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The Though Kitchen - Dedicated to Stirring the Pot

Archive for April, 2011

Board Meetings

Posted by Rick | April 28th, 2011 | Filed under Outdoor Sport, Who We Are


Sometimes board meetings come up in the afternoon that are simply unavoidable. Last week one happened at around 3pm. And I had no other choice than to squeeze into my black suit and deal with three other members of the board.

Well, better a 3-hour board meeting than a 3-hour bored meeting, right?

Spring Provocateurs: Allison Arieff

Posted by Josie | April 26th, 2011 | Filed under Design, Positive Change

A year ago we decided to feature Portraits of people who inspire us— foodies, artists, designers and people who go about their work in a provocative way. We hired the talented filmmaker, Jordan Kinley, to help us bring these Portraits to life (although, I can’t say the same for the pig).

Of course, finding people who inspire us is not difficult; we’re surrounded by them and follow their work every day. Our challenge, at Nau, is to be able to capture the very essence of what makes these visionaries so extraordinary, and bring it to you in a three-minute vignette.


This Spring, we decided to take the Provocateur series a bit deeper by asking the hard questions and listening to what they had to say. The result? Three people and three unique perspectives that might change the way you view things…It did for us.

Over the next few weeks, we’ll launch three Portraits: Allison Arieff, NY Times blogger; Drummond Lawson, the Green Giant at Method; and Sean Carasso, founder of Falling Whistles.

To kick off the series, here’s a little bit about Allison Arieff, our first Spring Portrait:

Allison Arieff – Writer, Visionary + Food Advocate

allison_blog_image_2Allison is one of the original founders of Dwell magazine, a blogger for the New York Times, a food advocate, and an impressive gardener and mom.  She welcomed us into her home for the Portrait shoot last month on what was possibly the rainiest day in San Francisco’s history.

Over the course of several hours, we learned what has inspired her over the years and how her outlook on design and positive change has evolved throughout her career.  Her perspective on design and what the design community needs in order to evolve both enlightened and surprised us.

Her Portrait takes place in her sunroom which is currently being renovated.  Surrounded by stormy weather and a raw interior, she brings light to what could be considered a harsh environment, a perfect metaphor for how we view Allison’s role in the changing world of sustainable design.

Learn more about Allison’s view on design here. And, to see more jewelry like the necklace she’s wearing in her Portrait, visit kirstenmuenster.com.

Friday Foto Fest: Earth Day Edition

Posted by Rick | April 22nd, 2011 | Filed under Art, Bikes, Design

tumblr_lk1f0wVmlT1qc0cxpkelly_slater_surfylas del uni 92920110323_114414_jeffbridgesjohngoodman

Time to clean off my desktop. Seems like I’ve been stockpiling a lot of brightly-colored fotos lately. Must be a spring thing.

Happy Earth Day, everybody!


Posted by Rick | April 18th, 2011 | Filed under Music


Wow. We are BARELY getting this Music Monday post in while it is still officially Monday. Paying taxes, dealing with the aftermath of a wild weekend, and of course the fact that it’s just a Monday have the potential to derail things. But songs like Rachel Goodrich’s “Light Bulb” have the power to make it all better again. On this remix, she teams up with fellow Floridians ANR (Awesome New Republic) to add a little low end to her sun-shiney single “Light Bulb.”

And, if you like the above, you can (and should) buy Rachel’s full album HERE.


Posted by Rick | April 15th, 2011 | Filed under Art, Design, Environmental Change


When we first launched the Thought Kitchen, I had this idea that I would bring a little garbage home from the beach every time I surfed until I had enough junk to build some kind of art piece. I still have a bag of bottle caps, candy wrappers and broken cigarette lighters in my basement. Needless to say, it didn’t really work out. (It didn’t take me long to realize that I don’t get to the beach enough to build a monument of any significance.)

