Week Who-Even-Knows-Anymore

By Claire

This week was short, due to the holiday, but still jam-packed with all kinds of good stuff. We learned more about Financial Statements, progressed on our consulting projects, heard from some great guest speakers, and finally had a Wednesday night Community Time that didn’t make me exhale a convoluted breath of frustration and exhaustion when it was over. It was actually a really nice night. And, I must mention one of my highlights of this week: I think it’s an understatement to say we found a gem of a sandwich shop, really close to the Groundswell premises.

In Gerry’s class (called How Money works) we presented our Financial Statements for the businesses of Alternia, one of the only surviving countries of the MAD War for Economic Supremacy. Using the businesses of our alternate reality as templates, we grounded ourselves in the real(er) world of accounting and attempted to balance our Financial Positions.

The day progressed, but my presence waned. My group and I had a scheduled meeting with the organization we are working with, for a consulting project that we’re working on for Uffe and Amada’s classes. This is what happened while I was out, as I understand it:

Vietnamese SubJim Barker (on the Board of Directors) came in and spoke about some of his experiences as an entrepreneur. The part that I heard was very interesting, genuine and informative. Gilad probably spoke after this. I’m sure he was very animated and entertaining, as usual.

We were back in time for the start of Uffe’s class, where we split off into our consulting groups and shared our progress on framing the challenge that each group is tackling for their respective organizations. …Then my group and I deeked out again (the meeting had caused us to skip lunch) and we found something we could never have dreamed of. Just three blocks from Groundswell lies the salsa-techno music playing Vietnamese Sandwich shop. It was a wonderful experience, eating $3 subs made by an incredibly high-spirited dancing sandwich magician. This what Tuesday was comprised of, more or less.

Wednesday evening was filled with delight. We began in Amanda’s class, learning how to approach the research part of our Human Centered Design for our consultation challenges. Class Shift Cargo Deliverytime quickly turned into potluck time and we ate marvelous food in good company.

We were joined by Graham from Shift Urban Cargo Delivery, who spoke of the process of co-creating a start-up based on a good idea and of the many positives and complexities of running a worker-cooperative business. Finally, we had Community Time and the sailings were smooth (this is worth exclaiming about!!!) I sensed a feeling of excitement in the room as we listened to Amanda brief us on what Semester two will look like, but alas, I’ll leave you in suspense: tune in next semester to Groundswell Updates to find out what will unfold.

Eliot presented the visual design he and Matt had been working on, which illustrates Groundswell’s inner workings and how they interact with the greater Groundswell community. I think there’s more to it than that, but I can’t really remember much else, except that the image looked a lot like a chocolate chip cookie. In addition, Eliot briefly told us about the Enbridge pipeline plans and the Defend Our Climate rally this weekend to try and stop it. I don’t know about everybody else, but I for one, will be there, hopefully wearing a handmade salmon hat.

Shiki Plays the ViolinShiki topped off the night with a beautiful violin performance. She walked us through a brief history of her interest in different genres, from classical to Celtic. It was probably the cutest violin mash-up I’ve ever seen.