Natasha is in her 15th week:
The Bubble Project is in its 5th Week: Bernal Hill 2!
Went back to Bernal in hopes of another perfect weather day, but was greeted with rain and too much wind for biggies. The video is even a bit more meditative than the last...but I like it a lot. I made an 11-loop garland with 1 foot/side equilateral triangles which I was pleased to find functions nicely.
Full Screen HD highly recommended for video!!!
As of this moment I am on bubble hiatus, pending your thoughts, hopefully posted here as comments so we can have a group discussion. I want to thank a local Bernal resident for coming up to me to express concerns about the environmental impact of what I'm doing. I truly believed I had given this matter enough thought, but further reflection calls that into question, so I'd like to get folks' thoughts. First, I'm hoping he reads this; I owe him an apology because I was misinformed about my own materials. I insisted that "dish soap" was not "detergent" because at some point I had gotten the impression that detergent doesn't actually make bubbles--that only soap can do that--and for a detergent to foam, they have to actually add more ingredients to consumer detergent products so people will get the foam they like that makes them think "clean" even though it may actually hinder the cleaning process. Be that as it may, I use "Dawn Manual Pot and Pan Dishwashing Detergent," a product made with "biodegradable surfactants" according to the label. So it is, in fact, dishwashing detergent. Anyhow, I told the gent, quite truthfully and sincerely, that I have done this for quite a while and made a point of going back to check places where I have bubbled. Each and every time, I have found literally no visible trace of my having been there. Grass thrives; rain-washed soil does not bubble.
Reflecting on the way home I realized, however, that this is not the point. Negative environmental impacts are often imperceptible to perpetrators, as they result from the cumulative actions of multiple offenders. What the resident said that struck me was, "it's like you're pouring gallons of detergent into the hillside." Again, no, this is not the case, but I am pouring 2-4 cups of dishwashing liquid, mixed 14-1 with water over an area I'd assume is about 1/4 mile in diameter. In each 15 cups (almost a gallon) is a little less than a teaspoon of baking powder and a little less than that of a water-based lubricant powder that is 1/4 polyethylene oxide and 3/4 sucrose. I have (for the moment) abandoned using propylene glycol, but I do use about an ounce (that's 0.83%) of glycerine. Again, I think it's a poor argument for me to make that simply because the amounts are tiny I am doing nothing wrong--seems to me that I see smokers throwing butts into the street each day, making a similar rationalization about a tiny piece of litter in a giant place. So, what I need is perspective from my enviro-conscious and scientific peers. Is it reasonable to spill these things, in these amounts, once or twice on a public hillside in very thin, dispersed layer that leaves no discernible trace? I know of no one else doing this exact thing in these places, and it clearly makes a lot of people happy... but is it wrong? Am I documenting my own bad behavior with a picture of my child at the top of each entry? At the moment I am unsure... Please lend me your thoughts.