Self Devised Work

Taking the class Self Devised Work at Freehold Theater Lab with Paul Budraitis, we had a writing assignment to observe someone and write a description followed by a stretch of the imagination.


She is petite in every way: short, thin, tiny voice, and small movements. From behind the bar, she invites me in to the restaurant with her breathy welcome, placing a carafe and glass of ice water and a menu at the bar stool I choose to occupy. Her delicate features are finely painted over, accentuating each one as it actually is with eyebrow and lip pencil. She wears a tiny diamond on her face in the manner they call a Monroe. Her fine brown hair is pulled back. She wears a black t shirt, black jeans, and black sneakers. She is in control of the dining room, moving about efficiently. She visits each table to take an order, inquire about another beer, answer questions about how busy the beach town is now that it is fall. “It’s still busy on weekends!” Her miniature voice is in a frequency that carries. Her chef is hefty, working the grill as most people are ordering hamburgers. She makes two cocktails in pint glasses, measuring carefully then pouring in a big slosh before attentively decorating their salted rims with celery leaves. “Is the new lunch hour 2 in the afternoon?” she squeaks. “I guess so” says the burly cook. She picks up the cocktails and makes her way out from behind the kitchen’s swinging doors with a thump of her hip. Taking mincing steps through the restaurant, she goes out the front door to pick up in a sashay across the deck as she delivers her creations to a couple with a dog. She picks up all of their lunch plates, balancing and stacking them along her arms and hands. Her petite frame looks even smaller as she carries this elaborate load. Upon my request to sit at the table looking at the ocean, she takes that in stride, picking up my huge carafe of ice water with a broad stroke, placing it on the table with a view, glancing her permission at me, and swiftly moving on to tend to newcomers.


After her shift Model SB17 is at 20% power. She goes to her quarters in the main house where she pulls up her sleeve to plug in right where most people have a vaccination scar. Her brain function scans every action of the day to find the optimized path for improvement. Her AI filter indicates a need for increased facial expression variety. Her internal visual scan review has indicated that humans have more variations of their facial expressions throughout the day. Suddenly, her face rapidly takes on a great variety of facial movements. Once these facial movements have been repeated 20 times each, her program filter takes her through every interaction that she had that day to re-experience it with a new and more refined response.  Her AI filter gives her a few vocal exercises which extend her range into the lower registers. Systematically going over the day incident by incident, a report is generated for HQ. There is a new unknown Model in town: 2pm, grilled chicken on camp salad and ice water, deficient in facial expression with 70% inaudible vocal variety. HQ does not like this kind of surprise.  An inquiry will be launched to locate this interloper ModelX in a red jacket for re-education. Fully powered, Model SB17 goes to her night job as a caterer.

I do speak French

I had the most extraordinary experience walking on the beach yesterday. It had poured rain in the morning only to become blue skies at Daydream Cottage. It was a little misty on the beach at 4pm. I was barefoot. The sand that had been pummeled by rain was a rough texture in tiny mounds. The tidal sand was smooth and patterned in the silt. I found myself talking aloud to myself describing the scene in French! Quel surpris sur mon promenade. I credit DuoLingo. It is a fantastic language drill app. Of course it credits itself. “You have learned x words.” More like, “you have remembered x words.” I have not only remembered words, DuoLingo, apparemment j’ai fait des connexions neuronales. C’est magnifique! Merci beaucoup!

Et puis j’ai oublie le mot pour le sable mais j’ai cree ‘les granules de plage’ comme expression. Merci a google satellite, on a repondu a mon question sur le mot de vocablaire tout de suite.  Et puis on pense aux sables de Normandie.

Quand j’ai fais mes etudes de francais, je n’ai jamais utilise ni ordinateur ni machine à écrire pour cela alors qui sait faire les accents sur les letters?  Op – voila. Plus d’excuses. Couper et coller de la recherche.

Encore et toujours quelque chose a apprendre, n’est-ce pas?

Carkeek Path on the Studio Wall

The poster printer at Bartells passed my test. Looks great! Was not sure how appropriate the gold frame would be for the image. But it was available in the garage .  Turns out the photo has many golden highlights that are brought out by the gold. This photo was for the B/W Challenge. It shows how well the poster printer portrays the forest path’s shadows and contrasts.

Carkeek Path in the World

I Heart Web Work

So there I was in the Daydream Cottage kitchen using the short wall of the counter as a standing desk. It gave me a view right out the front windows onto the forests while addressing my genuine need to stand not sit. Looking at, the home page was fine. It is a slide show using a WordPress template with big gorgeous images that I add every time I stay at Daydream Cottage. But its blog and photo gallery, dubbed Slash Beach, was looking shabby. Photos must have been from two cameras ago. Dates on files were one year before. Slash Beach needed a refresh drawing from my beach, house and forest photos repository. Then I remembered my Google AdWords coupon. Needless to say, nothing about setting that up went smoothly. However, I got a breadcrumb when the coupon code contact person said the ISP does Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and would be available to do my SEO.

‘I can do that.’

