This morning I got a cuppa from Black Bear and stuck my nose in Karl Linn’s book: Building Community and Commons, inspired by his tips to create instant interactive space (that addresses exactly the sort of “disconnect” in community development that ‘big P’ articulately warned against before resorting to threats, in response to Glodecks’ recent post about our hood’s future).
I’d love to build on Linn’s suggestions in a visual language that feels more current, like this or this – like exploring our neighborhood in a brave mythology of our own creation drawn by our own hands to delineate each of these moments unfolding.
I imagine a world where when one mama asks “what are YOU going to do to nourish it?” at a focus group where, tired after a day of work, she’s breastfeeding her baby in the corner, a corporate type perks up and realizes his money is better utilized groundbreaking green affordable housing complexes than wasting away perpetuating the illusion of Scarcity in the stock market. In that world aggressive anarchists with a sore rep lose their edge when they realize they are invited to a table where their wisdom is welcome, and yeah that ‘developer’s wife’ DID make you organic vegan cookies, bitch! Maybe a neighborhood where business owners can relax during long potluck siesta lunches neighboring co-houses make from ingredients grown in a three-block radius. I walk down the street and pause, look to my left: a windowful of dance troupe of 34 teens is crunkstepping rehearsal for an upcoming street parade; to my right a windowful of young moms-to-be doing prenatal yoga. Why not? We’re dreaming it awake. I’ll bring supplies to start just such a ‘coloring book’ Friday.
And Today, just seeds: to start telling neighbors about the “park party”, we drew the invitation out on the ground. The lil’ twins from Texas St. (sshhh! it’s their birthday Saturday) and I stood facing the empty lot and imagined it gardenfull. People joined in, people asked what’s up –
I’m always amazed how easy it is to set that space alive. We’re alive. It’s good to be here.
come one come all
Cherokee street (Park)ing Day
11am-6pm across from Globe Drug
Friday + September 19 + 2008