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glaze drips, cutting barrels and cleaner great lakes

updated mon 23 jan 06


primalmommy on sun 22 jan 06

Replying to a whole digest at once -- sorry, I know that screws up the
progression of subject headings, but I have the attention span of a
beagle and can't hold a thought in my head long enought to do it the
right way.

Glazing: If the bottom of your flat bowls is coming up with a very thin
coat of glaze, that tells me that when you are glazing the inside, the
bisque is drinking its fill... so when you dip the outside, it's just
not thirsty for glaze. Maybe glaze all the insides one day, and then all
all the outsides the next.

If you are using the same color inside and out, try making a generous
foot ring and dipping straight down, rim down into the glaze bucket to
glaze the outside. Lift it and hold it until it stops dripping. Again,
having thirsty bisque helps.

Cutting barrels: I grew up on a lake where all the floating rafts sit on
55 gallon drums. Most of them come from the bottling companies -- coke
or pepsi or whatever -- or the local factories that make soaps and such.
My studio rain barrel (albeit plastic, now) came from such a place ($10)
and despite a soap and water hosing, dispensed mountain-dew-scented rain
water for the first several months. And as a kid I remember hiding in
the cool under the lake raft, smelling some artificial lemon scent that
remained in our barrels. Nothing to explode, no risk beyond a
caffeine/sugar head-rush.

As for the increased clarity of the Great Lakes: I sleep with an
environmental biologist, so I know this one! Zebra mussels -- those
invasive, expensive little hitchhikers from ballast water that clog
intake pipes and have no natural predators -- spend their days filtering
water, packaging sediment in little zebra mussel poops called
"pseudofece" and depositing them on the lake bottom. The good news is,
it has improved lake clarity and allowed light to get to the deeper
layers. The bad news is, heavy metals are forever. This is especially
problematic in shallow Lake Erie, where the slightest storm stirs up
those layers of pre-1970s pollutants like lead, mercury and pcbs
(remember when the lake was declared dead?) and they end up in my

Remember too, young'uns, that the surgeon general says nobody of
childbearing age or younger should eat any Great Lakes fish. Ever. A big
thank you to the short sighted industrialists who used the lakes as a
toilet for the factories. (Though most are now in the better cemetaries
with the big ornate Classical-pillared tombs, and can't hear me.)

Off to slurp my coffee,

Kelly in Ohio

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