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Friday, June 25, 2010

Day 6: Dwell on Design Conference, LifeFood Organic Café & Ani Phyo


Roland, Naoko, and baby visited the Dwell on Design conference at the Los Angeles convention center this afternoon. It was nice to see all different aspects of design, from architecture, interior design, industrial design, graphic design, and landscape architecture, presented here and all of the latest ideas were evident. There was even a play area for children. Unfortunately, most of the firms seemed to be selling high end stuff with nothing shown being affordable for us, unless you consider some of the prefab buildings to be a good value home since the smaller ones cost tens of thousands instead of a typical home hundreds of thousands of dollars cost. But these homes were tiny and would not work for most families. I love the concept of the prefab, but I think it must be practical with lots of storage space and an adequate number and size of rooms, and the savings that prefab engenders since it is made in a factory must be passed on to the buyer in order to attract mainstream America. Right now, the prefab architects seem to be mostly going after the high end market which I think defeats the biggest promise of prefab, which is to give the masses affordable, healthy, nontoxic, energy efficient, using passive energy, well designed homes, something that has never existed in the US as it largely has in Europe. I feel the biggest problem with the US housing market is the escalating, over evaluation of homes that are way over priced, unhealthy, toxic, energy inefficient, use sunlight inefficiently, and archaically and awkwardly designed. This fundamental truth is what caused the housing market bubble to burst, since the value is simply not there. Also of not at the conference were the living walls of green plants growing on walls. I also really liked viewing the student drawings showing us what is possible with the human mind. Unfortunately, most of these imaginative visions will never be realized and what is mostly built is drab and ordinary. Sometimes I think we should put students in charge since they are not overly concerned about keeping their career or getting reelected, they are more earnest and want to improve upon what currently exists.
What is your favorite design? It can be a building, interior, object, garden, and so on.
We drove north to Hollywood to visit LifeFood Organic café, owned by Annie Jubb. After searching for a parking space for nearly an hour, we finally decided the one hour parking meter was the best since it expired at eight o’clock. This is more of a takeout café since there are no restrooms here, although you can visit the coffee house next door. There are some seats available here. The food is excellent; some of the best rawfood we have tried on this trip. There are various juices prepared daily in the refrigerated case. We liked the green juice. The best items in the deli case that we tried were the award winning chili, spinach soup, shitake sandwich, lasagna, LFO burger, and the lemon poppyseed cake. The burger was truly amazing. It looked like a real miniature burger, had a real dense structure, real like bun and cheese, and tasted wonderful. Your hands will even get messy. The lemon poppyseed cake is one of the best rawfood desserts I have ever had. It was a joy to eat since it was really creamy and smooth and the flavor was amazing. We ate it very fast!
We wanted to meet the owner, Annie Jubb, and drove to the Yoga Works, where we were told she was, to no avail. However, while there we did get to meet well know rawfood chef, author, and dare I say, tv star, Ani Phyo, who was giving a talk. We bought her new book, Ani’s Rawfood Essentials, asked her to autograph the book, and we chatted with her for a short time. She was very nice. I only wish we could have talked to her longer, but she was on her way out. She was gracious enough to let us take a photo of her with us. Her new book is packed with over 250 recipes, with many of the recipes trying to emulate traditional recipes, but there are also many original rawfood and healthy fermented recipes to enjoy. We look forward to trying them out! So we didn’t meet Annie Jubb but we met Ani Phyo instead so life is full of happy surprises if you let it happen! I won’t talk about the long traffic laden drive home.

What is your favorite raw food chef?

Roland’s Websites:
Green Harmony Living – Planet friendly website
Green Harmony Living Store – Raw, Vegan, & Organic Foods & Products
Green Harmony Design – Beautiful, Edible, & Sustainable Gardens
Green Harmony Tours – Sustainable Ecotours to Germany

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