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The Avocado Jungle is a source for current events, politics, arts and culture on the web. Editor In Chief David P. Kronmiller, along with a talented staff and guests, bring you news, commentary, analysis, interviews, humor, music, art and more. Our deeper mission is to seek truth in understanding, offering current events, arts and culture as paths to that understanding. We value and promote creative thought, intelligent dialogue, elevated debate, and informed action. If you see something that interests you on the site, please take the time to leave a thoughtful comment. Thanks for visiting.

Jungle Writers

David P. Kronmiller, Editor-In-Chief
Notes from the Jungle
Matthew Tullman, Current Events Editor
On current events.
Joyce Chen Blogging from New York.
Tharuna Devchand Blogging from South Africa.
J Lampinen
Our resident comic strip, Congo & Steve
Joanna Lord
Blogging on life, art and spirituality.
Jeremy Olsen
Director of Development emeritus and occasional commentator.
Dan Rickabus
On things musical.
Nicky Schildkraut
On poetry.

Plus guest writers and past staff, including Zach Fehst, Amy Reynolds, Aaron Vaccaro, Jae Day, Sarah Jawaid, Scott Martin, and Bronson Picket.
April 10, 2010, at 11:00 pm — Arts and Culture | Audio | Music | music tracks / / / / / / /

Derek Polischuk: Mozart’s Piano Concerto in D Minor

The Avocado Jungle is thrilled to share with you a very fine performance by pianist Derek Polischuk and the Michigan State University Symphony Orchestra of Mozart’s Piano Concerto in D Minor.
1st movement.
2nd movement
3rd movement

April 10, 2010, at 9:00 pm — Arts and Culture | Audio | audio interview | Interviews | Music / / / / / / / /

An interview with concert pianist Derek Polischuk: PART 1

Teaching at Michigan State University’s College of Music in East Lansing is an incredible pianist and teacher with a sharp mind and an infectiously positive outlook, Derek Polischuk. I had the pleasure of an interview with him. This is part 1 of 2. Listen to the interview.

March 12, 2010, at 6:35 pm — Arts and Culture | Audio | audio interview | Interviews | Music / / / / / / / /

An interview with Dan Rickabus

I recently had the pleasure of an interview with our new music blogger, Dan Rickabus. This young man from Michigan has a happy perspective on life, a strong yet smokey rock’n’roll voice and a weird way of making ukelele work in his catchy alt-rock songs. Podcast only.

March 3, 2010, at 8:50 am — Blogs / /

Artist In Residence: Angela Richelle

Just a quick note on something special that’s happening these next few months on the Avocado Jungle. We have the pleasure and honor of having a very talented photographer as our first ever Artist In Residence. Angela Richelle is a photographer, working professional and mother living in Southern California. We’ll have more soon, perhaps even an interview of a decent length. For now I’d like to encourage everyone to see her first work as our Artist In Residence, a chills-inducing shot of her own divorce papers–and a very candid and moving bit of writing to go with it. The photo is entitled, “Dissolution of Marriage.”

February 26, 2010, at 2:04 pm — Arts and Culture | Audio | audio interview | Music | Music In Our House | music tracks | music video | Videos / / / / / /

Music In HIS House: Dan Rickabus

Here’s a video from uke-rocker (?!) Dan Rickabus. His smooth-yet-gritty voice and his big, ukelele-glazed rock sensibilities are very easy on the ears.

May 26, 2009, at 12:53 pm — Art | Arts and Culture | Audio | audio interview | Interviews / / /

The art of Joe Vaux

"Flood" by Joe Vaux; 12" x 16"; acrylic on wood.Jeremy Olsen of The Avocado Jungle conducts an interview with Joe Vaux, whose acrylics on wood surfaces simultaneously evoke both children’s nightmares and dark metaphors for very grown-up truths.

April 20, 2009, at 12:00 pm — Audio | audio interview | Blogs | Interviews / / / / / /

Finding the Role Model in All of Us: an interview with Brian Center, Executive Director of A Better L.A.

I interview Brian Center, executive director of A Better L.A., a community improvement group whose mission is to transform communities that struggle with violence, and whose approach is to identify the important players and resources, bring them all to the table to talk and plan, and then teach people within a troubled community to make use of these resources for themselves and change their own situations for the better. I recommend listening to this inspiring interview about people accomplishing incredible things simply because they hold the belief that it can be done. If you only have time for highlights, I’ve transcribed some of my favorite excerpts and added a little commentary.

April 2, 2009, at 12:00 pm — Blogs /

Missed Connection

MISSED CONNECTION. YOU: a middle aged woman in mom jeans with two small dogs, walking along the street behind mine the other day. ME: the 32-year-old who looks 15 who was jogging down the street pushing an empty stroller. The one you treated to the hilarious remark, “Your carriage is empty!” making light of his pain without knowing it.

March 16, 2009, at 12:00 pm — Audio | audio interview | Blogs | Interviews /

Well Educated People

I took this week’s theme for The Avocado Jungle and styled it into the question, “Is education part of the solution to almost every problem the world faces?” Then I began asking teachers and former teachers. Last time I wrote it was middle school music teacher Ria Kubota. This entry I’m sharing two strikingly similar […]

March 10, 2009, at 12:00 pm — Audio | audio interview | Blogs | Interviews /

Teaching the Right Things

I took this week’s theme for The Avocado Jungle and styled it into the question, “Is education part of the solution to almost every problem the world faces?” Then I asked a great friend and great teacher, Ria Kubota, that very question. I got a wonderfully unexpected and insightful answer, even with a restless infant […]