That’s not the case with Washed Ashore, a community art project sponsored by the Artula Institute of Bandon, Oregon. They’ve mobilized hundreds of people to collect plastics that have washed up on the beaches of Oregon to create large-scale sculptures of the wildlife affected by pollutants. Seagull feathers made of old flip-flops, whale bones made from milk jugs, a coral reef made from Styrofoam. In the words of Washed Ashore, this project acts “as an antidote to despair…” And it is, creating something beautiful from rubbish and raising awareness about a problem we can help fix.

If you’re in the Portland area, you can see for yourself when the traveling exhibit takes residence at Portland Community College’s Sylvania campus from April 20-June 10.

Cabin Essence

Posted by Rick | April 11th, 2011 | Filed under Art, Music, Outdoor Sport

Last week I stumbled across a pretty amazing youtube channel by a guy in Sweden who calls himself “Log Cabineer.” He shoots these really simple videos of a record player spinning old vinyl in front of the landscapes surrounding his cabin. They are powerful, calming, and have the amazing ability to transport one from their seat in front of a computer screen to a magical outdoor setting. Something about the way each video feels like a still life, with very subtle movements—clouds shifting, a fly hitting the surface of the lake—and the music mixing with the ambient sounds of nature is really enchanting. Have a look. Oh, and check out the video where the dog grabs his beer on command. What a life.

Called Out by Kai

Posted by Rick | April 7th, 2011 | Filed under Art, Personal Reflection, Who We Are


Wow. I can just imagine the assignment in preschool: Do a drawing about your dad and share it with the rest of the class.

Now, as a young dad myself, I can totally relate to this scenario. Of course I’d love for my son to immediately whip out the magic markers and illustrate my surf passion just like Kai, the son of our friend Mark Hoffman, did a few weeks ago. In my dreams, the picture would be of a grizzled version of myself screaming down the face of a giant north coast bomb. Fearless. Unshakable.

But when the subject of the piece is the angst that only a surfer who has recently given up regular trips to the coast to be a good father knows, things get a bit bittersweet. Certainly my own son has heard me lament about sub-par surf conditions, plea for more water time, and while watching surf videos, pondered my answer to the question, “Can you do that, Dad?”

Of course, we hope that those little moments of bliss when you score a soft, long, perfectly formed left at Seaside hit home with the kids—or at the very least that fleeting feeling of freedom when you get a few hours away with friends and a few cold beers on the beach. But that’s a bit tougher to explain to a 5-year-old.

Kai’s dad is half of the directing duo, The Hoffman Brothers, and the auteur behind the Nau short video Spring Runoff.

truck farm for kids

Posted by leighann | April 4th, 2011 | Filed under Uncategorized

truckfarm_nau_thoughtkitchenBesides their award-winning film, Truck Farm, Ian Cheney and Curt Ellis (our 2010 Grant for Change winner) are about to plant another big idea— traveling farms for kids. This summer the filmmaking duo will launch a fleet of 25 mini-Truck Farms across the US. Their goal? Make sure every urban center has its own school-based truck garden that will teach kids that food doesn’t grow from a wrapper and farming can be just as fun as recess.

Set to launch on Earth Day, the Truck Farm armada (financed by a generous micro grant from Truck Farm) will host a national school garden contest as well truck planting events in select cities across the US. So grab a rake and friend and join a movement.

To learn more, check out www.truck-farm.com.

two entries from the 2010 school garden contest

two entries from the 2010 school garden contest

Music Monday: tUnE-yArDs – Bizness

Posted by Rick | April 4th, 2011 | Filed under Art, Music

When we first heard the tUnE-yArDs track “Bizness,” from the forthcoming album  w h o k i l l (April 18), we really thought it was an African-tinged world-beat song from the ‘80s. It was on a mixtape, which strips all context away, leaving only the sounds to speak for themselves. Then we dug a little deeper and found this amazing video. It combines a few things we love—unbridled movement, eye-catching design, rebellious kids—to compliment the upbeat soundtrack, which is quickly becoming the background music for our own Spring moves.

Download the track: