Sunday, September 16, 2007

"You can't teach what you don't know, and you can't lead where you won't go"

The title - coined by Jesse Jackson - seems a good lead-in to this short blog

I took a little breather and spent a delightful day attending a 'Sourdough Speaker Series' event at the North Cascades Environmental Learning Center. It's been two and a half years since this well-designed and sustainably constructed, LEED-compliant mini-campus has been open, and it is truly a great place to visit and recharge one's batteries.

The Center is located off Highway 20, several miles past Newhalen, across Diablo Dam and is carefully sited on gentle wooded slopes.
Operated by North Cascades Institute, it was built as part of the mitigation for increasing hydroelectric capacity for Seattle City Light.
It's mission is focused primarily on children, but former children -adults- are also welcome, with on-site and off-site educational program offered nearly year-round. [December & January are mainly for staff training]

About 35 people came to this event, which featured 'two veteran writers who know virtually everything about the political and environmental history of the Northwest; the good, bad and ugly', as the brochure proclaimed.
From their remarks and their answers to questions, this was true.
It was, as promised, 'an intimate evening of storytelling about the past, present and future of conservation and restoration in the North Cascades and beyond'.

The speakers were Timothy Egan, New York Times reporter and author of award-winning books, The Worst Hard Time [dustbowl story] and The Good Rain [Pacific Northwest classic], and Joel Connelly, Seattle Post-Intelligencer columnist reporting on local andregional people, politics and public affairs.

Both these guys are famous for a reason - they are good at what they do!
It's not so much the topics they talk about as the effective manner they tell us.
There is a skill in reporting and writing they both have, that I envy!
Maybe spending a little more time around folks like these, and more time out in nature, will help me learn to do this better?
I hope so! Wish me luck.
'I am always ready to learn although I do not always like being taught' - Winston Churchill