Tea with Pan        
Danger - Mines! Golan Heights

When arriving in the arid, volcanic and mine-dotted land of the Golan Heights, it is hard to imagine that within it hides some of the most luxurious water resources of the country.

Golan - Banias

The strip of lush green in the midst of dead, dry grasses is in fact the creekside forest of the Banias creek. It is named after the Greek goat-god, Pan (Arabic does not have the letter "P" so it was replaced over the years with a "B" and stayed that way) , and the city of Panias that dwelled around its springs at the foothill of Mount Hermon (all the snow that melts penetrates the earth and comes out of these springs, and some others, into three creeks - Haztbani, Banias and Dan, which later joint forces to become the Joradn river). And inside that greenery hide sites such as this lovely waterfall:

Pan's Waterfall
We took two separate hikes, one to the Banias Fall (seen above) and another to the Banias Springs and the Temple of Pan. In contrast to the heat and dryness above the creek's canyon, it is hard to imagine a more befitting place for worshipping the green god Pan. You truly can feel the presence of the life force running through the creek, and even eighteen years in water-rich BC does not taint the wonder at such sight. The vegetation is spectacular, and includes side by side fig trees and Syrian maples, carobs, oaks and even ferns that grow alongside the pebbled creek and on the waterfall's rocks. There is a hanging trail there for part of the hike as well. And one more interesting point is a colony of rock hyrax that not only saw from up-close, but also smelled their dungy droppings - a mixture of civet, castoreum and maybe even a little bit of funky smell of goat droppings... you can see one of these creatures (a youngster) hiding among the carob tree's nooks and crannies, in the photo below. It looks a little bit like a squirrel because it is so blurry - but it does not have the typical long tail. Or any tail at all, for that matter.

Carob Hyrax Colony

Temple of Pan
Our second hike began at the springs of the Panias and the sacred area of the Temple of Pan which in fact are the ruins of three ancient Greek temples that were the core of the city of Panias): One for Pan, which is in the cave you can see in the photo of the springs, to which goats were sent as sacrifice, to ask Pan to bless the livestocks with fertility and health. Goats that disappeared in the river were considered to be received; those who left traces of blood were signs for trouble and prayers that were not accepted. Next to it was a temple for Zeus. And on the very far right - the temple and gravesite for the dancing holy goats. I am assuming these are the ones that were received as sacrifice. There are many other sites and remains along the Banias creek, namely a Druze prophet's graveyard at the top of the cave for Pan (Nabi Khader, which is their name for the prophet Eliyahu AKA Elijah), Agripas' palace, an old flour mill (operated by the creek), a synagogue, and more. The caves below formerly had statues of Pan and other gods and goddesses.

Temple of Pan

I was overjoyed by the wonderful smell of fig leaves, so green, fresh and slightly milky. The true scent characteristics of any watery area in Israel. And also there were maple trees, some reaching giant proportions, with many impressive hollows and hiding places. Fig leaves and cool creek's pebbles are a classic scent combination, made entirely by nature... I wish I could bottle that!

Traveling Tea Party at Pan's Creek
As we walked towards the old mill and Agripas' palace, we found a cool, shady spot to brew a cup of tea. And speaking of classic combinations: I brewed lemon verbena tea, and poured the concoction into my gourd to make a truly South American mate. Lemon verbena (Aloysia citriodora) also originates in Argentina. We enjoyed it with some halva and ka'akat isfar which I will tell you more about at a later post. My only regret is not having more cups and not inviting the American tourists that sat next to us to catch their breath. Something to think about for party.
          The Art of Lovin' Animals --- Featured Group of Artists Inspired by Their Beloved Pets.        
"Enilde And Our Children" Oil on Panel 42" x 60"
Painting by Luke Van Hook, 2003
Painting and Photograph copyright by Luke and Ginger E. Van Hook, 2004
Courtesy of the Van Hook Collection

The Art of Lovin' Animals
Features a group of artists inspired,
motivated or influenced by their beloved pets
and appear in this blog in the following order:

Joshua Elias, Simone Gad, Betty Glass, David Newsom,
Monrovia Association of Fine Arts supporters
(KidsArt Studio, PaintNPlay Art Studios, Tyson & Tillman Skate Dogs)
Family Dog and Cat Hospital in Monrovia, California (displays animal artwork).
Ginger Van Hook, Luke Van Hook,
Alex in Welderland, Elena Wolek, and Zareh.

Additionally as part of the "Art of Lovin' Animals"
there is a special book and movie review of
John Grogan's book "Marley and Me", and the recent hit movie
starring Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson

Written by Enilde G. Van Hook with special thanks to all participating artists!

Do you remember your first pet? I do. I even have a picture of how much bigger my cats’ paws were than my two feet put together at the age of three. My mother, tells me I had a yellow duck, a small dog and a large yellow tabby cat that owned me as a child.
These three pets were protective, possessive and they were my first companions as I ventured out, for the first time, into my wild back yard of dirt and weeds. I was born in Rosario Argentina and to me now as an adult, my backyard is still my world. I live in Los Angeles, California but the romance of the Argentinean Pampas is not lost on me. From the pictures of my past, I gathered that my Belgian Grandfather, Francisco, ran a plant nursery in Buenos Aires and that my father, Luis, grew up to be an inventor in America. But the most unique connection I have to my past is my relationship with animals. I’ve had a pet at almost every age as I grew up. The importance of this type of companionship has not been explored enough in the art world, at least, this is my opinion. This is the reason I am blogging about the subject of the art and inspiration of lovin’ pets. I hope to instigate discussion, if not compassion. I hope to motivate an artistic response to my thoughts as well. You may have a completely different experience, so I personally encourage you to post your comments after you read this entry.
This is what I asked myself for the subject of the essay for Ginger's Art Journal. What is the relationship of animals and pets to the art world? How involved are animals throughout the art strata? How much inspiration is gathered from the love of a pet? Can that even be measured? Does the love of a pet inspire political causes? Activism? How does one explain the pangs of loneliness from the loss of a pet? Does the death of a pet make an artist create more art? Does the gift of a new life of a pet inspire hope and renewal in artists? How do artists express their love and affection for the four-legged critters of our earth? How do animals, pets, pet trees, pet rocks or pets of any kind affect the process of making art?
There are a number of artists that I have followed for a period of time to investigate the questions that will make up this entry. Studying the work of a number of local artists from the Los Angeles and surrounding areas that work with pets in their art practice, I will present some of their unique stories with photos. The artists, in alphabetical order, include Joshua Elias, Simone Gad, Betty Glass, David Newsom, Ginger Van Hook and Luke Van Hook, Alexandra from Alex in Welderland, Lena Wolek and Zareh. Additionally, the art of lovin’ animals has made a seamless transition from the literary art into the film arts so I will discuss one of my favorite books by John Grogan named “Marley and Me” as it compares to its latest movie version of “Marley and Me” starring Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson which opened in December for Christmas Day.
The method selected to choose these artists was random. I began my animal photographic study in 2006. Through my daily practice of studying the arts, I have come across people who were “in my back yard” and came to connect with me in a special way. I didn’t set out to write a story about animals. I merely went about my daily routine of photographing people and artwork that caught my “eye” because I was at the right place at the right time. Believing that the universe has a special plan for me, I allowed this story to evolve of its own volition. What I discovered both surprised me and opened me up. What I mean by this is that I was surprised to discover that artists who had pets had a great deal in common with other artists who had pets. Most people know and understand the history that reveals how the Egyptians revered cats and how the dog is considered “man’s best friend”. While it was common to have general conversations about how great it was to have pets and create pet portraits, I rarely came across artists that spoke to the deeper underlying significance in the arts about this specifically. While doing this research, I came across the most extreme case of worshiping our pets. The act of cloning has been in the news ever since the cloning of “Dolly” the sheep, but did you know that now there is a company that has launched itself into a commercial venture to clone man’s best friend? I discovered this and lots more so enjoy the new year in 2009 with a renewed commitment to your beloved pet. This is an ongoing story so don’t feel left out if your best friend isn’t included in this entry. I’m still reviewing artwork and pet portraits,
feel free to send me an email about your animal story and I’ll include it in the followup stories!


Fine Arts Painter

Joshua Elias, Exhibition, DCA Fine Arts
Santa Monica, California
Photo copyright Ginger Van Hook, 2007
Winston and Lucille read art literature on the couch and
wait for Joshua Elias to become inspired to feed them.
Photo copyright Ginger Van Hook, 2008
Paintings by Joshua Elias
Art in the making at the Brewery Artist Colony
Los Angeles, California, 2008
Studio visit by Ginger Van Hook
Photo copyright Ginger Van Hook
Artist brushes belonging to Joshua Elias
The instruments by which Joshua Elias creates the canvas of weather and inspiration.
Photo copyright Ginger Van Hook, 2008
DCA Fine Arts Gallery, Joshua Elias with Mathew Heller and his girlfriend
Photo copyright Ginger Van Hook 2007
Joshua Elias, Exhibition at DCA Fine Arts Gallery
Santa Monica, California
Photo copyright Ginger Van Hook, 2007
Joshua Elias with his cats Winston and Lucille
in his studio at the Brewery Arts Complex in Los Angeles, California
Photo copyright Ginger Van Hook, 2008

Joshua Elias
Artist Statement

Art has become about large quantities of Resin, masquerading as Content. The focus has been on Process, confusing it with Content. Enough. I wish to focus on Content. Story and Vibration lead the way for me to paint.

I work in oil because of the depth and movement that it allows for me, as a medium. I focus on Landscapes that are rearranged. Traveling spirits act as guides, to the movement of a particular painting. The influence of Moorish architecture and its many doorways offers and allows entryways into paintings.

At present we are in a period of Time where there seems to be long standing fights over Space, Time Religion, Money, Ideology, and Relationships. Enough. The one thing we do all share is Weather. Through the action of Creating our own environment, our own personal Weather, the Repositioning of Weather can illuminate and allow for more Creation to happen, more of a Life Force to shine and to take shape.

ï¿_ Joshua Elias

Courtesy of the DCA website

Fine Arts Painter, Collage Artist, Actor and Performer
Simone Gad, Artist, Solo Show, L2Kontemporary Gallery
February 2008 Chinatown, Los Angeles, California,
Photograph by Ginger Van Hook, copyright 2008

Selfportrait with Max and Bella/Autoportrait avec Max et Bella
Private collection, photo courtesy of Simone Gad, Artist, copyright 2005
Gad/Rin-Tin-Tin Collection Long Beach Museum of Art
Courtesy Simone Gad, Artist, copyright 2005

Picture Holocaust Clowns - Pinups 127, Gad and Poodle
Courtesy Simone Gad, Artist, copyright 2005

Selfportrait with Cat and Jesus
Private collection, Courtesy of Simone Gad, Artist, copyright 2005

Hommage a Ma Mere 2005 Painting Collage
Copyright and Collection- Simone Gad
Courtesy Simone Gad-Artist
Photograph by Antonio Garcia

Autoportrait avec Kashmir, painting collage 2005/06
Courtesy Simone Gad- Artist and L2Kontemporary Gallery
Chinatown, Los Angeles, California. Copyright Simone Gad

Portrait of Bella, the Brindle cat, acting secretary for Artist, Simone Gad
Los Angeles, California, Artist studio visit
Photograph by Ginger Van Hook, copyright 2008

Bella the Brindle Cat, (on the Marilyn and JFK Installation)
Photo copyright and courtesy of
Jesse Bonderman and Simone Gad,

Bella, the Brindle Cat #2 (Marilyn Installation)
Photo courtesy of Jessie Bonderman and Simone Gad

Portrait of Simone Gad, Artist with companion, Bella.
Los Angeles, California, Artist studio visit
Photograph by Ginger Van Hook, copyright 2008

Portrait of Bella
The Brindle cat, Artist assistant, model
and loyal companion to Simone Gad.
Los Angeles, California, Artist studio visit
Photograph by Ginger Van Hook, copyright 2008

Max and Bella pose for pictures in the window of Simone Gad's artist studio
Los Angeles, California
Photograph by Ginger Van Hook, copyright 2008

Simone Gad poses with one of her paintings of Chinatown
during her solo show at L2Kontemporary Gallery
Chinatown, Los Angeles, California
Photograph by Ginger Van Hook, copyright 2008

Enilde Van Hook writer's notes: I met Simone Gad at an exhibition of her work in Chinatown in the spring of 2008. The L2Kontemporary Gallery is a unique gallery located at 990 N. Hill Street #205 in Downtown Los Angeles (90012), California. I received an email from ArtScene, a wonderful source of local Art Events that is produced by the staff of Coagula Art Journal. Special thanks to Michael Salerno and Mat Gleason, because somewhere in the announcement, I read that Simone Gad was a Belgium-born artist and this led me to want to meet her to talk about the art in Belgium, where my grandfather had been born. Once I attended her exhibit and got a chance to meet Simone, I realized there was a distinct cultural connection we had through our reverence to the animals. She used images of her cats to make intriguing and poignant self-portraits and insightful photographic collages.
I have followed Simone Gad’s work into 2009 and you will enjoy visiting her site through the L2Kontemporary Gallery located in Chinatown in Los Angeles: Follow these links to get to know a renaissance artist, a versatile film and TV actress, a woman of many talents and an artist who has a great deal of compassion to show for her animal friends: visit the online gallery site at http://www.l2kontemporary.com to view her solo show at L2k for Feb 08 plus her updated resume which may be viewed at saatchigallery.org by writing in her name or wooloo.org by writing in Simone Gad’s name.
Special thanks to the L2Kontemporary Gallery for cooperating with my interview! (www.L2Kontemporary.com and L2Kontemporary@sbcglobal.net and phone: 323-225-1288)

Simone Gad
Artist Statement and Biography: 2009

I've been showing in museums and galleries for 40 years-am a 6 times grants recipient, including a CRA Grant 1986, the Woman's Building 1985/6, New Orleans Contemporary Museum of Art 1984, the Gottlieb Foundation-NYC/Painting Medical Emergency Grant, Change Inc-Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Grant-both in 2002 for painting and medical emergency, and Artist Fellowship Foundation Grant in 2007-NYC. I am included in the Archives of the National Portrait Gallery/Smithsonian-Washington, DC, and will also be included in the Lyn Kienholz Encyclopedia of Los Angeles Artists who have shown between 1944 and 1979. In Los Angeles, I am represented by L2kontemporary Gallery-Chinatown, Jack Fischer Gallery in San Francisco, and am showing in Spain. I am also in the traveling museum exhibition-Your Documents Please thru 2010 in Japan/Europe/Mexico curated by Daniel Georges of Brooklyn, NY. I was born in Brussels, Belgium to holocaust survivor parents, from Poland. We came to the US in the early 1950's and settled in Boyle Heights/E.L.A, after arriving at Ellis Island. My mother got me into show-biz at the age of 4 upon our immigration. I grew up in the entertainment field as a young actress-have been working professionally in film, tv, commercials and theatre ever since. Have always had a dual career-.visual/performance artist and actor. George Herms and Wallace Berman were my first mentors. Al Hansen was my mentor from 1972 to 1995 when he passed away in Koln, Germany.

My cats Max and Bella Bettina Kashmir are my inspiration for many of my painting collages-have been so for many years. I've always been inspired by my cats and dogs that I've had since I arrived to this country from War torn Europe. My father got me my first dog-Teddy Queeny when I was a child living on Folsom Street-We had just returned from a movie on Brooklyn Avenue when we saw the puppies on our way home. I was allowed to have one-and I was so happy. But my mother hated animals and wouldn't let me keep my pet with me in my bedroom and it cried all night. I was heartbroken when I got home from Nursery School the following day and found that my dog was gone. My mom told me she had sent it to New Jersey to live with my Tante Sally. I wasn't allowed to have any animals after that. Years later I visited my aunt and asked her if she had taken care of my Teddy Queeny and she told me she never did-she never got the dog-didn't know what I was talking about. I realized that my mother had lied to me and had possibly killed my beloved doggie. I had moved to Topanga Canyon for a while in the late 1960's-that's where I got to know Wallace Berman and George Herms. I was given a miniature sheppard-who I named Lady. She was my constant companion and I adored her. She was run over by a couple of friends who were staying with me one night. I found her bleeding from her mouth by the driveway. She died in my arms and I could feel her spirit leave her body. We buried her the next morning. I was devastated for years. A friend of mine gave me a dash-hound and I took it home to be with me when I left Topanga and stayed with my parents for a while. I named her Wiggle Butts because she had this habit of wiggling her behind when she walked. I was not allowed to keep her-once again-so I called a friend and had her drive from The Canyon to pick Wiggles up and take care of her for me. When I left my parents and got an apartment, I got a cat-Nathaniel-my very first cat-who was with me for 15 years until he passed away. It was then that I started to incorporate animal objects into my collages-in the mid 1970's.

copyright Simone Gad 2009

http://www.l2kontemporary.com to view Simone Gad’s solo show at L2k for Feb 08 plus her updated resume-you may also get it on saatchigallery.org by writing in her name or wooloo.org by writing in Simone Gad’s name-



Focus One Gallery in Monrovia, California. Sponsored by M.A.F.A.,
the Monrovia Association of Fine Arts and Focus One Community Credit Union.
Photo by Ginger Van Hook, copyright 2006

Betty Glass celebrates Christmas with Lulu at home in 2008.
Lulu, wearing her new holiday sweater,
pokes her nose into the gift bag
to see if she likes what Santa has brought her.
Photo copyright and courtesy of Betty Glass and James Glass.
Turtle Painting, Watercolor Artwork by Betty Glass reminiscent of her pet turtles.
Photo copyright and courtesy of Betty and James Glass.
Trojan Horses, Watercolor painting by Artist, Betty Glass
Photo copyright and courtesy of Betty and James Glass.
Hummy, Watercolor Painting by Artist, Betty Glass.
Photo copyright and courtesy of Betty and James Glass.

Yankee and Sugar, Watercolor Painting by Artist, Betty Glass
memorializing the life of her beloved friends.
Photo copyright and courtesy of Betty and James Glass.

Yankee (5-17-80 --- 4-20-94)
the larger white and orange Brittany on the right,
and Sugar (7-20-90 --- 12-24-04)
the smaller Brittany on the left.
"Beloved Friends and Forever in our hearts!"
Loyal Friends, Inspiration and Companions
to Artist, Betty Glass and her family.
(Special thanks to husband, James Glass
for his technical computer assistance
with digital photography formating of Betty Glass Artwork.)
Photo copyright and courtesy of Betty and James Glass

Enilde Van Hook, Writer's Notes:
I met Betty Glass through the Monrovia Association of Fine arts in 2006. We were showing together at the Focus One Gallery on Huntington Drive in Monrovia, California. When Betty came into the gallery, she was toting her adorable poodle named Lulu. I was charmed immediately and I just had to have a photo of this beautiful female pooch with a twinkle in her eye and the gumption to come into an art gallery where only humans gathered. This little poodle had no clue there was any difference between her and her owner, and she acted like she was looking at the art just like everyone else. At the time, I considered this a very cultured poodle and I told Betty so. Betty giggled and let me take her snapshot with Lulu and then we did not see each other again until we had another show together, also at Focus One Gallery two years later in December of 2008. When I saw Betty this time, I saw the connection of her artwork and the love of her animals come through her work and later, she agreed to participate in the interview for my blog. You may enjoy Betty Glass's artwork by visiting her website at www.bhglassart.com

Betty H. Glass
Artist Statement about Animal Art

Through art we communicate our feelings and thoughts.
Our art reflects what experiences in life have influenced us.
I have had a lifetime of pets
ranging from goldfish, parakeets, and turtles and, of course,
the loyal dog—always your friend even when the sky seems to be falling.
I am still sketching and painting animals, birds, and fish.
The softness of their fur, the texture of their feathers and fins,
the variations of color are very appealing to me,
because color is part of my artistic signature.
Sometimes they are presented in a realistic fashion.

Other times I use animals in a more stylized way—
using their shapes as patterns, semi-abstracting them and their background.
For example, my painting Trojan Horses shows flattened stylized figures of horses.
Hopefully artistically pleasing and calling to mind ancient Greece.

A Finding Aid to the Collection in the Library of Congress.

Surveyor general of Spanish West Florida. Correspondence, bills of sale, court
transcripts, testimonies, surveys, notebooks, plats, land grants, maps, petitions, and other papers
relating principally to Pintado's duties as alcalde, commandant, and surveyor general.

Land grants--Alabama.
Land grants--Florida.
Land grants--Louisiana.
Land grants--Mississippi.
Land tenure--Alabama.
Land tenure--Florida.
Land tenure--Louisiana.
Land tenure--Mississippi.
Real property--Alabama.
Real property--Florida.
Real property--Louisiana.
Real property--Mississippi.
Vicente Sebastián Pintado Papers 2Alabama--Maps, Manuscript.
Florida--History--Spanish colony, 1784-1821.
Florida--Maps, Manuscript.
Louisiana--Maps, Manuscript.
Mississippi--Maps, Manuscript.

          Top 5 reasons to love your SCOBY        
Andrea's gift
Andrea's Gift
This post is something of an experiment. While SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) has become a bit of a dirty word in blogging recently, I believe there's nothing wrong with making cosmetic changes that increase the chance that people will find and read what you have to say.

One kind of post title that people appear to like promises a list of reasons for something. I've been meaning to write a post about the joys of the fermentation community for a while, and the original title of this post was "It takes a village to grow a SCOBY". But I'm going to use the list format, instead. Tell me whether you like it and I should do more of them, or you think it is just gimmicky.

Just to remind you, a SCOBY is a Symbiotic Colony Of Bacteria and Yeast. The acronym usually refers to the culture used in making kombucha, but milk kefir and water kefir grains are also SCOBYs. Yoghurt cultures are not.

5. While there isn't much scientific proof of the benefits of fermented drinks such as kombucha and kefir, there is plenty of anecdotal evidence that people with gut issues who drink kombucha seem to feel better. That is certainly true in my case. There was a scare a few years ago in which the FDA linked deaths to kombucha, but there doesn't seem to have been any conclusive evidence there. I've never felt ill after drinking my home-brew. It's also a great source of B vitamins. Of course it is important to make sure everything is clean, etc. - well, duh. They haven't warned people off Pepsi yet, because, you know, it doesn't do anything bad to you.

4. Even if you, like me, can't drink cultured milk directly, you can still make wonderful dairy products with it. I made the most amazing cultured butter from local organic milk I had fermented with milk kefir grains. It tasted just as good as the store-bought butter brought in from Quebec, and was considerably cheaper, which you can't always say for home-made stuff. Just as an aside, if I were able to access raw milk in Manitoba it is entirely possible that I would be able to drink the milk kefir. Again, there hasn't been much scientific research but I've heard many anecdotal reports of people who were supposedly intolerant of dairy doing just fine with the unpasteurised version. Again, you need to make sure everything is clean and safe. Well, duh.

3.  There is something very magical about watching the slow transformation of sweet tea into something resembling cider. You plop your little alien-looking colony into the tea, cover the jar and put it in a warm place. After about a week you will have a new baby SCOBY to share with your friends, and a yummy drink to put into bottles for a second fermentation with fruit or herbs. I usually use blueberries, strawberries or ginger. It's incredibly delicious. Even if it didn't have a single health benefit, it just tastes so nice, especially first thing in the morning. Move over, grapefruit juice.

2. It does take patience, whether you are making kefir or kombucha. You can't hurry it up, although you can slow it down by keeping it in a temperature that is too low. I usually put my jar in the oven with just the light on (and a BIG sign on the door to prevent me from cooking my ferments!). Having to wait on nature is good for the soul in these frenzied times. It can be quite zen.

1. Best of all, you get to interact with an amazing community of fellow enthusiasts. You can't buy a SCOBY in the supermarket. There are websites out there which will sell one to you, but it is much more fun to get one from a local person. I was fortunate to be put in touch with a lovely lady named Andrea, who gave me my first kombucha SCOBY. I am so grateful to her, and to Sarah who gave me milk kefir grains. I was fortunate to be able to pass on some of my baby SCOBYs to others interested in travelling a similar route. You can't buy that kind of experience, either.

So, those are my top reasons for loving my SCOBYs. I'm sure I could come up with more, but I don't want the blog post to be too long. What do you think?
          Milk kefir bliss!        
Strawberry-infused kefir I know that a lot of people claim that dairy is too Neolithic to have any place in a paleo-style diet - in fact, I have seen claims that anything you can't pull off a bush or kill with a sharp stick does not belong in our diet. Hmm, a little extreme much? While 10,000 years are a mere blink of an eye in evolutionary terms, the fact remains that many people, especially of dairy-herding heritage, are able to digest dairy products into adulthood with no apparent ill effects. Especially fermented products such as cheese, yoghurt and the subject of today's blog post - kefir.

We are blessed here in Canada with a government that does not permit the use of rBGH (or any other hormones, to my knowledge) in the dairy herd, so that is not an issue. While I would love to buy raw milk, unfortunately that is not legally available in Manitoba (time for a campaign, maybe??). I have to make do with pasteurised milk, but at least it is not ultra-pasteurised (another USAmerican food industry innovation we are blessedly spared), and I can get local whole organic milk at my local health food store. It costs an arm and a leg, of course, but it is worth it to me not to have my boys chugging down antibiotics they don't need.

I myself cannot tolerate plain milk, but I do very well with yoghurt that has been fermented for 24 hours, according to the rules of the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. I therefore decided to experiment with milk kefir, which also ferments for 24 hours.

Milk kefir grains
The main difference between them is the starter - you can make yoghurt from a previous batch of yoghurt (although commercial yoghurt really only has a couple of strains of lactobacilli in it - it would be nice to be able to find more!), but for traditional kefir, you need kefir grains. Those aren't really grains - in fact, they are a SCOBY - a Symbiotic Colony Of Bacteria and Yeast. If the word seems familiar, I have rhapsodised here before about my kombucha SCOBY. The kefir SCOBY looks much friendlier than the kombucha one, as you can see in this picture. They really do look like grains.

You can make kefir using a starter from the health food store, but those aren't grains - it's a powder that contains dried bacteria and yeast in a specific combination. It makes decent kefir, but it is self-limiting - it won't grow grains, and after a few iterations you will have to put in more starter. It's from the same company that makes the dried yoghurt starter, and the results are similar - decent, but not comparable to using real, live food.

I was fortunate enough to be given some grains by a lovely lady I met in the Traditional Foods Manitoba Facebook group - and if you are interested in traditional foods and live in Manitoba, I strongly recommend joining that group. Such kind, helpful, welcoming people - friendly Manitobans all. I love it. I met her on a Friday morning, and by Friday noon my grains were luxuriating in a jar of whole milk on my counter. I checked them again after Shabbat went out, so about 30 hours later.

I should warn you that the grains are living things - don't expect them to do their best work as soon as you plop them down in a jar of milk. Mine had been sleeping in a refrigerator for a few months, and it took a couple of rounds before they woke up and really did their job. In fact, the first milk bath I gave them smelled downright awful, and I sent it down the sink. But the grains looked a little plumper and healthier than they had when I first got them, so I was hopeful. The same was true of the second bath, but the third one was just divine, especially once I flavoured it with strawberries.

The way I did that is called a second ferment - I strained the grains out of the thickened kefir (you can tell it is ready when it pulls away from the sides of the jar) and put them safely away in the fridge to nap in a small jar of milk. Then I put the kefir back on the counter, with a few sliced fresh strawberries in it, and left it there for 12 hours.

I cannot begin to tell you how awesome my strawberry-infused kefir tasted, especially after it had been chilled in the fridge. I also got all the goodness of a fermented food, with no ill effects - and trust me, I know about dairy-related ill effects.

How about you, have you tried making something new and exciting recently?

          In the name of development        
The indigenous community of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands has been systematically alienated from their land by the colonial and post-colonial policies. A new book chronicles the change.
The forests and the tribal communities of the islands are being decimated. (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Pankaj Sekhsaria’s recent book Islands in flux--The Andaman and Nicobar Story is a collection of around 20 years of his writings on the environmental and conservation concerns faced by the indigenous tribal communities of the region. Unlike his previous book, The last wave, a factual fiction adventure story dealing with love, longing and loss, this one is a collection of contemporary developments in the islands. The book is divided into seven parts and several chapters each dealing with the societal and ecological facets of the islands. Issues related to the environment, wildlife conservation and development policies that threaten the island’s indigenous communities have been chronicled by the author who is a long-time member of the NGO, Kalpavriksh.

Alienation of islanders

The book begins with the section, Setting the context, in which he writes about the history of the alienation of the island communities living there for over 40,000 years. The author takes a dig at the history writers of the modern democratic Indian state who have left gaping holes in their writings by not sudying the ancient indigenous communities--the Great Andamanese, the Onge, the Jarawa and the Sentinelese. It is here that the author mentions “if the real and complete history of the islands is ever written, the British would not be more than a page and India could only be a paragraph”.

The indigenous people have been systematically alienated from their resources by the British colonial policies and the post-colonial development-oriented policies of India. The Britishers set up a penal colony in the islands in 1858, the Japanese occupied the islands during the World War II, and during the post colonial period, thousands of settlers from mainland India were brought to the island. Though the islanders put up a fierce fight to defend their territories, the social fabric of the island communities has been violently torn apart and their populations decimated while the settlers outnumbered the original inhabitants. The region is witness to nation building exercises, hinduisation of ‘uncivilized junglees’ and even an attempt to rename the islands. The author calls this as an attempt to “reclaim what was never yours”. No effort has been made by way of scholarship or historical studies to take the islanders’ point of view.

Forestry is the chief source of revenue in cash in the islands but the system of forestry did not suit the region. The author quotes an official report by the Department of Environment, Government of India that argues that “the forestry system was leading to a preponderance of deciduous elements in the evergreen system that would eventually destroy the whole island ecosystem”. The carrying capacity of the islands has been long exceeded, the author says. Ill-conceived schemes like cattle rearing were introduced for a community that does not consume milk. Tourism is a concern in the islands which have been declared as ‘global biodiversity hotspot’.

The pristine forests and the people living in the Jarawa tribal reserve that covers half the island is under threat because of the ill conceived Andaman Trunk Road that separates the reserve land from the rest of the island. The Jarawas for whom the forests have been a home for ages have been reduced to begging around the Trunk Road that runs through the reserve. The road has been controversial due to the negative fallouts on the island’s ecology and the indigenous people. The Supreme Court had in 2002 passed an order to close it; the island administration chose to ignore it. Its closure was absolutely critical to protect the Jarawa community, the author says.

