sufficiency is a stupid idea. No one ever said that
everyone _had_ to do every single thing for themselves. Even
mentioning that makes me want to poke him in the eye. One person
living totally alone in the middle of nowhere might be self
sufficient. If there's just one more person, say a spouse, kid,
whatever, the division of labor will naturally arise.
It's the ability to do any and all things that is the important part,
or at least to understand what is involved in doing them, and is the
part that should be taught in schools. That would go much further to
breaking down the artificial barriers in the world, and expose kids to
a much wider variety of life and work so they could make up their own
minds about what is attractive to them and start charting their own
destiny at an earlier age.
Being able to do any and all things and/or having at least an idea of
how they're done may indeed be key, and maybe even the difference
between sinking or swimming in the event of some kind of social
"Someone has written a book about the children and their need for
their, just simply, emotional and mental development to have contact
with the mountains, with the air, the sea, with the dawn, the sunset,
the trees, the birds, the song of the birds. Children that don't have
these experiences have no real idea of the world they live in. They
live in a house, in a school, in a city that's all manufactured. And
they begin to be progressively isolated from the basic dynamics of
what human life is all about."
~ Thomas Berry (1914-2009)
A 'little cheesy pouch', ay?...
Well, maybe the first and last time I had KD, I may have realized that
you could get it better and maybe cheaper or at least around a similar
price if you bought a whole bag of cheap pasta for maybe 99 cents and
one of those red plastic containers of very meltable cheddar cheese
(that, despite the price, might go a longer way than a mere 'cheesy
We, or you, should do an experiment, an economic sim; KD vs
CheddarcheeseContainer + big bag of 99-cent pasta.
Is it? Of course people have to put a roof over their head, food in
their mouth and clothes on their back, but I don't know that earning
more to afford stuff people don't need makes them any happier, more
satisfied, more fulfilled - whatever you want to call it. There's an
old saying - if you want your kids to turn out well, spend half the
money on them and twice the time. Most things in life are like that.
They are inseparable. You determine what needs to be done - there's an
I (read you), you provide the motivation - another I (so far you have
the full complement), and you are the judge of what is hard work or
whimsy - two more Is. For a total of four eyes, 'scuse me, four Is
(IIII)...you don't wear glasses by any chance, do you? ;)
Not even close to being in the majority. Everyone is a minority.
Every single person is a minority of one.
We definitely don't think alike, but that's fine with me. I like
you. That trumps some wacky idea that people have to think or act
alike to get along.
See a doctor - he'll clear up that cheesy dividend and help lighten
that wallet for you.
Speaking of cows.
Last night I was talking to the expert across the road and he told me
he's gonna get some cows but first he has to build a fence through the
center of his fenced in horse area. You can't put cows in with horses.
Why? You won't believe it. No, Rico, you won't get Hows or Corses. The
cows will eat the horse tails, all the way up to the root, and the
horses just stand there and let em do it. Is that some crazy shit or
what? LOL He also introduced me to the term *foundering* - pertaining
to horse hooves. Inneresting. Here's something else. If the
consequences of the US gov't finances go according to plan and we end
up on the road to the endarkenment it will take 20 years of
concentrated effort to attain enough horses to start over again, 18th
century style. There was as much information lost during the 20th
century as was gained.
I'm not a "tad" anything, and haven't been since I was a tad.
Earliest I remember being nuts about - Fireball XL5 (Google it on
YouTube) and Batman.
WTF...? Are you implying that the TV show was fiction?
Ya gotta stop this Starbucks thing. It's unseemly. Pretty much all
good cafes have free wireless these days, and better coffee, and cuter
women working in them. And better coffee.
At first I thought you were in Manhattan - you know, home of the
original Little Italy?, but I just checked your map link. Maybe
Starbucks is the best ya got. :)~
Do you have any record of the design? I don't recall seeing
anything. How about posting a picture, SketchUp model or pencil
drawing on a napkin? See what you can do - I'd appreciate it.
Plaster, stucco, clay - bunch of ways, traditionally. First and
foremost, don't put the thing anywhere there's a high water table,
underground stream, flood plain, etc. It's bad enough to drown in
your own bathroom, but to drown in your living room looks really bad
in the obituary.
Michael Reynolds did some interesting things getting the Earthship
idea off of the ground (sounds like an oxymoron), but I haven't heard
anything about him in a while.
Google Yakaboo - that's the next boat I'd like to build. It's a
sailing canoe. Some naval artichoke from MIT designed and built it
like 70 or 80 years ago and sailed it all around the South Pacific.
