When I take a day off, I often sit around and think about the nature of the economy that we operate in. Most of the time I’m in a quandry about the simplest and most basic of questions like: What is value? Today, I’m imagining what the implications might be when we treat interpersonal interactions as transactions with a “value”.
How does abstract value differ from quantified value?
In his book “Debt, the First 5000 Years”, anthropologist David Graeber suggests that perhaps the tendency of mathematically quantifying value might be related to the origins of the extreme war world that we currently live in. Math is murder? Ha, i hope not.
Graeber does a great job of dissecting our preconceived notions about the economy. He examines the morality of debt and credit, suggests a correlation between private property and human slavery, challenges the myths of barter economies, and muses on capitalism in general. This book really got me thinking about currency. I asked myself: Why do we call it “currency”? Is it the “current value” of things? No, no actually, I thought. It’s not that sense of the word. It’s more like a river current that flows.
Perhaps an even better analogy: it is like the current in a power circuit.
Another interesting character, behavioral scientist Dan Ariely Continue reading
We need some good strong-hearted riders to join our team! If you want a job working with awesome people that pays you to get exercise, be outside all day, and get lots of local farm veggies, all while making a real impact on our urban ecology, then this is for you!
We are seeking vibrant, athletic, and self-motivated individuals to join our team of delivery drivers. We are currently hiring part time delivery personnel who are interested in a unique and challenging work opportunity with a mission based organization based in Union Square, Somerville.
• Safely and professionally riding our cargo bicycles and trikes around Boston’s urban neighborhoods, carrying heavy loads.
• time management and completing deliveries on deadlines.
• maintaining delivery records for each route.
• handling customer service in the field on both ends of the delivery process.
• is comfortable and safe navigating Metro Boston streets and traffic on a bike.
• is able to endure harsh New England weather conditions while looking good, modeling excellent road etiquette, and providing superior customer service.
• maintains healthy personal appearance and has positive attitude.
• is meticulous and detail oriented at work.
• is passionate about the role of the bicycle in transforming urban culture.
• has an entrepreneurial spirit, learns quickly and can problem solve on the fly.
This job requires heavy lifting, physical endurance, and working outdoors in all weather. Think you can handle it? Drop us a line to email@example.com with resume and introduction. We look forward to hearing from you!
For the past two years, a local filmmaker Bob Nesson has been making a documentary about Metro Pedal Power.
and now it’s finished!
Power to the Pedals: Wenzday Jane and the Culture of Change Trailer
Come see the premeire on April 25 at BSA|Space in Boston!
We had a pretty intense wind storm yesterday, and while we are thankful that the snow did not match in intensity, we were still intimidated by the high winds blowing us around in the streets.
Then i saw THIS
For some reason, after i looked at the visualization of the storm from space (check out this awesome interactive map) the howling wind felt all the more intense, or maybe it’s just that I felt all the more tiny and fragile.
Meanwhile, the farmers are planning, seeding, and planning away. We got a couple new partnerships that we’re excited about – check it out
What the hell is gentrification anyway? Seems to me that “gentrification” is one of those weird subjective vocabulary words. Perhaps it means something like this: “There’s something that I want/need that is priced outside of my range to purchase it.” Perhaps sometimes it means old delicatessens and dive bars turning over to multi-national corporate banks
I guess my question is this: What, exactly, is the difference between gentrification and prosperity?
I mean if the neighborhood you live in is prosperous, the people around you are doing well and thriving – isn’t that a good thing?
Perhaps the problem is that “market value” is too often being driven by forces that have nothing to do with the individual prosperity of the residents… such as “city planners”, zoning boards, and corporate developers.
I’m so psyched about our new website. Designed and built by the one and only Skunk!
A phenomenal artist, community leader, and personal hero of mine, we are honored to have him as our graphic designer. Skunk works in trade for veggie delivery from one of our local farm partners. We keep him stocked with boxes of awesome veggies and he keeps us stylin’ and looking fresh! YES
Freedom from fossil fuels means inter-dependence on each other.
I started researching worker-owned cooperative structures early on in the development of my business. My questions about workplace environments and dynamics were some of the main reasons i decided to go into business. research was part of my homework to figure out what the heck i was doing. I even drafted legal documents to share ownership and had meetings to engage employees as owners, etc. Perhaps i was just doing it wrong, but i was unable to get commitment /buy-in from my employees. what was I doing wrong?
After several conversations with friends and colleagues, i started to wonder if i was chasing some unachievable utopian dream of “shared responsibility” and “equal empowerment”. I thought long and hard about this. here i am still thinking about it.
I also started to wonder if i was subconsciously trying to evade taking my own full responsibility for my life by attempting to share that responsibility with others.
I ask myself: Is it wrong to organize around the vision and direction of an individual?
One certainly comes up against questions like how to engage with people. the extent to which people want to be engaged vs just needing to take home a good paycheck and figure their own shit out? well, how do you define management work. what is the value of good leadership, executive decision making. to what degree is consensus possible. Continue reading
Sometimes, especially in the hardest, coldest months of January and February, I ask myself WHY. Why am I doing this?
Sometimes I wonder if I am just completely insane. Sometimes it is difficult to maintain confidence that what we are trying to do is worthwhile or that this business can be profitable or compete in the current oligarchy against the big, scary corporate giants. I honestly don’t know. Just as I don’t understand the universe or humans place in it, so I do not know, except by a leap of faith, trusting myself, that I am ever doing the right thing.
This morning, I hopped on the trike and did our Recycling pickups around Cambridge. As I pedaled out of the Casella recycling facility, above the soft, slow, steady sound of my crank and chain turning, all I could hear was the sound of oil burning. Motors burning oil. Motors burning oil. Motors burning oil. If I listened more deeply, I could also make out the underlying “black-noise” of rubber on bituminous ground. As I pedaled along Cambridge St, under the I-93 overpass, I thought of how much easier our lives are now in the oil age. Where we just flip a switch and push a gas pedal and can “effortlessly” move thousands of pounds in an instant. Wow, that’s nice. So easy and convenient. Anyone can do it. It levels the playing field, in a way. You do not need strength or guts or determination or even good health. Continue reading
Sometimes I do.
Sometimes I hold my breath when a particularly exhausty van or truck rumbles past me … I have this instinct to avoid inhaling the fumes. However, this can be problematic on a bike, cuz you sometimes need every breath, so missing a few breaths can really put you behind.
I noticed this today when I found myself inadvertently keeping pace with both a delivery truck and a big ass tour bus, along with the rest of the motor vehicle traffic all heading down Mass Ave from Cambridge to Boston. …Man, waiting at red lights, staring down the tailpipe of a bus….. do you wonder why cyclists don’t like to stop at red lights? I kept wishing that I practiced more pranayama. But the thing is I couldn’t Continue reading
Today MetroPed teamed up with the Charles River Transportation Management Association and Petsi Pies to bring bicycle commuters a free breakfast along the Minuteman Bike Path at the Alewife T station. With scones, coffee, and bicycle schwag in hand, we thanked our fellow for choosing the bicycle as their mode of transportation.
I got to see all types of cyclists including the everyday commuter, Continue reading