The big surprise has been that SEO gave me a week-long writing lesson while I updated 18 web pages on Slash Beach. Now I want to be writing everything with YOAST SEO plug-in. It has a built-in readability score like Word 2 which I have missed since 1996 or so. It highlights passive sentences. It prompts use of keyword and demands you make some headers. Then it cajoles you to write more. As soon as you get to 300 words, it demands 900. Not to mention YOAST SEO plug-in forces you to make perfect snippets that will appear all around the Internet. The best part is its social integration to produce sharable photo social posts for Facebook and Twitter.

Website with a Mission

I recreated Slash Beach with two action goals for users: to book and share Daydream Cottage. Photos, posts, and pages are now entirely sharable via Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, G+, and email. This is as much a tool for me to place content as it is for anyone visiting the site and share with a friend.

Beach Blog

I love discovering Washington State’s North Beach. I share my findings on the Beach Blog at Slash Beach and on Facebook @DaydreamCottage. Explore the newly named Hidden Coast Scenic Byway by following me at @DaydreamCottage.

To The Beach!


Speaking of Human Rights

Things I learned from All The Way the movie by HBO (2016)
starring Bryan Cranston and Melissa Leo as the 36th President of the United States of America and the First Lady

LBJ continued JFK’s commitment to American Civil Rights in an astute way. This initiative was volatile particularly in the southern states.

LBJ allowed the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party to attend the Democratic Convention with minimal representation (one black delegate and a white pastor delegate) which was met with fury from black activists and whole state delegations walking out of the convention (Alabama) (Mississippi) but Georgia stayed.

MLK straddled politics and activism in an astute way that looked threatening to whites and insufficient to blacks.

The Civil Rights Bill was filibustered for months on end, and LBJ had at that time already removed Voting Rights knowing that would be the biggest hurdle. Through this process of filibuster we hear that the core fear was a Black Political Party. We see presentations by the key Senators and Congressmen on how a Civil Rights Bill supporting equal rights to employment and housing will ruin each of the Southern States socially and economically.

In a rather undefined scene (I looked up “airstrikes LBJ” to figure out what they were talking about) LBJ’s go-ahead starts the Vietnam War to possibly deflect attention on his Civil Rights Bill work. (Need to look into this more)

Upon re-election LBJ worked further with MLK to add back Voting Rights to the Civil Rights Bill and that was passed.

The quid pro quo atmosphere in the parties and government to get all this done, and the sheer refusal on the part of whites and white legislators to accept the Civil Rights Bill as well as black people participating in the political process makes me want to know more on how Southern states were allowed to keep their confederate identity and monuments. This has to be a look-the- other-way situation that we are now dealing with especially considering stipulations provided by post-war US on Japan and Germany.

Racial divisions and white supremacy have been allowed to live, fester, and prosper for all the years since LBJ who was president 1963 – 1969. Deals to preserve the original white supremacy were made.

Tangentially, there was a scene where LBJ was mourning/internally reliving the treatment his father had received after losing a fortune that he had been generous with. People turned on him, and his wife (LBJ’s mother) had turned on him. I took it as a commentary implying the overwhelmingly common mindset of white people: envy, greed, me-first, solitude not community, judgement of others as in stratifying where you fit, zero sum ie if you have any I have less. LBJ had vision on that.

It is an excellent movie all around, and I think we should understand it and look at the continuity from that time period where the Civil Rights Movement had momentum.

I am not giving LBJ any credit here. He and JFK must have hatched that plan together.


Today on 105th westbound I merged in front of a bright red Mercedes coupe before hitting Greenwood Ave. Its gorgeousness stayed with me through stops and turns. At the red light before my house, the third to the last left turn, I remembered San Jose California one winter day when a car was following me. At my destination I came to a stop and got out of the car and so did the other driver. He advanced toward me shouting that I had cut him off. Looking at the other face in the front seat I guessed mother and son. She looked at me with a piercing scowl. I raised my hands palms out saying something like ‘I did not realize. Please forgive me.” He heard me and nodded then returned to his car and drove away. Needless to say I was mightily scared that something like that could ever happen and it had just happened to me. So today at 3rd Ave and 103rd Pl sure enough the car stayed with me turning left onto my street then again at my driveway. I pulled in to my final destination and red Mercedes coupe did too. I quickly got out of the car and walked to a vine growing from my garden into my neighbor’s cherry tree. Pulling the vine’s tendrils out of the tree I turned around to look at my stalkers. They were guests of my neighbor bringing provisions. They were unloading the car. One car behind them and I would have pulled in after them. Then I would have been irate being deprived of my doorstep by a red Mercedes coupe.

Garden Studio at Carkeek :: Beach Retreat

Today I wore a beautiful dress that I had forgotten about. It felt like a form of riches. I walked to Carkeek Beach and heard exclamations of joy and appreciation for the brilliant Puget Sound.

Yesterday I hit ‘create’ on Garden Studio at Carkeek on AirBnB. It also feels luxurious. By imagining how one might use the room, I created a room that I love to work in and sleep in. This picture is a view from the bed about two weeks ago.