Islands turn colonies

The author chronicles the colonising of the islands in a chapter of the same name and discusses how the settlers look down upon the indigenous communities. Tension continues between the tribal communities especially the ancient tribal community of Jarawas and the settlers over land rights and there is a lack of political will to ease this even as the population of the Jarawas has been reduced to a few hundreds. “There are opinions that the Jarawas should be assimilated into the modern world, but it is clear that it is exactly this contact with the outside world that is rapidly pushing them towards the brink,” the author states.

In the chapter, A brief history of logging, Sekhsaria provides an account of the timber operations in the Andamans. He notes how as a part of India’s colonisation scheme, mainlanders were settled here. This was done to strengthen India’s claim over the islands. Incentives were offered to settlers by way of land and royalty free timber. Timber-based industry was promoted and liberal subsidies offered. Forests were exploited to benefit settlers who had little stake in the islands or its natural resources. Timber offered for millions decreased after the 2002 Supreme Court order. The order was in response to a petition by three NGOs to stop logging. The Supreme Court order that banned the cutting of naturally grown trees in the Andamans and Nicobar islands were welcomed by the environmental rights groups. But logging continued within the tribal reserve.

In the section, Environment, ecology and development, the author stresses the need for evolving sensible conservation policies. The author discusses the consequences of introducing exotic species into the island systems. This has led to irretrievable loss of native species and ecosystems. “The Andaman and Nicobar islands are unsurpassed in their botanical wealth, and the ethnomedical knowledge of the tribals who live here is astounding,” he says.

In the section, December 2004 and its aftermath, the author discusses the turmoil caused by the tsunami of December 26, 2004 which killed around 3500 people in the fragile Andaman and Nicobar islands, the worst hit area in India. The tectonic activity due to the third deadliest earthquake of the world in the last 100 years caused a significant shift in the islands’ geography with a permanent average uplift of four to six feet while parts of Nicobar islands went significantly under, with the southernmost tip, Indira point on Great Nicobar island going 15 ft down. Apart from dealing with how the tsunami destroyed the island, the section also highlights how the people picked up the pieces and started all over again.

Leave them alone

The tsunami waters inundated large areas of the islands causing damage to its coastal and marine ecology. In the aftermath of this turmoil, ecologists have suggested ‘no intervention’ and that ‘leaving areas alone should be the preferred management option’. A disturbing facet of the islands in recent times is its water scarcity. The islands have been facing severe water shortages even during the pre-tsunami period but this got worse after 2004. Fresh water sources got hit by the tsunami.

Talking about the faulty development planning, the author discusses how the former president late Abdul Kalam in 2005 in the aftermath of the tsunami announced a grandiose vision for the development of the Andamans and Nicobar islands. This included ecologically perilous components like deep sea fishing, exploitation of bamboo, value-added coconut products and tourism.

A central thread of Sekhsaria’s book has been the neglect and acculturation of the Jarawas, and their losing scuffle with the outsiders. The book presented in a journalistic manner handles the issue very sensitively and the author exhibits a keen understanding of the history of the indigenous people and its ecology.

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          Political Map Of Mississippi        

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          Friends Of The Mississippi River        

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          Code Law Mississippi        

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          Oppression and True Womanhood in Ellen Glasgow's Virginia        
Here're a couple of snippets of the paper that I wrote for ALA 2012. Enjoy! And offer feedback, as I'd like to turn this into a full-length article:

In scholarship on Ellen Glasgow’s 1913 Virginia, surprisingly little has been said of the title character’s name. This is curious because, in its obvious allusion to her home state, the name that Glasgow bestows upon the protagonist of her eleventh book seems to position Virginia, the character, as representative of Virginia, the state in which the novel also takes place, and, by extension, of “the South” itself. It seems to me that, by considering the implications of Glasgow’s choice to name her central character after the state, we can start to delineate the ways that Virginia’s circumscription as a True Woman—which is an aspect of the novel that has been well-documented in the scholarship—reflects the oppressive functioning of the Southern body politic. I’m going to argue in this paper that the novel portrays the ideology of True Womanhood as not only leading women like Virginia to lives of sacrifice and ultimate abandonment but—and perhaps more importantly—as also working to maintain the functioning of the body politic that prevents social change within the South as a whole.

And I will start, as I’ve already suggested, with the name that Glasgow gives her title character. Virginia’s name has a proud history, at least for the citizens of Dinwiddie, Virginia, where the story is set. In the first few pages of the novel, we are introduced to a group of townspeople, who even 19 years after “the war,” continue to show respect for the those who fought to preserve the antebellum way of life by addressing these men by their military titles, people who even “a quarter of a century after ‘The Origin of Species’ had changed the world’s thought,” have never seen the book (14). Despite the defeat of the Civil War and Reconstruction, the people of Dinwiddie carry on with “cheerful fortitude” (9), considering their home state to be all that matters: “Of the world beyond the borders of Virginia, Dinwiddians knew merely that it was either Yankee or foreign, and therefore to be pitied or condemned according the Evangelical or the Calvinistic convictions of the observer” (14).

Like Virginia, the True Woman, Virginia, the state, is both cherished and carefully policed; she is idealized and protected from foreign infiltration. The etymology of the name “Virginia” augments this discussion of Virginia, the character, as representative of a body politic in need of border patrol. The first usage of the name “Virginia” appears on a 1587 map of the British colony in North America; the colony was named for Elizabeth I, “The Virgin Queen.” In this way, of course, Glasgow’s use of the designation “Virginia,” a name originally denotative of sexual chastity—particularly in a woman—reveals the author’s specific concern with the rhetoric surrounding the regulation of female sexuality. Indeed, through its depiction of Virginia’s cultivation as a virginal young girl, carefully controlled reproduction throughout her childrearing years, and ultimate abandonment once she has “outlived her usefulness” (445), the novel plots out the way that women of “leading families” (12) have been utilized similarly to the once ripe land of the colony, and then state, of Virginia—mostly for the benefit of middle-to-upper-class white men.

. . .

The one episode in Virginia that most fully reveals the connection between True Womanhood and the maintenance of the white male power hierarchy of the South is that of Virginia’s young son’s bout with diphtheria. Not insignificantly, Harry starts to show signs of illness immediately following Virginia’s decision to leave the children in her mother’s care—for the first time except for once when she thought that Oliver was sick and needed her in New York—and go with Oliver and a few friends to Atlantic City for a short getaway (329). In the middle of the night before Virginia and Oliver are set to go, Harry wakes up with a sore throat. His primary complaint, however, is that Virginia will be leaving him unprotected from “the black man” who frightens him in the hours between dusk and dawn: “But suppose the black man should come in the night while you are away, and I’d get scared and nobody would hear me” (331). In this way, sickness and blackness start to become confused, and, in Harry’s mind, at least, Virginia—possibly because, as his father had sensed years before, Virginia’s soul possesses a fierce “purity” capable of snuffing out “evil”—is the first line of defense to be employed against either or both of these threats. Of course, Virginia quickly decides that she must forego the trip to Atlantic City to stay home and protect her son. And when the illness sets in with more force, Doctor Fraser affirms Virginia’s belief that she alone can bring Harry back to health, telling her “sternly,” “[Y]ou must bear up; so much depends on you” (350). Obediently, Virginia not only nurses Harry day and night for three days, but also guards her son from the scary black man, making a point of telling him, even as he is delirious with fever, “Remember there is no black man, and mamma is close here beside you” (349). Throughout the diphtheria episode, then, Virginia plays the part of the perfect True Woman—providing round-the-clock care to her child, thinking nothing of her own safety or comfort but only of Harry’s wellbeing, praying unceasingly to God to take from her all worldly happiness in exchange for the sparing of her son’s life, and heeding the orders of the male authority Doctor Fraser. Ultimately, the diphtheria runs its course, and Harry pulls through—probably just as well as he would have had Virginia not completely abnegated herself during his sickness.

Symbolically, though, the episode demonstrates the ideological function of True Womanhood to protect the empowered white male citizenry (or, in this case, the future of the white male citizenry) from the threat—real or imagined—of either blackness figured as illness or illness figured as blackness. For, as Virginia points out when she wonders “whether the fright makes [Harry] sick or the sickness brings on the fright” (333), the two are really one and the same; to allow black men and women to advance socially would be to allow for a type of “sickness” to infiltrate the social body, according to a Dinwiddian perspective.

The diphtheria episode reveals, then, the faulty logic of the rhetoric surrounding lynching, showing that it is not white women who need protection from the sexual penetration of black men but, instead, white men who need defense against the social advancement of black men in order to preserve their own privileged status. In this way, the True Woman—as a representation of the Southern body politic—functions symbolically to protect the social and political interests of white men.

. . .

Works Cited

Glasgow, Ellen. Virginia. New York: Double Day, Page & Company, 1913.
Europeanhoneybee I haven't posted much for a variety of reasons, but mainly I have been doing yard work and gardening. (This post was actually begun in early April.) We had a late frost and very long, cold winter here in socal- for us anyway - which led to a later start than in many previous years. Chores ranged from dead-heading frost damaged plants to prep work and actual planting of seeds and starter plants in the veggie garden, and potting up plants for the local garden club's plant sale. I sadly lost about half of my orchids as a result of a week or 2 with lows in the high teens, which made my yard work less satisfying.

One thing that had me very concerned was the lack of bees in my citrus trees. Years ago we had so many bumblebees that lived on the hillside behind us that collected pollen from our property, until a housing development had to go in. (I plant to attract insects and birds yearlong.) With six assorted citrus in bloom and nary a bee in sight, I was very worried. However, I noticed my apricot and plum trees has baby fruits, so I was hoping the bees would come again. Thankfully, after 2 weeks without seeing a single bee, the bees slowly arrived. It was too late to order bees for my area so I was very relieved! Believe me, when you have millions of heavenly citrus flowers perfuming the air and do not see even one bee, you get worried. Especially this year... (Subject reference books are listed at end of post.)

If you haven't heard about the sudden drastic decline in the honeybee population, it is a real crisis. There are many reasons why bees die ( A few reasons being diseases, pests, pesticides GMO crops, natural disasters, etc.) but in the last year or two colony collapse disorder is at the root of the current crisis. The bees seem to completely disappear from the face of the earth as if they have been abducted by aliens or pulled up to God in an insect version of the rapture. The problem is worldwide and no one seems to know why.

As "smart" as man believes he/she is, we rarely are when we try to improve on Mother Nature. Since the "Better Living Through Chemistry" campaign began, man has made many things worse as well as better.

The "honeybee" is not native to many places in the world, but everywhere with flowering plants has its native bees. We have seen fit to eliminate, or almost decimate, many of the native species through one means or another. These same native species may have to be our saviours if colony collapse disorder continues to near extinction.

An excellent natural remedy to boost native bees can be read in the "San Francisco Chronicle: Time for a new approach to crop pollination by Deborah K. Rich, Special to The Chronicle, Saturday, May 21, 2005

Recognizing the very real threat of crop failure that our dependence upon a single species of bee poses, researchers are coaching pollinator understudies. The blue orchard bee (also known as the orchard mason bee) is proving a cooperative pollinator of some early blooming orchard crops, and the bumble bee is helping to pollinate hot-house tomatoes.

Still, it may be time -- while there still is time -- for another approach entirely. The United States is home to 4,000 bee species, of which 1, 500 are found in California, to say nothing of the many moth, fly, wasp and butterfly species that also assist with pollination."

Everyone who gardens can help. How-tos can be found at The Xerxes Society's Pollinator Conservation Program pages and at the USDA.

For those of you who wish to read more on bees, the following books can be found at your local independent bookstore or on the net from a worldwide indie by searching by author and/or title at Bookfinder or ADDALL.
Honey Bee Pests, Predators and Diseases by Roger A. Morse
Letters from the Hive: An Intimate History of Bees, Honey, and Humankind by Stephen Buchmann
Bees In America: How The Honey Bee Shaped A Nation by Tammy Horn
Bee diseases: Cause and Treatment by Eugene E Killion
The Queen Must Die and Other Affairs of Bees and Men by William Longgood
The Life and Times of the Honeybee by Charles Micucci (children's)
The Honey Makers by Gail Gibbons (children's)
Langstroth's Hive and the Honey-Bee: The Classic Beekeeper's Manual by L. L. Langstroth
The ABC and XYZ of Bee Culture: An Encyclopedia of Beekeeping by Roger Morse (a classic!)
Bees & Honey: From Flower to Jar by Michael Weiler
Fifty Years Among the Bees by C. C. Miller (another classic)
The Dance, Language, and Orientation of Bees by Karl von Frisch
          FT column: Robots can kill but they do not understand us        

I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe,” the villain played by Rutger Hauer reminisces at the end of the film Blade Runner after hauling Harrison Ford’s character on to a roof top and sparing his life. “People” is the operative word since Roy Batty is not a person but an android who escapes to earth from a space colony and takes revenge on the Tyrell Corporation, his creator.

Read more
          Comment on What would YOU like to read? by Michal Strutin        
Emeline Beach. Mark Twain and artist colony: lots of potential for crazy conflicts and ideas.
          Andrew Samonsky, Hannah Elless and Bryce Pinkham to Star in BENNY & JOON Musical at The Old Globe; Cast, Creatives Set!        

The Old Globe today announced the complete cast and creative team for the first show of its 2017-2018 Season, the world premiere musical Benny & Joon, with book by Kirsten Guenther, music by Nolan Gasser, and lyrics by Mindi Dickstein. Based on the beloved 1993 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer motion picture written by Barry Berman and Leslie McNeil, Benny & Joon is directed by Jack Cummings III, Artistic Director of New York's Transport Group.

It will run September 7 - October 22, 2017, on the Donald and Darlene Shiley Stage in the Old Globe Theatre, part of the Conrad Prebys Theatre Center. Previews run September 7 - 14, with opening night on Friday, September 15 at 8:00 p.m. Tickets start at $36 and go on sale to the general public on Friday, August 18 at 12:00 noon.

Benny & Joon is a delightful world premiere musical based on the beloved offbeat '90s romantic comedy movie. As Joon's sole caretaker, auto mechanic Benny makes sure his eccentric sister lives a comfortable, safe, and predictable life. But when Sam shows up, his off-kilter take on the world-full of classic films, Buster Keaton, and an oddball approach to domestic life-turns everything upside down. With unforgettable characters and a beguiling and tuneful score, Benny & Joon explores what happens when we step out of our comfort zones and take a leap toward love.

The cast features Andrew Samonsky (Broadway's South Pacific, Scandalous) as Benny, Hannah Elless (Bright Star at the Globe and on Broadway) as Joon, and Bryce Pinkham (Tony Award nominee for Broadway's A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder) as Sam, along with Colin Hanlon (Broadway's Falsettos, In Transit) as Mike, January LaVoy (Enron on Broadway, Coraline Off Broadway) as Ruthie, Paolo Montalban (Globe's Allegiance, ABC's Cinderella with Brandy) as Larry, Natalie Toro (Broadway's A Tale of Two Cities, Les Misérables) as Dr. Cruz and Mrs. Smail, and Jason SweetTooth Williams (Disney's Freaky Friday at La Jolla Playhouse) as Waldo and Video Store Owner. Completing the cast as Understudies are San Diego local Katie Whalley Banville (Globe's A Doll's House, Playhouse's Freaky Friday and Escape to Margaritaville) and Jake Millgard (Globe/USD Shiley M.F.A. graduate, Globe's Guys and Dolls).

The creative team includes Scott Rink (Choreographer), Dane Laffrey (Scenic and Costume Design), R. Lee Kennedy (Lighting Design), Kai Harada (Sound Design), Michael Starobin (Orchestrations), J. Oconer Navarro (Music Director), Howie Cherpakov, CSA (Casting), Anjee Nero (Production Stage Manager), and Amanda Salmons (Stage Manager).

"I'm truly excited to open the Globe's 2017-2018 Season with this special new musical," said Erna Finci Viterbi Artistic Director Barry Edelstein. "A world premiere based on the delightfully offbeat 1993 MGM film, Benny & Joon centers on something rare in the musical theatre: the bond between siblings. The love between the brother and sister of the title is deep, moving, and real, and it gives this musical a gentleness and sweetness that I find completely captivating. Creators Kirsten Guenther, Nolan Gasser, and Mindi Dickstein have brought to the Globe a memorable and unique show, and my friend Jack Cummings III-who has carved out a unique space in the American theatre with the very human, people-driven stories he tells-brings Benny & Joon a beautiful spontaneity and freshness. The show's score-rich, complex, melodic, and fun-won me over instantly when I first heard it, and I am happy to share this bright new work with San Diego audiences."

Additional events taking place during the run of Benny & Joon include:

VICKI AND CARL ZEIGER INSIGHTS SEMINAR: Tuesday, September 12 at 5:30 p.m.

An opportunity to closely connect with productions both onstage and backstage. A panel selected from the artistic company of each show (playwrights, actors, directors, designers, and/or technicians) engages patrons in an informal and illuminating presentation of ideas and insights to enhance the theatregoing experience. Reception at 5:00 p.m. FREE.

SUBJECT MATTERS: Saturday, September 16 following the 2:00 p.m. matinee.

Explore the ideas and issues raised by a production through brief, illuminating post-show discussions with local experts, such as scientists, artists, historians, and scholars. Subject Matters will ignite discussion, bring the play's concerns into sharp focus, and encourage you to think beyond the stage! FREE.

POST-SHOW FORUMS: Tuesday, September 19, Tuesday, September 26, and Wednesday, October 4.

Join us after the show for an informal and enlightening question-and-answer session with cast, crew, and/or Globe staff members. Get the inside story on creating a character and putting together a professional production. FREE.

Single tickets to Benny & Joon start at $36 and go on sale to the general public on Friday, August 18 at 12:00 noon. Tickets can be purchased online at www.TheOldGlobe.org, by phone at (619) 23-GLOBE [234-5623], or by visiting the Box Office at 1363 Old Globe Way in Balboa Park. Discounts are available for full-time students, patrons 29 years of age and under, seniors, military members, and groups of 10 or more.

Performances begin on September 7 and continue through October 22, 2017. Performance times: Previews: Thursday, September 7 at 8:00 p.m.; Friday, September 8 at 8:00 p.m.; Saturday, September 9 at 8:00 p.m.; Sunday, September 10 at 7:00 p.m.; Tuesday, September 12 at 7:00 p.m.; Wednesday, September 13 at 7:00 p.m.; and Thursday, September 14 at 8:00 p.m. Opening night is Friday, September 15 at 8:00 p.m. Regular performances (September 16 - October 22):Tuesday and Wednesday evenings at 7:00 p.m.; Thursday and Friday evenings at 8:00 p.m., Saturdays at 2:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m., and Sundays at 2:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. There will be no performances on Saturday, September 23 at 2:00 p.m. or 8:00 p.m. and no matinee performance on Saturday, October 14 at 2:00 p.m. There will be an additional matinee performance on Wednesday, October 11 at 2:00 p.m.


Kirsten Guenther (Book) previously lived in Paris, where she worked as a Paris correspondent for USATODAY.com and penned the popular weekly column "The Sexy Expat," about an American journalist trying to navigate and date the French. Her current theatre commissions include The Years Between (T. Fellowship) and the new musical Measure of Success (The Rockefeller Foundation Grant). Ms. Guenther wrote the book and lyrics for Little Miss Fix-It (as seen on NBC) and the book for Mrs. Sharp (Richard Rodgers Award for the Playwrights Horizons workshop starring Jane Krakowski, directed by Michael Greif). She penned the books to Out of My Head (licensed by Steele Spring Stage Rights) and The Cable Car Nymphomaniac (Bay Area Theatre Award nomination). Ms. Guenther is the recipient of a Johnny Mercer Writers Fellowship, Dramatists Guild Fellowship, and a Lincoln Center Honorarium. She has penned sketches for personalities such as James Franco, Jared Leto, Christopher Walken, Michael Douglas, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Steve Buscemi, Kathie Lee and Hoda, and others. She holds a B.F.A. in Acting from USC and an M.F.A. from the Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program at New York University.

Nolan Gasser (Music) is a critically acclaimed composer, pianist, and musicologist. He is most notably the architect of Pandora Radio's Music Genome Project and the company's chief musicologist from its founding in 1999. He holds a Ph.D. in Musicology from Stanford University. His original compositions have been performed in such prestigious venues as Carnegie Hall, David Geffen Hall at Lincoln Center, The Kennedy Center, Salle Pleyel in Paris, and the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, among many others. His theatrical projects beyond Benny & Joon include the opera The Secret Garden, commissioned by San Francisco Opera (2013); the oratorio Repast: An Oratorio on the Life of Booker Wright (2015); and the musical Start Me Up, in development. Dr. Gasser's forthcoming book, Why You Like It: The Science and Culture of Musical Taste, will be released in 2018 (Flatiron Books - Macmillan Publishers). He is also the subject of a documentary for the ESPN FiveThirtyEight series The Collectors entitled "Breaking Music Down to Its Genes" (2015). The film highlights his forthcoming work with Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center to pilot an algorithm to provide personalized musical therapy for cancer patients. Dr. Gasser's TEDx Talk, "Empowering Your Musical Taste," is available on YouTube.

Mindi Dickstein (Lyrics) is a lyricist, librettist, and playwright. She wrote the lyrics for the Broadway musical Little Women (licensed by Music Theatre International, original cast album released by Sh-K-Boom & Ghostlight Records). Her work on Benny & Joon, showcased in the 2016 National Alliance for Musical Theatre Festival, was developed in part at Running Deer Musical Theatre Lab, TheatreWorks Silicon Valley, Johnny Mercer Writers Colony at Goodspeed Musicals, and Transport Group. Her current projects include Snow in August (based on the Pete Hamill novel), which had a developmental reading at Second Stage in June; and Alight Arise Return, developed at Rhinebeck Writers Retreat and Lark Play Development Center. Her other musicals include Disney's Toy Story: The Musical, for which she wrote the book; and Trip (Playwrights Horizons Steinberg Charitable Trust Commission), Notes Across a Small Pond (Bridewell Theatre), and Beasts and Saints (Boston Music Theatre Project, ASCAP Foundation Workshop), for which she wrote book and lyrics. Her short play Starving to Death in Midtown was produced worldwide as part of the 2015 Climate Change Theatre Action. Her songs have been performed widely, including at Lincoln Center's Hear and Now: Contemporary Lyricists. Ms. Dickstein's honors include a Jonathan Larson Award, a Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Fellowship, and two New York Foundation for the Arts Playwriting Fellowships. She received her M.F.A. from and is currently on the faculty of New York University's Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program.

Jack Cummings III (Director) is Co-Founder and Artistic Director of Transport Group, where he most recently directed William Inge's Picnic and Come Back, Little Sheba in rotating repertory. His favorite Transport Group credits include Queen of the Mist by Michael John LaChiusa (world premiere); See Rock City & Other Destinations by Brad Alexander and Adam Mathias (New York premiere); The Audience (conceiver, world premiere); cul-de-sac by John Cariani (world premiere); Normal by Yvonne Adrian, Tom Kochan, and Cheryl Stern (world premiere); Marcy in the Galaxy by Nancy Shayne (world premiere); and Three Days to See (author/conceiver, world premiere); as well as revivals of I Remember Mama; Hello Again; First Lady Suite; Once Upon a Mattress; Almost, Maine; The Dark at the Top of the Stairs; The Boys in the Band; All the Way Home; and Our Town. His other New York credits include the world premiere of Terrence McNally's And Away We Go (The Pearl Theatre Company), 1,000 Words Come to Mind by Michele Lowe and Scott Richards (Inner Voices Theatre, world premiere), and Arlington by Polly Pen and Victor Lodato (Inner Voices Theatre, world premiere). His regional credits include I Remember Mama (Two River Theater), A Streetcar Named Desire (Gretna Theatre), Violet and The Young Man from Atlanta (Barksdale Theatre), and The Illusion (Nevada Theatre Company). He received his B.A. in International Relations from William and Mary and his M.F.A. in Directing from University of Virginia. He is married to actress Barbara Walsh.

Katie Whalley Banville (Understudy) returns to The Old Globe, where she previously worked on A Doll's House. Her recent credits include Disney'sFreaky Friday and the world premiere of Escape to Margaritaville (La Jolla Playhouse). She is a Resident Artist at Cygnet Theatre Company, with credits including Dainty June in Gypsy, April in Company, Parade, Cabaret, My Fair Lady, and Man of La Mancha. Her other regional credits include Louise inGypsy (Craig Noel Award) and Clara in Passion (ion theatre company), Jenny Hill in Big Fish and Gingy in Shrek The Musical (Moonlight Stage Productions), and Andi Lee in 42nd Street (San Diego Musical Theatre). Her choreography credits include Gutenberg! The Musical! (Backyard Renaissance Theatre Company) and A Christmas Carol (Cygnet).

Hannah Elless (Joon) returns to The Old Globe, where she originated the role of Margo Crawford in Steve Martin and Edie Brickell's Broadway musicalBright Star. Ms. Elless made her Broadway debut singing "Bless the Lord" in the revival of Stephen Schwartz's Godspell, followed by a very "Neil" turn in the Drama Desk Award-nominated The Other Josh Cohen under the direction of Tony Award winner Ted Sperling. She was most recently seen Off Broadway in Transport Group's Obie Award-winning productions of Picnic, as Millie Owens, and Come Back, Little Sheba, as Marie Buckholder. She can be found this fall on HBO's new television drama "The Deuce." Ms. Elless's film credits include Before Winter, The Lake Effect, and The Over/Under, as well as the upcoming When Mary Met Ally.

Colin Hanlon (Mike) was in the Falsettos revival, In Transit, and Rent on Broadway. He also played Fiyero in the first national tour of Wicked. He was Adam in The New York premiere of Dot by Colman Domingo, directed by Susan Stroman (Vineyard Theatre). Mr. Hanlon was in the original casts of I Love You Because and Edges. He played Pete in the world premiere of The 12 by Robert Schenkkan and Neil Berg (Denver Center for the Performing Arts Theatre Company) and Luke in the regional premiere of Next Fall at The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis. Mr. Hanlon's television credits include Steven on the Emmy Award-winning "Modern Family" on ABC, "Difficult People" on Hulu, and "The Sinner" on USA Network. He also starred in and produced "Submissions Only."

January LaVoy (Ruthie) is makes her Old Globe debut in Benny & Joon. She has appeared on Broadway in Enron and Off Broadway in Measure for Measure (Theatre for a New Audience), Wings (Second Stage Theatre), Coraline (MCC Theater), and Two Trains Running, Home, Funnyhouse of a Negro,and the world premiere of Will Eno's Wakey, Wakey (Signature Theatre Company). Her regional credits include Mattie Campbell in Joe Turner's Come and Gone (Mark Taper Forum), Kate in Good People (Pittsburgh Public Theater), Isabella in Measure for Measure (The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey), Stella in A Streetcar Named Desire, Dawn in Lobby Hero, and Portia in The Merchant of Venice (Denver Center Theatre Company), and the world premiere of Native Guard (ALLIANCE THEATRE). Her television credits include "Blue Bloods," "3 lbs.," "Law & Order" (original, "Criminal Intent," and "Special Victims Unit"), and Noelle Ortiz on "One Life to Live". Her voiceover work includes many national commercial campaigns and over 150 audiobooks. Ms. LaVoy has been honored as Audiobook Narrator of the Year by Publishers Weekly and has received multiple Audie Awards.

Jake Millgard (Understudy) was last seen in the Globe's productions of Guys and Dolls, Measure for Measure (Globe for All), Love's Labor's Lost,Macbeth, The Comedy of Errors, and Arms and the Man. He received his M.F.A. from The Old Globe and University of San Diego Shiley Graduate Theatre Program and appeared in their productions of As You Like It, The Seagull, Clybourne Park, and Pericles, Prince of Tyre. His New York credits include Sex and Violence, On Campus, and Remembering Kimberly. His regional credits include Dracula and A Christmas Carol (Actors Theatre of Louisville), The Full Monty (Northern Stage), and Art, The Odd Couple, and Lips Together, Teeth Apart (Mount Baker Theatre's Summer Repertory Theatre). He also appeared in the premiere of The Open Road Anthology (Humana Festival of New American Plays). Some of his television and film credits include "Grimm," Pudding Face, Placebo, and Frank and Barry.

Paolo Montalban (Larry) was last seen at the Globe as Mike Masaoka in the world premiere of Allegiance. He is best known for portraying The Prince opposite Brandy in Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella (ABC), as well as the series lead Kung Lao in "Mortal Kombat: Conquest" (TNT), which was based on the popular video game. He has appeared on Broadway in Breakfast at Tiffany's starring Emilia Clarke; as Manjiro in Pacific Overtures(Roundabout Theatre Company); and in The King and I. He was most recently seen Off Broadway as Tommie Haw, a stripping Chinese American cowboy, in Bella: An American Tall Tale (Playwrights Horizons). His other New York credits include Eglamour in Two Gentlemen of Verona (Shakespeare in the Park) and Claro in The Romance of Magno Rubio (Ma-Yi Theater Company). His regional work includes Arthur in The Unsinkable Molly Brown (The Muny, Denver Center for the Performing Arts Theatre Company), the world premiere of Bella (Dallas Theater Center), The King in The King and I (Lyric Opera of Chicago), Carl Magnus in A Little Night Music (American Conservatory Theater), The Emperor in The Orphan of Zhao (La Jolla Playhouse, American Conservatory Theater), and Clopin in The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Ogunquit Playhouse). Mr. Montalban has played recurring and guest-starring roles on "Madam Secretary," "The Blacklist," "Nurse Jackie," and "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit." His film credits include Just Wright, American Adobo, andThe Great Raid.

Bryce Pinkham (Sam) is making his Old Globe debut. His Broadway credits include A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, The Heidi Chronicles,Holiday Inn, Ghost, and Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson. His favorite television appearances are on PBS's "Mercy Street" and Baz Luhrmann's "The Get Down." He is a frequent collaborator with Outside the Wire, a theatre company that brings social-impact performances to American military audiences around the world. His most recent tours include Kuwait, Qatar, Japan, and Guantanamo Bay. He is a proud Leonore Annenberg Fellow and an enthusiastic graduate of Boston College and Yale School of Drama. Along with Globe M.F.A. alumnus Lucas Caleb Rooney, he co-founded a charity that uses theatrical storytelling to empower at-risk youth in Madagascar and the United States.

