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The Other Intelligent Design, or Rocks that Rock

I feel entitled, once in a while, to veer of the subject of the business of design and branding to cover one of my two loves—nature and food. Who knows how a rock or a shell or the pattern of seeds inside a cut piece of fruit will wend their way into that magazine layout or logo design? You just trust that what inspires you will work its magic at some point in the future.

Many designers I know are obsessed with rocks. The closest I’ve come to making sense of it is that rocks, with their smoothness, a wild streak of mineral deposit, surface pocked with teeny holes or perfectly oval shape, resemble the best intentionally designed objects, only they are accidents of the magic forces of nature.


Once such place where the forces of nature collide is Ona Beach on the central Oregon coast. Basalt rocks, both teeny and gigantic, have been sculpting this patch of coast for eons, creating an other-worldly landscape. You have to be here at low tide to be rewarded.







Year of Produce: October

Clobber or feed them? I say feed.

As I started writing this, election coverage murmured on the laptop in the kitchen, while the smell of bacon, vinegar and brown sugar filled the apartment. Collard greens. Election results weren’t sounding good, rekindling the helplessness I’d felt in earlier elections.

What does this have to do with October’s produce? It’s easy to confuse what you can and can’t control in life. You can care deeply about certain issues and not be able to fix them. But that doesn’t stop us from losing sleep and feeling frustrated. I discovered at some point with elections that I actively allowed my energy to be consumed by what I had no control over. Pure laziness designed to appear as though I was an active and engaged citizen. These are places where we often hide, like excess TV watching, ensuring that we’ll keep avoiding what really feeds us—bodily and mentally.

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