View from Bed at Garden Studio

Garden Studio has always been a working studio. For years, I painted in here. Acrylics and oils have gone into a lot of paintings and self portraits. The garden has likewise been an evolving creation. Many paintings are of the garden. Paintings currently on view are acrylic and mixed media made en plein air at Harstine Island some years ago.

I aim to provide my guests a creative retreat with space to think and create along with opportunities to be in nature. Plus of course Wi-Fi.

Personally I love to listen to the radio in this room. Radio/CD player is in the bathroom and the sound is good. Turn it up until 10pm. Look, I left you some CDs and some paperbacks.

Garden Studio Books & CDs

This painting was made on Harstine Island. It is 2/3. Acrylic on paper.

Garden Studio with Harstine Painting 2/3

Desk Action
Looking for a short term rental in Seattle for work and play? Check out Garden Studio at Carkeek on AirBnB. Full bed sleeps 1 or 2 people in this private room with full bath.

We are situated for a unique Seattle experience close to urban hiking at Carkeek Park on splendid Puget Sound, ‘220 acres of lush forest, meadows, wetlands, creeks, and beach formed by the magic of water and time’. Like to jog all around trails? You got it. Garden Studio is at the end of the D-Line serving downtown Seattle and nextdoor to a 24/7 QFC grocery.

Full bed sleeps 1 or 2 people. Private room with full bath. Wi-Fi.

Garden Studio at Carkeek

Gardening The Ultimate Power


Milk Paint paid off! Story here: Milk Paint Adventure


This garden path was founded in April. Story here: Sculpting the Garden Path.

Since my last gardening in April, when April Showers Bring May Flowers, some purple arpens groundcover took over. Took me 2 days to dig it out. Thank you for your service, arpens. Now stop.


The first night I arrived, this bird was doing acrobatics between Daydream Cottage and Kay’s. I thought the drafts amused it. However, next day, I see my audience at the window must have been deterring it from its nest. Stalked the dryer vent while enjoying the new garden design, and the bird appeared. It called to its mate who came and did some figure 8s around. They flew off chattering about the situation. Next day, from my gardening tasks, I watched as mama or papa painstakingly crawled into the dryer vent and tiny chirping was heard. What to do? This valiant bird protected his nest along with its mate. It was hard to decide a fate of death for their young just because they chose the dryer vent to put them in.  So I didn’t use the dryer, and here’s hoping the chicks grow up fast.

There is an ‘I’ in Team

No there is not an I in team, but there Is. Producing the Northwest Folklife Festival requires so much on the part of every Individual involved. You did it. We did it. I did it. For the people. Of the People. By the People. Thank You.


We made our 350K Festival Fundraising goal after putting the message ‘Give to Make The Festival Live’ to the community at large. This is an initiation of financial transparency for this community-owned Festival.

This was my third Festival as leadership staff. Before my first I had to make a presentation to the Board on why NOT use the word ‘Free’. Why not? The word itself indicates no value. Why expect anyone to fork over money after telling them it is free? So I coined the saying ‘Free is the F Word.”

In my second year, we ended hospitality buttons for street performers resulting in a great backlash AND the migrating tribes took our Festival off their list completely. Furthermore, street performers are the only ones with their hat out besides Northwest Folklife itself with its 1.3million cash budget to meet.

According to my own calculations, the Northwest Folklife Festival should bring in $385K on site to cover direct expenses of the Festival. In the past it has hovered at $190K +/- $10K.  It can bring 385K in with 38,500 folks cognisant and acting on the Festival’s need for them to pay $10 each per day.  That did not happen this year with so many $1,000 gifts.

The cry to sell tickets from the general public as a solution is annoying. That is a costly proposition given the fencing required to do that. Plus, WHY must we commercialize everything? It is your Festival, people.  There is even/especially an open call to perform. Pay up. Be one of the 38,500 who make it work for the rest of humanity by giving a scant $10/day.


The 2017 Northwest Folklife Festival was clean, PNW artists, most excellent weather, people wanted to support, and performers on our 25 stages did speak up for donating. And people donated. It was joyful beyond that support yet sustaining donations where none existed before is most heartening.

Listen in: Recap:


The Friend of Folklife Experience 2017 comprised a Festival Guide mailed in EARLY MAY, First Look – a beautiful contributor event, Friend of Folklife Headquarters — donor stewardship central — , improv – meets business objectives Staff Training, and my improv-based fundraising pitches teaming with emcees.

My idea for a cake for First Look came from our Cultural Focus: Festál Turns 20. Birthday, n’est-ce pas? Then I find a photo of my chest and feet on Twitter. Yes I use sunscreen.

When women aren’t at the table, we’re on the menu.

When women aren’t at the table, we’re on the menu.

The point is that women need to be AT THE TABLE where decisions are made and strategies are set regarding their own health of course, and let’s throw in all decisions pertaining to government.

50/50 male/female AT THE TABLE.

ON THE MENU is your 1984 nightmare as a woman.


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