About This Site

Rosie and Adam circa 1986

Organic/​Mechanic has been Adam Harvey’s weblog since 2002. He lives in Cleveland, Ohio and anything else you want to know can be discovered by digging through the archive.

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About the Name

Just Organic/​Mechanic. Two Adjectives. Not The Organic Mechanic. Just flip the switch.


Isn’t every human being both a scientist and an artist; and in writing of human experience, isn’t there a good deal to be said for recognizing that fact and for using both methods?”
James Agee from Let Us Now Praise Famous Men

The time of getting fame for your name on its own is over. Artwork that is only about wanting to be famous will never make you famous. Any fame is a by-​product of making something that means something. You don’t go to a restaurant and order a meal because you want to have a shit.”

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”
Theodore Roosevelt — The Man in the Arena

I wish to preach, not the doctrine of ignoble ease, but the doctrine of the strenuous life, the life of toil and effort, of labor and strife; to preach that highest form of success which comes, not to the man who desires mere easy peace, but to the man who does not shrink from danger, from hardship, or from bitter toil, and who out of these wins the splendid ultimate triumph.”
Theodore Roosevelt — The Strenuous Life

This is what you shall do: Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-​examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul; and your very flesh shall be a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in its words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion and joint of your body…”
Preface to Leaves of Grass — Walt Whitman

A person comes forth to life and enters into death.
Three out of ten are partners of life,
Three out of ten are partners of death,
And the people whose every movement leads them to the
        land of death because they cling to life
Are also three out of ten.

          What is the reason for this?
          It is because they cling to life.

I have heard that
          One who is good at preserving life
            does not avoid tigers and rhinoceroses
              when he walks in the hills;
            nor does he put on armor and take up weapons
              when he enters a battle.
          The rhinoceros has no place to jab its horn,
          The tiger has no place to fasten its claws,
          Weapons have no place to admit their blades.

          What is the reason for this?
          Because on him there are no mortal spots.

Tao Te Ching (50) (Translated by Victor H. Mair)