• saw a bunch of friends, caught up on their lives–one bought a house, another is working as a prep cook, that sort of thing–while we weeded and harvested at the gardens and took the dog to the dog park
This grabbed my attention–‘chess sets made from auto junk‘–and not for its bad grammar: ‘During the industrial revolution, the excessive non-biodegradable waste created serious threat to sustainable development, which is a serious cause of concern for everybody out there in the world. In this period, the world of transformation is still on and people out their [sic] transform various products out of junk products. One such transformation is chess sets.’ Chess and recycled junk both interest me.
• tonight we watched baroque with funny and fat waldemar januszczak (who, despite his name, has an english accent) as he traveled to catholic spain–velázquez–and protestant holland–rembrandt, hals, vermeer–with belgium–rubens–in between
‘The title [of the song We’re A Winner by Curtis Mayﬁeld] itself was a strong statement against inferiority complexes historically propagated among blacks by power brokers representing white social and cultural values, but the lyrics offer more than a critique – they offer an affirmative view of black culture that could foster mobilization and sustain political action under even threatening circumstances. Music, as exempliﬁed by Curtis Mayﬁeld, was to foster mobilization by presenting the political ideology of Black Power that enforced notions of black pride, but it also offered a venue for the creation of black culture that was not deﬁned by the dominant white culture.’ [more stuff about Mayﬁeld]
Saturday Serious Stuff 2013-09-07
David Suzuki writes, ‘Why do so many people accept a theory for which there is no scientific evidence [such as chemtrails] while rejecting a serious and potentially catastrophic phenomenon [such a climate change] that can be easily observed and for which overwhelming evidence has been building for decades?’
Suzuki continues, ‘Cass R. Sunstein points to three psychological barriers to accepting climate change that may also help explain why it’s easier for people to believe in chemtrails: People look to readily available examples when assessing danger, focus “on risks or hazards that have an identifiable perpetrator”, and pay more attention to immediate threats than long-term ones. Researchers Ezra Markowitz and Azim Shariff … add a few more, including that human-caused climate change “provokes self-defensive biases” and its politicization “fosters ideological polarization.” ‘
Suzuki observes that ‘people who subscribe to unbelievable conspiracy theories may feel helpless, so they see themselves as victims of powerful forces — or as heroes standing up to those forces. Whether it’s to deny real problems or promulgate imaginary ones, it helps reinforce a worldview that is distrustful of governments, media, scientists and shadowy cabals variously referred to as banksters, global elites, the Illuminati or the New World Order. The problem is that science denial is, in the case of chemtrails, a wacky distraction and, in the case of climate change denial, a barrier to addressing an urgent, critical problem. Science is rarely 100 per cent certain, but it’s the best tool we have for coming to terms with our actions and their consequences, and for finding solutions to problems. The science is clear: human-caused climate change is the most pressing threat to humanity, and we must work to resolve it. We don’t have time for debunked conspiracy theories.’
• we watched Men At Lunch on TVO about that photograph and New York in the 1930s.
Sunday Animation 2013-09-08
Roch Carrier is known for The Sweater which is on the back of our $5 bill and was turned into an NFB film, but the NFB also made The Street , based on ‘a short story by Montreal author Mordecai Richler. It makes a strong statement about how many families respond to their old and infirm members. In washes of watercolour and ink, filmmaker Caroline Leaf illustrates reactions to a dying grandmother, capturing family feelings and distilling them into harsh reality.’ My favourite line is, ‘It’s amazing. The mysteries of the human heart.’ Hand-Crafted Cinema Animation Workshop with Caroline Leaf  explores her art and creative techniques. In it she says, ‘All art works with a balance between limits and freedom…. The sophistication is what you can do with those limits.’
• we harvested at the gardens and watched ‘the land between–the country of our defeat‘, the story of how the land was taken from the natives, the surveyors and traders who followed, and the lumber barons, miners, and canal-builders who had a huge impact on the land.
See stuff about Curtis Mayfield, Friday.
• we watched the story of wales: a new beginning, about coal and slate extraction and strikes in the years leading up to ww2. (ties in with the research i’m doing on vandana shiva.) makes you wonder if maybe we shoulda left the coal in the hole, if maybe we should leave the oil in the soil.