Very cool design. There's some guy Joe something-or-other who runs a
boat building school in New England somewhere (or was it Maryland?)
that build a replica. He said he learned more about sailing in a week
with the thing than in all the years sailing prior to that.
I don't do polite. :)~
Post some fookin' pictures of it, you tease, or I'll have some of the
goombahs in Ottawa whack you while you're sitting in Starbucks!
It's all about coatings and drainage. Spray or rolled on bituminous
coating, gravel, geotextile fabric, then backfill.
I guess I should look up words more often before using them.
I enjoyed Batman too and vaguely recall FXL5. I don't think we had the
channel it was on, but probably would have enjoyed it too.
Remember the original Ultraman or The Starlost? Or Spiderman or Rocket
Robin Hood? It's all coming back to me now.
Even these crazy things:
Well, you'd think it would have been more plausible fiction.
After I sent the email yesterday, I also thought that Steve Austin's
pelvis might also sustain fractures from running 60 miles per hour
(kind of funny when you think about it). Really his whole body would
fall apart around the use of his implants-- which might make for good
fiction: We could have him under the operating table every week with a
What will it be!? How will it perform?! Be sure to tune in next week!
I also had a thought about which super hero I'd rather be, and thought
of maybe The Flash, because he could disable any of the others before
they could react.
I couldn't agree more, but drink matcha green tea which isn't always
available, and am able to leverage them for discounts.
In fact, I dropped into a local tea outfit just before but they wanted
an arm and a leg for matcha which would have costed me ~$7 for a
drink, which seems ridiculous.
Yes, it could be a better area too. Ottawa's the last town I should be
living in. Manhattan would be an improvement. I still have yet to
visit NY now that I think about it and would like to soon.
I used to have a record of it from using a difficult-to-model-with
open source software, but it should be easy to redo in ACAD.
Especially seeing as you had pointed out some 3D container models at
Google for me, I'll try to look into it.
Plaster, stucco and clay under the earth? Really? Even without a water
table, that seems dubious.
True. I like the added built-in waterproofness of a container.
I actually saw and posted over at Transition Ottawa a documentary
about him. It was pretty good. But, and I forget if this was already
mentioned, the idea of using tires, concrete and plastic kind of bugs
me-- all of which I think he used and still does.
I've seen it before and even recall the name too-- a lovely design and
project and looks like it goes fast.
Frankly, I've been seriously considering classic wind-powered ocean-
going wooden boatbuilding and/or boating as a change-of-career/
lifestyle. You can do a lot with a good, decent-sized boat.
$15 000 for 15 months at the Wooden Boat Centre, Tasmania, for
example. Tough to save, but it would certainly turn a "vacation" or
sabbatical into something very practical and interesting.
That particular Starbucks seems to be quite the cop-spot, BTW, but the
goombahs have nothing to worry about with me.
These days especially they seem to have far more honour than cops.
Interesting, and thanks. Some of that sounds less than natural or
local, though, but what the hell, I'll keep it in mind.
Vancouver's too expensive, noisy, congested, dirty, and earthquake-
prone, etc., and I've already lived there long enough.
I'm sick of Ottawa and probably the opposite on that personality-test
colour-wheel thing than perhaps the personality that may be typical of
the government/capital/embassy/bureaucratic town that is Ottawa.
As for Nova Scotia, it's got the second warmest winter climate in
Canada, I've briefly lived there on two separate occasions, and it's
relatively clean, quiet, laid back and friendly.
I'm considering Shelburne or Lunenberg, but would settle with Halifax.
You're in Boston, yes?
Thanks for reminding me - I've gotta make some coffee.
You've...never...been...to...NYC...? LOL!!! Good one! Oh...you're
serious. Sorry, and...sorry. It's an amazing place. People don't
realize it's hundreds of small villages jammed onto a little island.
Everyone's got their local dry-cleaner and grocer and the coffee shop
that rules, but getting to any one of those other hundreds of villages
takes no more than half an hour or 40 minutes during rush hour. It's
a _great_ walking city.
You're on a Mac, right? Don't apologize, everybody has their
foibles. :)~ You should check out SketchUp if you haven't already.
For most design work it beats the pants off of ACAD, and steals its
lunch money. There's a nifty plugin called Sketchy Physics. Check
that out and don't say wow...if you can.
