Photo Set: The Thomas Fire

It's been a little bit over a month now since the Thomas Fire, the largest wildfire in California history, tore through Ventura County and the east end of Ojai. While we're battling yet another natural disaster in the form of mudslides (due to the damage from the fire), I'm now able to look back on … Continue reading Photo Set: The Thomas Fire


Chubby Bunny Six

Chubby Bunny One. You remember the game "Chubby Bunny," where you put an increasing number of marshmallows in your mouth and try to say the words, "Chubby Bunny" followed by the current number of marshmallows in your mouth? Chubby Bunny Two. The game is funny because, quite naturally, the more marshmallows you put in your … Continue reading Chubby Bunny Six

Pseudonyms for Fun and Profit

  There are many reasons to use a pseudonym, most of them are about protection. Religious figures and social activists often dawn pseudonyms to protect themselves from targeting. Graffiti artists use "handles" to avoid arrest (I see you Robin Gunningham!). Dancers and pornstars have stage names for obvious reasons. Donald J. Trump fabricated "John Barron" and … Continue reading Pseudonyms for Fun and Profit

Default Setting: Distrust or Trust?

Unless you're a completely self-sustainable hermit living a remote life in the mountains, chances are you're going to have to deal with at least one other human being on a daily basis. So when you meet that new person, ask yourself: Is my default setting to trust this person, or not to trust this person? … Continue reading Default Setting: Distrust or Trust?

Be A Good Neighbor

In the wake of the Thomas Fire, now the largest wildfire in California history, neighborhoods and communities are coming together, some for the first time, trying to figure out how to better be prepared for another emergency of this magnitude, asking ourselves collectively, "What could we have done better?" Southern California is expecting another earthquake, … Continue reading Be A Good Neighbor

Revisionist History and Rose-Colored Glasses

We all choose to exercise a little revisionist history when looking back on events from our life. We consciously (or subconsciously, in the case of trauma, for instance) narrow down the "facts" we choose to remember in an attempt to continually reframe the experience in our memories in a positive way. The Romans called this … Continue reading Revisionist History and Rose-Colored Glasses

Your Personal Mantra for 2018

For many, myself included, 2017 was a year that could not possibly be forgotten quick enough. So rather than look back on the carnage searching for silver linings, I felt it was more important to go forward. One way to do this is to solidify my "Personal Mantra for 2018." The New Year's Resolution is … Continue reading Your Personal Mantra for 2018

Building (and Burning) Bridges

Portland, Oregon, has a TON of bridges that span the Columbia and Willamette Rivers, unsurprisingly earning Portland the official nickname of "Bridgetown." As the Willamette divides Portland down the middle, starting at the top, there's the St. Johns Bridge, Fremont Bridge, Broadway Bridge, Steel Bridge, Burnside Bridge, Morrison Bridge, Hawthorne Bridge, Marquam Bridge, Tilikum Crossing, … Continue reading Building (and Burning) Bridges

Photo Set: Northern Ireland

The trip to Northern Ireland was by far the most important part of my trip. I was going to meet a "new" friend, someone I'd written about extensively over the last five months, to interview him and speak with him about the project. This is what I love about writing!  Our adventure started at Waterloo … Continue reading Photo Set: Northern Ireland

Photo Set: London and Rochester, England

I'd had about as much romance as I could handle, so it was finally time to say goodbye to France and move onto the next destination. I hopped on the high-speed train from Paris to London, under the English Channel. It was a really cool experience, and apparently super efficient, which made me question why … Continue reading Photo Set: London and Rochester, England