Thursday, March 30, 2006

google chatting with the "old man"

Not my old man, but Old Man Rivers...


me: How does this one work?
OMR: Like magic
me: My first google chat
OMR: lol. I like it alot better then msn except not as many people are on here
me: Yeah...
OMR: One day though Google Talk will become the future
me: I like the fact that it is not as big and gaudy as the e-mail
OMR: ...and full of ads
me: Not full of bright, pop-up ads
OMR: Gmail will be the future
me: No beautiful smiles for singles sites etc.
OMR: lol :)
me: Even the emoticons got out of hand on msn
OMR: haha. Custom emoticons
me: I hate those loud ones on hi5. I think I am becoming more of a minimalist.
OMR: Yeah, I had to disable the function to see custom emoticons. Minimalist...hmm.
me: Simplifying my life
OMR: I cant remember if thats what I want to be
me: Trying to...less clutter
OMR: Yes
me: More of what's important or maybe so much going on right now that it feels that way
OMR: lol. My dream house will be a minimalist house. Actually, there is no way I could do that
me: futons
OMR: lol. There was something I wanted to be that as an "ist" or "ism." I can't remember what though
me: Hmmm...Not tha shizzle?
OMR: Oh well...

Monday, March 27, 2006

Some Other Spring

sung by Billie Holiday...

Some other spring
I'll try to love
Now I still cling
To faded blossoms
Fresh from worn
Left chrushed and torn
Like the love affair I mourn

Some other spring
When twilight falls
Will the night bring
Another to me?

Not your kind
But let me find
It's not true that love is blind
Sunshine's around me
But deep in my heart it's cold as ice
Love, once you've found me
But can that story unfold twice?

Some other spring
Will my heart awake?
Stirring to sing
Love's magic music
Then forget the old duet
Love in some other spring?

written by: Irene Kitchings / Arthur Herzog Jr.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

V For Vendetta

I went to see V for Vendetta on the weekend. I have been looking forward to it since I first saw the trailer online last month. The first thing I heard was it was produced by the Wachowski brothers, the guys who brought us one of my other favourite movies, The Matrix. Even though I was dissapointed in the 2nd and 3rd Matrices I heard some interesting early buzz about this latest project.

There seemed to be some early speculation that it would cause a lot of controversy, especially among neocon circles. Without spoiling too much of it for you, the story takes place in a dystopian future England where society is highly structured and the government rules with fear and propaganda. The protagonist V, is branded as a terrorist and while one is left to question his motivations and strategies, he is clearly painted as the hero.

I won't tell you any more other than some of the thoughts it provoked. I thought a lot about ends-means consistency and the ethics of using particular strategies for political effect. I also thought about the ethics and effectiveness of what I will characterize as "severe indoctrination." One reviewer described the film as a revolutionary call to arms. I don't think I would go that far but it did provoke some interesting thoughts as well as being entertaining. I give it 4 out of 5 stars.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Mohandas K. Gandhi

Whew! I finally finished "Gandhi, An Autobiography: The Story Of My Experiments With Truth" and I am still processing it. I am finding it difficult to offer a definitive opinion about the man and his work. Obviously, one cannot ignore his contributions to the theory and practice of non-violent militancy/non-cooperation/resistance (Satyagraha). He also set an extremely high standard with regard to personal conduct, integrity and self-restraint. What I am having difficulty with was his apparent allegiance (in his own words) to the British Empire, especially during the Zulu War, Boer War, and World War I. Additionally, there seems to be a lack of solidarity with other Indigenous people, specifically the Africans during his 15+ years in South Africa.

His autobiography admittedly paints broad strokes and I will have to research many more sources to get a better understanding of the man, time, context and other players involved. I do admire his unwavering commitment to the truth, something I wish to emulate in my own life.

[P.S. Reading Gandhi's autobiography was no. 49 on my list and writing 100 posts on my blogs was no. 81.]

Monday, March 13, 2006


Citizens of Springfield... I have been sporadically updating lately I know. My first excuse is that I was in Vancouver (aka the big smoke) last week and I stayed with my mom who believes that internet access is an unnecessary expense and usually I have to find an internet cafe or other wireless location. My second excuse is I have been running around the woods like a fool and working like mad on a homework assignment, which I submitted this afternoon. FYI, I am doing well so far and my future as a rebellious academic looks promising. Humble beginnings I know, but I have no where but to look up at that ivory tower and see if I can't spread a lil camouflage along the way ;-)

Monday, March 06, 2006

Women scheme and men are idiots

I'm pretty sure that I will never be a bonafide opera critic, but generally that is what I got from the The Marriage of Figaro performed at the Chan Centre at UBC on Sunday. Oh and they all had great voices. In particular, I liked the signing of Cherubino, a role I assume was originally written (by Mozart) for boy sopranos, but in today's "civilized" times is performed by a young(ish) woman.

I have long appreciated opera, classical music and other colonial favourites and despite nodding off a couple of times, which ALWAYS seems to happen to me at live musical performances of any kind no matter how much I enjoy them, I really did enjoy my first live opera. Kleco Ly, for getting the tickets and accompanying me and of course for nodding off a couple of times yourself so I didn't have to feel bad! ;-) Another one (#40) bites the dust off my list.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

This is NOT it!

I don't have the answers...yet. I have some good ideas and believe it or I am actually implementing some of them. I realize that change often takes longer than we might like, but right now I feel impatient. This morning as I drove to work in my sensible, no-frills Honda civic (with over 300,000km on it), sipping my cafe americano, I yelled out loud at the top of lungs. Fear not, I did not have any passengers to frighten, nor did I do any dangerous swerving, but I was struck by a moment: Something in my gut screamed that this world, our place in it, as it is right now is not right. It can be a hard feeling to describe in theory but I can sure tell you how it feels.

500 Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women.
Are we INSANE? As Indigenous men, how can we tolerate that?
As human beings?
Somewhere in the neighbourhood of 30,000 children die from hunger EVERY SINGLE DAY.
Youth suicide epidemics. Our people are killing themselves.
If you talk to some elders, this phenomenon is a recent is very much a legacy of colonialism.
Diabetes? Super Big Gulps. Give that kid a lollipop.
Can't concentrate or sit still? Here, have some ritalin.
Bored? Here, have an X-Box.
Want a treaty? Special price: Your soul.
Let's reconcile. Don't worry, I'll be gentle.
Only if you Indians would go to school. Get a job. Be a consumer.
Be Canadian...a friendly country for sure, polite too.
Wanna fight? Go to court...go ahead. I dare you.
When you win you lose. When you lose you really lose.
Maybe you lost before you started.
Any other tools I can try, master?
Get Rich or Die Trying? Get Free or Die Trying.
Got Fish? Got KD?
Play bingo. We laugh.
Drink. We laugh.
Stick that needle in your arm. We laugh.
We cry.
We scream.
Why is freedom so impractical?
Why are radicals vilified? Crush dissent.
We are used to obeying orders, even a stern look or tone will do it.
Why is dignity radical?
Where is hope? In the Canamerican dream? Boy that Hummer is the shizzle.
I can be like you.
I can be better, really I can.
Forget about creating a strong sense of identity based purely on Indigenous values, principles and worldviews. The imperial vision will do nicely.
I can oppress my brother.
I can be progressive, practical, forward-thinking, a leader.
Are you happy?
How is your soul doing?
Who are you?
What makes your life worth living for? What would you die for?
Let go of your illusions brother.
Let go of your fears sister.
Be free.
Be Indigenous.

Another way of life is possible.
Live your dreams.
Start now.
Right now.