A Coal-Fired Trip to Alaska
This debossed copper sign belonged to A.S. Dautrick, a steamship man for the Alaska Coast Company and the Alaska Steamship Company. One of the vessels he booked was the S.S. Dolphin, which for a time operated the Southern Alaska route to and from Seattle. His wife rode the ship at least once, in 1903. The S.S. Dolphin sailed from Seattle every 12 days. A first class ticket was around $20 in 1917, or about $500 today.
The world’s navies ran primarily on coal-fired engines when A.S. Dautrick started his career at the turn of the 20th century, and steamships are a reminder of these simpler times, before the oil-based economy took over everything. Which makes one long for the even more innocent days of wind-powered vessels, even if those vessels were often used to colonize, enslave and kill.
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New Mutual Aid Influencer Drops
Alexander Bolt runs the Street Blessings TikTok account which in a few weeks has come out of nowhere to gain tens of thousands of followers. I’m giving this guy the benefit of the doubt for now because mutual aid comes in all kinds of flavors, but I’m wary of his constant push for donations and, as is the TikTok style, the constant mugging for the camera. A video stunt where he “gives the shirt off his back” to a guy seems staged - he’s wearing two shirts. He’s not shoving the Christianity in our faces just yet but stay tuned. A problem I have long had with mutual food aid is that in a lot of shelters if you want to be fed they’re gonna make you pray. If you are giving food to people there should be no means testing or any conditions at all.
Another red flag: Alex can’t cook. Watching him make spaghetti with sugary Prego brand supermarket tomato sauce, garlic from a jar and Johnny’s Seasoned Salt was the most cringe thing I have seen on the Internet in a while.
One of the principles behind Nirvana Wok from the beginning was that people sleeping rough on the streets deserve good food and not cheap garbage. I’d really love for Street Blessings to embrace that concept. Alex also solicits Amazon donations and redistributes the goodies using a TikTok program that let’s anyone make wish lists and ask for people to send them free stuff.
Fine. He’s young and has boundless energy and will evolve.
We lost a subscriber this month. A great guy. We didn’t have much in common — I don’t have much in common with anybody — but we did share a love of good food and I was lucky enough to be invited to dinner at his house dozens of times.
See pictures of Nirvana Wok’s food on Instagram. We also post regularly on Twitter. No TikTok yet.
After 3 years, we are still NOT soliciting donations, but when that does happen, if it does, it will happen here: Donorbox • Patreon • Venmo • Stripe
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