Andrew Samonsky (Benny) has appeared on Broadway as Neville Landless in The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Kenneth Ormiston in Scandalous, and Lt. Cable in the Tony Award-winning revival of South Pacific, with which he was also seen in the "Live from Lincoln Center" PBS broadcast. Most recently he played Robert Kincaid in the first national tour of The Bridges of Madison County. He originated the role of Captain Phoebus in the American premiere ofThe Hunchback of Notre Dame (Paper Mill Playhouse, La Jolla Playhouse). Mr. Samonsky was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for his portrayal of Frank Russell in the Off Broadway production of Michael John LaChiusa's Queen of the Mist, and he appeared in the City Center Encores! productions ofFiorello! and Merrily We Roll Along. He has originated the roles of Richard in Somewhere in Time (Portland Center Stage), Beauchamp in Tales of the City(American Conservatory Theater), Joshua in Little Miss Sunshine (La Jolla Playhouse), and Nick in Disney's On the Record (first national tour). He is a soloist with symphonies across the country, including the New York Philharmonic and Boston Pops. His television and film credits include "Elementary," "Guiding Light," The Ceiling Fan, and The Secret Song.

Natalie Toro (Dr. Cruz, Mrs. Smail) originated the role of Madame Defarge in A Tale of Two Cities on Broadway and won Sarasota Magazine's Best Featured Actress Award in its pre-Broadway run. She was the first American to play the role of Eponine in Les Misérables, and she was nominated for a Joseph Jefferson Award for her portrayal of Eva Peron in the 20th anniversary tour of Evita. She originated the role of Sally in Alan Menken's A Christmas Carol and also played Mary Magdalene in Jesus Christ Superstar, Grizabella in Cats, and Camila in In the Heights. She has originated roles Off Broadway including La Bruja in The Yellow Brick Road and Ginger in Zombie Prom. Her regional work includes The Bikinis, Zorba, Mrs. Johnstone in Blood Brothers,Frances of Guernica, Everything's Ducky, and The Fix produced by Cameron Macintosh. Ms. Toro is currently a headliner with her one-woman show on major cruise lines around the world. Her CD Natalie Toro includes a duet with Sutton Foster, and her holiday CD Just in Time for Christmas features duets with Ryan Kelly from Celtic Thunder and Grammy Award winner Jon Secada. Ms. Toro's television credits include "Law & Order," "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," "Elementary," "Person of Interest," and "Black Box." She has also performed with numerous symphony orchestras and at Carnegie Hall and the National Concert Hall in Dublin, Ireland.

Jason SweetTooth Williams (Waldo, Video Store Owner) is making his Old Globe debut with Benny & Joon. He has spent the last year in the new Disney musical Freaky Friday, enjoying runs at La Jolla Playhouse, Cleveland Play House, Alley Theatre, and Signature Theatre Company, where it received its world premiere. He was also recently seen Off Broadway opposite Jackie Hoffman as Prince Dauntless in Transport Group's production of Once Upon a Mattress directed by Jack Cummings III. Mr. Williams is a longtime collaborator of award-winning writer Joe Iconis, having appeared in Iconis's Bloodsong of Love (Ars Nova), The Black Suits (Summer Play Festival/The Public Theater), ReWrite (Urban Stages), and Things to Ruin (album available on Sh-K-Boom & Ghostlight Records). His other favorite theatre credits include Crossing Brooklyn (Transport Group), The Trouble with Doug (TheatreWorks Silicon Valley), and The Disappearing Man (Musical Theatre Factory). As a writer, Mr. Williams co-wrote the '70s Blaxploitation-inspired action musical Broadway BounTy Hunter, which had its world premiere last summer starring Annie Golden at Barrington Stage Company.

Scott Rink (Choreographer) choreographed the Off Broadway productions of Once Upon a Mattress, Three Days to See, Queen of the Mist, Hello Again, Being Audrey, Crossing Brooklyn, Songs for a New World, and Normal. Mr. Rink's regional credits include Carnaval de Fuego (Six Flags Elitch Gardens),Alice in Wonderland (Birmingham Children's Theatre), Disney's Mulan (Imagination Stage), and Seussical (Wagner College). His commissioned works include dances for Ailey II, ABT II, Oakland Ballet Company, Minnesota Dance Theatre, Repertory Dance Theatre, The Ailey School, Harvard University, University of North Carolina School of the Arts, and University of Minnesota, among others. Mr. Rink has created a number of works for his company danceRINK in New York City and abroad. As a dancer, Mr. Rink performed in the companies of Eliot Feld, Elisa Monte, Karole Armitage, and Lar Lubovitch.

Dane Laffrey (Scenic and Costume Design) previously designed sets for The Old Globe's production of The Few. His Broadway credits include set and costumes for Deaf West's Spring Awakening, set for Fool for Love, and sets for this season's revival of Once on This Island at Circle in the Square Theatre. His recent Off Broadway credits include sets and/or costumes for Rancho Viejo, Indian Summer, The Christians, and Iowa (Playwrights Horizons),Sell/Buy/Date (Manhattan Theatre Club), Homos, or Everyone in America (LAByrinth Theater Company), Picnic and Come Back, Little Sheba (Transport Group), The Harvest (Lincoln Center Theater), The Glory of the World (Brooklyn Academy Of Music's Harvey Theater), Cloud Nine (Atlantic Theater Company), and other work at Roundabout Theatre Company, Second Stage Theatre, Vineyard Theatre, Lincoln Center Theater, MCC Theater, Soho Rep., Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, Transport Group, and many others. Mr. Laffrey's regional work includes the Humana Festival, Mark Taper Forum, Shakespeare Theatre Company, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Huntington Theatre Company, Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, Denver Center for the Performing Arts Theatre Company, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Goodspeed Musicals, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, Baltimore Center Stage, Studio Theatre, Dallas Theater Center, New York Stage and Film, and others. He has also designed internationally in Tokyo, Oslo, Osaka, and throughout Australia. Mr. Laffrey won a 2017 Obie Award for Sustained Excellence of Set and Costume Design, and he has been nominated for a Drama Desk Award and four Henry Hewes Design Awards, along with numerous regional accolades.

R. Lee Kennedy (Lighting Design) is the resident lighting designer for New York City-based Transport Group, and he has designed their Off Broadway productions of Inge in Rep: Picnic and Come Back, Little Sheba; Once Upon a Mattress; Three Days to See; I Remember Mama (Henry Hewes Design Award nomination); Almost, Maine; Queen of the Mist (Hewes nomination); Hello Again; See Rock City (Drama Desk Award nomination); Bury the Dead(Drama Desk nomination); Marcy in the Galaxy; The Dark at the Top of the Stairs; Normal; The Audience (Drama Desk nomination); First Lady Suite;Requiem for William; Our Town; and the world premiere play And Away We Go by Terrence McNally, produced by The Pearl Theatre Company. His regional credits include The Light in the Piazza (Barrymore Award) and The Outgoing Tide (Barrymore nomination) (Philadelphia Theatre Company), Cake Off (Signature Theatre Company), and I Remember Mama (Two River Theater), as well as Illinois Shakespeare Festival's 2006, 2008, 2009, and 2011 seasons. Mr. Kennedy has designed national tours of The Secret Garden (Joseph Jefferson Award Citation), Once on This Island, Five Guys Named Moe, and A Grand Night for Singing.

Kai Harada (Sound Design) designed the Broadway productions of Amélie, Sunday in the Park with George, Allegiance, Gigi, Fun Home, On the Town,First Date, Follies (Tony and Drama Desk Award nominations), and Million Dollar Quartet. His other credits include Poster Boy (Williamstown Theatre Festival), Beaches (Drury Lane Theatre), Brooklynite (Vineyard Theatre), Little Dancer and First You Dream: The Music of Kander & Ebb (The Kennedy Center), Zorro (Moscow, Atlanta), Hinterm Horizont (Berlin), Sweeney Todd and The Pirates of Penzance (Portland Opera), and She Loves Me (Oregon Shakespeare Festival). He was also the audio consultant for the Broadway revival of Hedwig and the Angry Inch.

Michael Starobin (Orchestrations) previously orchestrated In Your Arms at The Old Globe. His credits include Sunday in the Park with George, Mrs. Miller Does Her Thing, Freaky Friday, Kid Victory, Falsettos, First Daughter Suite, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, If/Then, Annie, Dogfight, Leap of Faith, Queen of the Mist, The People in the Picture, Sondheim on Sondheim, Next to Normal (Tony Award), The Glorious Ones, Dr. Seuss's How the Grinch Stole Christmas!, Adrift in Macao, Bernarda Alba, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Assassins (Tony Award), The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, A New Brain, A Christmas Carol, Hello Again, Guys and Dolls (1992), My Favorite Year, In Trousers, Once on This Island, Closer Than Ever, Legs Diamond, Romance/Romance, Carrie, Birds of Paradise, Rags, Three Guys Naked, and Von Richthofen. His film credits include The Hunchback of Notre Dame, A Goofy Movie, Life with Mikey, Home on the Range, Tangled, Lucky Stiff, and Beauty and the Beast (2017).

J. Oconer Navarro (Music Director) previously served as music director of The Old Globe's Rain. He recently penned new arrangements for Disney's Beauty and the Beast, currently playing at Oregon Shakespeare Festival. His select New York credits include Adding Machine, Curtains, First Daughter Suite, The House of Blue Leaves, Iowa, Mary Poppins, We the People, and seven seasons with Lincoln Center Theater. His regional credits include Barrington Stage Company, Hangar Theatre, The Kennedy Center, New York Stage and Film, three national tours for Theatreworks USA, and Two River Theater. He is part of the founding faculty of New Studio on Broadway at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, as well as the Musical Theatre Conservatory at the Stella Adler Studio of Acting, and he is music supervisor at Camp Broadway. He is also a composer, lyricist, and writer whose works have been seen Off Broadway. In addition, he is the resident composer for The Church of Saint Paul the Apostle in New York and is a recipient of an American Theatre Wing Jonathan Larson Grant.

Howie Cherpakov, CSA (Casting) returns to The Old Globe after casting their productions of October Sky and Bright Star (Artios Award nomination). His Broadway and national tour credits include Bright Star, Next Fall (Artios nomination), The Seafarer, Coram Boy, Chicago, Annie Get Your Gun, Dirty Dancing, and South Pacific. Off Broadway and regionally he has cast productions for Lincoln Center Theater, Women's Project Theater, New York Stage and Film/Powerhouse Theater (Artios nomination for The Power of Duff), Atlantic Theater Company, Naked Angels (Artios Award for Fault Lines), Pasadena Playhouse, Irish Arts Center, Soho Theatre in London, American Theater Group, and New York Musical Festival, among many others.

Anjee Nero (Production Stage Manager) has previously worked on the Globe productions of King Richard II; Picasso at the Lapin Agile; October Sky; Kiss Me, Kate; The Twenty-seventh Man; Bright Star; Dog and Pony; The Winter's Tale; Be a Good Little Widow; Allegiance; A Room with a View; Richard O'Brien's The Rocky Horror Show; The Savannah Disputation; Kingdom; and the 2007 Shakespeare Festival. Ms. Nero also worked on the Broadway production of Bright Star and will soon be launching the show's tour. Her selected La Jolla Playhouse credits include Sideways directed by Des McAnuff,Ruined directed by Liesl Tommy, A Midsummer Night's Dream directed by Christopher Ashley, and Herringbone directed by Roger Rees and starring BD Wong. Ms. Nero has worked with several prominent regional theatres including The Kennedy Center, Hartford Stage, Center Theatre Group, Siti Company, Huntington Theatre Company, and Berkeley Repertory Theatre, to name a few. Her other selected credits include Schick Machine (Paul Dresher Ensemble), which toured both nationally and internationally, and Garden of Forbidden Loves and Garden of Deadly Sound (IMAGOmoves), which performed at the International Hungarian Theatre Festival in Cluj, Romania.

Amanda Salmons (Stage Manager) has previously worked at The Old Globe on King Richard II; The Blameless; Dr. Seuss's How the Grinch Stole Christmas!; October Sky; Macbeth; Rain; The Metromaniacs; Kiss Me, Kate; The White Snake; The Two Gentlemen of Verona; Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike; The Last Goodbye; Globe for All (2014, 2015); the Summer Shakespeare Festival (2011-2013); Somewhere; Lost in Yonkers; I Do! I Do!; and The Price. Her other credits include Blueprints to Freedom: An Ode to Bayard Rustin (La Jolla Playhouse), Kiss Me, Kate (Hartford Stage), The Foreigner, miXtape, See How They Run, The Music Man, and The Rivalry (Lamb's Players Theatre), The Gondoliers, The Pirates of Penzance, Candide, and Trial by Jury (Lyric Opera San Diego), and SummerFest (La Jolla Music Society). She received her B.A. in Theatre from UC San Diego.

The Tony Award-winning Old Globe is one of the country's leading professional regional theatres and has stood as San Diego's flagship arts institution for over 80 years. Under the leadership of Erna Finci Viterbi Artistic Director Barry Edelstein, The Old Globe produces a year-round season of 15 productions of classic, contemporary, and new works on its three Balboa Park stages: the Donald and Darlene Shiley Stage in the 600-seat Old Globe Theatre and the 250-seat Sheryl and Harvey White Theatre, both part of The Old Globe's Conrad Prebys Theatre Center, and the 605-seat outdooR Lowell Davies Festival Theatre, home of its internationally renowned Shakespeare Festival. More than 250,000 people attend Globe productions annually and participate in the theatre's artistic and arts engagement programs. Numerous world premieres such as the 2014 Tony Award winner for Best Musical, A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, Bright Star, Allegiance, The Full Monty, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, and the annual holiday musical Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas! have been developed at The Old Globe and have gone on to enjoy highly successful runs on Broadway and at regional theatres across the country.

          London's CHAMPIONS OF MAGIC Tour Headed Stateside This Fall        

Following in the footsteps of Downton Abbey, John Oliver and James Corden, the latest British sensation to hit our shores is the Champions Of Magic tour.

The five world-class illusionists that make up this mind-bending theatrical production are coming to the USA for the very first time, following 4 years in the the UK, with sold-out shows, rave reviews and a run in London's West End.

The Champions Of Magic cast includes Grand Illusionists Young & Strange, Queen of Close-Up Fay Presto, Master Mind Reader Alex McAleer and International Stage Magician Of The Year Edward Hilsum.

With over 20 million online views between them, this cast of Britain's top magicians includes international award winners presenting incredible mind reading, stunning close-up magic and daring large-scale illusions. Their skills have been seen around the world on TV with appearances on The CW's 'Penn & Teller: Fool Us', CNN's 'A Quest For Magic' and NBC's 'Caught On Camera With Nick Cannon'.

Witness the impossible, including disappearances, levitation, teleportation and a heart stopping finale, all presented with lighting and special effects to rival the biggest theatrical spectacles.

Champions Of Magic has been seen by tens of thousands across the UK and finally in fall 2017 U.S. audiences will get their first chance to see why British fans return to see the country's biggest touring illusion show time and time again. Don't miss your chance to catch some of the greatest magicians on the planet on their debut US tour, in a show that never fails to amaze.


October 3 - Whiteaker Center, Harrisburg, Pensylvania

October 5 - State Theater, Ithica, New York

October 6 & 7 - The Levoy, Millville, New Jersey (New York City Metro)

October 8 - Infinite Energy Center, Duluth, Georgia (Atlanta)

October 10 & 11 - Sharon Morse PAC, The Villages, Florida (Gainsville/Orlando)

October 12- The Orpheum, New Orleans, Louisiana

October 13- Arlington Music Hall, Arlington, Texas (Dallas / Ft. Worth)

October 20, Warner Theatre, Erie, Pensylvania

October 25, Weidner Theatre, Green Bay, Wisconson

October 26, Genesee Theatre, Waukegan, Illinios (Chicago)

October 28, Emporia Granada Theatre, Emporia, Kansas

November 3, Casino Regina, Regina, Saskatchewan

November 8, Union Colony Civic Center Greeley, Colorado

November 9, Rose Wagner PAC, Salt Lake City, Utah

November 10, Thousand Oaks PAC, Thousand Oaks, California (Los Angeles)

November 12, Northern Quest Casino Airway Heights, Washington (Spokane)

November 15, Cal Poly Arts, San Luis Obispo, California

November 16, Sycuan Casino, El Cajon, California (San Diego)

November 17, Grand Theatre, Tracey, California (San Francisco)

November 18, Cerritos PAC, Cerritos, California (Los Angeles)

          La Jolla Playhouse Announces Cast and Creative Team for Hansol Jung's WILD GOOSE DREAMS        

La Jolla Playhouse announces the cast and creative team for its world-premiere production of Wild Goose Dreams, by Hansol Jung, directed by Leigh Silverman, running September 5 - October 1 (press opening: Sunday, September 10) in the Mandell Weiss Forum.

The cast will feature Yunjin Kim (TV's Lost; Berkeley Rep's The Woman Warrior) as "Yoo Nanhee," James Kyson (TV's Heroes, Hawaii 5-0) as "Gook Minsung" and Francis Jue (Broadway's Pacific Overtures; Obie Award winner for Yellow Face) as "Father," along with Carolyn Agan (San Diego Musical Theatre's Ragtime) as "Woman/Chorus," Julian Cihi (Broadway's Doctor Zhivago) as "Man/Chorus," Rona Figueroa (Broadway's Miss Saigon) as "Wife/Chorus," Samantha Wang (DNA New Work Series' Akeelah and the Bee) as "Hyonjin/Chorus," and UC San Diego M.F.A. students DeLeon Dallas, Kyle Hester and Kimberly Monks as "Chorus."

The creative team includes Paul Castles, Composer; Jongbin Jung, Korean Music Composer; Charity Wicks, Music Supervisor; Yasmine Lee, Choreographer; Wilson Chin (Kill Local, Hollywood), Scenic Designer; Tony Award winner Linda Cho (Limelight, The Orphan of Zhao), Costume Designer; Keith Parham (Tribes), Lighting Designer; Joanna Lynne Staub, Sound Designer; Gabriel Greene, Dramaturg; and Melanie J. Lisby, Stage Manager.

"Hansol Jung's exquisite new play brings together two strangers bound by their shared loneliness in a hauntingly beautiful piece that shifts between the tangible and the ethereal, the literal and the metaphorical. Award-winning director Leigh Silverman makes her Playhouse debut mounting this brand new work with an extraordinary cast and creative team," said La Jolla Playhouse Artistic Director Christopher Ashley.

In Wild Goose Dreams, a North Korean defector who has left her family behind and a lonely South Korean father start an unlikely online romance as they each attempt to allay their fears and alienation in this inventive, lyrical and darkly humorous piece.

Hansol Jung is a playwright and director from South Korea. Plays include Cardboard Piano (Humana Festival at Actors Theatre of Louisville); Among the Dead (Ma-Yi Theater Company); No More Sad Things (co-world premiere at Sideshow Theatre, Chicago and Boise Contemporary Theatre) and Wolf Play. Commissions from Playwrights Horizons, Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation grant with Ma-Yi Theatre and a translation of Romeo and Juliet for Play On! at Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Her work has been developed at the Royal Court (London), NYTW, Berkeley Rep's Ground Floor, O'Neill Conference, Sundance Theatre Lab, Lark Play Development Center, Salt Lake Acting Company, Boston Court Theatre, Asia Society New York and Seven Devils Playwright Conference. She is the recipient of the 2016 P73 Playwright Fellowship at Page 73 Productions, Rita Goldberg Playwrights' Workshop Fellowship at the Lark, 2050 Fellowship at NYTW, MacDowell Colony Artist Residency and International Playwrights Residency at Royal Court. Her plays have received the Paul Stephen Lim Playwriting Award (Among the Dead), Honorable Mention from the 2014 Arch and Bruce Brown Playwriting Competition (Cardboard Piano), and was named 2014 finalist for the Ruby Prize (No More Sad Things). She has translated over thirty English musicals into Korean, including Evita, Dracula, Spamalot and The 25th Annual...Spelling Bee, while working on several award winning musical theatre productions as director, lyricist and translator in Seoul, South Korea. Ms. Jung holds a Playwriting M.F.A. from Yale School of Drama, and is a proud member of the Ma-Yi Theater Writers Lab.

Leigh Silverman is a two-time Obie Award winner, directed the Encores! and Broadway productions of Violet and earned a Tony Award nomination. Other Broadway credits include David Henry Hwang's Chinglish, Lisa Kron's Well, as well as Andrew Lippa's The Wild Party for Encores!. Over thirty world premieres including: All the Ways to Say I Love You (MCC); Tumacho (Clubbed Thumb); The Way We Get By (Second Stage); American Hero (Second Stage and Williamstown Theatre Festival); Kung Fu (Signature Theatre); The (curious case of the) Watson Intelligence (Playwrights Horizons); No Place to Go (Public Theater); The Madrid (MTC); Golden Child (Signature Theatre); In The Wake (Center Theatre Group/Berkeley Rep and Public Theater, Obie Award, Lortel nomination); Go Back to Where You Are (Playwrights Horizons, Obie Award); From Up Here (MTC, Drama Desk nomination); Yellow Face (Pulitzer finalist, Center Theatre Group/Public Theater); Coraline (MCC/True Love); Hunting and Gathering (Primary Stages); Oedipus at Palm Springs (NYTW); Blue Door (Playwrights Horizons/Seattle Rep); Well (Public Theater/Huntington Theatre/ACT).

Carolyn Agan (Woman/Chorus) won the 2016 Craig Noel Award for Ragtime at San Diego Musical Theatre. Other credits include the national tour of The Phantom Tollbooth, Olive in The 25th Annual...Spelling Bee, Belle in A Christmas Carol ('10-'15), Freedom's Song, 1776, LiberTy Smith and Parade (Ford's Theatre), Hello, Dolly! (Signature/Ford's Theatre), Two Gents: A Rock Opera (Shakespeare Theatre), Audrey in Little Shop of Horrors (Olney Theatre), Aldonza in Man of La Mancha, Bold Girls, The Hostage (Keegan Theatre). Ms. Agan serves as Director of Education at San Diego Musical Theatre and is an associated teaching artist with La Jolla Playhouse and The Old Globe.

Julian Cihi (Man/Chorus) has appeared on Broadway in Doctor Zhivago and Off-Broadway as Romeo in Romeo and Juliet at Classic Stage Company. Other credits include The Importance of Being Earnest; A Month in the Country (Williamstown Theatre Festival), Roger in RENT; Orlando in As You Like It (Toho Productions; Japan), directed by Michael Mayer. TV: The Mysteries of Laura (NBC); Mr. Robot (USA); High Maintenance (HBO); Gypsy (Netflix). Born and raised in Tokyo and currently living in New York City, Mr. Cihi earned his B.A. from Brown University and M.F.A. from NYU Tisch Graduate Acting.

DeLeon Dallas (Chorus) is a third-year M.F.A. actor at UC San Diego, where credits include La Bete, Native Son, Streamers, Strange Men, Damascus. Regional: Honky (San Diego Repertory); Brothers Size (Ubuntu). Film credits: Honky (PBS). He holds a B.A. in Sports Management from Concordia University, Nebraska. He was also chosen for the summer 2017 Guthrie Experience for actors in training. Mr. Dallas collaborated closely with the Guthrie Theater and other actors in his class from different training programs to devise a new works called Incurable: A Fool's Tale.

Rona Figueroa (Wife/Chorus) appeared on Broadway as Kim in Miss Saigon, Eponine in Les Miserables, as well as in Nine and Lennon. Off-Broadway credits include Daisy in Dogeaters (Public Theater) and Grusha in Caucasian Chalk Circle (Vineyard Theater). Regional: Lady Thiang in The King and I (Chicago Lyric Opera), Misaki in I Sing the Rising Sea (Virginia Stage Company), Mimi in Rent (Vermont Theater), Luciana in Boys From Syracuse (Center Stage), Mary Magdelene in Jesus Christ Superstar (NSMT) and We Will Rock You (Vegas). Film/TV credits: Dragonheart, A New Beginning, Slow Jam King, Mysteries of Laura, Eye Candy, Gossip Girl, Royal Pains. Rock band: Quasilulu, albums on iTunes.

Kyle Hester's (Chorus) regional credits include A Midsummer Night's Dream, Hamlet (Santa Cruz Shakespeare); Annie Get Your Gun (Dutch Apple Theatre); The Jazz Funeral of Stella Brooks (Provincetown Tennessee Williams Festival). LA: Macbeth (Harold Clurman Lab Theatre); Twelfth Night (LA New Court Theatre); Henry VI, Part 1 (The Production Company). UC San Diego: Strange Men, Streamers, Native Son, Angels in America: Perestroika, Go. Please. Go., La Bête. Film: Praxis, Finale. TV: The Temp Agency. Training: M.F.A. from UCSD (2018), B.F.A. from NYU Tisch.

Francis Jue (Father) was featured in La Jolla Playhouse's production of Thoroughly Modern Millie. On Broadway he has appeared in Pacific Overtures, Thoroughly Modern Millie and M. Butterfly. Favorite theatre credits include Yellow Face (Obie and Lucille Lortel Awards; Drama Desk and Drama League Award nominations), In the Next Room, or the vibrator play (AriZoni Award), Miss Saigon (Elliot Norton Award), Kiss of the Spiderwoman (Drama-Logue Award), Cabaret (Bay Area Critics Circle Award), Falsettoland, tokyo fish story, Kung Fu, King of the Yees and Paper Dolls. Film and TV credits include Joyful Noise, and recurring roles on Madam Secretary and Law & Order: SVU.

Yunjin Kim (Yoo Nanhee) has appeared on the popular television series Lost, Two Sisters and Mistresses. Her theater credits include Yachiyo in Ballad of Yachiyo at Seattle Repertory Theatre; Fa Mu Lan in The Woman Warrior at Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Diana in Junk Bonds at Capital Repertory Company, Jing Mei Woo in The Joy Luck Club at Long Wharf Theatre and Huoy in The Survivor at Actor's Theatre of Louisville. Her Korean film and TV credits include Shiri, The Legend of Gingko, Rush! (Japanese film), Iron Palm, Yesterday, Ardor, Diary of June, Seven Days, Harmony, Heartbeat, The Neighbors, Ode to My Father, House of the Disappeared, Beautiful Vacation, Wedding Dress, With Love.

James Kyson's (Gook Minsung) theater credits include Blood (The Complex); Hair (Knightsbridge). His television appearances include: Preacher, Elementary, Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders, Sleepy Hollow, NCIS: LA, Justified, Hawaii 5-0, and series regular on Heroes. He also voiced the History Channel's WWII in HD, Ken Burns' National Parks, Adventure Time and HBO's Animals. His film credits include Walk to Vegas, Shutter.

Kimberly Monks (Chorus) is a third-year M.F.A. actor at UC San Diego, where credits include: La Bete, Native Son, Taming of the Shrew, Are You There and Damascus. She received a B.A. in Religion: Youth Leadership from Vanguard University of Southern California. Ms. Monks was also chosen for the summer 2017 Guthrie Experience for actors in training. She collaborated closely with the Guthrie Theater and other actors from different training programs to devise a new works called Incurable: A Fool's Tale.

Samantha Wang (Hyonjin/Chorus) appeared in the Playhouse's DNA New Work Series reading of Akeelah and the Bee. Other credits include: Vanessa in In the Heights (UC San Diego), Betty-Lou Who in How the Grinch Stole Christmas! and Underworld Voice in The Odyssey (The Old Globe), Emma in Lego Friends Live Holiday Show (Legoland California), Sara Crewe in A Little Princess (San Diego Junior Theatre). Ms. Wang is currently working towards a B.A. in Political Science: Public Law and a B.A. in Communications at the University of California, San Diego.

The Tony Award-winning La Jolla Playhouse is internationally-renowned for creating some of the most exciting and adventurous work in American theatre, through its new play development initiatives, its innovative Without Walls series, artist commissions and residencies. Currently led by Artistic Director and 2017 Tony Award winner Christopher Ashley and Managing Director Michael S. Rosenberg, the Playhouse was founded in 1947 by Gregory Peck, Dorothy McGuire and Mel Ferrer, and reborn in 1983 under the artistic leadership of Des McAnuff. La Jolla Playhouse has had 28 productions transfer to Broadway, garnering 38 Tony Awards, among them the currently-running, Tony Award-nominated hit Come From Away, along with Jersey Boys, Memphis, The Who's Tommy, Big River, as well as Billy Crystal's 700 Sundays and the Pulitzer Prize-winning I Am My Own Wife, both fostered as part of the Playhouse's Page To Stage Program. LaJollaPlayhouse.org.

          The Dream Colony: A Life in Art        
The Dream Colony: A Life in Art
author: Walter Hopps
name: Ruth
average rating: 4.08
book published:
rating: 4
read at:
date added: 2017/01/19

          Ant Control Tips        
It is never fun to find that you have an infestation of ants around or in your home. Ants are hard to get rid of. They are very social beings. They live in large nesting colonies. Like bees, the colony has a queen and a lot of workers who take care of her. She is the only one who lays eggs.
          Carpenter Bee Removal        
Carpenter bees are what an entomologist refers to as a solitary bee. This means that they do not live in colonies like the honeybee, which is considered a social bee. Although they do not live in a colony, it is not uncommon to find them living in close vicinity and at times, this can be a large number. Carpenter bees are thought to be docile insects, but the female of this specie can inflict painful stings. If you see a large number of carpet bees around it is important that you do a bee removal immediately.
          Houston : Plantation Homes Debuts New Floor Plans in Northwest Park Colony        
Houston : Plantation Homes Debuts New Floor Plans in Northwest Park Colony

Plantation Homes is introducing a new series of floor plans priced from the $180,000s in Northwest Park Colony, located inside Beltway 8 near State Highway 249.

The nine one- and two-story floor plans represent a new, lower price point for Plantation Homes in the Houston area.

“This series of homes delivers an excellent location at a price not often found these days in the Houston area, especially inside Beltway 8,” said Paul Blackburn, region president for McGuyer Homebuilders, Inc., (MHI), parent company of Plantation Homes. “It opens up the possibility of home ownership to a broader audience, especially with the current average price of a single-family home in Houston topping $280,000.”

The homes range from 1,425 to 2,592 square feet and feature brick exteriors and custom quality oak-accented cabinetry. Several plans also feature kitchen island work centers. Model home construction has begun.

“All of the designs come with Plantation’s signature 10-year structural warranty and a two-year limited warranty that is double what most other builders offer,” Blackburn said.

The homes — designed for 45-foot homesites — also feature the builder’s Eco Smart energy-efficiency measures that meet stringent Environments for Living platinum-level guidelines. The flexible floor plans also allow for structural customizations.

Located within the Klein Independent School District, Northwest Park Colony offers easy access to State Highway 249, Beltway 8, Loop 610 and Interstate 45. Shopping, dining and everyday conveniences are nearby, and the Greenspoint Business District and Bush Intercontinental Airport are minutes away.

For more information, visit www.plantationhomes.com.

