On a personal note...

For those that want to see what's up with me and who are not all that enamored with Peak Oil.

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Location: San Francisco, California, United States

"There are no answers, only choices."

Monday, October 03, 2005


Today I helped a little Nicaraguan mother birth her baby. It is the third vaginal birth I have witnessed, but the first in which I was able to really participate. “¡Empujé Mami!” (push mama!) I kept insisting as I cradled her left heel and bent knee. I have to say it is easy to get choked up watching that little tuft of hair pop out. It is easy to get choked up watching papa sob, as he sees his son emerge into the world. So proud he is as he cuts his son's cord. So relieved mama is as her boy, wrapped tight, is brought close and they see each other for the first time.

Labor and Delivery is beautiful medicine.

Sunday, October 02, 2005


I have often fallen into, perhaps even enjoyed being in, the roll of the Cassandra. For those of you that are unaware of the myth, Cassandra was the daughter of King Priam and Queen Hecuba of Troy. As with all the Greek gods and goddesses, she was blessed and cursed at the same time. She had a little tryst with Apollo, so he blessed her with the gift of prophesy. Then when things went south, he cursed her by having no one believe her.

While I continue to follow the Peak Oil phenomenon, and you should too, it has become mainstream. I feel less compelled to be a Cassandra in that, finally, this is becoming a topic of broader discussion. There is some good research being done out there. As for myself, I have become more resigned to it; we are either going to make a difficult transition to alternative fuels or we are not. I guess all the blathering I did helped me come to terms with it, like a person coming to accept terminal cancer. I am as prepared for Peak Oil as I am willing to be.

There are legion of Cassandra on the political front. Except for the occasional spasm (see archives), I have been refraining from regular political commentary – I would be consumed. We are alive and witnessing the most corrupt presidency in the 229-year history of this country; sometimes the urge to explode is overwhelming. Finally, maybe, just now, this too is becoming part of mainstream discussion.

The question then becomes what to do with Gone to Croatoan. The mission statement has been “My impressions about the imminent loss of our petroleum way of life, what can be done to cope during the transition and what it means to recover from it.” The imagery that inspired the blog title was one of walking away from it all. Many myths surround the Lost Colony (see blog footnote below). The one I like is that the settlers, having a rough time imposing their European ways on the wild mid-Atlantic coast, simply gave up and threw in their lot with the natives; they went Paleolithic and thrived.

I want to keep that image. I like it. It describes me fairly well. However, I want to expand the range from solely Peak Oil to other topics as well. I have been inspired recently by Viggo Mortensen’s website Perceval Press. It is left-leaning, like me and encompasses a variety of topics and features artwork and articles, intermixed with commentary. In a recent Charlie Rose interview I watched, he said that he has no other agenda than to put up topics he, and other posters in his group, think might be interesting.

My other blogsites, "on-a-personal- note” and “post-petroleum-clearinghouse” were the result of trying to keep GTC on topic. With the first, I felt that my family and friends might want something less controversial and the second evolved out of the shear volume of links to other great, similarly themed sites.

Instead of starting a fourth blog, I think I will just merge back to one, after all, I am a rather busy student. Henceforth, a new Mission Statement: “Gone to Croatoan; impressions on living in the world while striving not to be too much of the world.”

Speaking of school, soon the Labor and Delivery rotation will end for me here at SFGH. Psych will be next.

(from "One flew over the Cuckoo's Nest")

Update 1:30pm - On second thought, as I sit here at UCSF library scanning all the links at post petroleum (at T1 speeds!), I see that most of the blogs I linked to have linked to GTC as well. It would be unfair to them for me to change the GTC theme. Also, all those cool links here on the front page would no longer be appropriate. Folks with real (for $) web domains do not have this dilemma in that each new blog would just be another page within their domain.
Maybe a fourth blog is in order. It could be called "The Fourth Blog."