Cart (0)
Sign up for Off the Grid and get the latest Nau news and special offers. X
The Though Kitchen - Dedicated to Stirring the Pot

Archive for February, 2008

Painting the Big Apple Green

Posted by Josie | February 29th, 2008 | Filed under Personal Reflection, Positive Change

nyc-home-sketch2.gifNext week I’m going to leave Portland’s bike lanes behind and fly to New York City for Nau’s warehouse sale. First and foremost, I plan on eating a lot of delicious food. Second, I plan on taking notes about how New York City takes advantage of the dense population to be more sustainable and socially conscious than other cities.

Having never been to NYC, I can guess the obvious reasons New Yorkers have a smaller carbon footprint — extensive public transportation, small living spaces, and the ability to get anything your heart desires by walking three blocks or less. What about the less obvious examples that make it a socially conscious city?

Openhouse, the venue where Nau is holding the warehouse sale, is one example of a hip NYC retail space doing business unusual. Like-minded companies rent this beautiful space for a variety of artistic, creative and socially responsible events: GOOD Magazine made it their Community Center for the month of December, Joni Mitchell’s Art Expedition was launched here, and it hosted a Frank Tell Fashion showcase. Why Openhouse? In addition to its great location and clean design, 5% of the lease cost for this space goes to the non-profit organization of the renter’s choice. In the case of our sale, it is a win-win-win for Openhouse, Nau, and Kiva, who will receive 5% of our lease in addition to 5% of our net sales from our four day event.

Now that I’ve found one socially conscious business, does anyone have any suggestions for a good place to eat in SoHo?

Nau Warehouse Sale NYC
Where: Openhouse Gallery, 201 Mulberry St.
When: March 6 – March 9
Thursday 11am – 7pm
Friday + Saturday noon – 8pm
Sunday noon – 6pm

RIP, WFB (1925-2008)

Posted by admin | February 28th, 2008 | Filed under Personal Reflection

buckley_william1.jpgOn a May morning in 1989, my world collided briefly with William F. Buckley Jr. The influential conservative was the commencement speaker at my small catholic university. Having just completed my junior year, I was tasked driving him to and from the ceremony. Buckley, emerging from a sleek jet, hopped in the back seat uttering a brief hello. Twenty-five miles later and minutes from campus, Buckley, rifling through a well-worn Louis Vuitton duffel, realized he’d left his commencement gown and colors on the plane. Leaving him to explain to my boss, I raced back to the airport, retrieved the gown from plane and with minutes to spare bounded into the church. Graduation in those days was managed by a Benedictine monk, Brother Stephen. He grabbed the black gown from my hands and began ironing it. I will never forget seeing Buckley race up to him and say in his achingly apparent accent and now famed sharp tongue, “Hold on a minute…It’s meant to be worn wrinkled.”

FILMED BY BIKE Call for Entries

Posted by Rick | February 25th, 2008 | Filed under Outdoor Sport

One of our favorite film festivals, Filmed by Bike is gearing up again for April, 2008. They need your bike-themed movies, so don’t be a slacker and miss the entry deadline: March 1, 2008.

DEADLINE: March 1, 2008
LENGTH: 8 minutes or less
COST: Free
HOW TO ENTER: Download the entry form from Filmed by Bike.

Filmed by Bike embraces the art and innovation of bikes through the eyes of imaginative storytellers who use moving images to celebrate the world’s most efficient and creative form of transportation. Now in its sixth year, the festival showcases a love of two wheels in eight minutes or less. This premier festival happens once a year in Bike City, USA: Portland Oregon. The event grabs hold of an entire weekend of screenings and features movies from around the globe.

Entries are evaluated by an esteemed jury of bicycle and film enthusiasts from the Portland-Seattle area.

Why are you still sitting in front of your computer? Get out there and start filming!

Dream Bus

Posted by Rick | February 24th, 2008 | Filed under Design, Personal Reflection, Positive Change, Sustainability


Saw this bus on a walk yesterday.
Had to run over and look in the window.
Of course, it had the perfect sticker on it…

Why doesn’t a car manufacturer make a cool bus again? An AWD, hydrogen-powered six-seater with a fold-down bed in back (or above). Sink, toilet, and card table would all come standard.

This Westy concept car by Verdier is what I’m talking about… Hello, VW?

The Art of Politics

Posted by admin | February 21st, 2008 | Filed under Positive Change, Who We Are

Art of Politics 2008 logo

Art and politics have long history together. So it was with great pleasure that I read about a recent addition to the marriage of creative output and political activism. Art of Politics 2008 is, in their own words, “a political art poster design contest geared to engage youth in art and politics and to inspire and motivate people around the country to become more aware and involved in social, political and environmental issues this election year.” Sweet.

So far poster topic submissions have ranged from political apathy to police brutality. New posters will be posted to the site on a weekly basis through April 30th, 2008 at which time the contest will open on-line people’s-choice style voting. Check it out.