I'm running a design for a friend up to the Providence area tomorrow
and having a twofer as she is having a little dinner birthday party
for herself with a small group of friends. One of the surprises is
that I took some old photos of her family and some photos I took of
their house, cropped just the artwork hanging on their walls and some
of the family photgraphs, and have them hanging on the walls and
sitting in frames on the shelves in the design. Instant wow factor
and it brings the scale alive with their loved ones and cherished
Ever seen a dry lake bed? Ever see what happens to a dry lake bed
when it gets hit with water? It swells right up. They make bentonite
clay panels that have been used in waterproofing for a long time.
Clay, well, forever I guess.
But of course the main thing is to locate the future building's
excavation/fill site correctly in the first place to avoid
subterranean water and water runoff from above.
That's one of the reasons that they can be had relatively
inexpensively, and still in good condition. The seaworthiness rating
is more stringent than the 'waterproofness' required for a house. I'd
imagine that must do some sort of blower/compressed air test to check
the tightness, but I don't know for sure.
Concrete bugs you...eh, so don't use it. The tires I don't have too
big of a deal with. Sunlight and UV degradation is what kills tires.
They'll last for many, many decades buried. If you want to go old
school earth-sheltered, use stone, or better yet a dug out cave in
That sounds interesting, but why would you need a 'school' for that?
Go to India or Malaysia and work there for a while and help them build
your boat. Comfort zones are for buildings, not people.
Bituminous material is as natural as oil. Curare and Botox are also
natural. What you don't want to do is poison the environment and
create a future cleanup mess, and I get that. A bituminous coating on
a steel container that was surrounded by gravel with some geotextile
fabric holding back the dirt would last forever in units of your
lifetime, and then some, and any future cleanup would be localized and
Sounds nice, never been. One day, maybe soon.
Nope. I live on Long Island currently, but I'll probably be locating
in the not too distant future.
I am looking forward to seeing how 8, in his weakened state, deals
with the robot tiger that can catch rocket-propelled bombs in its
I make my own too, if unconventionally. It usually comes out so good,
that I can't handle coffee at a shop or with a machine.
I'm sold. :)
I'm on IBM (Dell laptop), but have experience with Mac. I'll look into
SketchUp and Sketchy Physics, especially since the former has been
praised quite a bit.
Cool. You mean in the 3D design, like image-mapping?
That's good to know.
Funny, but in Vancouver there's some sort of service station (maybe
for cars) that uses old cut tires for roof tiles and it looks ok...
Actually, here it is:
While I was at it, I decided to see if I could bum a ride with Google
to my old school and at the same time, show you Arthur Erikson, c.
What is that? Brutalism? Well anyway, that's the sight/site that
greeted me for too many days, and it was rarely that sunny and warm-
looking, except when school was out.
Here's the other side. It just occurred to me that I should have taken
most of my courses in the summer:
Cappadocia looks very nice, and they even have a hotel in one of
I have been back to looking at the Trullis incidentally, to
investigate how they might be waterproof with just stone, and noticed
that they are built very thick with 2 layers in and out and a middle
gravelly filling. Unsure if that alone does it, but it does make me
That's not a bad idea. I recently came across some info and a pic
online of I think in Malaysia of how they use heat and maybe even some
fire to bend wood for the boat frames.
I'm wondering, though, if I end up coming back with some other kind of
yacht technology than something more like a classic Bristol Channel
pilot cutter, and how it might fare.
...The more you learn, the more you need to find out. :/ :)
Yes, that's true, it's related to pitch:
"Pitch is the name for any of a number of viscoelastic, solid
polymers. Pitch can be made from petroleum products or plants.
Petroleum-derived pitch is also called bitumen. Pitch produced from
plants is also known as resin...
Pitch was traditionally used to help caulk the seams of wooden sailing
vessels (see shipbuilding).
Petroleum-derived pitch is black in color, hence the adjectival
...The pitch drop experiment taking place at University of Queensland
is a long-term experiment which measures the flow of a piece of pitch
over many years. For the experiment, pitch was put in a glass funnel
and allowed to slowly drip out. Since the pitch was allowed to start
dripping in 1930, only eight drops have fallen. It was calculated in
the 1980s that the pitch in the experiment has a viscosity
approximately 230 billion (2.3x1011) times that of water...
The heating (dry distilling) of wood causes tar and pitch to drip away
from the wood and leave behind charcoal. Birchbark is used to make a
particularly fine tar. Tar and pitch are often used interchangeably.
However, pitch is considered more solid while tar is more liquid.
Traditionally, pitch used for waterproofing buckets, barrels and small
boats was drawn from pine. It is used to make Cutler's resin."
Good to know. If a container or two were buried, I'd make it a
different design than the one I previously designed.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.