Posted by: Jack | April 28, 2007

An Earthy Day

Last fall I built a bird feeder for our tree-dwelling neighbors and although the hearty food supply was seemingly appreciated, I got lazy and failed to replenish it. The birds were apparently picky in their selection and after a few weeks, the remaining seeds sprouted into grass which continues to flourish to this day. Keep in mind there is no soil of any kind here. The grass seems to be growing with roots just resting on the bare wood.

This demonstration of grass’s ability to grow in very poor conditions led Anna to the great idea of planting a whole strip of grass along our balcony’s railing. This morning I took the initiative and created our new five square-foot lawn. After searching around Home Depot for a product which could be easily attached to the railing and would contain a shallow amount of soil, I settled on some perforated plastic sheeting designed to keep leaves out of gutters. Cutting this in half provided the perfect size as well as sufficient drainage.

After assembling, filling and planting–all of which took a whole five minutes–I spent some time photographing Anna’s various flowers among our richly forested backdrop yielding the current header photo you see at the top of this page.

In totally unrelated news, this weekend the bi-annual Arts Walk art festival is taking place in Olympia. The event features art work of all forms from hundreds of contributors displayed throughout various shops downtown. Additionally there are many live music and variety performances going on at all times. The festival climaxes tomorrow afternoon with the infamous Procession of the Species; a parade celebrating the elements of nature and the many species of our planet. The procession is best known for very elaborate costuming, some of which can be seen in this photo gallery on the event website.

Late afternoon I made my way down to Sylvester Park which lies in the heart of downtown. I arrived shortly before the festivities began, setting up my slackline and warming up with some juggling. For the following four hours I maintained a continuous, sizable audience and spread the joyous and healthy addiction of slacklining to numerous people of all ages. Despite the exceedingly greater technical difficulty of juggling and unicycling, both of which I practiced as well, people always seem to get the biggest kick out of the slackline. I’ve spent over a year developing consistent backcrosses with three clubs but everyone seems far more blown away when I simply walk the extent of the line; a feat which most people can accomplish in a week of practice.

Aside from the frustrating lack of relation between technical difficulty and performance value, I had an awesome time. After so many hours on the line and far too many lofty back flip dismounts I may be extremely sore tomorrow but if this is not the case, I hope to get out there for a repeat performance. This time I may have to put out a hat.



  1. […] ago I decided that our apartment’s lack of a yard or lawn was unsatisfactory and therefore installed one our balcony. After enduring some back-n-forth battles with the local avian population, the grass has sprung up […]

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