Cold Hands, Warm Hearts

Posted by Rick | February 19th, 2008 | Filed under Design, Positive Change, Sustainability

onecoldhandstickersml.jpgLosing a glove sucks. Usually, if you’re biking or on a walk, you try to retrace your route and hope that some kind soul has picked it up and stuck it on a fencepost”but that rarely seems to happen. What ends up happening is that you keep the other glove for a while, unable to throw it away because technically, it still works. You almost feel sorry for it, like an identical twin that’s been separated from its sibling, until finally you have to donate it or toss it away. It’s so much better to lose a hat, because at least you know the hat has more of a chance for a second life.

The One Cold Hand? blog is an ingenious lost-and-found on the web that reunites Pittsburgh’s lost gloves with their lonely counterparts. Designed by Carnegie Mellon art student Jennifer Gooch, the site is a work of art in itself, with each lost glove telling a story and inspiring the imagination. But this isn’t just for show”As of yesterday there have been 12 happy endings where gloves have been returned to their rightful owners.

Pulp, Poo and Perfection

Posted by Rick | February 14th, 2008 | Filed under Environmental Change, Outdoor Sport, Positive Change, Sustainability

celulosa_exoz.jpgI finally got a chance to download the short movie Pulp, Poo and Perfection that addresses two issues threatening water quality in Chile: Pichilemu’s sewage pipeline and forest industry pollution in the South. It’s a great piece that shows how surfers and organizations like Save the Waves can rally public awareness of corporate irresponsibility and environmental disregard. Between scenes that document the chewing and spewing of paper mills, there’s some great footage of the treasured left point breaks that are at risk”If you’re a goofyfooter like me, you’ll be even more pissed off! Released in Chile in November 2007, the short has been screened at several film festivals over the past few months, including Earth Vision in Santa Cruz and the Wild and Scenic Environmental Film Festival.

You can download the full podcast of the documentary HERE. (under podcasts/ppp_english)
To support Save the Waves in their fight against the Chilean pulp mills, go HERE.

Bike Love

Posted by admin | February 12th, 2008 | Filed under Design, Outdoor Sport

Well, it was a banner weekend for bike lovers in Portland. The NAHBS is now behind us, and in its wake lingers the aroma of pure two-wheeled lust, not to mention permanent grins and some new ideas for the next bike-you-never-knew-you-needed-that-now-you-have-to-have. Between the Teams of Portland exhibit and party, the show itself, and Rapha’s debaucherous, ridiculous, sublimely excellent night of Roller Racing, there was a little something for everyone.

Go to the next page to see photos!

Read More »

FRAGILE: Contains Peace

Posted by admin | February 11th, 2008 | Filed under Design, Positive Change, Who We Are

Peace Box.jpgBack in November Josie came hopping back to my desk to deliver a very bright box that had just been dropped off by the postman. Handing it to me, she seemed very excited to know what it was. Having no idea myself, we sat down to take a look. The box, a five-inch cube, sported a Pollock-esque paint job of dripping splotches of blue, yellow, purple, magenta, and turquoise on a mauve ground. One side was signed and dated, like a piece of artwork, and a band of clear packing tape wrapped all the way around to hold it together. It was very light and a jiggle revealed no noises from inside. After this once-over of the curiosity, our attention was drawn to the top of the box, where we found postage, my address, a return address, and a large sticker advising in bright red, “HANDLE WITH CARE / FRAGILE / Contains: PEACE.”

The box suddenly gained some heft, and questions began to pour into my head: There’s Peace in here? How does it fit? What does it look like? Will it fly out if I open the box? Do I want to open the box? What can I do with this? Who can I give Peace to? Who needs it most? How on earth did this Peace get addressed to me in the first place? I have to be careful with this!

The mysterious contents of the box beckoned to be seen, but I resisted the urge and did some quick research instead. The home-printed return label listed the sender as “Franck de Las Mercedes” of New Jersey, and listed a website, fdlmstudio.com. A trip to the artist’s site revealed this artifact as part of an extensive series titled, “The Priority Boxes Project,” and along with a form to order one, provided this explanation:

“By using a box format painted on the outside, sent by mail, Franck aims to have people interact with a work of art, from the person requesting one, to the very first change of hands at the post office, all the way to its receiver. By holding and observing one, the recipient can consider what the box suggests it contains, realize the fragility of what they are holding, and in that relation become aware or activate their ability to take action and influence change. The boxes must be free, in order to reinforce and remind us that things like peace and hope are not only free but also a priority.”

Read More »

Got Bikes?

Posted by admin | February 8th, 2008 | Filed under Outdoor Sport, Who We Are


It’s the beginning of a banner weekend here in Stumptown. As many of you know, the North American Handbuilt Bicycle Show is in town, highlighting the incredible crafts-personship (there’s some damn fine women showing this weekend, too) of this hemisphere’s finest bike builders. With over 150 exhibitors, and crazy amounts of gorgeous bikes on display, it will be a visual feast. Don’t miss it.

Running concurrently are some notable bike culture events worth checking out. For sheer graphic and design enjoyment (al la the above photo of my people on the Super Relax program), be sure to check out the Teams of Portland exhibit, or at least the website for all our non-local Kitchen readers. Also, uber-stylish bike clothing purveyors Rapha are hosting some good times of their own. Peep the options, including a killer Sunday ride, here.

No doubt there’s more. Add ‘em to the comments if you like. Now go outside and enjoy!