          Pic of the day July 14, 2017 at 11:03PM        

Colony B Wallpaper specially prepared for The Awkward Squad. #blog #writersofinstagram #scifi #SFF From Instagram: http://ift.tt/2uiZWTb

The post Pic of the day July 14, 2017 at 11:03PM appeared first on Mikey Campling.

          Downtown Mesa may get 50-unit artist colony        
courtesy of Parker Leavitt, The Republic | azcentral.com9:42 a.m. MST October 22, 2014 Non-profit developer Artspace wants to build an affordable-housing project for working artists in Mesa. (Photo: Artspace) STORY HIGHLIGHTS Non-profit developer Artspace wants to build a 50-unit artist colony in downtown Mesa Nearby light rail was a major factor in choosing the Mesa […]
          NIGHT IN THE SUN (poems)        

Weldaghost /1

An Occurrence In Dead City /5
Gothko /8
Profession /9
Auto-Da-Fe (For Holly) /11
Short Bit, Young Money /14
Lao Tzu In German /15
Big Beer /17
Lack Toes /19
Night In The Sun /20

Chikurubi /23

Xateros /27
The Head of Zumbi /28
Land of Plenty /29
The Amazon /30
Feral To The Wiser /31
Sin Vivo /32
S.O.L. /34
Tiny Samadhi /35
Mun Man /36
Survival Is A Gothic Thing /38
Mangelina /39
The Pope of Morgues /40

The Five Senses /43

Porchtripper /49
The Earlene of Our Dreams /51
One Skilled In Care Would Let Be /53
No After /55
Two Paintings Two Men /57
John Elena McGrady /59
The Full F /61
Mascot Of The Floating World /63
Outs /65
J.G. Will Say It /67
Stadistics /68
The World Stable /70

A Dracula For Marechera /73

Svilva /77
Youngblood Eternal /79
Drawing /81
Spare Change (In The American Colony) /83
Little Factor /84
1.27.45 /85
The Selected Pests of Mao Zedong /86
Pineal Man /89
Mutiny In Heaven /91

          Beatrix Potter Syndrome        

When trying to understand something new, we automatically look for parallels in our previous experience: we seek examples from the familiar in order to better understand the unfamiliar. Often, this can be helpful, as when we learn a new language and we draw on our knowledge of another language with a common root.

Unfortunately, this strategy can also take us down a path that leads not to greater understanding, but to the confusion of fact with conditioned thought and to a form of distorted vision.

This can readily be observed in the interpretation of animal behaviour by reference to human behaviour, which is one form of what we call anthropomorphism. Myths and fables and children's tales are so suffused with the granting of human values and character traits to animals that it is hard to think of a creature that has not, in our imaginations, been stereotyped and imprinted with characteristics ascribed to it by someone with a particular point to make, or axe to grind. Thus the fox is 'wily and cunning'; the dog is 'faithful and obedient'; the elephant is a 'gentle giant' and the snake is 'sneaky and deceitful'. Aesop probably started the trend, but I prefer to call it the 'Beatrix Potter Syndrome', in recognition of her influence on the developing minds of 20th-century children, of whom I was one.

Beatrix Potter was an accomplished illustrator and observer of nature, who, had she been born a century later, may well have had a distinguished career in science. Sadly, she is now only remembered for her children's books depicting animals in human clothing who walk on their hind legs. From her stories, a direct line can be drawn to the emotionally charged portrayals of animals in many Disney films, while the brutal reality of the lives of wild animals is hidden beneath a veil of sugary sentimentality.

Potter's assignation of human attributes and behaviour to animals is only one form of anthropomorphism. There are at least two other ways in which we routinely corrupt our understanding of the non-human world by our choice of language: the use of words to name or describe an animal and the description of animal behaviour in human terms.

We can draw examples from the world of bees to illustrate both of these phenomena.

When we label the egg-laying mother of the colony as 'queen' bee, we impose on her by implication all the meaning with which that English word is loaded. Thus we may expect to find her as a monarch in charge of the colony, issuing orders and, perhaps, punishments for infringements of 'colony law'. The term 'queen bee' has passed back into the English language as a description of a woman with a controlling and manipulate nature, who likes to have people around her to serve her needs and give her attention. This reinforces the popular but inappropriate picture of a real 'queen' bee, which should really be more accurately thought of as the egg-laying servant of the colony and certainly not its ruler. While the queen bee does indeed have a retinue of attendants to feed and groom her, it is they who lead her around and prepare places for her to lay. When she begins to show any signs of a decline in her ability to provide eggs, she will be superseded, ignored and left to starve.

Likewise the male bee, or drone, which has inherited the popular meaning of its name as a parasitic loafer, or one who lives off the labours of others. While the male bees do no obvious and visible work compared to their sometimes hyper-active sisters, we know remarkably little about their day-to-day activities due to the comparatively small amount of research that has been conducted on them. I suggest it is highly improbable that a colony would deliberately encumber itself with a 'useless' 10-15% of its population at a time when gathering food is its primary concern. Simply because we have so far failed to study them with due care does not entitle us to label them as 'surplus to requirements', which is how they are regarded by most conventional beekeepers. In fact, research by Juergen Tautz at Wurtzburg University has shown that drones may indeed have hitherto unsuspected duties within the hive and may well have functions in the outside world that have so far eluded detection. As long ago as 1852, Moses Quinby (Mysteries of Beekeeping Explained) suggested that drones would likely have functions beyond mating with a queen, perhaps including helping to keep the brood warm. R.O.B.Manley noted that his best honey-producing hives generally had "a large number of drones" (Honey Farming, 1947).

When we come to bee behaviour, so much of it is alien to us that we struggle to make sense of it, so it is not surprising that we resort to attempts to explain aspects of their world in human terms. We talk freely of bees foraging for food, scouting for a nest site, communicating by means of the 'waggle dance', defending their home, mating and carrying out their dead because these are all activities that we can easily relate to and make practical sense in terms of day-to-day survival in a colony.

What is perhaps more surprising - and infinitely less helpful - is when people concoct mystical 'explanations' derived entirely from their imaginations and pass them on as if they had some scientific validity or foundation in fact.

Myths and legends, populated by gods and heroes, are poetic allegories through which we have conveyed information - both oral and written - from generation to generation and thus gained some understanding of our cultural history. Many myths are anthropomorphic in their personification of natural phenomena, but as long as we understand their origins and true nature, we can learn from them without confusing their content with objective reality.

However, as our scientific understanding of the natural world grew rapidly throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, there was a parallel growth of popular interest in such things as clairvoyance, telekinesis, telepathy, reincarnation, ghosts, out-of-body experiences and suchlike para-psychological phenomena that appear not to be subject to the known laws of physics, chemistry or biology. Despite the lack of verifiable evidence for such phenomena, they appear to occupy a nether region that stubbornly persists in popular culture.

In the context of this article, the consideration of whether or not such phenomena really exist is less relevant than the fact that they have, since Victorian times at least, been routinely presented as if they were genuine by people with a considerably greater talent for showmanship than for scientific rigour. Demonstrations of 'manifestations from the spirit world' were fashionable in late nineteenth century society, while Ouija boards and 'table-tipping' have floated in and out of fashion almost to the present day, despite the efforts of rationalists such as James Randi and Derren Brown to expose the trickery behind them. Variations on the 'clairvoyance' theme have been around at least since the days of the Delphic Oracle - probably the first example of a tourist industry built around a mystical cult - and show no signs of losing popularity, despite various myth-busting public exposures of fraud and trickery.

Rudolf Steiner, in his lectures on bees, delivered in November and December of 1923 at the Goetheanum in Dornach, Switzerland, sought to interpret the world of bees by means of 'Anthroposophy', a Christianized, version of the mystical 19th century eastern-derived 'religious philosophy' of Theosophy, whose best-known proponent, Helena Blavatsky, was also a performing clairvoyant. Both Steiner and Blavatsky claimed to derive their occult knowledge from outside the material world, by a process that would nowadays be called 'channeling'.

Steiner believed that mankind had existed on Earth - although not necessarily in material form - since its creation, and that bees (as well as other animals) were created for our benefit. This chronological reversal of the truth as revealed by fossil evidence - bees having certainly been around for more than 100 million years before Homo sapiens - sets the scene for further dubious assertions, such as when he talks of embryonic queens "giving off light" that somehow causes a colony to swarm from "fear that 'it no longer possesses the bee poison".

Anyone unfamiliar with Steiner's idiosyncratic cosmology and his other writings about the supposed history of the Earth may be surprised by passages such as:

"Our earth was once in a condition of which one could say that it was surrounded by clouds that had plant-life within them; from the periphery, other clouds approached and fertilised them; these clouds had an animal nature. From cosmic spaces came the animal nature; from the earth the essence of plant-being rose upwards." (Lecture VIII)

Back in the world of bees, Steiner makes much of the 21-day gestation period of a worker bee as being equivalent to "a single rotation of the sun on its axis" (Lecture II), apparently unaware that the equatorial regions of the sun perform a single rotation in 25.6 days, while polar regions rotate once in about 36 days (NASA).

He goes on to say that 'the drone is thus an earthly being' (because its completion takes longer than the sun's rotation - which in fact, as we now know, it does not).

He further elaborates on this thesis:

"The drones are the males; they can fertilize; this power of fertilization comes from the earth; the drones acquire it in the few days during which they continue their growth within the earth-evolution and before they reach maturity. So we can now say: in the bees it is clearly to be seen that fertilization (male fecundation) comes from the earthly forces, and the female capacity to develop the egg comes from the forces of the Sun. So you see, you can easily imagine how significant is the length of time during which a creature develops. This is very important for, naturally, something happens within a definite time which could not occur in either a shorter or a longer time, for then quite other things would happen."

As happens numerous times in the Lectures, Steiner makes a statement that is demonstrably erroneous, and then goes on to elaborate a sequence of specious arguments from it, which, being derived from false premises, must inevitably lead to false conclusions.

It would be tedious to cite every instance where Steiner is obfuscatory, unnecessarily mystical or just plain wrong. Suffice to say that, while not being totally devoid of interest, his Lectures are about as useful a source of insights into bees as a medieval book of medicinal herbs would be for conducting modern surgery. Indeed, Steiner even betrays his lack of basic understanding of the functions of the human body (Lecture VII) in saying that:

"...it is represented as though the heart were a kind of pump, and that this pumping of the heart sends the blood all over the body. This is nonsense, because it is in reality the blood which is brought into motion by the ego-organization, and moves throughout the body."

However, Steiner does make some non-mystical statements that must be considered, as they at least fall into alignment with observable reality. He warns against pushing bees for over-production, drawing a parallel with the dairy industry (Lecture V); he emphasizes that "... the bee-colony is a totality. It must be seen as a totality." (Lecture V); The one much-vaunted but often mis-quoted, 'prediction' made by Steiner, usually misrepresented as a 'prophesy' of the general demise of bees, amounts to a rather mild criticism of the then relatively new practice of artificial insemination: "...we must see how things will be in fifty to eighty years time...".

Right at the end of the final Lecture, we find clear evidence that Steiner's view of nature is actually highly anthropocentric:

'Thus we can say: When we observe things in the right way, we see how the processes of Nature are actually images and symbols of what happens in human life. These men of olden times watched the birds on the juniper trees with the same love with which we look at the little cakes and gifts on the Christmas tree. "...I have therefore spoken of the juniper tree which can truly be regarded as a kind of Christmas tree, and which is the same for the birds as the blossoms for the bees, the wood for the ants, and for the wood-bees and insects in general."

And so Steiner's personal mysticism, as well as his sentimentality, turns out to have a large component of anthropomorphism lurking within it.

Having reached this point in our analysis, we have to consider what is left to us: what would be a legitimate methodology for the study of bees, that would be free from the elephant traps of anthropocentrism, anthropomorphism, sentimentality and mysticism, yet can encompass the sense experienced by many who come into contact with bees that there is 'something else' present, beyond the purely material?

A rationalist would say, 'observe without interpretation: see what is there and describe it as accurately as possible, but without overlaying it with meaning. Be true to observable reality'.

And yet, many people report some kind of transcendental experience in the presence of bees en masse, so are their reports to be written off as mere whimsy?

Speaking from my own experience, I can say that while working with bees and maintaining a calm, unhurried demeanour, I have had moments of inner peace akin to that I have also experienced while meditating or engaging in certain martial arts practices that aim to 'still the mind'. Having one's unprotected hands in a hive containing 50,000 fully-armed bees has a way of focusing the mind very much in the moment, while any deviation from the 'now' is likely to be punished more rapidly and more severely than by a Zen master's staff.

Being present 'in the moment' is a rarer - and thus more precious - experience for the 21st-century Twitter-dweller than for our ancestors. For the opportunity to experience that sense of timelessness in the company of a wild creature so many millennia our senior is a privilege that beekeepers should celebrate and cherish.

Mysticism has had its day. We are grown-ups now: we have seen the atom bomb and the double helix and we need to come to terms with objective reality in all its wonderful forms without ascribing all phenomena just beyond our understanding to the work of gods, aliens, faeries or gnomes. We can appreciate nature without projecting our aspirations or values onto it. We can observe without always needing to know the 'hidden meaning' of what we see hear, smell and taste. We can be elevated by what is around us and enjoy all the sensations available in this remarkable, natural world. We can even compose poems and songs, myths and fables to entertain us and our children, but we no longer need to sit at the feet of all-too-mortal men who exert power over the ignorant by interposing themselves between us and authentic experience of the mysteries of life.

Philip Chandler

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/6814638

          So Much Less Than The Great I Am        
If there is one single mental component which engenders the belief that one has, or is in possession of, humanity's longest held zeitgeist the 'immortal soul' it is a person's ego. Only via egotistical thinking can one conclude human consciousness(the 'person'/'self') is not engendered by the biology in which it manifests but instead is somehow independent thereof and can therefore continue to exist, intact, indefinitely and independent of the only location ever known for that 'person', its functioning biology.
While it's likely, after centuries of "slaughter the unbeliever" and elevated breeding levels among the doctrinally oppressed, some are born with an 'Id' that's genetically predisposed to believe the 'immortal soul' notion, I think one may suggest that the presence of such among the population is born of the existence of the egotistical notion triggering epigenetic changes over time.
Could one suggest then that it's the presence of Ego alone that engenders the ready acceptance of eternal life fantasies?

I think so; here's why.
I, one of the soulless, an unbeliever, consider the "I" that is me to be the current culmination of this biochemical genetic colony's life experiences and its current chemical state. The "I" that is me "exists"(has power in the cosmos) for only 1/40th of a second1, then is gone, lost forever, an imprint on the chronology of the cosmos. And is instantly replaced by a new version of "I" with 1/40th of a second more experience2, a new chemical state and responsibility for all this colony's prior acts. When, after a lifetime of about 100 trillion conscious moments, this genetic colony finally fails beyond the capacity for internal or external maintenance or repair, there will be one final "I" before the consecutive stream of "I's" that made up the "me" can no longer be generated. The memory of that recorded "me", who imprinted on the shape of the cosmos for the merest blink of the cosmological timescale, lingers in the consciousness of all or a portion of society then diminishes over a period of time relating roughly to the recorded accomplishments. For the "I" that is "me" the "I" does not extend beyond the single conscious moment and the recorded "me" cannot exist beyond the means which engendered it.

You, one of the soulful, a believer, consider the "I" that is you to be an eternal entity, able to live beyond the biochemistry, extending from before conception, way beyond the single moment and long past the death of the genetic colony stretching on into an distant, possibly unending, future. An "I" of such importance the cosmos will not allow it to expire.

So the question here is...
Which "I" has the bigger Ego?

This is one of the Too Many Questions

1 "1/40th of a second" : Supporting evidence/explanation here
2 "1/40th of a second more experience" : The nature and depth of the experience available in this time period is determined by the complexity of the "I" experiencing the moment. For more on this see Conscious Of Consciousness.

ego: Oxford Dictionaries
1. A person’s sense of self-esteem or self-importance.
1.1 Psychoanalysis - The part of the mind that mediates between the conscious and the unconscious and is responsible for reality testing and a sense of personal identity. Compare with id and superego.
1.2 Philosophy (In metaphysics) a conscious thinking subject.

id: Oxford Dictionaries
Psychoanalysis - The part of the mind in which innate instinctive impulses and primary processes are manifest

This is one of the Too Many Questions
Please leave a comment - Anything will do
The best communications are often,

          On your Arizona vacation dont miss attractions such as the Reid Park Zoo        
Make your vacation plans with one of the top online vacation guides to Arizona. Explore attractions in southeaster Arizona and visit attractions such as the Pinnacle Peak Park or the Arizona Trail if you are seeking the great outdoors. Or relax in luxury on an Arizona Spa vacation. Or take your children to the Toy Train Operating Museum. Here are a few of the Arizona attractions awaiting you on your vacation!

Visit Pinnacle Peak Park in Tucson, Arizona. You will find there is much more to Pinnacle Peak Park than simply hiking and climbing. Pinnacle Peak Park is located in North Scottsdale, Arizona — East of Pima Road, off Alma School Road between Happy Valley Road and Dynamite Boulevard. The park entrance is on 102nd Way, just west of Pinnacle Peak Patio restaurant. Trail Dust Town (where Pinnacle Peak is) has been a Tucson landmark for over 40 years. If you answered yes to these questions, Pinnacle Peak Park has a variety of volunteer opportunities available for you! Location: 6541 E. Tanque Verde Rd., Tucson, Arizona

Tubac Artist Colony - Tubac, Arizona. This community of southern Arizona is quickly becoming a growing artist colony. Although the Tucson Artist Colony is not an "Artist Colony" in the truest sense it is a group of some of the best artists in the Southwest. Tucson Artist Colony provides premier studio spaces but it is the Art Classes offered through the Tucson Artist Colony that really set it apart. Contact the artists through his/her website to sign up for classes. Tubac’s present incarnation as an artists’ colony began in the 40’s with the opening of Dale Nichol’s Artist School. Location: 45 miles south of Tucson off I-19.

Arizona Trail - Southern Border to Northern Border, Arizona. Dissecting the state of Arizona from its southern border with Mexico to the northern border of Utah this trail gives hikers, bikers and horseback riders an un-matched opportunity to enjoy the beautiful state of Arizona. There are 807 miles of trails to enjoy. The Arizona Trail is a continuous, 800+ mile diverse and scenic trail across Arizona from Mexico to Utah. Currently 94% of the trail is complete. The Arizona Trail Association's mission is simple: build, maintain, promote, protect and sustain the Arizona Trail as a unique encounter with the land. Use common sense when using the Arizona Trail.

Desert spa resorts in Arizona are especially popular during the winter months. Phoenix, Scottsdale and Tucson are home to several first class spa vacation resorts. The Boulders Resort features the Golden Door Spa which opened in 2001. The spa offers numerous treatments inspired by the Arizona desert surroundings. Arizona Biltmore, located in Phoenix, has a 22,000 square foot spa center, eight heated pools and three outdoor whirlpool spas. The resort spa uses Sonoran desert plants, stones and mud as a basis for its innovative spa treatments. Arizona features several well-known destination spas. The health spa offers over 100 facial and body treatment options.

Tour the Reid Park Zoo in Tucson, Arizona. The Reid Park Zoo is home to more than 400 animals. You’ll see all of your favorite zoo animals in comfortable habitat environments located throughout Reid Park Zoo. The Reid Park Zoo features an impressive assortment of beautiful Asian Animals, including Gibbons, bears and tigers. You’ll also see majestic Asian tigers at the Zoo, another endangered species the Zoo is active in protecting. African animals are well represented at the Reid Park Zoo. Brightly colored Macaws are another type of bird exhibited at the Reid Park Zoo. You’ll gain a unique understanding and appreciation of the effort it takes to keep the Zoo’s animal residents healthy, happy and safe at the Reid Park Zoo.

Fort Lowell Museum - Tucson, Arizona. Troop strength at Fort Lowell averaged 130 officers and 239 enlisted men. Serving at Fort Lowell were companies representing the 2nd, 4th 5th and 6th Cavalry Regiments, and the 1st, 8th, and 12th Infantry Regiments. The buildings at Fort Lowell reflected a Mexican Sonoran style of architecture. Currently to the west of the Fort Lowell Park the Commissary building and ruins of the hospital remain. The one intact Officers Quarters on the Adkins Steel parcel representing the most complete original structure from the 1870s Fort Lowell. Since 1963 the Arizona Historical Society has operated a branch Museum at the Fort Lowell Historic Site. Location: 2900 N. Craycroft Road, Tucson, Arizona - The museum is located in Old Fort Lowell Park at the corner of Cracroft and Fort Lowell Road in Tucson.

Gadsden Pacific Division Toy Train Operating Museum - Tucson, Arizona. There are 90 members of this organization dedicated to the advancement of model railroading by the collection and operation of toy trains and railroad memorabilia, as well as preserving prototype railroad history by sponsoring railroading related activities and events to share with the public. O-Gauge, G-Scale, Standard Gauge, S-Gauge, HO-Scale, N-Scale, Z-Scale displays are all set up for the showing of the different styles of model trains at the museum. GPD hosts two toy train shows/swap meets annually, now called the Winter Toy Train (formerly Coyote) and Summer Toy Train (formerly Roadrunner) Shows.
Penelope SanMateo is a travel writer for Arizona Beautiful. Her travel articles provide insights into attractions and events you don't want to miss while on your Arizona vacation. She recently visited the Reid Park Zoo while touring southern Arizona and the city of Tucson. The zoo offers an impressive assortment of animals from asian bears and tigers to a variety of african animals including a white rhinocerous.
          Navgraha Shani Rahu Vakri Dosh Nivaran Diksha Mahotsav - Kailash Siddhashram (Jodhpur)        
Dates: 28, 29, 30 November 2016

Address: Kailash Siddhashram
1-C, Panchavati Colony,
In Front of N.C.C. Ground,
Ratananda, Jodhpur - 342011 (Rajasthan)

Phone:0291-2517025, 0291-2517028
Mobile: 07568939648

          Maa Taapti Vaivasvatah Gurutva Shakti Diksha Mahotsav - Kailash Siddhashram (Jodhpur)        
Dates: 21, 22, 23 July 2015

Address: Kailash Siddhashram Jodhpur
1-C, Panchavati Colony,
In Front of N.C.C. Ground,
Ratananda, Jodhpur - 342011 (Rajasthan)

Phone:0291-2517025, 0291-2517028

Mobile: 07568939648, 08769442398

          21st April 2015 - Akshaya Tritiya Divas        
21 April 2015 – Akshaya Tritiya Divas – When the whole day is auspicious for getting success in any sadhana

Akshay Tritiya is symbolized by God Vishnu, the preserver God in the Hindu Trinity. It was the day when Vyasa started writing the history of great Mahabharat war. According to Hindu mythology, on this day the Treta Yuga began and the river Ganges, the most sacred river of India, descended to the earth from the heaven. It was on this day that Goddess Annapoorna was born. Kubera received his wealth and position as custodian of wealth and property with Goddess Lakshmi on this day by praying to Lord Shiva. Lakshmi Tantram says that even Kubera prays to Goddess Lakshmi, the Goddess of wealth and consort of Vishnu, on Akshay Tritiya.

It is traditionally observed as the birthday of Prashurama, the sixth incarnation of God Vishnu. Yudhishtira received the Akshaya patra, which he used to serve food for all the needy ones in his kingdom. It was on this day that poor Sudama, the best friend of Krishna visited Him (Lord Krishna) to greet Him after He became the King. With nothing to offer, Sudama takes with him puffed rice and offered it to his friend and never discussed his poverty though he intended to. On his return he found his hut changed to a palace.

It was on this day only that Dushasana, Duryodhana’s brother, unveils Draupadi at the royal court where Krishna protected her providing the ‘unending’ veil. In more recent history, Adi Shankara recited the Kanaka Dhara Strotra on this day for the sake of the poor couple at whose house he stopped for offering and was offered their only available gooseberry.

A dip in the river Ganges on this day is considered to be very auspicious. The Vedic scriptures say that knowledge gained or charity done on Akshaya Tritiya is very fruitful. It is considered to be a very lucky day to start new business or venture. Many people buy gold or property on this day. Fasts are kept on this day and worships are performed.

Followers of the Jain religion consider Akshaya Tritiya to be a holy and supremely auspicious day. It is associated with Lord Adinath, also known as Rishabhadeva, first of the twenty-four Tirthankaras. Lord Rishabhadeva meditated without any food and water for six months and after that set out to accept food. He was the first monk of that era. Jain monks, do not own anything. They do not even cook food for themselves. When hungry or thirsty, they set out to accept ahara. They do not ask for it and accept it where it is offered. Tirthankara Rishabhadeva went to people to accept food. However, the people of that time did not know anything about the lives and disciplines of monks, as he was the first monk of the era. The people of Ayodhya offered him gold, jewellery, gemstones, elephants, horses, expensive garments and even their daughters to honor their beloved king.

But Rishabhadeva was not in search of these things. He sought only a morsel of food, but nobody offered it to him. Nobody understood that their king was looking for food, to ensure that the monks who would come after him get food and water in the purest form; he needed to lead an ascetic life. As there was no choice, he had to fast for one year until King Shreyansa understood his need due to his divine knowledge. Shreyansa Kumar offered him sugarcane juice and thus Rishabhadeva ended his fast. This was on the day of Akshaya Tritiya. Hence, sugarcane juice is considered by Jains to be one of the best offerings.

Akshaya Tritiya, owing to all these great events is thus considered as one of the most sacred days of the year. It is further believed that religious gifts bestowed on Akshaya Tritiya become inexhaustible. Jains today observe a fast to commemorate their first Tirthankara Rishabhadeva on Akshaya Tritiya and end their fast with sugarcane juice.

In the ancient texts it is also mentioned that if someone perform any mantra sadhana or recitation, then the person gets the full benefit of each and every recitation. This day remains energized throughout the day for complete 24 hours and thus the entire day is beneficial for performing sadhana. There is no restriction of any type and any sadhana can be performed on this day. Presented below, are four very powerful sadhanas related to various sects of a human’s life and are thus recommended for everyone.

Akshaya Lakshami Sadhana
(For inexhaustible wealth)

The unanimous answer for the basis of life in present world is wealth. The reason for this is that without it, life becomes a long tale of misery and sufferings. Not just for the family man, wealth is equally important for an ascetic. In fact, the Yogis who strive selflessly for bettering the lives of others, might need more wealth than the family man, for building temples, hospitals and for other charitable purposes.

Hence wealth is the key to success and happiness in life, provided that it is used for noble causes. If one lacks wealth in life, if there is a scarcity of resources then utter frustration, hopelessness, poverty and despair sets in. The Goddess of wealth is Lakshmi and to enchant her in one’s life is not so easy. This is because Lakshmi remains permanently at a place only if there is sacredness, intelligence, patience and activeness ruling over the place.

There can be no better way of making these attributes a permanent part of your home than accomplishing Akshaya Lakshmi Sadhana, that too on this auspicious day. There are thousands of Sadhanas for gaining wealth that have appeared in the ancient scriptures but presented below is a very powerful and rare sadhana, which if performed on the occasion of Akshaya Tritiya, not just makes a person rich but intelligent too.

Sadhana Articles: Five Laghu Supari, Jwalamalini Yantra and Akshaya Rosary.    

Sadhana Procedure: Have a bath, wear pure white clothes and sit facing South on a white mat. Cover a wooden seat with white cloth. Draw a star with six edges with vermillion on the cloth. This can be created by drawing two triangles one above the other, each pointing to opposite direction. Now place the five Laghu Supari on each of the vertices of the star. Place the Jwalamalini Yantra in the centre of the star. Also place a picture of Sadgurudev. Offer vermillion, rice, flower petals on the picture and light a mustard oil lamp. It is advisable to use a big lamp so that all the Suparis remain immersed in oil.
Then offer prayers to the Guru and chant one round of Guru Mantra. Take water in the right palm and then speak out thus – I (speak out your name) am performing this Sadhana for gaining wealth and intelligence and for giving Goddess Lakshmi a permanent place in my house.

Now drop the water onto the floor. Next chant just three (3) rounds of the following mantra wit Akshaya rosary.

Om Akshaya Lakshmyai Siddhim Dehi Pratyaksham Bhav Namo Hoom
|| à¥ अक्षय लक्षम्यै सिद्धिं देहि प्रत्यक्षं भव णमो हूं ||

Blow away the flame after chanting the mantra. Take out four Suparis and throw them in four directions outside from your house. Then tie the remaining Supari and other Sadhana articles in the white cloth and bury this bundle in your house or place the bundle in your safe.

Sadhana Articles:   Rs. 470/-

Akshaya Swaastha Sadhana
(For a perfect health)

To overcome all hurdles, all adversaries, one needs the decisive strength of divine power with the help of which even the worst phases of life can be easily crossed over. One might well succeed in warding off the attacks coming from expected sources, but many catch ones from unknown and unaware sources leaving them struggling to keep life going on smoothly. Even if one is equipped with a daring spirit, one can possible take on at most two or three foes at a moment. A series of attack coming from scores of sources instead of proving to be a healthy competition could mean loss of precious time, energy and money and even health in life.

Life becomes fraught with worries, constant fears, ill health and loss of wealth due to such negative influences in life. In such situations, especially when no amount of wise counselling is available, there is no other choice than seeking divine help.  Sadhanas alone can help one overcome such persistent foes, for Vedic rituals are a wonderful source of Shakti or divine power which not just instils physical strength and stamina, rather also strengthens one mentally and spiritually. One should perform this sadhana if he is left hopeless in life, is surrounded by enemies or is living a life full of misery.

Sadhana Articles: Shakti Yantra

Sadhana Procedure: Wear a red cloth and sit on a red mat facing South. Cover a wooden plank with red cloth and place Shakti Yantra on it. Worship the Yantra and light a ghee lamp. Now chant the following mantra for 40 (forty) minutes fixing your gaze on the yantra.

Om Kreem Kaali Udhrvoditaayai Om Phat
|| à¥ क्रीं  à¤•à¤¾à¤²à¤¿ ऊध्र्वोदितायै  à¥ फट् ||

Drop the yantra in a water body after the sadhana. This completes the sadhana procedure and the person starts getting all sorts of favourable circumstances in life.

Sadhana Articles:  Rs. 250/-

Akshaya Saubhaagya Sadhana
(For an infrangible fortune)

Every married woman in this world wishes to remain in her wifehood throughout her life. It is true that even a man wishes the same for himself, but it really is a truth that very few woman are fortunate to be blessed with such a fortune. This sadhana can also be performed by a married woman for the good health of her sick husband or if he is entangled in some problematic situation, which can be life threatening. This sadhana ensures good health for her husband and safeguards him from any peril. Presented below is the sadhana, which if performed with full devotion on this day, can bestow such a fortune upon any married woman.

