Randal Jasper Stumphorn, Jr.1 
Member since Apr 27, 2010


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Re: “Roads and Redwoods

When they propose to use Portland cement and steel to build the Richardson Grove project, Caltrans engineers are overlooking a safe, sustainable, non-toxic, 100% organic and locally-sourced building material: environmentalists. Healthy stands of environmentalists exist all along the coast, growing up to 30 miles inland. Isolated stands have even been reported in Florida, where they are an invasive weed threatening pristine condominium ecosystems. The manufacture of cement and steel are carbon- and energy-intensive processes. But the sustainable harvest of environmentalists can actually represent a net carbon sink, depending on the amount of acai berry products each stand would otherwise consume. High-quality environmentalists are composed of a hard, unyielding material. One environmentalist skull is thick enough to support a staggering 1.1 million pounds. Ground into a rubble, they make suitable fill for road beds. Yield per environmentalist is low, but high harvest volume would negate this problem. Four to five hundred environmentalists rolled together with a baling machine, compacted in a hydraulic crusher, treated with a compound of chemical adhesive, and embedded in the ground could serve as an anchor for the retaining wall. Hundreds of other environmentalists could be woven between these anchors to replace the trusses that would otherwise be necessary to complete the wall. With more environmentalists poured in behind those to act as back-fill, the wall could then be planted with deep-rooting grasses and native shrubs, and it would be invisible within five years. Environmentalists within a 100-mile radius of the project site might contain as many as 10,000 acre-feet of water. Caltrans could easily divert that water and use it for dust control during project operations. Furthermore, environmentalists are acidic, with a pH usually around 5.0, making them suitable as a tree mulch. Composted with chicken manure to kill off the fungus blights that sometimes infect environmentalists, they could then be sprinkled around the roots of trees affected by the project to encourage re-growth. Furthermore, harvesting local environmentalists would create a million local, permanent jobs over the lifetime of the project. Environmentalists: America's renewable resource.

Posted by Randal Jasper Stumphorn, Jr. on 04/27/2010 at 12:52 PM

Re: “Welcome to Pot City!

China is currently outpacing the US in development of pot infrastructure. The new Shanghai/Hong Kong pot pipeline network will deliver over 80 million barrels of superheated kief slurry per minute to international markets. We can't hope to compete unless the federal government embarks upon a national pot infrastructure building campaign to rival that of the interstate highway system in the 1950s. We need to seed a pottech supercluster through research incentives and make Potter Valley the Silicon Valley of pot. We need to market bundled pot derivatives to international securities markets, and tie a North American unified currency to a pot standard. We need to start slant-drilling for hard-to-reach pot-shale deposits at the bottom of the North Sea, and most of all, we need a geosynchronous space elevator to fuel warp drive systems and open new pot markets in Alpha Centauri.

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Posted by Nathaniel Page on 04/09/2010 at 2:00 PM

Re: “A Pair of Paradoxes

Dear Barry, By now, all of your loyal readers are aware that you live in Old Town Eureka. You mention it in the italic biography at the bottom of your column over 76 percent of the time. We know that your wife also lives in Old Town, that your genes live there, and that you frequent Old Town Coffee and "Steve and Dave's bar in Old Town, where you live." After three weeks of not announcing your neighborhood of residence in the print media, you slipped back into that old mainstay this week. You must have been suffering writers' block in January, when every column came with an "Old Town Eureka" caveat. Sometimes it was embedded in a witticism, as in "Barry Evans yadda yadda in Old Town Eureka, where he lives." Usually it was just a concise conclusion: "He lives in Old Town Eureka." That is, when it wasn't "blah blah Old Town yadda yadda, in Old Town, where he lives." Why don't you share more original and more substantive facts and opinions about yourself? I can learn more about you from a simple Google search than what you usually share, besides that you live in Old Town. Why not try something like: "Barry Evans sometimes thinks it's all a paradox, especially in conversation with his Relatives: Phillip B Evans, Rogers Louisa Evans, and Philip Barry Evans." Or "Barry Evans sometimes thinks it's all a paradox, especially since he was abandoned as a baby and educated at the orphanage boarding schools run by the Shaftesbury Homes, first at Fortescue House School in Twickenham." Or: "Barry Evans sometimes thinks it's all a paradox. He became a minicab driver in Leicestershire, where in 1997 he was found dead in a dilapidated bungalow at the age of 53." I suspect you got in the habit of writing these biographies during your "four-year stint as a National Public Radio commentator." That's the kind of stuff I like. Devote more column inches to interesting anecdotes like that one, and fewer to mentioning that you still live in Old Town. If you must mention that you live in Old Town, consider making your column about Old Town, and then the fact that you live there will become a sort of credential. Best regards, Nathaniel Page

Posted by Nathaniel Page on 03/15/2010 at 8:22 AM

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