Hello, world. After some serious procrastination, I am launching this blog. I have tried to pick a name that encompasses all I might want to comment on, both the curmudgeonly gripes about everyday life, and the thoughts about world problems. In between will be my missives about my obsession: how to curb our society’s dislike of walking and its over-dependency on driving cars. This ill parallels our downplaying of the local over the larger scales of life.
I sit here on my netbook on my favourite (I use Canadian spellings) workplace, my lapboard, with my public library’s copy of WordPress for Dummies. It is obvious that much has happened at WordPress since this volume was written in 2006, so the menus don’t match up very well. I might have to break down and buy a more recent version from a bookshop (favoured over on-line sellers).
The name of the blog, hearth health, reflects my fascination with words on many levels. The two words are so alike, hearth being the place in the home in front of the fireplace (when fireplaces provided the house’s heat), but now it is more symbolic: the place on earth where we find our rootedness. It is also my e-mail address at my own domain, @ties.ottawa.on.ca. This domain, itself, reflects my preference for identifying with the elements of where I am rooted, in this case the larger-scale elements of my hearth.
The reference to health is to the idea that our hearth, or ‘heart-earth,’ if you will, can be healthy or sick, and for most in the developed world, it is not well, being so spread out between compartmentalized domains, with the car, our personal car, being used to keep them linked. But distance is not that easily overcome. Driving imposes stress, repetitiveness, costs, and isolation; walking is rhythmic, exhilarating, social, fun, and cheap.
I plan to post here about 3-4 times a week, and look forward to soliciting comments from those who come across one of my posts.