Sadhana Articles: Saubhaagya Varjavrata Rinni Yantra and Saubhaagya Rosary

Sadhana Procedure: Get up early in the morning and take a bath. Get into clean white clothes and sit on a white mat facing East. Take 100 grams of red lead (sindoor) in a box and place the yantra on it. Now make a mark with saffron on the yantra. Light a ghee lamp and an incense stick. Next chant 5 rounds of the mantra below with the rosary.

Om Hreem Mahaadevataayai Mahaayakshinyai Mama Akhanda Saubhaagyam Dehi Dehi Namah
|| à¥ ह्रीं महादेवतायै महायक्षिण्यै मम अखण्ड सौभाग्य देहि देहि नमः ||

Offer the yantra, rosary along with the box of red lead to a tulsi plant grown within a temple premises after the sadhana on the same day. Accomplishing this ensures that such a woman continue to live a fortunate life and her wifehood continue throughout her life.

Sadhana Articles: Rs. 450/- 

For more details please contact –

Pracheen Mantra Yantra Vigyan, Jodhpur
1-C, Panchavati Colony, 
In Front of N.C.C. Ground, 
Ratanada, Jodhpur – 342001(Rajasthan)
Phone - 0291-2517025, 0291-2517028
Mobile - 07568939648, 08769442398

          Navniddhi Asht Siddhi Holika Sadhana Mahotsav - Jodhpur        
Dates: 4, 5 March 2015

Address: Kailash Siddhashram Jodhpur
1-C, Panchavati Colony,
In Front of N.C.C. Ground,
Ratananda, Jodhpur - 342011 (Rajasthan)

Phone:0291-2517025, 0291-2517028

Mobile: 07568939648, 08769442398

          State-by-State Redux: V of X - The Midwestern States Revisited - I'm Forever Frying Fritters...        
In our final foray into the Midwest, I try to wed some of the Midwest's most quintessential foods together: corn, flour, wild rice and frying (it's not just for the South anymore).  I was, at first, at a loss, but Marcia Adams and her Heartland cookbook came to my rescue once more.

Snacking State-by-State Redux V of X: The Midwestern and Prairie States

What are the Midwestern States?: always includes: Missouri, the Great Lakes States (Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota) and the Prairie States (Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas); sometimes includes: Oklahoma, West Virginia and (western) Pennsylvania.
Important Cities: Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Des Moines, Detroit, Fargo, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Omaha, Pierre, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, Topeka, Tulsa
Regions and Subregions: The Great Lakes; The Prairie States
RAFT Nationsbison (most of North & South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, Iowa, northern Missouri, southern Minnestoa, southern Manitoba), chestnut (parts of southern Ohio, West Virginia), corn bread & BBQ (Missouri, Illinois, southern Indiana, parts of southern Ohio & eastern Iowa), maple syrup (Ohio, western Pennsylvania, northern Indiana & West Virginia), pinyon nut (western South Dakota, Nebraska), wild rice (Michigan, southern Ontario, eastern North Dakota, southern Manitoba, northern Minnesota, Wisconsin, northern Illinois & Indiana, parts of northern Ohio & Pennsylvania)
Foods the Region is Best Known For: hearty "heartland" fare; pioneer and Native American dishes; Eastern European, Scandinavian, Southern European, German and Amish fare; sauerkraut; corn, wheat, soy, beef; BBQ (Missouri) & chili (Ohio)

For the Midwest, I wanted to find a recipe that could encompass as much of this vast region as possible.  Midwestern foods that pop in my mind after the last two years of this project include corn, wheat and wild rice.  I found the perfect recipe early on in Heartland: a dessert corn fritter, eaten with powdered sugar and maple syrup (in the Illinois section of her cookbook, page 14).  Her cakey and light "Bishop Hill Corn Fritters" are named for the small utopian community in northwestern Illinois:
The Bishop Hill Colony, a communal Utopian community close to Galesburg, began disintegrating in 1861, when the colonists started dividing up the common property into individual holdings.  The town declined but is now in the process of being restored by its 166 citizens, mostly descendents [sic] of the original settlers. [Adams 1991: 14]
The project continues today.

Of course, I did not follow Adams' recipe to a tee.  I threw in some wild rice just for variety

The Recipe: Bishop Hill (Illinois) Corn Fritters, with Wild Rice

To make these fritters, exact measurements on page 14 of Heartland, assemble these ingredients, most of which you probably have on hand:

* corn (the original recipe does call for canned corn, though frozen or fresh can be substituted.  This organic can from Wegman's was really not too much more expensive than a regular one, so I bought this one instead)
* flour (had it)
* sugar (same)
* baking powder (yup)
* butter (uh huh)
* salt and pepper (that too)
* eggs (same)
* equal amounts of milk (just a quart for about $1ish) and water
* oil (for frying - I used a combination of peanut oil and rice bran oil)
* wild rice (this I had on hand; leave it out if you don't have it.  I added about 1/2 cup)
* maple syrup and powdered sugar (had both)

Boil some wild rice according to package directions.

While that's going, beat some eggs.  That's one of those old-fashioned egg beaters. Bet you haven't seen one of those things in a while, have you?

Add your water, butter and milk...

And stir in the corn.  Make sure you've drained the corn.

Add the dry ingredients and wild rice, and stir enough to moisten.

Heat your oil to deep frying temperature (about 350°F to 375°F) and drop in your fritters in spoonfuls, and fry about two to three minutes a side.

Drain on paper towels, and sprinkle with powdered sugar.  Serve hot with maple syrup.  Reheat in the oven if you need to.  It's just not the same in the microwave.

Adams meant it when she said "delicate and cakelike" [1991: 14].  These things are just absolutely luscious.  Plus, I felt guilty eating them.  Come on: fried fritters doused in powdered sugar and maple syrup?  Who wouldn't feel guilty eating this?

- - - - -

The next region we will visit is the South.  First, we take a detour into African-American cuisine, an integral part of the Southern food landscape, by looking at one historic, home grown recipe from George Washington Carver himself.


Adams, Marcia. Heartland: The Best of the Old and the New from Midwest Kitchens. Clarkson Potter: New York, 1991.

Some information also obtained from Wikipedia and from the Food Timeline State Foods webpage.

          Bee Hives To Maintain Bee Colony And To Get Raw Honey        
When talking about bee hives and raw honey folk frequently think about having to scale a tree to get them. This is frequently not true as many professional bee keepers have popped up around the planet and have their hives at floor level. This makes removing honey from the hive easier, and safer. There is however still the danger of getting stung, but at least you do not have to fret about breaking your neck.

Bee hives have been the first source of raw honey since the beginning of recorded history. Archeologists have found cave paintings of folks climbing trees to get honey out of suspended hives in varied locations. History does not tell us when we started training bees but we do know that we were actively practicing it around 2400 BC. Historical proof shows that early bee keepers used logs, pottery, and even baskets for bee's to build their colonies in and raise young.

Early beekeepers had to use crude methods of obtaining honey from bee colonies that they inclined. In most situations, they suppressed the bees with smoke then broke into the hive and ripped out the honeycombs. These were then mashed up and the honey was mixed with the larval eggs, the material of the honeycomb itself, and then crudely strained. This worked in getting the honey but wiped out the hive totally.

luckily , bee hives have evolved considerably since those times and removing the raw honey does not harm the colony. Modern bee farmers use slide out hives having a brush like structure that can easily be emptied, and then replaced. This makes sure that the bee colony will be safe, and can produce more honey later. Honey that's's cropped is then run thru a complex system of filters to make sure it's clean, and safe for consumption.

till the 18th century, we did not actually know much about bees. What we probably did know revolved around superstition, folklore, and old wives tales. Scientists at the time had had enough of this and started actively dissecting and investigating bee hives, bees, and the raw honey they produced. This laid the foundation for what we all know about bees today.

Insect behavior is quite complicated, even though it appears simple. Bees communicate with body language, pheromones, and occasionally a mix of the two. This can cause some fascinating activity if you've a colony with a glass window. Folk have been observing bees and other insects like this for decades and it continues to fascinate the curious mind.

Not only do bees produce honey, but they're crucial to the ecosystem of our planet. These sometimes-tiny insects can pollinate many hundreds of flowers in a day. These flowers then support a myriad of other insect and animal life that makes up our food chain. Even the smallest of bugs can have an insurmountable result on our planet.

At the moment, bee hives are still the only source of raw honey we have. Sure, you can try to imitate it with synthetic tastes but nothing comes close to the genuine thing. Honey is an essential part of breakfasts across the globe and many start their day with it. It also has many medical properties that make it highly sought after.
          300th episode        

Michael Schur (creator of The Good Place; co-creator of Parks & Recreation), Damon Lindelof (co-creator, Lost, The Leftovers), Carlton Cuse (co-creator of Jack Ryan, Colony, and Bates Motel; co-showrunner, Lost), Marti Noxon (co-creator of Unreal and Girlfriend's Guide to Divorce), Douglas Petrie (co-showrunner of Daredevil and The Defenders), David Fury (Buffy; 24), Jane Espenson (Buffy; Once Upon a Time), Charles Murray (Luke Cage; Sons of Anarchy), Andrew Miller (co-creator, Secret Circle; creator of the upcoming Tremors), Andrew Reich (Friends; co-producer Dead Pilots Society), Ben Acker (co-creator, Thrilling Adventure Hour; Supernatural), and Heath Corson (co-host, Nerdist Comics Panel; Scream) join Ben Blacker and Writers Panel darlings Josh Friedman (Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles; Avatar 3) and Jeff Greenstein (Friends; co-showrunner, Will & Grace; director, Mom) to celebrate this milestone episode of the podcast!

Recorded at Largo at the Coronet on November 6, 2016.

          First Timers and One Season Wonders        

A double-header recorded at ATX, a Television Festival this year. First, Ryan Condal (co-creator, Colony), Zander Lehmann (creator, Casual), Sarah Gertrude Shapiro (co-creator, unREAL), and Joe Pokaski (co-creator, Underground) discuss the process of creating and/or running their own show for the first time, and learning to juggle all that having a new series entails, from pitching, to writing and producing a pilot, having their series picked up, organizing a writers room, and being paired with seasoned showrunners (or learning to become one themselves). Moderated by Tim Goodman (The Hollywood Reporter).

Then, Debra Birnbaum (Variety) talks with Hart Hanson (creator, Backstrom), Ted Griffin (creator, Terriers), Javier Grillo-Marxuach (creator, The Middleman), and Kevin Falls (creator, Journeyman) about the lessons they have learned from their one-season wonders, the constantly-changing definitions of success, not compromising creative vision, and how these short-lived series have shaped their ongoing careers. Recorded at ATX Television Festival on June 11, 2016.

Get your badge now for ATX's sixth season, June 8-11 2017, at http://atxfestival.com/


Co-creators Carlton Cuse (Lost; co-creator of The Strain, Bates Motel) and Ryan Condal (Hercules film) and star Josh Holloway (Lost; Intelligence) discuss the new USA series including the importance of family, the show's creation, colonization, and more.

Recorded at NY Comic Con on October 9, 2015.

Colony premieres on USA on January 14th.

          The latest Overwatch update renders aimbots useless        
Heroes never die, and cheaters never prosper. Image recognition bots, which are most often used in Korea, have been waylaid by this latest Overwatch patch. 1.12 arrived yesterday, adding the new Lunar Colony map and a few tweaks. One of those tweaks, not noted in the patch notes, has made the game less susceptible to […]
          Escape from Mars        
Prove your hand is the fastest in the entire galaxy in Escape from Mars. Escape from Mars is an html5 game inspired by the arcade classic Back Panic, where you will have to repair your starship to escape from the uprising of the Martian colony. Your crew will help you but be careful: there are extra-terrestrials everywhere. Draw your weapon fast and exterminate the alien species without hurting your allies. Fulfil the achievement objectives to gain experience points and become the best space crew member of the rankings. And if you are really sure of being the hero of the galaxy, try Invasion mode. How far will you get? Play now on any iOS or Android device.
          Unsanctioned Wanderings: Capturing the Vagrant in Romantic Prints        
December 2014

Unsanctioned Wanderings: Capturing the Vagrant in Romantic Prints

Lucy Kimiko Hawkinson Traverse
University of Wisconsin-Madison

“[. . .] their movement cannot be captured in a picture, nor can the meaning of their movements be circumscribed in a text”

-Michel de Certeau, The Practice of Everyday Life

1.        Epitomized by Caspar David Friedrich’s Wanderer Watching a Sea of Fog (c. 1817-18), and the Wordsworthian peripatetic, the gentlemanly or artistic wanderer is integral to the Romantic imagination. Wandering lies at the heart of picturesque sightseeing, blank verse poetry, specimen collecting, and the Romantic cultivation of self. However, these forms of sanctioned wandering exist against a backdrop of less desirable movements that, nonetheless, inform, color, and at times literally converge with, the endorsed amblings of the inquisitive artist-gentlemen. Unsanctioned forms of wandering existed on a spectrum of criminality, which at times included peddlers, actors, shepherds, discharged soldiers, beggars, orphaned children, gypsies, sailors, highwaymen, pirates, and ultimately, as Toby Benis has argued, “anyone on the road without adequate cause” (2). These disparate groups, while often meticulously differentiated, were also increasingly amalgamated as vagrants through a series of common burdens and discriminatory practices, resulting from changing Poor Laws, licensing, and Vagrancy Acts in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.

2.        It is not my aim or desire to reproduce here an exhaustive catalog of wandering types. Rather, I hope to sketch some of the strategies of representation used to capture the vagrant body in print. And further, to tease out some of the tensions and slippages between the text as material object and the roaming body it seeks to arrest. To do this I will examine a selection of British Romantic prints, all bound in books published in London in the first two decades of the nineteenth century (1800-1820). Some of these texts explore a signal category of wanderer (e.g., the urban beggar in the case of John Thomas Smith’s Vagabondiana, or, Anecdotes of mendicant wanderers through the streets of London [London, 1817], or the gypsy in the case of Heinrich Moritz Gottlieb Grellmann’s Dissertation on the Gipseys [London, 1807]) while others assemble a variety of eccentric persons, among which can be found wandering types (e.g., James Caulfield’s Portraits, Memories, and Characters, of Remarkable Persons [London, 1819], or G.H. Wilson’s The Eccentric Mirror [London, 1806]). The prints discussed are chosen because they represent different strategies of resistance to the project of containment or arrest, strategies which include signifying in ways that resist the cataloging missions of the text/author, critiquing the text as material object and commodity, representing stasis as a potentially political act, and encouraging the reader/viewer to be cognizant of their complicity in processes of erasure.

3.        The rich body of scholarship interested in Romantic vagrancy tends to focus primarily on Wordsworth’s representation of and engagement with the itinerant poor. The hope of this project is to explore how a more sustained survey of contemporaneous visual representations might alter and expand our understanding of Romantic vagrancy and its relationship both to the artist’s construction of self and the (supposedly) static image. This project resists the impulse to treat as a given the print’s stasis, or to accept prints as a default medium used in the absence of alternative representational technologies. In highlighting the tension of wandering as a space-time practice and the apparent stasis of the published print, I do not mean to suggest that Romantic moving-picture technologies (such as P.J. de Loutherbourg’s Eidophusikon, exhibited in London in 1781) would have offered a more accurate, neutral, or appropriate means of representing acts of unsanctioned wandering. Rather, by examining prints that represent wanderers we are able to explore instances of resistance that complicate a binary understanding of the moving and the still. Prints may seem to “arrest” or “make still” the wandering impulse, but they also reproduce and disseminate the vagrant body. In this way, prints allow for the movement of images even if they are not typically considered “moving images.”

4.        The Romantic era saw the displacement of many people as a result of enclosure, clearances, and revolutions. As Anne Wallace has argued, the resultant increase in pedestrian mobility, not only in the form of those exiled from common lands and sent adrift, but also in the form of “deliberate excursive walking, especially by the relatively well-to-do and educated,” meant increased contact between those wandering for spiritual or artistic refinement and those made mobile out of economic necessity (166). Such contacts feature prominently in the poetry and prose of the Romantic period, as authorial wanderers frequently encounter members of the wandering class, finding cause to celebrate, condemn, or identify with those traversing the landscape in less orthodox ways.

5.        While it may be problematic to assemble such divergent groups into a single category, a series of late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century laws and ordinances worked to consolidate the wandering poor and to place them in a particular relationship to a wage- and settlement-based economy, which, I would argue, gave them a distinct class status. Since 1662, poor relief had been largely based on a system of parish charity that took “settlement” (defined as birth, long-term residence, or employment in a given community) as a prerequisite for assistance (22-23, 29). The wandering poor were inherently disqualified from such assistance, as they were not settled and were thus not the responsibility of any particular parish. Furthermore, this system of localized assistance increased hostilities towards the unsettled, as those forced to pay the poor rate were invested in limiting any additional burden on parish funds. Tales of transporting pregnant women in labor over parish lines, the destruction of cottages, and the forced eviction of unwanted dependents suggest (with possible hyperbole) some of the strategies used to decrease the pauper population and its concomitant costs (Lloyd 122; Olsen 23). For the nomadic poor this meant continually enforced movement. Unwilling to take on additional charity cases, many communities set laws restricting the number of days vagrants could camp within parish limits. Simultaneously, a series of Vagrant Laws made the very act of continuous, unsettled movement a criminal offense. Thus, an ironic and illogical system was produced whereby nomadic persons were (through local ordinances) required to move regularly, yet by conforming to these laws they subjected themselves to a variety of state-sanctioned punishments, including whipping, imprisonment, and forced labor (Mayall 258).

6.        If, as Celeste Langan has argued, vagrancy functions as both the paradigm of Romantic movement and thought, and as the structural analogy by which we understand the liberal subject, how does this liberalism relate to the materiality of the book, particularly the encyclopedic volumes of types which both contain and mimic the movements of their subjects (Langan 27)? While wandering may be integral to Romantic thought and action, so too is the desire to capture, record, and classify. Indeed, the most immediately apparent discontinuity in prints of wandering types centers on the tension between mobility and stasis. These are persons defined by their unauthorized movement, and yet, to record them as distinct personalities or types requires a degree of arrest. Thus, we find a collection of images organized around a verb that is largely unrepresented. These figures sit, stand, crouch, pose, gesture, and occasionally step, but they do not seem to wander.

7.        A print of Margaret Finch, “Queen of the Gypsies at Norwood,” from James Caulfield’s Portraits, Memories, and Characters, of Remarkable Persons is particularly striking in its apparent stasis (figure 1). As “Queen of the Gypsies,” Finch is unequivocally a representative of a wandering people, and we are told that she has spent her life “traversing the whole of England, in the double capacity of gipsy and thief.” However, in this image we find Finch boulder-like in her squat immobility and groundedness. Having adopted the custom “of sitting on the ground with her chin resting on her knees,” the author explains, Finch’s sinews became “so contracted, that she could not extend herself or change her position” (Caulfield, Portraits, 247-249). In this way, Finch becomes almost hyperbolically immobile, her body calcifying into a stationary lump. Thus fixed, she becomes a site of pilgrimage, a cause for wandering rather than its practitioner, as “persons from the highest rank and quality to that of the lowest class in life” clog the roads leading to Norwood, hoping to see the “singularity of her figure” and benefit from the “fame of her fortune-telling” (Caulfield, Portraits, 247-249). Her spatial movement restricted, she remains an embodiment of temporal roving, as she is believed to possess the ability to see into the future.

8.         As Michael Kramp has argued, the figure of the deformed and repulsive gypsy hag was a Romantic type constructed to undercut the “threat to heterosexual and labor (re)production” posed by the late eighteenth-century trope of Gypsy femininity as aggressively sexual. The old fortune-teller, the “antithesis of sexual allure,” does not endanger heteronormativity, or pose the threat of miscegenation (Kramp, Reconceptualization, 1339). In her decrepit and static state, Margaret Finch becomes an attraction rather than an attractor, and yet, this depiction also exceeds its presumed project to simply re-present a “type”.

9.         Though unwanted by Norwood (Caufield complains that Surry and Kent are especially “pestered” and “plundered” by gypsies), Margaret Finch appears defiant in her stasis (Caulfield 247-249). The cave-like structure that she inhabits seems to have grown up around her, mimicking her contours and naturalizing her place in the landscape. Her face, the nose of which has been drawn in more dramatic profile than the eyes and mouth, seems to hover between a frontal and side view, and concomitantly between a specific likeness and an attempt at physiognomic typing. Her direct stare confronts the viewer, even as her pronouncedly arched and elongated nose distracts from the specificity of this address by calling upon ethnic stereotypes meant to signal her eastern origins and status as “domestic other” (Nord 5).

10.         Bolstering the potential defiance of this address are details that would signal her irreverence to the Romantic reader. In addition to the predictable advice regarding hard work, religious devotion, and frugality, the poor were often advised to avoid unnecessary dependents, such as pets. In a 1795 article in The Times, we find a curious preoccupation with dogs as signifiers of excess (qtd. in Olsen 21-22). Dogs are presented as luxuries that may be afforded the rich, but are so impractical for the poor that their retention disqualifies their owners from charitable assistance. The presence of not just one, but two dogs solidifies Finch’s status as undeserving of—even defiant toward—charitable aid. Likewise signaling Finch’s “excess” are her tobacco pipe and drink. [1] 

11.         Though Margaret Finch dies in 1740, anchored to a Norwood hovel by a decrepit body, through the reproduction and dissemination of this print, she regains a measure of spatial and temporal movement, persisting through time and “traversing the whole of England” once again. Here, the print seems not to “arrest” or “capture” the subject so much as record an act of defiant immobility—stasis as a political act, in the face of discriminatory laws and practices. The boulder-like solidity of Finch’s form, enveloped by the landscape and seemingly immovable, suggests an insubordinate persistence.

12.         Refusing a teleological and hierarchicalizing narrative, recent scholarship purposes a greater degree of ambiguity, reciprocity, and oscillation between still and moving images. More importantly, such work critically rethinks the implications of stasis. Resisting an easy alignment of stasis with death, or a confusion of “rigor with rigor mortis,” Karen Beckman and Jean Ma advocate the “recursive temporality of the ‘still moving’ ” (5, 11). Beckman and Ma are particularly concerned with the political potential of the recursive and hope that it may provide an alternative to conceptualizing collective political agency solely in terms of “movement” (14). Attempting to forge a model of productive recursive activity, recent scholarship stresses the double meaning of “still,” which may be used to connote an arrest or immobility as well as a persistence or continuation. Significantly, if taken in the latter sense, “the still is on the side of becoming and moving rather than in strict opposition with it” (Kaplan 221). It is this tension or doubleness within “the still” that Jean-Luc Nancy has explored in relation to the logic of concealment (31-47). In a like vein, Jean Baudrillard has interrogated stasis that is not static in diverse instances of “freezing,” arguing that such “immobility is not an inertia, but a paroxysm which boils movement down into its opposite” (67). Whereas Nancy purposes a understanding of (the) “still” which is implicated in movement, Baudrillard insists that even if the still is understood as the antithesis of movement, it cannot be carelessly aligned with inaction or apathy. Rather, it is a particularly concentrated, dense, or “intense” extraction of that movement.

13.         An inaugural plate in Heinrich Moritz Gottlieb Grellmann’s Dissertation on the Gipseys (figure 2), may offer an instance of one such dense freeze. Arrested in the moment of taking a step, a gypsy woman of elongated stature moves from light to shade with an infant and small child. The varied positions of eyes and bodies gives the figure group a varied directionality that seems to work against the suggestion of movement in a particular direction. At the same time, the woman’s movement from light to dark within the hillside scene suggests a true spatial movement through a landscape that is more than a token backdrop. In combination, these aspects of composition and lighting give the scene the odd effect of appearing both spontaneous and posed. A coin in the woman’s outstretched hand (though vaguely delineated) is marked by the simple cross-and-dot pattern of a medieval two- or four-pence (Fleetwood 34-35). [2]  Though ostensibly meant to signal that the woman has received alms, this numismatic anachronism also complicates the temporality of the scene. In conjunction with the figures’ ahistorical dress, the coin suggests a temporal as well as spatial unrootedness, which stands in tension with the print’s claim to have captured a specific moment. In this way, the print seems to present its subjects as simultaneously caught in the act of wandering and performing the act with choreographed exaggeration, and thus gives us a particularly dense extraction of the act that is both specific and symbolic. While acknowledging that anachronistic details fit comfortably with primitivizing constructions of Gypsies as unchanging and timeless, we can still recognize a resistant potential between the supposed temporality of the ethnographic sketch (the claim to have captured) and suggestions of a deeper, un-moored time within the image.

14.        The ethnographic project of containment and classification may be further undermined by the book as material object. Many of the books dedicated to vagabonds, gypsies, and others of the wandering class become themselves strangely nomadic texts. Even a work as seemingly focused as Grellmann’s Dissertation on the Gipseys is notably sprawling and fragmented in its execution. Illustrations are clearly appropriated from other contexts, and gesture more towards their disparate origins than a cohesive narrative. Even the frontispiece, an engraving of a pirate and wanderer by James Heath (1757-1834), apparently after a painting by Richard Corbould (1757-1831) or one of his sons (figure 3), [3]  seems to have been appropriated from another context (as the unrelated volume and page numbers below the caption suggest). Thus, an image intended to introduce a focused treatise on a single topic (gypsies), instead conflates gypsies with other wandering types (pirates) and encourages the viewer to think of other mediums and published contexts for the image at hand. Unfolding pages cut to different sizes, interspersed with plates illustrating themes only tangentially related to the argument of the text, continually push the reader out of the confines of the book to imagine additional sources, narratives, and paths of inquiry. While Grellmann’s text strives to categorize, re-present, and define gypsies in a systematic fashion, its format and diverse content continually undermine this agenda.

15.        Even in seemingly more cohesive ethnographic projects, competing desires to generalize and particularize stand in tension. In Vagabondiana, or, Anecdotes of mendicant wanderers through the streets of London, John Thomas Smith strives to depict the “wanderers” of London, but in order to obtain portraits “drawn from life” he must arrest his roaming subjects. Thus, a vagrant like “Black Joe” (Joseph Johnson) (figure 4) is identified by the specific address of his supposed encounter with Smith, “N4 Chandos Street, Convent Garden.” Ironically, however, this specific location is not articulated in the print, the background of which consists only of non-descript shading. Smith undertakes the seemingly contradictory task of assembling subjects that are both unique and representative. Organized around abstract qualities such as “industriousness,” the text produces as archive of distinct “types” valued for their perceived role as representatives of larger categories. “Black Joe” is taken to represent both the black urban poor (he is one of only two characters in the book identified by a racial signifier) and the particularly creative or ingenious beggar. Thus, Johnson is represented as both a unique subject and a type, and as both emplaced and de-contextualized.

16.        Smith explains that Johnson, imaged with a crutch and cane, has sustained wounds rendering “him incapable of doing further duty on the ocean.” However, as a “consequence of his having been employed in the merchant’s service only,” Johnson is “not entitled to the provision of Greenwich,” and “having no claim to relief in any parish” must glean a living on the streets. Though the elaborate model ship, which Johnson wears affixed to a simple cylindrical cap, is described by Smith simply as evidence of especially creative beggary inspired by his former life as a sailor, between text and image other narratives surface. The author explains that Johnson animates his model ship “by a bow of thanks, or a supplicating inclination to a drawing room window,” thus simulating the “appearance of sea-motion” (33). Johnson’s decision to masquerade as an aquatic vessel may stem from his time as a sailor (one of many, primarily lower-class, occupations available to black Britons in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century), and yet the juxtaposition of a black man and large ship during a time of heated debate surrounding slavery also resonates on other levels.

17.        At the time of this sketch, the British slave trade had (ostensibly) been abolished, but slavery itself was still rampant. Additionally, ships held the threat of deportation, as London officials concocted solutions to the “problem” of the city’s black poor, an effort that culminated in an attempt to ship London’s impoverished blacks to a colony in Sierra Leone (Gerzina 142-173). Though unexplored by Smith, the context of the trans-Atlantic slave trade and the possible threat of deportation are difficult to repress. Although we are assured that Johnson’s gestures are “supplicating,” his performance carries a political edge, an edge that may or may not have been registered by the women taking sugar in their tea as Johnson theatrically “sailed” past their drawing room windows.

18.        The fact that Smith’s Vagabondiana could itself enter such drawing rooms, becoming a sort of guidebook to the eccentric characters that passed, further complicates the project of “capturing” Johnson’s likeness. Smith’s impulse to record his own meanderings through sketches of fellow wanderers could be read as an act of violence by which the implied movement of the author/illustrator is privileged, while the subject’s movement is arrested or denied. By assembling an encyclopedic volume of vagrant types, Smith simulates the act of wandering using the conceit of “happening upon” beggars in their native environs and making “sketches taken from life”. Arguably, the disassociative perusing offered by such texts could function as safe supplement for more radical movement.

19.        Romantic sightseeing and landscape texts were likewise invested in simulating the act of wandering in potentially problematic ways. In Humphrey Repton’s Fragments on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening, the enclosure of common lands and the clearance of undesirables is enacted with the simple lift of a page (Harrison 46). In “View from my own cottage, in Essex” (figure 5), the concluding hand-colored aquatint from Repton’s final treatise and memoir, we find a view of the artist’s own yard. Framed by two large trees, Repton’s view is molested by the traffic of public thoroughfares, which lie just beyond his low lattice fence. More troubling still is the one-eyed, one-armed, one-legged vagrant who leans against this fence. Disabled, elderly, and seemingly exhausted, the man’s mournful eye, long face, and hunched weariness, echoed by the long shadow he casts, seem intended to win our sympathy as viewers. Behind him, in a meager triangle of public green, flocks of ducks scavenge for food, perhaps underscoring the beggar’s own reliant state. Repton’s solution to the aesthetic problem posed by these vagrant scavengers (the beggar as well as the birds) is simple erasure. Lifting the half page reveals an “improved” garden, in which the formerly common green is appropriated and privatized with the use of handsome shrubbery. Plantings and trellises further obscure undesirable aspects of his surroundings (such as the butcher shop) and the beggar disappears altogether. In a final—almost perverse—gesture, Repton offers an empty chair (near the shade of a tree), but only after that weary traveler so clearly in need of such a comfort has been completely expunged. In this way, the "before" and "after" design of Repton’s over-slip illustrations work to justify both the enclosure of common land and the removal of unwanted persons on aesthetic grounds (pun intended).

20.        While the reader/viewer is made potentially complicit in the act of erasure by lifting the page of Repton’s book, it is a process that can be reversed (the vagrant body can be reinserted into the landscape by replacing the over-leaf). Arguably, the nature of “before” and “after” views depend on a certain back and forth comparison between the two images. While the “before” and “after” images are valued differently and their sequencing is meant to suggest improvement and progress, fully appreciating the extent and specificity of the renovation requires that the reader/viewer refer back to the original scene. Likewise resistant to the process of erasure is the inclusion of such a memorable and explicitly damaged body (bearing three distinct wounds), the removal of which is difficult to excuse as an ethically neutral act.

21.        This is not to assume that the injured vagrant is necessarily seeking aid. Certainly, many wandering poor practiced trades and had strategies for living off the land, and were explicitly not looking for charitable assistance or long-term residency in a parish. However, their forced—and simultaneously criminalized—nomadism made almost any action dangerous and suspect. Those who preferred, or were forced into, continual movement were faced with the additional difficulty of navigating lives on rapidly dwindling common lands. In “View from my own cottage, in Essex” we see enclosure on a small scale, as Repton appropriates the apparently public triangle of green for his own purposes, thus alienating both the beggar and the scavenging birds.

22.         Enclosure, the privatization of communal grounds, greatly restricted both the movement and the resources of the wandering poor. The process of consolidating and enclosing commons, wastelands, and open fields into private holdings demarcated by fences, walls, hedgerows, or trenches originated in the late medieval period, but experienced an unprecedented surge in England between 1793 and 1815 (McCalman 496). In many regions the process of enclosure eroded customary rights, including the right to graze animals, gather wood (estover), fish (piscary), cut peat (turbary), and glean wheat or produce left after the harvest (Janowitz 155). Like the agricultural laborers that depended on access to common lands to supplement their meager incomes, for members of nomadic or wandering classes attempting to live off the land, the loss of these customary rights severely affected their ability to subsist. Such rights are explicitly flaunted in an introductory plate from Grellmann’s Dissertation on the Gipseys (figure 6), in which a group of encamped gypsies flaunt their estover and piscary rights.

23.        This depiction of potential theft is exacerbated by the tense relationship between the book as commodity and the vagrant body’s supposed exclusion from commodity circulation. The Gypsy “thirst for glittering Gold” described in Dissertation on the Gypsies is echoed in the glittering crest and gold-coated pages of the book itself, reminding the reader that the artfully-bound volume which collects and contains these observations may itself be an object both coveted and stolen. In this way, the text, which delineates a particular relationship between the Gypsy and personal property, participates in this construction by making the possibility of theft more immediate to the reader—you hold in your hand something that is simultaneously described as desirable to the “dangerous” gypsy vagrant. Thus, the text itself seems to speak the threat of theft.

24.         While vagrants were often differentiated by degree of perceived criminality, I maintain that considering groups as seemingly disparate as beggars, gypsies and highway-men under the umbrella of a threatening un-rootedness helps to clarify how even the most explicitly criminal of these could be appropriated by artists as models, objects of meditation, or catalysts for expressions of empathy, longing, and admiration.

25.        The competing modes of representation we see in “The Trwe [sic] Effigies of James Whitney, the Notorious Highwayman” (figure 7) from James Caulfield’s Portraits, Memories and Characters of Remarkable Persons (1819), speak to an ambivalence toward the Romantic criminal wanderer as well as to a conflation of artistic and criminal types. Though decidedly a criminal—defined (in part) by his roaming, un-rooted movement—Whitney is here seen as a leisured artist or writer dressed as though seated in his study. Comparable images abound in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century portraiture, attesting to what fashion historian Aileen Ribeiro describes as the “well-established, (even hackneyed) convention for artists, men of letters and musicians to be painted in loose gowns” (34). James Maubert’s 1695 portrait of John Dryden (poet, critic, and author of heroic verse) and a 1689-90 portrait of Robert Boyle (after J. Kerseboom) are but two examples of the long tradition upon which Whitney’s “portraitist” draws. However, the engraver clearly plays against these associations as well. Though the dressing gown is understood as comfortable domestic attire for the gentleman who works at home (or, more specifically, the gentleman who does not work, but has pursuits or improves himself at home), it is here coupled not with the usual slippers and study, but with markers of Whitney’s outdoor livelihood: his boots and hat. Further parodying the convention, Whitney directs our gaze not to his accomplishments or objects of study, as we often find in similar images of learned men, but rather to the shackle on his left ankle, underscoring his captivity and criminality. Whitney signifies as both artist-gentlemen and notorious outlaw, and thus the image, while static, moves the viewer along (at least) two separate channels of association. [4]  Thus, the conflation of types inevitably leaches out through competing vocabularies of representation—a process echoed by the fugitive pigments that, with time, leak across the page, allowing the figure to move once again as a ghostly remnant. Though all aging prints are subject to this chemical instability, there is something particularly haunting about this effect in relation to the nomadic body seemingly captured within the text.

26.         Whitney’s “arrest” seems particularly pronounced as he is both literally imprisoned and figuratively captured by the text. Yet, images of cages, prisons, and captives often functioned to inversely signal ideas of physical and mental liberty in eighteenth-century art. As Lorenz Eitner argues, unlike the allegorical representations of previous centuries, the Romantics turned away from the Goddesses of Liberty and Phrygian caps of Baroque art, toward more indirect representations of Liberty, primarily signaled through images of its antithesis. [5]  Compassion for prisoners, images that underscore the pathos of enchainment, sensational tales of prison escapes, and a general public sympathy for the incarcerated seem to pervade the period. Likewise, Eitner points out that “the prisoner’s plight became a favorite metaphor of the isolation or persecution of artists by society” (37). Thus, the importance of liberty is underscored by images that depict its absence: the bound captive, the long-suffering prisoner. Similarly, perhaps, static portraits of wandering types call to mind the mobility they negate.

27.        The representation of “Victor, the Savage of Aveyron,” (figure 8) in G.H. Wilson’s Eccentric Mirror provides another instance of a wandering body both literally and figuratively captured, but makes more explicit the role of text in that arrest. Having wandered the woods unsupervised for many years, Wilson relates, Victor is finally caught by three sportsmen in 1798. Wilson tells us that they find “a disgusting slovenly boy, affected with spasmodic, and frequently with convulsive motions, continually balancing himself like some of the wild animals in the menagerie” (5). And yet, in the portrait that introduces the story, we see the clean, almost classical torso of a boy poised and fully contained within an elaborate set of framing devices. Though supposedly a child of the wilderness, in this likeness, nature is sent to the margins, contained and domesticated in two entwined cornucopias that pour down their bounty as decorative flanking. Far from a threatening or enveloping wilderness, this vegetation is contained and merely ornamental. However, the portrait, in which he is groomed but still naked, introduces an ambiguous temporality. Is this “Victor” before or after his capture?

28.        In a panel below, “Victor” is shown seated with a tutor learning his alphabet. Above, a stylus, paper, and alphabetic flashcards reiterate the theme of literacy. To the right, a badminton racket and birdie indicate a strategy for channeling his “sporadic” movement into organized sport. Together, these symbols suggest the disciplining of the mind and body. However, they also underscore the fraught relationship between the nomadic body and the text as a conduit of literacy, suggesting that “Victor” must be made literate in order to understand his own process of domestication. That is, he must be brought into literacy in order to recognize his own place in the text—a process underscored by the mirror-like quality of the medallion that contains his likeness and the way his gaze is directed at the facing page, on which the narrative of his life commences. The scene may narrate the process by which “Victor” will come to understand his own imprisonment within the text, but it also holds out the possibility of future self-representation.

29.        As a strategy of tying language to static forms that can thus be (at least in some sense) “owned,” the printed word seems inherently at odds with the itinerant subject it strives to depict. The historiated initials (figure 9) that populate John Thomas Smith’s Vagabondiana speak to the anxieties surrounding mobility in relation to the written word as property, and suggest acts resistant to reductive classifications. The small human figures that entwine themselves around inauguratory letters molest, steal, and vandalize the words used to describe them in subtly subversive ways, suggesting that language—even written language—is never stable. The movement of these embodied letters may also speak to what Michel de Certeau has called the “parallelism between linguistic and pedestrian enunciation,” whereby walking (understood as analogous to the speech act) produces the possibilities it executes (99). Thus, walking, as a space of enunciation, can make certain possibilities “exist as well as emerge” (98). Likewise, the man who entwines his body with the inauguratory letter of the word “Beggary” simultaneously presents and performs the word that seeks to classify him. That is, he performs a sort of linguistic theft.

30.        The tensions registered here between nomadic bodies and the texts that strive to anchor them are furthered complicated by the changing understandings of texts as intellectual property during the Romantic period. Emerging from a Kantian understanding of original genius as antithetical to the spirit of imitation, [6]  Wordsworth, Coleridge, and other major literary figures of the period argued for a distinction between original labor and original genius (Saint-Amour 30-31). Ironically, as Paul Saint-Amour argues, “the Romantic conception of authorship revolted against the very market conditions—mechanical reproduction, textual commodification, logics of equivalency, labor-based copyright laws—that had made authorship professionally viable in the first place” (31). Imbedded within this idea was the belief that the artist was ahead of his time. In the words of Saint-Amour, the Romantic conception of Genius “was earliness personified: not only did geniuses do things before anyone else, they antedated even their own comprehensibility and consumability” (32). The Romantic roots of what would solidify into a more self-conscious conception of the avant-garde as the century progressed is worth underscoring as it coincides with changing understandings of intellectual property and copyright law.

31.        Between 1814 and 1842, copyright protection was expanded from 14 to 42 years, and the first posthumous copyright law was enacted, protecting a work for 7 years after the author’s death. A major catalyst for these extensions was the argument, put forth by Wordsworth and others, that true artistic genius could not be understood in its own time and thus required a postmortem window, during which its value could finally be recognized (Saint-Amour 32). While the idea of artistic genius far precedes the nineteenth century, the concern that this genius was unlikely to be sufficiently appreciated during the artist’s own lifetime, that the artist was “out of synch” with his contemporaries (explicitly not co-temporaneous), seems a peculiarly Romantic preoccupation, and is suggestively imbricated with assumptions about the vagrant as having an eccentric relationship to time. Gypsies, and to a lesser extent other wandering types, were consistently assumed to have prophetic powers, as countless representations of gypsy fortune telling and divination attest. Thus, in addition to a sort of spatial eccentricity, members of the wandering class were often presumed to have a temporal eccentricity.

32.        The origins and lineage of vagrants were often (temporally as well as geographically) obscured. Grellmann’s Dissertation, for instance, spends an entire chapter attempting to determine from what country Gypsies originate and at precisely what date they came to be in England. By definition without land or title, vagrants were by and large excluded from the city and parish records that would give them a clear place in hegemonic time (further obscuring questions of origin and lineage). Perhaps a reflection of this ambiguity, the wandering figure is often constructed as a timeless, prophetic figure. [7] 

33.        Through changing copyright laws we find Romantic authors insisting on their lack of contemporanaiety and an attendant need for temporal freedom (through the prolonged life of their works). In this argument for a proto-avant garde I see a sort of temporal wandering, a feeling of disrootedness from one’s own era, a belief that artistic production is not of one time or place, but roams—not unlike those vagrant bodies with whom the Romantic artist so readily identifies. However, we should also note a certain paradox operating within this forced alliance. The Romantic conception of original genius, as a less tangible and heavily mythologized alternative to original labor (understood as industrial and solid), ostensibly resists the labor-based copyright laws it helps to enact—laws concerned with the production and distribution of texts as private commodities.

34.         To state this contradiction more precisely, at the same time that Romantic artists take the wandering, property-less subject as a model for creative production, they advocate for intellectual property laws that draw increasingly rigid boundaries around the intellectual-as-commodity. Concomitant, then, with the land enclosures that help to further dispossess the wandering class, we find a series of intellectual or literary enclosures that privatize texts, removing them from the public domain. As an added insult, these texts frequently contain representations (either literary or visual) of wandering bodies, which they twice alienate: both in their representational arrest, and through their commoditization and privatization as texts operating within a capitalist economy and under the protection of copyright monopolies. And yet, despite this double gesture of appropriation and enclosure, the vagrant body is not wholly confined. Repeatedly, we see it surface, resist, and question the parameters of its enclosure.

Baudrillard, Jean. “Cool Memories.” The Cinematic. Ed. David Campany. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2007. 67.

Beckman, Karen, and Jean Ma, eds. Still Moving: Between Cinema and Photography. Durham, North Carolina: Duke UP, 2008.

Benis, Toby. Romanticism on the Road: The Marginal Gains of Wordsworth’s Homeless. New York: St. Martin’s Press, Inc., 2000.

Caulfield, James. Portraits, Memories, and Characters, of Remarkable Persons. London: H.R. Young and T.H. Whitely, 1819.

De Certeau, Michel. The Practice of Everyday Life. Trans. Steven F. Rendall. Berkeley: U of California P, 1984.

Eitner, Lorenz. “Cages, Prisons, and Captives in Eighteenth-Century Art.” Images of Romanticism: Verbal and Visual Affinities. Ed. Karl Kroeber and William Walling. New Haven: Yale UP, 1978. 13-38.

Fleetwood, William. “An Appendix to Chronicon Preciosum: Containing An Historical Account of Coins.” Chronicon Preciosum: or, An Account of English Gold and Silver Money. London: Printed for T. Osborne, 1745. 1-55.

Gerzina, Gretchen. Black London: Life Before Emancipation. New Brunswick, New Jersey: Rutgers UP, 1995.

Glajar, Valentina and Domnica Radulescu, eds. “Gypsies” in European Literature and Culture: Studies in European Culture and History. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2008.

Grellmann, Heinrich Moritz Gottlieb. Dissertation on the Gipseys. London: William Ballintine, 1807.

Harrison, Gary. Wordsworth’s Vagrant Muse: Poetry, Poverty, and Power. Detroit: Wayne State UP, 1994.

Hawes, Derek and Barbara Perez. The Gypsy and the State: The Ethnic Cleansing of British Society. Bristol: SAUS Publications, 1995.

Janowitz, Anne. “Land.” An Oxford Companion to the Romantic Age: British Culture 1776-1832. Ed. Iain McCalman, et al. Oxford: Oxford UP, 1999. 152-161.

Jarvis, Robin. Romantic Writing and Pedestrian Travel. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2000.

Kant, Immanuel. Critique of Pure Judgment, trans. J. H. Bernard. New York: Hafner Press, 1951.

Kaplan, Louis. “Aleph Beat: Wallace Berman Between Photography and Film.” Still Moving: Between Cinema and Photography. Eds. Karen Beckman and Jean Ma. Durham, North Carolina: Duke UP, 2008. 196-225.

Kramp, Michael. “The Romantic Reconceptualization of the Gypsy: From Menace to Malleability.” Literature Compass 3 June (2006): 1334-1350.

Langan, Celeste. Romantic Vagrancy: Wordsworth and the Simulation of Freedom. Cambridge: Cabridge UP, 1995.

Lloyd, Sarah. “Poverty.” An Oxford Companion to the Romantic Age: British Culture 1776-1832. Ed. Iain McCalman, et al. Oxford: Oxford UP, 1999. 114-125.

Mayall, David. Gypsy Identities, 1500-2000: From Egipcyans and Moon-men to the Ethnic Romany. New York: Routledge, 2004.

McCalman, Iain, et al. An Oxford Companion to the Romantic Age: British Culture, 1776-1832. Oxford: Oxford UP, 1999.

Nancy, Jean-Luc. “Concealed Thinking.” A Finite Thinking. Ed. Simon Sparks. Stanford, California: Stanford UP, 2003. 31-47.

Nord, Deborah Epstein. Gypsies & the British Imagination, 1807-1930. New York: Columbia UP, 2006.

Olsen, Kirstin. Daily Life in 18-Century England. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 1999.

Peltz, Lucy. “Corbould, Henry (1787–1844).” Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Ed. H. C. G. Matthew and Brian Harrison. Online ed. Lawrence Goldman. Oxford: OUP, 2004. Web. 14 Mar. 2009

Repton, Humphrey. Fragments on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening. London: J. Taylor, 1816.

Ribeiro, Aileen. The Gallery of Fashion. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton UP, 2000.

Saint-Amour, Paul. Copywrights: Intellectual Property and the Literary Imagination. New York: Cornell UP, 2003.

Smith, John Thomas. Vagabondiana, or, Anecdontes of Mendicant Wanderers Through the Streets of London. London: A. Arch, 1817.

Wallace, Anne. Walking, Literature, and English Culture: The Origins and Uses of Peripatetic in the Nineteenth Century. New York: Oxford UP, 1993.

Wilson, G.H. The Eccentric Mirror. London: James Cundee, 1806-1807.

List of Figures

Figure 1:

Figure 2:

Figure 3:

Figure 4:

Figure 5:

Figure 6:

Figure 7:

Figure 8:

Figure 9:


[1] The accompanying text suggests that a “mug of beer” may be had “at the place generally called the Gipsy-house” (Caulfield 247-249). BACK

[2] Coins with a similar pattern on the obverse of the monarch’s profile were minted between the reigns of Richard I and Henry VII (c. 1189-1509). Choosing to show the back of the coin further obscures the temporal as a coin’s face changes with each new reign. BACK

[3] Richard Corbould (1757-1831) had two sons, George Corbould (1786-1846) and Henry Corbould (1787-1844). Richard Corbould married Charlotte Heath, a daughter of the Heath family of engravers and their eldest son, George, apprenticed with James Heath (Peltz). BACK

[4] The “gentlemen thief” was a salient category in the Romantic imagination, exemplified by the “Prince of Pickpockets,” George Barrington (1755-1804), a trained actor and London’s most notorious and celebrated thief. Although arrested repeatedly, Barrington was often (supposedly) released on account of his “gentlemanly demeanor and eloquence,” testifying to the slippage between the categories he embodied (McCalman 417). BACK

[5] There are, of course, notable exceptions (e.g., Delacroix’s Liberty Leading the People, 1830) however, Eitner persuasively argues that, in general, the Romantic period sees a movement away from this type of overt allegory. BACK

[6] As put forth in the Critique of Pure Judgment (1790). See, for example, Kant 150-51. BACK

[7] A popular subject in art of the preceding centuries, the gypsy fortune-teller gained renewed cultural currency in the beginning of the nineteenth century with Sir Walter Scott’s Guy Mannering, or, The Astrologer, published in 1815. The novel’s ambiguous hero, Meg Merrilies, a tempestuous gypsy, and one of the most memorable literary gypsies of the era, famously divines young Harry Bertram’s horoscope. Not only were illustrations of this scene well known through the various prints of Scott’s novel, the figure of Meg Merrilies became the popular subject of paintings and poetry, including John Keats’ “Meg Merrilies,” of 1818. BACK

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          [fb]100005017091105 [訪客] in response to: 我是無賴:如果那時砂勞越獨立……        
您在文中也提及“拉惹们把砂劳越让给英国政府”;其实,一来,Vyner Brooke是否真的背弃砂劳越有待争议,有者透露是他向英国政府寻求资金上的协助时被英国政府软禁(您说得对,当时砂劳越二战之后国库空荡),因为英国政府抓住机会夺取政权;二来,反英殖民的拉惹至少还有Anthony Brooke。
Hi Greetings. I'm aware that your article is not really focused on history or politics, but I'd like to share what I know.
Fact is, there were many who preferred independence over British colonization.
There were riots, gun fights, imprisonment, assassination, massacre etc. (these were not in our text books as Malaya doesn't let Malaysians/Sarawakians learn Sarawakian history). Some though, are surfacing in bits and pieces with the help of world wide web.
I happen to know these as I have a mother who, in order to seek a better future for Sarawak, put in considerable effort going through international legal documents and books related to Sarawak and Borneo history (she does share the information collected with fellow Sarawakians on FB and other medias).
She also interviewed some old folks who lived through WWII.
Those who stood up and sought for independence were suppressed by force, some were unfortunately branded as communist terrorists.
There were tortures, murders, war is always ugly.
And do bear in mind that Britain played a huge part in getting Sarawak into Malaysia, literally giving Sarawak to Malaya (this is backed up by recently declassified British documents).
A referendum (to be an independent country or to be part of Malaysia) was avoided at all cost, as Britain didn't want to know/didn't care what Sarawakians wanted at that time.
I'm not sure if you are familiar with the different between Sarawak as a British colony and Sarawak as an independent country under Brooke. But there is a fundamental difference (sovereignty, independence, right).
Also, I can't help noticing that you mentioned "the Rajahs" gave Sarawak to British government. Well, it's actually arguable if Vyner Brooke really did "betray" Sarawak; some say he was grounded by the British when he went over to ask for loan (you were right that Sarawak was broke after WWII) and British saw the opportunity to take over Sarawak. Secondly, Anthony Brooke with significant backing from local Sarawakians, was against the cession to Britain.
Just sharing what I know, as a Sarawakian.
No ill will or offense intended.
          Escape from Mars        
Prove your hand is the fastest in the entire galaxy in Escape from Mars. Escape from Mars is an html5 game inspired by the arcade classic Back Panic, where you will have to repair your starship to escape from the uprising of the Martian colony. Your crew will help you but be careful: there are extra-terrestrials everywhere. Draw your weapon fast and exterminate the alien species without hurting your allies. Fulfil the achievement objectives to gain experience points and become the best space crew member of the rankings. And if you are really sure of being the hero of the galaxy, try Invasion mode. How far will you get? Play now on any iOS or Android device.
          Interview of Norbert Untersteiner by Brian Shoemaker        
Interview of Norbert Untersteiner by Brian Shoemaker Untersteiner, Norbert, 1926- Dr. Untersteiner was raised in Austria. In 1931, his father took him to Spitsbergen. This trip and reading books about explorers of the polar regions influenced him to work in polar regions. He describes life in Austria under the Nazis. After World War II, he was employed by the American Occupation Troops to run errands after living in difficult conditions in Vienna. He was a student at the University of Vienna, and then transferred to the University of Innsbruck. In the summer, he worked with the Austrian Alpine Club to survey glaciers. After completing his doctorate in geophysics and astronomy, he accepted an apprenticeship with a Vienna radio station. After becoming an assistant at the University, Dr. Untersteiner was involved in a heat balance study, and in foliation studies in the Alps. He was a member of a team to study heat balance, moisture balance, and radiation on mountains in East Pakistan. After difficulties in obtaining a position, he was employed by the University of Washington, for the U. S. Northern Hemisphere Glaciology Program. Many studies on mountain glaciers and on ice floes are described in detail. The various problems of delivering supplies by airplanes are included. The problems of evacuating people and supplies from an ice floe (Ice Station Alpha) that is breaking up were challenging. On Ice Station Alpha II, he and his associates made physical measurements for a complete one year cycle. From some of this work, the Ekman Spiral was developed. Dr. Untersteiner used this data for a comprehensive paper on heat and mass balance of melt ice. Conditions at ARLIS II are compared to others. U.S. Submarines and Russian submarines added mystery to the work of a few persons on Ice Station Alpha II. The development of AIDJEX (The Arctic Ice Dynamics Joint Experiment) started in the late 1960s. After a short stay as Director of the Office of Ocean Programs for NOAA, he returned to the University of Washington as Director of the Polar Science Center. Before leaving AIDJEX in 1978, he received a grant to start the Arctic Data Buoy Program. In 1988, Dr. Untersteiner accepted the position of chairman of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences and retired in 1997. In 1992, he accepted membership on the U.S.A. Environmental Task Force to advise the CIA. Later, it was converted to MEDEA. He cites some work of MEDEA. He summarizes some of the early history of the Polar Research Board, National Research Councils and the usefulness of the meetings. He was in charge of the research plan for the Hansen Drift Station established by the International Research Council. In 1999, he accepted the position of Chapman Professor of Physical Science at the University of Alaska. In conclusion, he said “it was a very good time to be a scientist.” Major Topics 1. Early interest in polar studies kindled by a trip to Spitsbergen when he was five years old. 2. He describes living conditions at the University of Vienna for students after 1945. 3. His first position was weather forecaster for a radio station. 4. Early work studying ice melt is discussed. 5. Difficulty in conducting research and living on an ice floe is discussed. 6. The moving ice of the glacier made it necessary to more the Jamesways, and to build a new runway. The Jamesways were difficult to move. 7. The purpose of the camp on the glacier was to make measurements for a one year cycle. 8. He describes an incident with some crew members of a US submarine on the Ice Station Alpha. 9. The development of a Geophysics Department is described. 10. His role in designing the mission of AIDJEX is summarized. Cooperation with other research groups made the program more comprehensive. 11. He became Director of the Office of Ocean Programs for NOAA. He describes his disappointment with the position and returned to his faculty position in Seattle, and became Director of the Polar Science Center. 12. In the 1990s, he accepted a position on an Environmental Task Force which involved advising the CIA and a member of MEDEA. Key Individuals Mentioned 1. His father, _____ Untersteiner, M.D.—p.1, 2, 3 2. Richard Fensterwalter—p.7 3. Professor Viatorres—p.7 4. Professor Schotts—p.7 5. Professor Heinz von Ficker—p.8, 9 6. Herfried Hoinkes—p.10 7. Hans Almann—p.10 8. Karl Christian Wallen—p.10 9. Walter Schawarzacher—p.11, 14 10. Bullock Workman—p.11 11. Heinrich Herald—p.12 12. Walter Brendel—p.13 13. Alfred Hoikes—p.13 14. Colin Bull—p.14 15. David Elliott—p.14 16. Robert Sharp—p.14, 15 17. Bert Crary—p.15, 17, 89 18. Mildred Crary—p.19 19. Harry Wexler—p.15, 16 20. Richard Hubley—p.16, 23 21. Chuck Sterns—p. 17 22. Phil Church—p.18, 22, 31, 41, 42, 108 23. Arne Hansen—p.18, 20, 35, 36, 38, 43, 46 24. Joe Fletcher—p.19, 57, 60, 70, 90, 91 25. Father Tom Cunningham—p.19 26. Fritz Awe—p.19, 23, 28 27. Morris Davidson—p.20, 77 28. Ken Hunkins—p.20, 22, 28, 37, 38, 39, 40, 56, 57 29. Terrence McDonald—p.20, 84 30. Lt. Colonel Stromquist—p.20 31. Joe Smith—p.20 32. Joseph Bilotta—p.20 33. Brian Freeman—p.20, 21 34. John Sader—p.24 35. Charlie Keeler—p.24 36. Tom English—p.26, 37 37. Frank Badgley—p.28 38. Bill Campbell—p.29, 36 39. George Cvijanovich—p.35 40. Walfried Ekman—p.38, 39, 40 41. Wieland Bieckness (?)—p.39 42. Hal Brayton—p.43 43. Max Brewer—p.44, 45, 53 44. Art Leckenbrook—p.46 45. Lawson Brigham—p.47 46. Major Joe Belota—p.48, 49 47. Jack Calvert—p.49 48. Sir Hubert Wilkins—p.52, 53 49. Lowell Thomas Sr.—p.52, 53, 54 50. Peter Froekin—p.52, 53 51. Bernt Balchen —p.53, 54 52. Prof. Charles Raymond—p.55 53. Allen Thorndike—p.55, 70, 71, 80 54. Gary Baker—p.55 55. Sam Kolbeck—p.55 56. Walt Whitman—p.55, 92 57. Admiral Bowen —p.57 58. Richard Goodie—p.58 59. Suki Manave—p.58, 62 60. Brooks Brian—p.58 61. Ned Ostenso—p.58, 62, 74 62. Bill Swenbeck—p.58 63. Dick Waters—p.59 64. Ross Burent—p.59, 60 65. Kurt Bryan—p.62, 63 66. Bert Boleen—p.63 67. John Kutzba—p.63 68. Joe Smagerinski—p.63 69. Jule Charney—p.63 70. Admiral Tom Owen—p. 65, 66, 67 71. Brian Shoemaker—p.1, 52, 64, 68, 69, 100 72. Dick Schauss—p.68, 69 73. Admiral Geiger—p.71, 72, 94, 96 74. Admiral Bachokle—p.72 75. Waldo Ryan—p.72, 73 76. Elliott Weinberg—p.74 77. Ferris Webster—p.74, 76 78. George Beckman—p.77, 82 79. Drew Rothrock—p.71, 77 80. Jamie Morrison—p.77 81. Dick Trobridge—p.77 82. Reid Parmutter—p.77 83. Jim Evans—p.77 84. Gary Macutt—p.77 85. Tom Grenfell—p.77 86. Bob Brown—p.70, 77 87. Ben Vogel—p.78 88. Bo Buck—p.78, 79 89. Roger Colony—p.78 90. Jim Baker—p.80, 81, 82 91. Ross Heath—p.82 92. Gordon McDonald—p.84 93. Al Gore—p.84 94. Walter Monk—p.85 95. Rita Coburn—p.88 96. Larry Gould—p.89 97. Paul Palmeroy—p.89 98. Nick Washburn—p.89 99. Bill Keel—p.89 100. Tom Jones—p.90, 91 101. Bob Rutford—p.71, 91 102. Ed. Todd—p.91, 97 103. Peter Wilkness—p.91, 92 104. Sherry Abbott—p.91, 92 105. Trishnakov—p.95 106. Ron McGregor—p.96, 97 107. Max Britten—p.96 108. Sydney Chapman—p.100, 109 109. Keith Roncort—p.100 110. Dr. Sofoo—p.101
          Buck Lasek Video        


In 1885 a band of German immigrants established Colony Olivenhain about five miles from the Pacific Ocean. Driving through town you can still see the town hall they built, a sturdy, functional wooden box where family gatherings, barbecues, and 4-H Club fundraisers are held today.


Author: avatarweezie23
Tags: Bucky Lasek skateboarding skater skateboard bucky lasek video skate interview
Posted: 23 April 2009

          Mental heath treatment in Africa        
Bookmarked for later reading.

Get religion discusses a Harper's piece on mental health problems and hospitals in Ghana (which alas is only readable if you are subscriber).

when I was in Africa, the joke was that all of our schizophrenics spoke English: Many had stress related psychoses from the culture changes.

But we also saw a lot of "conversion" reactions.

How many are demon related? Probably few. However, this is not a Pentecostal belief, because traditionally some people were affected by a spirit at puberty.

Conversion reactions will respond to suggestion and hypnosis, which is why prayer (or the traditional treatment by the local Nganga) works.

But there is also vitamin related problem, infection related problems, post concussion related problems, etc.

In the old days, if you had a spirit you might be revered, but if you were crazy, you would be beaten and thrown out on your own to live (reminds me of the man in the cemetary in the bible). Or you might be poisoned, either accidentally (by giving them herbal medicine to treat the problem.. we had lots of death from accidental poisoning to treat illness), or even deliberately.

This is what people did in the good old days to those who threatened them, before police and the court systems.

My friend in Africa had one of her nieces develop mental problems in puberty, perhaps from the stress of loving her dad to HIV and from school.

My friend cured her by taking her on a pilgrimage to the grave of John Bradburne, where she was healed, although she only lived a few more years. What did she die of? HIV? Infection? I have no idea.

Bradburne was gentle guy, a veteran with PTSS, who found God and who later worked at a leper colony and was martyred. Now, at least 30 of my collegues there were martyred, but the Africans only spontaneously saw him as a saint... I presume because the rest of us were bossy do gooders, and he only was known for his love.

          Comment on Final Dufus Show and Album… Donations Needed!! by Hidden Artist: Dufus | TheBrandNewColony        
[...] celebrated on September 25th at Cakeshop, NYC. ” If you like to support this raw talent then visit his blog, the rest it is really up to you // Categories: Hidden Treasures Tags: Comments [...]
          NYT: Prison dementia makes caregivers of killers        

James Evers, an inmate at the California Men's Colony, shaves Joaquin Cruz, 60, a convicted killer with Alzheimer's disease. Dementia is a fast-growing phenomenon in prisons that many are not prepared to handle. The California Men’s Colony is using convicted killers to care for inmates who can no longer care for themselves.

          The Dred Scott Decision        
Some weeks ago I saw a reference to the Dred Scott decision and decided that it was time finally to read it. Delivered in March 1857, the decision was a key step towards the Civil War.  Chief Justice Roger Taney, a Marylander, ruled against Dred Scott, a Missouri slave who had sued on behalf of himself, his wife and two children, arguing that they had become free by virtue of years of residence (with their master) in the free state of Illinois, and in parts of the Louisiana territory north of the 36' 30" line that had defined the permissible area of slavery under the Missouri Compromise.  Taney argued that Dred Scott had no right to sue because the Founders, he claimed, had never imagined that either slaves or their free descendants could become citizens.  But Taney had not just ruled against Scott in this case: he had declared any Congressional attempt to limit the area in which slavery would be permitted to be unconstitutional, and he appeared to endorse the increasingly popular white southern view that slaveholders had a right to take slaves, like any other property, with them anywhere in the Union.  The Republican Party had just lost a fairly close election to Democrat James Buchanan, and the decision alarmed northerners who, while not abolitionists, wanted to keep slavery out of new territories and out of the North.  The principle behind the decision--that slavery could not be restricted--split the Democratic Party three years later in 1860, paving the way for the election of Lincoln, the secession of mot of the slave states, and the Civil War.

Slavery is the subject of renewed controversy nowadays, and Taney's opinion and the two dissents by Justices McLean and Curtis  raise critical questions about slavery's relation to the Constitution and its role in the early Republic.  The opinions make up one of the longest entries in the whole record of the Supreme Court, and I did skim parts of Tawney's and skipped a couple of concurring opinions.  But the whole experience was extraordinarily educational.

"Originalism" is of course the dominant right-wing judicial philosophy today, and Taney's opinion turns out to be originalism on steroids.  He began by asking whether Dred Scott had the right to bring suit in the first place, given that he was black, a slave, and the descendant of slaves, and answered the question with a resounding no.  The Founders, he argued, never believed that such beings could become citizens of the United States or full members of the community.   That was proven, he argued, by their status in all the original colonies, North and South, which treated all blacks as inferior beings.  It was also proven, he argued, by the text of the Constitution, which in at least two places specifically acknowledged and thereby endorsed the existence of slavery.  Now Taney, from the Compromiser generation (like Henry Clay and Daniel Webster), was old enough to remember the adoption of the Constitution, and he argued that no subsequent generation could disregard the views of the framers on this point.  Going even further backward to the Declaration of Independence, Taney argued that "all men are created equal" could not possibly be taken to include black men.

The question I am going to address at length with the help of Justice McLean's and Justice Curtis's dissents is whether Tawney was right.  This question now has far more than historic interest.  What immediately struck me was how closely Taney's view of the Constitution and the views of founders echoes what PC academics argue today:  that the Constitution specifically relegated black people to inferior status and that no one had the slightest intention of every changing this.  But it turns out that Taney sustained his argument only with the help of extremely selective evidence and highly tendentious reasoning--as the two dissenters made very clear.

Taney cited a number of colonial and even post-revolutionary statutes from New England states that did indeed mark out "negroes" (as the opinions used and wrote the word) as a separate class and denied them certain rights.  But almost without exception, the statutes that he quoted referred to the right to marry: they barred miscegenation and punished it with fines.  We shall see in a moment how incomplete this historical view was, but I might also remark that I see a great inconsistency in Taney's view.  He was using these colonial and state laws to argue that the people of the states in 1787 did not believe black people could be citizens, but arguing that that view bound the whole nation for all time, even though it was based upon state laws that obviously could, and sometimes were, changed at a later date.  It was incumbent upon him, it seems to me, to show that this view was actually reflected in the Constitution itself, and this, in my opinion, he most definitely could not do.

The two brief constitutional provisions that Taney cited to make his case deserve to be quoted.  The first, from Article I, Section 9, related to the importation of slaves: "The Migration or Importation of such Persons as any of the States now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited by the Congress prior to the Year one thousand eight hundred and eight, but a Tax or duty may be imposed on such Importation, not exceeding ten dollars for each Person."  The second, from Article IV, Section 2, related to fugitives from one state to another: "No Person held to Service or Labour in one State, under the Laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in Consequence of any Law or Regulation therein, be discharged from such Service or Labour, but shall be delivered up on Claim of the Party to whom such Service or Labour may be due."  Now both of these passages did refer indirectly to slavery.  The first allowed states to continue importing slaves for twenty years, or until such time as Congress prohibited the trade (as indeed it did in 1807, although enforcement of the prohibition was unfortunately lax.)  The second provided for the return of fugitive slaves from one state to another.  Yet in fact, Taney's interpretation of these clauses, in my opinion, is clearly backwards.  They do not enshrine a right to hold slaves, much less a permanent inferior status for black people, in the Constitution.  First of all, neither of these passages refers only to slaves.  The first covers "migration" as well as "importation," and "migration" could not possibly refer to slaves.  And the second obviously refers, in fact as well as in theory, to all those white people who were bound to masters for set terms of service, and to apprentices as well.  These provisions do not establish a separate status for any of the men and women to whom they refer: they are referred to simply as "persons," one of the framers* favorite words, for which we owe them our thanks.  And their language--like the language of the three-fifths clause, which Taney interestingly chose not to mention--was obviously designed to avoid putting the word "slave" into our founding document.  That tends to confirm the historical view of Abraham Lincoln (and many others), opposite to Taney's, that most of the founders regarded slavery as an evil that had unfortunately found its way to our shores, one that they had already kept out of the Northwest territories, and one that they hoped and expected to disappear.  And last, but hardly least, just as the Constitution includes no explicit reference to, or definition of, slavery, no one could possibly argue that it defined even a third group of "persons," free black people who could not be citizens, which Taney's argument assumed to exist then and for all time.

It was not necessary, however, to wait 160 years for an historian to discover the logical and historical weaknesses in Taney's argument.  Justice McLean (from Ohio) exposed both the logical and historical flaws in Tawney's argument in quite scathing terms.  To begin with, he argued, Taney was ruling against Scott on the grounds that he was a slave--but the question of whether he was in fact a slave was the one the case was supposed to decide.  (And Scott had in fact prevailed in a lower court!)  Then Curtis showed that Taney's argument about the historical view of black people within the United States was utterly without foundation in theory or fact.

"In the argument, it was said that a colored citizen would not be an agreeable member of society. This is more a matter of taste than of law. Several of the States have admitted persons of color to the right of suffrage, and, in this view, have recognized them as citizens, and this has been done in the slave as well as the free States. On the question of citizenship, it must be admitted that we have not been very fastidious. Under the late treaty with Mexico, we have made citizens of all grades, combinations, and colors. The same was done in the admission of Louisiana and Florida. No one ever doubted, and no court ever held that the people of these Territories did not become citizens under the treaty. They have exercised all the rights of citizens, without being naturalized under the acts of Congress."

In short, McLean simply reported that black people's status varied enormously from state to state and that there no prohibition, neither explicit nor customary, against them enjoying the rights of citizens, nor had there ever been.  He proceeded in another lengthy argument to show that Taney's arguments that Congress had no power to ban slavery from territories, or even to legislate for territorial governments, was without foundation, a tendentious claim reflecting a violent contemporary controversy over the extension of slavery.  And last but hardly least, drawing on older British precedents, he argued that Dred Scott's slavery had ceased when he took up residence with his master in a free state.  Slavery, he argued powerfully, existed only where it was protected by local law.  And while the Constitution did require free states to return fugitive slaves, a master surrendered his right to his slaves the moment that he crossed with them into a free jurisdiction.  In other words, taking the white southern argument head on, McLean argued that law did not regard slaves as property like any other, but rather as property only when explicitly sanctioned by local law.

But it was when I reached Justice McLean's discussion of the actual legal point that would decide the freedom of Dred Scott that I got a real shock.  That point was the issue of whether Dred Scott had become free by virtue of his residence with his master in Illinois and in free Louisiana territory where slavery had been outlawed by the Missouri Compromise.  From the moment I first read about the case when I was perhaps ten years old, I had assumed that Dred Scott, perhaps influenced by abolitionists, was asserting a novel right and that Taney's decision reflected precedent. I could not have been more wrong.  Many state courts, and the courts of Missouri in particular, had heard such cases in the previous decades and had frequently awarded the aggrieved slaves their freedom.  The Missouri Supreme Court had explicitly repudiated more than 20 years of precedence in denying him his freedom.    It was Taney who was making new law by fiat, reflecting new slaveholder militancy, just as the whole South was making new law by asserting the inability of Congress to prohibit slavery in the territories.  In fact, McLean noted that not only Missouri, but also Mississippi, Virginia, Louisiana, Kentucky, Maryland and other states had held that slaves taken by their masters to reside in free states became free.

Justice Curtis, who hailed from Massachusetts (and specifically from Watertown where I now live myself), began with a very lengthy technical argument about jurisdiction but then went straight to the heart of Tawney's argument that descendants of slaves could not be citizens.  The Constitution, he noted, referred to "citizens" of the United States, by which it could only have meant citizens under the Articles of Confederation, which in turn meant citizens of the various states.  There was no question that the citizenry included persons of African descent.   "Of this there can be no doubt.  At the time of the ratification of the Articles of Confederation, all free native-born inhabitants of the States of New Hampshire, Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, and North Carolina, though descended from African slaves, were not only citizens of those States, but such of them as had the other necessary qualifications possessed the franchise of electors, on equal terms with other citizens."

Curtis proceeded to quote from an extraordinary 1838 decision from the Supreme Court of North Carolina defining the status of free black inhabitants in terms opposite to what Taney had said, and remarkable for its use of the terms "persons" and "property", keeping in mind that only the word "persons" is used to refer to slaves in the Constitution when such reference cannot be avoided.

"According to the laws of this State, all human beings within it, who are not slaves, fall within one of two classes. Whatever distinctions may have existed in the Roman laws between citizens and free inhabitants, they are unknown to our institutions. Before our Revolution, all free persons born within the dominions of the King of Great Britain, whatever their color or complexion, were native-born British subjects -- those born out of his allegiance were aliens. Slavery did not exist in England, but it did in the British colonies. Slaves were not, in legal parlance persons, but property. The moment the incapacity, the disqualification of slavery, was removed, they became persons, and were then either British subjects or not British subjects, according as they were or were not born within the allegiance of the British King. Upon the Revolution, no other change took place in the laws of North Carolina than was consequent on the transition from a colony dependent on a European King to a free and sovereign State. Slaves remained slaves. British subjects in North Carolina became North Carolina freemen. Foreigners, until made members of the State, remained aliens. Slaves, manumitted here, became freemen, and therefore, if born within North Carolina, are citizens of North Carolina, and all free persons born within the State are born citizens of the State. The Constitution extended the elective franchise to every freeman who had arrived at the age of twenty-one and paid a public tax, and it is a matter of universal notoriety that, under it, free persons, without regard to color, claimed and exercised the franchise until it was taken from free men of color a few years since by our amended Constitution."

Curtis, like myself a proud New Englander, proceeded to show that Taney's statements about the status of free blacks in revolutionary-era New England were simply wrong.   The Articles of Confederation, he noted, granted "the free inhabitants" of all the states "all the privileges and immunities of free citizens of the several states," and during the debate on the adoption of those articles in the Continental Congress,an amendment proposed by South Carolina to insert the word "white" between "free" and "inhabitants" was voted down.  The basic rule of citizenship, he showed at length was the one now enshrined in the 14th amendment, that it was conferred by birth.  Curtis also stood another of Taney's arguments on its head.  Taney had cited a 1792 federal law establishing the militia, to which "every free, able-bodied, white male citizen" should belong, as evidence that black people were not regarded as citizens. In fact, Curtis argued effectively, it proved the exact opposite, since if it were agreed that black people were not citizens it would have been unnecessary to add the word "white" in the first place.  And when Missouri was admitted in 1821, he showed, the Congress specifically invalidated a provision of its Constitution that would have barred free colored persons from settling in the state, on the grounds that it would have unconstitutionally deprived citizens of other states of privileges to which the Constitution entitled them. He also argued that international law was common law, and that international law had rejected slavery for some time.  He also argued that Scott's master had effectively recognized his freedom by allowing him to conclude, in the Wisconsin territory, a lawful marriage!

Curtis aggressively asserted the power of Congress to legislate against slavery in a territory, and did not hesitate to note " the social and moral evils of slavery, its relations to republican Governments, its inconsistency with the Declaration of Independence and with natural right." The attempt to argue that rules against slavery would discriminate against inhabitants of the southern states, he argued, was an attempt to write an exception into a categorical clause of the Constitution for which there was no basis.

Let us then put this decision in the context of American history, with particular reference to race and slavery.

Because so many of them believed slavery to be an evil, the Founders, while unable to do anything about it in southern states, did not specifically recognize or protect it in the Constitution. When the Constitution was first adopted the Confederation had just banned slavery in the Northwest territories, clearly anticipating that Congress would be able to do the same. Meanwhile, most of the northern states had just abolished it.  Many southerners also hoped to see it disappear, and a number of the founders, including Washington, freed their slaves upon their death.  However, with the invention of the cotton gin and the rise of a new generation of southerners, the view that slavery was a necessity and a positive good gained ground.  In  1820, when the Missouri Compromise banned slavery north of 36' 30" (except in Missouri), some southerners were arguing that slave property was protected everywhere--but they clearly lost that fight in Congress.

Like the NRA and its allies in recent decades, the slave owning South now began re-interpreting the Constitution to serve their own ends.  The controversy over slavery became more and more bitter in the 1830s and 1840s, and especially after the Mexican War added vast new territories to the Union.  More and more southerners began to argue that slaves were property like any other--a claim that could not really be justified at common law, since slavery had formed no part of the English common law which the new Republic had adopted.  What happened in the Dred Scott decision was perfectly parallel to what happened in the District of Columbia v. Heller decision in 2008, when the court, by a 5-4 majority, suddenly adopted the NRA's view, overturned two centuries of precedent, and created an individual right to bear arms.  In both cases, an organized, ideologically driven minority had imposed its will upon the Supreme Court, and thence upon the country.   In the Dred Scott case the reaction was swift.  Not even the entire Democratic Party would accept the view of Dred Scott, and the decision allowed Lincoln to win a huge electoral college victory in 1860.  With no hope of making its views prevail through law, the South seceded, and the Civil War both defeated the southern states and ended slavery.

The argument that the framers and their Constitution were deeply embedded in racism and never envisioned freedom for the slaves is false. It is also politically disastrous for the nation.  Again and again we have preserved our ideals by returning to the principles the framers enshrined.  That, in my opinion, is what we must do again now, rather than argue that the American society and government has always been inherently, irretrievably racist.  Racism certainly has never been absent from American life and is not now, but it has lost ground over the centuries precisely because it is alien to our founding documents.  To argue that it is not takes away our best hope for further progress.

Brochures are now available and registrations are being accepted for the CCGS-ETHA FAMILY HISTORY FAIR scheduled for Saturday, March 29, 2014, at the First United Methodist Church, 1031 SE Loop 456, Jacksonville, Texas. The event is being organized by the Cherokee County Genealogical Society and sponsored by the East Texas Historical Association, SFASU, Nacogdoches. The hours of the one day event are 9AM to 3PM. The church will open at 8:00 AM for vendors and exhibitors to begin setting up and for checking in at the registration table.
The fee to attend the CCGS-ETHA Family History Fair is posted on the CCGS website and will include a hot lunch provided by the church’s adult mission group. The fee will be discounted for CCGS and ETHA members and will include the hot lunch. The Family History Fair is a fund raising project for both CCGS and the adult missions group of First United Methodist, Jacksonville, to fund their respective activities.
While walk-ins will be accepted, advance reservations for the Family History Fair are strongly advised by society members especially for the lunch count. To obtain a brochure and to register for the event contact the society by regular mail at P. O. Box 1332, Jacksonville, Texas 75766, via e-mail to ccgs@suddenlink.net, or by calling 1-903-586-0135. For more details on the programs and the speakers visit the CCGS web site at http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~txcherok.
There will be three tracts of speakers with four sessions each. Dr. Scott Sosebee, director of ETHA and an associate professor of history at SFASU will be the key-note speaker at 9AM. Speaking sessions will begin at 10:00 AM and 11:00 AM with 12:00-1:00 lunch break and then 1:00 PM and 2:00 2PM.
Carol Taylor of Greenville, Texas, is the speaker in Tract I entitled CIVIL WAR PAPER TRAILS. Mrs. Taylor presented a similar program series at the Angelina College Genealogical Conference last July and will be presenting speaking sessions on similar topics in Houston early this month. Her four session titles are "During the War: Records Created 1861 – 1865," "When the War Was Over" "Women, Children and Other Civilians," and "Southern Claims Commission Papers." Mrs. Taylor, a retired teacher and an avid genealogist for years, earned her master’s degree in history from Texas A&M in Commerce.
Christi Watkins R.N. Chief Clinical Officer at Palestine Regional Medical Center, will present two sessions in Tract II, “Are You Related to Royalty??, “ and “Skeletons in the Closet.” Ms. Watkins has extensive expertise in the field of DNA testing for identification purposes and worked in New York City after 9/11.
Still in Tract II, Carolyn Reeves Ericson of Nacogdoches will present one session on “Early Virginia Research” including information on the early Germanna Colony and Ancient Planters. Mrs. Ericson is a genealogist, historian, author and publisher, operator of Ericson Books and writes a weekly genealogy column for two East Texas newspapers. The fourth session in Tract II will be present by Linda Reynolds, Director Special Collections, East Texas Research Center. The ETRC is located on the second floor of Steen Library At SFASU in Nacogdoches. Mr. Ainsworth’s topic will be “Records Preservation.”
In Tract III John Garbutt of Rusk, Special Projects Administrator will present the first session, “History of the Texas State Railroad.”
David Schochler of Diboll, Texas, will present two sessions entitled “Genealogical Research in Western Europe” and “So, your GGGrandfather was born in the Sundgav! Now what?” In 2013 Mr. Schochler published a book based on his research of his Schochler family who settled in Cherokee County, Texas. His previous programs for two area genealogy societies have been present in period costume. Kaye Slover of Nacogdoches will speak on Cherokee County Cemeteries.
Vivian Cates, Alto 1-936-858-3801
1st Vice-president Program Chairman, Publicity, Special Projects
Cherokee County Genealogical Society
          The Moon is a Harsh Mistress        
The Moon is a Harsh Mistress
author: Robert A. Heinlein
name: Jeff
average rating: 3.66
book published: 1965
rating: 5
read at: 2017/06/11
date added: 2017/06/12
shelves: read-in-2009, audio-collection, read-in-2008, read-in-2007, read-in-2006, read-in-2004, read-in-2011, read-in-2012, read-in-2013, read-in-2014, read-in-2017, read-with-kids
Moon is one of my favorite of Heinlein's novels. It is a near-future story where the moon has become a penal colony. Harsh survival conditions grow an admirable culture and the story surrounds a revolution for freedom and independence from the jailors.

Unlike some of Heinlein's novels, the plot is solid from beginning to end. Characters are amazing as always with Heinlein. The libertarian backdrop and plausibility of both the culture with which we start and the actions taken in revolution are satisfying. For adults approaching Heinlein, this is an excellent start.

As of my 2012 reading, my seventh, this is a still a favorite. The end still makes me cry and the novel still makes me happy throughout. This was a perfect addition to my current "literary comfort food" binge.

In 2013, I tried this one with the kids, and it was a bit much. I mostly ended up skipping ahead and revisiting it on my own.

          Aven Colony Xbox One        
          Review of David Hill, Gold!        
Few Australians release that it was the discovery of gold at Gympie by the semi-literate James Nash in October 1867 that almost certainly saved from bankruptcy the fledgling colony of Queensland, which had only separated from New South Wales in 1859. The reality is that at the time of this spectacular gold rush at Gympie, some 160 kilometres north of Brisbane, the Bank of Queensland had closed its doors, the colony of less than 22,000 settlers was in the grip of a severe depression, most public works had been abandoned, ...
          2 Scientists, 2 Different Approaches To Saving Bees From Poison Dust        
It's planting time in America. Farmers are spending long days on their tractors, pulling massive planters across millions of acres of farmland, dropping corn and soybean seeds into the ground. Most of those seeds have been coated with pesticides known as neonicotinoids, or neonics for short. And despite attempts by pesticide makers to reduce this, some of that coating is getting rubbed off the seeds and blown into the air. That dust is settling on the ground, on ponds, and on vegetation nearby. Honeybees and wild bees, looking for food, will encounter traces of the pesticides, and some will be harmed. They may become disoriented and bring less food back to their colony. Many may die. Several years ago, Christian Krupke , an insect specialist at Purdue University in Indiana, became one of the first researchers to discover that rogue dust was wiping out bee colonies. At first, Art Schaafsma , an entomologist at the University of Guelph, in Canada, didn't believe it was true.
          Where’s The Party At? Summer Fun at The Charles and Colony Bar        

What we’ve all been waiting for is finally here: SUMMER! What’s on the agenda? We’ve got a couple ideas for you. Do you like good music? Watching sports? Dancing? A good brunch!? If you’re yelling “yeah-yeah-yeah!” at your screen, boy do we have just the thing for you. Let’s head to Gastown or Kitsilano in […]

The post Where’s The Party At? Summer Fun at The Charles and Colony Bar appeared first on GetintheLoop.

          Post-Colonialism: Definition, Development and Examples from India        
This speech deals with the phenomenon of post-colonialism. It presents general definitions of the post-colonial theory and provides some information about its development as well as illustrating background knowledge about basic landmarks of India's colonial past. It then concentrates on the post-colonial development of India which was a British colony until 1947.
          Comment on About the Author by claesju        
Hi! Thanks a lot for your comment! It´s very satisfying for us like students. Yes, I know the other three centres, we´d visited it. About my second surname, Jurado, I suppossed that your friend is descent of spanish because there were a colony from the Sixteenth cetury to the end of XIX century. My family as many spanish have some related families in America and also Philippines but I have no idea of related there. Thank you! really interesting your comment.
          Re: Ship Mary Ann London>Mass Bay Colony 1689        
Hello jaclanc,
I may have also had an ancestor on this ship that landed near Boston. His name was Paterson. If you would like to compare the family history, please contact me.
          (Review) The Tea Planter's Wife by Dinah Jefferies         
Publisher and Publication Date: Broadway Books. Paperback June 20, 2017.
Genre: Fiction, India.
Pages: 448.
Source: I received this copy from Blogging from Books for this review.
Rating: Okay.

Dinah Jefferies

Gwendolyn Hooper, age 19, traveled from her home in Gloucestershire, England to the country of Ceylon. The year is 1925. She joined her new husband, Laurence Hooper. Laurence is a widower and a tea planter. He is age 37. They met in England and had a whirlwind relationship. Gwen is dreamy-eyed with love and the expectation of a being a wife.  On board the ship, just as Gwen arrived in Ceylon, she met mysterious Savi Ravasinghe. After attending a party, Gwen became uncomfortable with an American woman who is in a business relationship with Laurence. Early in the story unanswered questions develop for Gwen. What happened to Laurence’s first wife? Why is his behavior so odd for a newlywed? Is the American woman more to Laurence than a business type relationship?
Ceylon was a British Crown colony between 1802 and 1948. Ceylon is now called Sri Lanka. It is an island southeast of India. The length of the island is 268 miles. The width of the island is 136 miles. Colombo is the capital of Sri Lanka. Three mountains on the island are over 7,500 feet, the tallest at 8,281 feet. The Monsoon rains are from May to September. For more information: Britannica.

My Thoughts:
The Tea Planter’s Wife had the beginnings of a great novel, but there are four things that did not work for me.
1. There were opportunities to examine and illustrate through the story the contrast of wealthy citizens (white British), and the poor people who were native to Ceylon and India. Many of the workers at the tea plantation were from India. I wanted to see more development in this element. The Great Depression effected all people. The wealthy lost money and the poor became poorer. Gwen loved beautiful clothing. She was alert to fashion trends. However, most of the people living in Ceylon were trying to feed their families. During the story Gwen wanted to do more for the people, for example build a school. Her husband is less inclined to want to reach out and help the people. So, some attention is given to this element, but I wanted to see greater development.
2. Several descriptive references are made to “pulled faces.” What does this mean?
Further, several monotonous references are made to a trembling or “wobbled” mouth. These descriptions were used too much. They were boring.
3. Gwen is a teenager when she marries a man 18 years older. She is young, naïve, silly, and immature. It took gumption to marry and travel so far away from England to the exotic world of Ceylon. What happened to that gumption she had shown a spark of? I wondered what kind upbringing and home life she’d had? I wondered about her parents? During the story, Gwen reflected on her father. And, she misses home at times. Her parents never went to visit their daughter while she was living in Ceylon. A friend from England visited her but not her parents. It became a big mystery to me about her parents. I couldn’t understand why more attention was not given to them? I don’t think Gwen even mentions letters from her parents. Odd.
4. The answer maybe because Gwen is so young, but why did she not know what happened to the first wife? Females are curious. Young females are known to ask questions about previous relationships their men had. Why did she not pick his brain beforehand?
5. There is an absence of communication between Laurence and Gwen. If in the beginning they had shared about their families, then there would be no need for insecurities. Of course, there would be no story either.
After reading The Tea Planter’s Wife, I wondered if the story had been told by the nanny/servant Naveena, would I have liked it better? This woman had cared for Laurence, his first wife, and Gwen. Naveena was a native to the culture and people group. I feel she had a unique perspective on the people she worked and cared for.
Final Thought:
The story wraps up nicely. Everything is placed in a nice gift wrapped box with a bow by the end of the novel. I am glad the story had closure. I kept reading, The Tea Planter’s Wife, because I wanted to know what happened to the characters and those unanswered questions about the first wife.

          Tamar Haspel on Food Costs, Animal Welfare, and the Honey Bee        

honey%20bees.jpg Tamar Haspel, who writes "Unearthed," a column on food and agriculture at the Washington Post, talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about a wide variety of issues related to the cost of food and how it's produced. Topics discussed include why technology helps make some foods inexpensive, how animals are treated, the health of the honey bee, and whether eggs from your backyard taste any better than eggs at the grocery.

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Readings and Links related to this podcast episode

Related Readings
This week's guest: This week's focus: Additional ideas and people mentioned in this podcast episode: A few more readings and background resources:
  • Agricultural Subsidy Programs, by Daniel A. Sumner. Concise Encyclopedia of Economics.
  • Externalities, by Bryan Caplan. Concise Encyclopedia of Economics.
  • The Jungle, by Upton Sinclair. Amazon.com. Influential 1906 novel about troubling practices in the meat-packing industry.
A few more EconTalk podcast episodes:


Podcast Episode Highlights

Intro. [Recording date: June 28, 2017.]

Russ Roberts: We're going to talk about a number of food issues today, based on some recent columns you've written. And, I have to say, almost every one of them is interesting. Which is unusual for me.

Tamar Haspel: That's a start. Not everybody would agree with me.

Russ Roberts: No. Of course not. Of course not. But that's why I'm the host. I want to start with a column you wrote recently on why some foods are more expensive than others. And, the answer you give is: machines. And you give the example of tomatoes. So, talk about why machines are important in the cost of food, and in particular what they've done to tomatoes.

Tamar Haspel: Well, machines are important in a lot of different crops. But they particularly play out in the conversation that kind of dominates the cost when it comes to food. Which is, people keep asking: Well, why are the foods that are bad for us--the foods that come out of the industrialized food system, the processed foods--why are those so cheap? And fruits and vegetables are so expensive? And it's a very good question. And, subsidies usually are fingered; and I've written about that as well. And they do play a role. But a much bigger role is played by other things that are more inherent to the crops, and aren't, you know, sort of government-imposed. And machines are one of them. Because, the machines that harvest the grains that paper the vast acreage in the Midwest--the corn and soy--are a big part of why those things are cheap. But, when you look at vegetables, it's instructive to look--not to compare them to grains, but to compare them to each other. And tomatoes are a great example of that, Because we have two kinds of tomatoes. We have the tomatoes that we eat, and then we have the tomatoes that go into cans. And the tomatoes that we eat are, have to be harvested by hand, because we demand that they be bruise-free and blemish-free--that they be harvested right at the height of their ripeness. Whereas, tomatoes that are going in cans can get a few bruises. They can have tough skins, because those are going to be removed in processing. But, up until about 1960, we didn't have those differences, because there was no such tool as a tomato harvester. And, it was interesting--because it's not just that an engineer at UC Davis invented a tomato harvester. It's that an engineer at UC Davis (University of California, Davis) invented a tomato harvester at the same time that a plant scientist at UC Davis invented a kind of tomato that was harvestable. And they weren't hand in hand. And the [?] was, through the 1960s, the variety of tomato that was grown for canning changed. And these machines were introduced. And over the course of that several iterations of machines that got better and better, the cost of labor for tomatoes dropped 92%. Which is astonishing. I think [?] about something like, you know, 24 cents a ton. And, it's one of the reasons--it's not the only reason, but it's one of the reasons that canned tomatoes, you can buy at my supermarket--I can find for $1 for a 28-ounce can, when they are on sale. Whereas fresh tomatoes in the summer will set you back $5/pound sometimes.

Russ Roberts: Yeah. It's just an incredible example of how technology--first of all, in the beginning, it makes the farmer a little bit richer. Maybe a lot richer. But as more and more people adopt the technology, competition forces the price down closer to its cost.

Tamar Haspel: And at the very beginning--at the very beginning, it makes the farmer poorer, because he has to buy the thing.

Russ Roberts: Well, yeah, the outlay. But at first it gives the farmer who adopts the technology, if it's good technology, a competitive edge.

Tamar Haspel: Right.

Russ Roberts: And then they get rich; and other farmers notice it. Or the people who invented the machine want to sell it to those other farmers. And then competition among the farmers pushes the price down. Talk about how--

Tamar Haspel: [?] nature of the market.--

Russ Roberts: you have a beautiful little simple calculation on the tomato example, how the ratio of fresh tomatoes has changed over time. In particular, before the adoption of the harvester and after. Do you have that number handy?

Tamar Haspel: Yeah, well I remember it. Because, before tomato harvesters were introduced the cost of a canned tomato was about $0.15 a pound; and the cost of a hand-harvested tomato was about $0.27 a pound. So it wasn't even a 2:1 ratio. And now it's more than 3:1, with, I think beefsteak tomatoes, the last USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) data I saw showed $0.92--$3.00 and something, $0.17 a pound, versus under a dollar for canned tomatoes.

Russ Roberts: Well--but the canned tomato, it's more than a pound. Sixteen ounces--it was 28 ounces. Right? So, it's even--

Tamar Haspel: Well, that was a USDA price. And it was per pound.

Russ Roberts: Oh, okay. Okay. Thank you. Excellent.


Russ Roberts: The other part I thought was interesting that you highlighted was the impact on employment. I often like to point out that, in 1900, about 40% of the U.S. labor force was on the farm, for related agriculture, and today I think it's under 3%, maybe it's about 2%, 2-and-a bit. And, if you didn't know anything, you'd say, 'That must mean people are starving to death.' But, of course, it's the opposite. We have a lot of food, even though we have many, many fewer--both in percentage and I think absolute terms as well working as farmers. So, what did that harvester--

Tamar Haspel: It's way lower, in absolute terms--

Russ Roberts: What did that harvester do to employment and wages?

Tamar Haspel: Well, it's very difficult to tease out exactly what a machine does, versus all of these other things that affect food prices and farm economics. And, I'm not an economist, although you are. So, hopefully between us, we can puzzle it out.

Russ Roberts: I only play one on EconTalk. No; I am an economist.

Tamar Haspel: And, a couple of things happened. One is, the labor dynamic that was going on at the time. And, after the War, the Second World War, a lot of farm labor moved into cities, because there were better-paying jobs in factories. And so farmers didn't have access to the same kind of labor pool that they had earlier in the century. And not having access to keep labor is one of the factors that really drives mechanization. And so, the shift from tractor to combine happened at about that same time. And obviously that played a role. But the combine did some other things, too.

Russ Roberts: Tamar, explain what a combine is. Because--we've all heard of it. But tell us what it is.

Tamar Haspel: It's a really cool machine, actually. It's this giant box with different attachments to it. And it's kind of like, you know, your Kitchen Aid stand mixer: It has all these different things it can do when you plug them in. And, but its basic job, combine, is a combination of things. So, the basic 3 functions it does are harvesting--so, as you drive the combine over the field, it picks the plant, it cuts the plant off. Threshing, so it removes the grain, or in the case of corn, the cob, from the plant; and it also cleans it: it gets some of the schmutz off the grain. And it also can take the leftovers, the stalks and the leaves, and either spit them back out on the field because a lot of farms use it to cover the bare earth, or it can bale those and they can be used for animal feed. Now, a big combine is, I think they can cost close on a million dollars at this point. They are extraordinarily expensive. But one of the reasons they are extraordinarily expensive is this dynamic that we saw--where, a farmer would get a combine, and all of a sudden, that farmer not just could farm more acreage, but at some level would have to to get the economies of scale to put the capital into the farm equipment. And, the Midwest lends itself to that because of the geography. It's flat and fairly uniform. And that's one of the reasons that we have these huge swaths of corn and soy and wheat in the central part of the country. And so, combines were part and parcel of that transformation you were talking about, from going from 40% of the U.S. labor force on the farm to, oh, it's between 1 and 2% now. But we grow much more food on less land.

Russ Roberts: How wide is a typical combine, if there is such a thing as typical? Do you know?

Tamar Haspel: Well, they go as wide--the widest attachment I've seen--and if there are farm people out there, I'm sure that they can correct me on this if I'm behind--the widest one I saw was 32 rows. But I think most are probably a little bit smaller than that.

Russ Roberts: It's an incredibly--to me it looks like a giant comb being pushed ahead, through--

Tamar Haspel: It does--

Russ Roberts: And it only works effectively on what are called 'row crops,' right? And what are those? And what aren't those?

Tamar Haspel: Row crops are the grains and legumes that are grown in rows. They are cereals, grasses that lend themselves to this kind of harvest, because they are uniform; they all ripen at the same time. And they are very distinct from fruits and vegetables, which--I mean, there's a reason the USDA calls them 'specialty crops,' because they need a lot more attention; they need a lot more maintenance; they have a lot more inputs; they generally require irrigation, which row crops sometimes do but often don't. And, farming them looks very, very different.


Russ Roberts: I want to give you a couple of examples of--this is one of my favorite things. I don't know--listeners may know this or not, but I'm really, I really love specific examples like these of how productivities change, the impact on consumers. So, one of them which is surprising--I don't know if you've heard this one; and I've never talked about it on the air--is orange juice. So, orange juice comes in these not-so-attractive containers, environmentally, sometimes, they might come in an aseptic juice-box: there was a big debate over whether that was good for the environment or not. They come in various kinds of cartons and plastic. And a lot of people would feel, I think intuitively, that it's better to squeeze your own orange juice for the environment, because that way you don't have to have all the packaging. And what people wouldn't notice--and I heard this from a Coca Cola executive--and of course they own Minute Maid and probably 90 other things--but you don't think about the fact that if you are going to transport oranges from, Florida, say, to your house or to your local supermarket, they are round. So, they've got to be put in a box. The box isn't round. So, you stack a lot of boxes in the truck; but the boxes hold a certain, really, relatively large amount of air by definition because the orange is round. But a juice box is flat. So, when you send juice boxes from the factory to the grocery, you are transporting the oranges in an incredibly efficient way. You need fewer trucks, fewer trips. And then, the other part of course which we don't think about is that Minute Maid is really good at squeezing oranges. And we're not as good. You might say, 'Well, what do you mean? We get all the juice out?' But Minute Maid not only gets all the juice out. You might compost--which is lovely--it seems to be a good thing. People smile on it. But, Minute Maid uses every single bit of that orange, because they've got a lot of oranges to take care of. So, the skins are used for all kinds of things; and the--animal feed--

Tamar Haspel: I was going to say--the skins, they use the by-products for all kinds of things.

Russ Roberts: So, it's surprisingly effective. And it's also, of course, probably in many ways better for the environment. Unless you live in Florida. Right?

Tamar Haspel: And actually, it's funny, because the whole round-versus-square part, in my business, not the journalism business but in our oyster farm, we pack our oysters in onion bags. And, of course oysters are irregularly shaped to begin with. But when you put them in onion bags and you stack them on pallets for transport, or you put them in onion bags and then you put the onion bags in larger boxes, you are doing exactly the same thing as the oranges: You are wasting a lot of space. And, we work with a much larger producer here on Cape Cod, and they have switched over to boxes for that very reason.

Russ Roberts: And the whole revolution--I once did a half-tongue-in-cheek but a half-serious piece that the cardboard box is one of the greatest inventions of all time. And, the cardboard box on steroids is called a container ship. And of course--

Tamar Haspel: You know, it's funny because I have had that exact same conversation with--talking about the greatest innovations of the 20th century and everybody is like, 'Oh, the computer.' And I go with 'Container shipping' every time.

Russ Roberts: Because it's shockingly transformative of price. And I think--I'm going to give another example, but it's really important to remind ourselves that the price comes out to the consumer because of the competitive process. If only one person had container ships, they could keep all those lower costs in the form of higher prices for themselves.


Russ Roberts: So, I want to give you another example. This is a crazy example. I used to really be into eggs. I'm still into eggs a little bit. But, in my book, The Price of Everything, I did some egg examples. And, as you mentioned--this is a little bit old; it's probably even more impressive now. But, the first statistic I want to give you is that in 1900, a maid--somebody who cleaned houses--made about $240 a year. That person would work 12 hours a day, 6 days a week. So, they were making about $0.07 an hour. And in 1900, a dozen eggs cost $0.20.

Tamar Haspel: Wow.

Russ Roberts: So, they were really cheap. They weren't really--they took 3 hours' of work for a person of manual labor to earn enough money to buy a dozen eggs. Today--and housecleaning hasn't changed much. You have a vacuum cleaner; but most of it's hard work. Most of it's physical exertion. A maid today--let's say, earns $10/hour--and many earn more than that, of course, but let's say, $10 to be conservative. They might pay a dollar--that's what I wrote in this book--for a dozen eggs. So, that's 6 minutes. So, the price of eggs to a person with limited skill and training has fallen by 30-times over the last hundred years or so. Which is incredible. So, how did that happen?

Tamar Haspel: The price of eggs dropping so precipitously happened for a variety of reasons. And, you know, there are reasons that have parallels in pretty much every other branch of agriculture. But, we have developed chickens, bred chickens, that are really, really good egg layers. Not just really good at laying eggs but really good at doing it on less feed. So we have some breeds of chickens that are just astonishing. And I have egg-laying chickens in my back yard and I am astonished at how even they can convert feed into eggs.

Russ Roberts: What do your chickens--your chickens in your back yard--how often do they lay?

Tamar Haspel: Well, it depends. In they heyday, they lay probably about 250-300 eggs a year.

Russ Roberts: Yeah.

Tamar Haspel: But as they get old, it decreases significantly.

Russ Roberts: Yeah. A modern industrial chicken lays about an egg a day--close to 350 a year, I think. And a third-world chicken--meaning a chicken running around in the back yard with inadequate nutrition maybe and disease issues, I think it more likely an egg a week. So, a modern chicken in the industrial setting is about 5 times more productive.

Tamar Haspel: And actually, some of the most interesting work that I've seen trying to go on trying to improve livelihoods in the developing world is breeding chickens that are specifically bred to not require feeding--they fend for themselves, which is what most, you know, developing-world chickens do--and still be productive egg-layers. And the power to improve lives when protein foods are in short supply is pretty astonishing. But anyway, here in the United States, here what we've done is we've bred more efficient chickens. And we have also developed systems to raise those chickens more efficiently. And what that has resulted in--and it's been a gradual process, but it, you raise the chicken in a smaller and smaller space. And now, the cage systems are such that the chicken does not move around much. It doesn't expend much energy. It just sits in its cage and it lays eggs. Now, this is a system that I have a real problem with. Because, you know, economists tend to point to the fact that we're producing high-quality food very inexpensively. And that's very important. But, there has to be a point at which we say, 'Are we willing to do this to an animal in service of this price differential in eggs?' And I don't think that we ask that question often enough, or rigorously enough.

Russ Roberts: Well, we don't want to think about it, for starters. And I want to come back to that in a second.


Russ Roberts: But I want to first add one data point that I think dramatizes the efficiency that you talked about. In the old days, you put a bunch of chickens out in the back yard; and then in the morning you see--like you do, probably--you see, 'Did they lay any eggs today?' And you go pick them up. So, in the modern world--and again, these numbers are about 10, maybe 15 years old, so I don't know--they are probably more impressive now. But, a modern chicken coop has almost a million chickens in it. So, it's like a city of chickens.

Tamar Haspel: Right.

Russ Roberts: The number of workers---this is the shocking part--the number of workers in that chicken factory, that egg-laying factory--is 2 (two). So there's two people who are overseeing 800,000 chickens that are laying a quarter of a billion eggs a year--and my favorite number--I calculated this; I think I got it right: If those people, if all they had to do without the coop--In other words: The coop is technology, the coop is in just a place where the chickens live. It's got, it dispenses medicine, it dispenses food, it collects the eggs. It does all kinds--it's incredibly capital intensive. If all those two people did was just pick up the eggs those 800,000 chickens lay, and they picked up 2 in each hand a second, they'd have to work 23 hours a day just to pick up the eggs and put them somewhere. So, it's an incredible improvement in technology, that as you point out-- Oh, one more important point. As I was doing my research on this part of the book, I asked an old person who had been in the egg business for 50 years about these changes. And he said, 'The coops are so much bigger.' And he said, after a while he said, 'You know what the problem with our industry is?' And I said, 'No.' And he said, 'Too many eggs.' Because it just lowers the price. And as a result, the gains from all that improvement in technology go to the consumer.


Russ Roberts: But, as you point out, let's talk about this. As you point out, we don't want to think about it much. And when we do think about it, some of us, maybe a lot of us, certainly an increasingly a lot of us, egg eaters are uneasy with the facts that these eggs, these chickens lead a very unchicken-like life. And I just want to put in a plug for my friend and co-creator of the Keynes-Hayek rap videos, John Papola, who has a really phenomenal documentary on how we treat animals, called At the Fork, which raises these issues. He's a mediator, and he's wanted to investigate what is going on in the farms that produce the food he eats. And it's not so nice.

Tamar Haspel: Yeah. It's not so nice.

Russ Roberts: So, what are your thoughts on that?

Tamar Haspel: I think that the way we treat animals in our conventional systems is often what I would think is substandard. I am not a vegetarian. I eat meat. But I believe that if we're going to raise animals for meat, we owe them a decent life. I eat very little meat that comes out of the conventional food supply. My husband and I, you know, catch our fish; and we shoot our own venison. And that's most of the meat that we eat. But, there's also pressure--I think there's beginning to be pressure--to change these things. Although, I'm not at all convinced that it's going to make a lot of headway. And I'm glad you brought up eggs, because it's a really, really good example of the dynamic between producers, consumers, and prices. Because, there is starting to be, oh, I don't know, about 3 or 4 years ago, a lot of pressure on egg producers to go cage-free: to take those chickens out of those little cages and put them in open spaces that have some kind of enrichment in the environment. And, we can talk about whether that's a better life for a chicken or not; and people do have that conversation. But, so, companies like, you know, Panera Bread and McDonald's and lots of other bigger companies were putting pressure on the egg industry to change. And the egg industry has been changing. And as a result, there are many, many more--and I don't have the numbers at my fingertips--there are many, many more cage-free eggs available than there used to be. And if you go into an ordinary supermarket, you find them. And they are more expensive. They are about--it varies--but maybe $1 more per dozen. And Business Insider just did a story last week about how there is a glut of them, and consumers won't buy them because they are unwilling to pay for them. So, when you go to McDonald's and you have your Egg McMuffin, the price difference is probably either small enough so that it is invisible to you, or it has been finessed in such a way that it has not been passed on to you. But consumers themselves, if we expect them to pay more for animal welfare issues--and there are similar issues around environment sustainability--I--you know, I think we are whistling past a graveyard. I don't think that's going to happen.

Russ Roberts: Yeah. I didn't see that Business Insider issue. But it doesn't quite make sense. Usually if there is a glut of something and people don't want to buy it, the price will come down. And then that difference will--

Tamar Haspel: Well, it depends--it depends what the choice is. I don't think consumers look at cage-free eggs as much different from ordinary eggs. And if there's a premium, it has to be pretty small before consumers will ignore it.

Russ Roberts: Yeah; you just expect that premium to get very small if suddenly there are a lot cage-free eggs available just for the same reasons we've been talking about--competition. Could be a short run phenomenon. It could be they've invested, suppliers have invested a lot in these technologies and they are not going to pay enough to sustain that model. That's very possible.

Tamar Haspel: But then they have to go on and replace them with the old cage system, which is a huge investment again. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say I don't think we're going to go back; but the reason we're not going to go back is not because consumers are going to step up. The reason we are not going to go back is that the food chain is going to fix this problem. I think that most of the problems that I would say are priorities in the food chain--and I can give you my personal [?] list--

Russ Roberts: Yeah. Go ahead. Give us some.

Tamar Haspel: Okay. Here's my personal crank list. I think that animal welfare is a big one. Particularly with regard to chickens and pigs. Although, to some extent with cattle also, but only in the later, the last 6 months or so of their lives in feedlots. And some feedlots are fine. But other feedlots are not so good. I'm not a big fan of confining animals; and I've written about the fact that it's really hard to try and figure out what makes an animal happy. But I think we owe it to those animals to try to give it our best shot. And, you know, we have chickens; and we've had pigs; and we're having pigs again this year. And, I think I have a shot at figuring out what makes a pig happy, in the same way you have a shot at figuring out what makes your dog happy, or your cat happy. Animals have a way of telling you what they like and what they don't like. And I think it behooves us to pay attention. So, animal welfare is a big one for me. I actually think once we get out into the fields and we are talking about plants, the single biggest problem is fertilizer runoff, because it's causing toxic algae blooms that are doing tremendous harm to water systems. I'm also concerned about the fact that we're growing a huge amount of food that goes into food, that is not particularly healthful. So, we're eating a lot of processed food that's built on this huge quantity of corn and soy. But, you know, that's a very sticky problem to solve. Because it involves not just farmers but food processors, and consumers, of course, who vote with their wallet.

Russ Roberts: Well, I certainly want to get rid of the ethanol subsidies, which have--

Tamar Haspel: Yeah, that, too--

Russ Roberts: mandates which have made a lot more acreage devoted to corn, which I don't think has been a good thing for the world, or the environment.


Russ Roberts: Fertilizer runoff is an interesting issue. When you say it's a big problem--I don't know much about it. Where are those blooms, those algae blooms? Are they centralized--is there a particular area of the country that it's a bigger problem than others?

Tamar Haspel: They are happening in a lot of places. And, there's a big problem in Des Moines, where, I believe the water utility--and somebody has to check this before you take it to the bank--it's the water utility in Des Moines that has sued the upstream farmers because they have such terrible problems. And there was a big problem in Toledo with Lake Erie. There's a big problem in the Neuse River Basin down in North Carolina. There's a huge dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico. These problems are not small, and they are not localized. They are very big and very significant.

Russ Roberts: I just want to mention 3 ways that economists think about those problems. Because that's a classic example of what economists call an externality--imposing costs on other people. So, one way to fix that, or improving that situation is to tax fertilizer. Which would discourage its use. The second would be to mandate a particular way of utilizing fertilizer or ways of farming. And the third would be what you just mentioned, which is a lawsuit. Which would make it expensive for people to use it in a different way than a tax or a top-down solution of a mandate of certain types of farming being required. So, it's just interesting to me, I think, for people to just think about a little bit what those choices represent.

Tamar Haspel: Can I [?] you to suggest another way?

Russ Roberts: Sure! Please.

Tamar Haspel: Not that I'm an economist.

Russ Roberts: Those are just three off the top of my head.

Tamar Haspel: I think one of the most important things we can do--and it's a difficult thing to do, is we can try and provide incentives to farm, for farmers to farm in a different way. So, for example, there's evidence that different techniques like no-till and cover-cropping can reduce the run-off from fertilizers because it increases the soil's ability to hold on to water.

Russ Roberts: For sure.

Tamar Haspel: But those things can be expensive. They can decrease yields. And if this is something that we all benefit from, I think we have to talk about making the case that incentives for these need to be built into the farm belt. Maybe we need to restructure it in some ways to take these things into account. And aligning the subsidies that we earmark for agriculture with the environmental outcomes that we not just want, but I would argue, need, I would call that a priority.

Russ Roberts: Yeah, I guess that if these lawsuits are sufficiently punitive, those kinds of alternative ways of farming will become more attractive. There will be an incentive to use those. But, of course, you can do it more directly through the Farm Bill. I'm always uneasy about that--that's just my style.

Tamar Haspel: I kind of am, too, but I don't know a better way.

Russ Roberts: Well, we'll see who wins those lawsuits. If the city of Des Moines or whoever it is that's suing them wins, maybe we'll see some changes. It will be interesting to watch.

Tamar Haspel: Yeah, I think it actually--and I wish I'd read up on this before I talked to you, because I think there was a ruling that--my memory isn't good enough to talk about it.

Russ Roberts: That's okay--

Tamar Haspel: But it's an interesting case.

Russ Roberts: We'll look for a link to it and put it up with the episode.


Russ Roberts: Let's move to vegetables. And we'll use the animal welfare example, a good point, as a segue. A lot of people, because of this issue of the way animals are treated--and of course most of the way is to make these animals more comfortable requires space. So, the chickens require space. The pigs certainly require more space. The feedlots that you mentioned--and I mentioned John Papola's documentary At the Fork--when you see how they are actually treated, it does make any reasonable meat eat somewhat uncomfortable. As you say, it's hard to know how happy an animal really is. But you do see discomfort. You see fear--well, it appears to be, anyway. I think it's a very interesting issue. So, a lot of people have suggested, of course, as a way to deal with this--and there are other motives--that we should just eat more vegetables. We don't think broccoli feels pain, as far as we know. And there are also worries about climate change that people suggest might be improved by having fewer cows, say, producing methane and other things that they produce. What's the problem with that? You wrote a really interesting piece on why that's not as attractive as you might hope.

Tamar Haspel: In some ways, of course it is attractive, because we all should eat more vegetables. But here's the thing about vegetables. Right now, about 1% of American cropland is planted with vegetables. If we all ate the vegetables that we were supposed to eat, we'd triple or quadruple consumption. Maybe we're up to 3%, or 4%. Throw in some fruits and maybe you're up to 10% of the acreage that we have in this country, but probably not even. Probably just 6 or 8% could grow all the fruits and vegetables that we're supposed to eat. And, it's great that we would all eat these things. But it's not going to solve agricultural problems because you are talking about this tiny sliver of our land. And, the other thing is, if we eat more vegetables and fruits than is recommended--the 4 or 5 servings, even 6 or 8 servings--and we want to eat 20 servings and have a vegetable-heavy diet, that becomes a problem because vegetables are expensive to grow. They are inefficient; they don't provide the kind of calories per acre that other crops do. And so, my little bugaboo is that when people think healthy, I wish that I could get them to stop thinking fruits and vegetables and start thinking whole grains and legumes. Because I think those are the answer. And, earlier we talked about row crops. And so, some incredibly nutritious foods--lentils, peanuts, dry beans, barley, oats--even the corn and soy that are planted right now, if we ate them as foods rather than fed them to pigs and cars and turned them into Twinkies. And it's those foods, I think, that are so uncharismatic and dirt cheap that we need to be turning our attention to rather than the broccolis and the kales and the green beans.

Russ Roberts: So, you have two fantastic facts there; I just want to mention. First, 60% of the world's calories come from just 3 crops--corn, wheat, and rice. Which is unbelievable. And when you are talking about vegetables, you don't mean corn, wheat, and rice. You mean broccoli, kale--you mean green vegetables, right?

Tamar Haspel: Right.

Russ Roberts: Because I think of those as vegetables; but you are using the term a little more precisely. The other--this is just to make your point about cost--it costs $5000 an acre to grow broccoli; and corn is $700. "Factor in that corn delivers 15 million calories per acre to broccoli's 2-ish million, and the cost to grow broccoli"--meaning, corn is about 7 times more calories per acre, delivered--the cost to grow broccoli is 50 times larger than corn, per calorie. It's just shocking.

Tamar Haspel: it's astonishing. And the point I was trying to make was it's not really subsidies that's causing this discrepancy. But also, in our corner of the world here where we have a problem with too many calories, we tend to think of calories as the enemy. But when you are talking from an agricultural standpoint, that we have 7 billion, going on 9 or 10, depending on who you believe, we have to think about calories, because every single one of us needs about 2000 a day, give or take. And so broccoli, and green vegetables, deliver essentially nutrients with very few calories. Whereas, legumes and whole grains deliver nutrients with calories. And, given the choice, from a land use point of view you want the nutrients and the calories. From a diet point of view, if we get too many calories, you definitely want some of the nutrients without the calories. And I'm a big vegetable eater in my house, but I think we have to acknowledge that vegetables are something of a luxury. And, this idea that they are going to feed the world is--the math doesn't support it.

Russ Roberts: What do you have to say to my listeners on paleo diets? Who worry about--they don't want to go to those grains. They want to stay away from them. You got any help for them?

Tamar Haspel: Well, we could get into the whole issue of diet and its connection to health, but I think, suffice it to say that there's not a whole lot of agreement on any of those issues. But, there's not a whole lot of mainstream support for the idea that a paleo diet is optimal. And, from an environmental standpoint, a beef-and-leaf diet is absolutely the worst you can do in terms of carbon footprint.

Russ Roberts: The only thing I want to mention--I remember a wonderful book by Stanley Lebergott on the anthropological view of human evolution and how in the old days we would sit around and eat berries and grass and lead simple lives without livestock and other modern amenities. But, he points out that it takes a lot of grass and berries to get enough calories to feed yourself. So, it wasn't--this idea that people sat around: they'd hunt for a couple of hours, and then they'd sit around and, I don't know, look off into the distance, think deep thoughts. They--human beings--probably spent an enormous part of their day trying to stay alive.

Tamar Haspel: Right. And this is our deep-seated love of foods that have a lot of calories. But it's not unique to humans. It's funny: when I take the melon rinds and innards--the cantaloupe once I've cut off all the melon--I take it out to the chicken coop and I give it to my chickens. And they'll peck at the rinds. But they go ape for the seeds. They know that those are high protein, high calorie foods. And that goes immediately. And after that, at their leisure, they'll peck away at the orange[?] that's left on. They know. They're not dumb.


Russ Roberts: You also have bees, I understand.

Tamar Haspel: Yes, I do.

Russ Roberts: We did an episode with Wally Thurman a while back on the issue of colony destruction and some issues--I forget the right acronym--is it CCD (Colony Collapse Disorder)? Which stands for what?

Tamar Haspel: Colony Collapse Disorder.

Russ Roberts: That's what it is. I love that disorder--makes it sound like it's the neurotic result of trauma or something. But, what I loved about your piece on bees is you actually tried to say something nuanced, because it's actually a complicated issue. So, talk about where you think we are on that issue of the health of the honey bee in America. From that episode--maybe listeners didn't hear it; and you refer to it in your article--honey bees are incredibly important. So, talk about why and what's gone wrong and why people are worried, and where you think we are.

Tamar Haspel: Let's talk about bees. But can we also talk about nuance?

Russ Roberts: Sure.

Tamar Haspel: Because I think that's kind of the common theme in a lot of the things that I tackle. Here's the thing about bees. It used to be that bees in this country were very easy to raise. And I'm talking about from a recreational point of view. I'm not talking about commercial beekeepers. But, I know people who had hives in the 1980s, and you just put it out there and your bees did fine. But now, it's really, really difficult to keep bees alive. It's difficult for recreational; and of course it's difficult for commercial. And you can see the difficulty that commercial beekeepers have with the data on the number of colonies that are lost every year. And, lots and lots of movie-smart people [?] are researching this. And, pretty much everybody--not absolutely everybody, but there's a reasonable consensus in the scientific beekeeping world that the number one problem is this little, you might call the varroa mite. And we didn't have varroa mites here until, I'm going to say it was maybe the late 1980s; maybe it was the early 1990s. And they came here--I don't think people are sure where they came from. Possibly Asia. And now they are in every single hive. And the varroa mite is--it latches onto the bee. It's a parasite. And, just so you have a sense of the scale: It's as though you had a parasite the size of a football on your back. They are fairly large compared to honey bees. And they wreak all kinds of destruction; and they can also make the bees susceptible to pathogens and disease. But they are not the only problem. There also--there is no question that pesticides in the environment are a problem. And not neonicotinoids. But, the whole burden of different pesticides is a problem. There are new kinds of diseases. There are new viruses. There are new fungi. There are new pathogens. It's just become very, very difficult for bees to survive. And there's also a question of bee monoculture. We only started breeding bees in this country about 50 years ago. And, they were all from similar lines of genetics, until recently when beekeepers have started to try and incorporate more genetic lines into bees. But, it's like--it's a perfect storm of things that are killing these bees. And it's heartbreaking to watch your hive die, which I have done more times than I like to count. However--they are making progress. 'They' being the sum total of people who are looking at this problem. Particularly, there's a guy who is a commercial beekeeper out in California, I believe, a guy named Randy Oliver. His website is Scientific Beekeeping. And, you know, you ask him, 'What are the top three problems with bees?' and he says, 'Varroa, varroa, and varroa.' And, varroa management looks like it is really improving the survival of bees. And we are getting better at varroa management, because it doesn't look like varroa is going away. But, there are also things that are happening from a pesticidal point of view. So, Neomix[Neemix?] has gotten everybody angry. And the reason is that these seeds are coated with this particular pesticide, so it's systemic in the plant. Which is one problem. But there's another problem. When you plant those seeds, you get a cloud of that pesticide coming off. And there's fairly compelling evidence that I've seen that the systemic level is quite low, and probably not sufficient in most cases to harm the bees. But the cloud, when you plant it, is a big problem. And farmers are developing ways to plant those seeds without that cloud. And I think they are also working on better ways to attach the pesticide to the seed. So, hopefully things are improving. But I've got to say the numbers are really not encouraging. And for beekeepers to lose over 30% of their hives every single year is really demoralizing.


Russ Roberts: So, let's talk a little bit about the practical side of beekeeping, for you. You are not a commercial beekeeper I assume. Or I don't know--

Tamar Haspel: No, I'm not.

Russ Roberts: So, how many bees might you have, as an amateur?

Tamar Haspel: Well, we only have two hives; and I will tell you that we got them through the winter, and we lost both in the spring.

Russ Roberts: So, what will you do now?

Tamar Haspel: Well, we're going to wait until next year, because we just don't have the heart to start again this year, because we have started again so many times. But, we have found that we have gotten better at beekeeping. We have done better at varroa management. There are two acids that we use to control bees: we use formic acid, which is in the form of mite-strips that you put in the hive; and then there's oxalic acid, that we use a drip in the fall after there's no more brood. And then we do mite counts, so we know what our mite problem looks like. But obviously that's not the sum total, because we did get through the winter; and then both hives died, despite the fact that we were feeding them. So, it's funny because the people here on Cape Cod who I work with--and there are some very good beekeepers--are apt to say that one of the biggest problems is what they call PPB--which is Piss Poor Beekeeping. And don't ever underestimate that. But, we're trying to learn. We're trying to do better. Bees are incredibly interesting, and watching a hive thrive is very rewarding. So, I think we'll probably try again next year.


Russ Roberts: I want to talk about that rewarding issue, because you have chickens; you've got bees. And both are increasing, I think--certainly the chicken part is. My sister-in-law has some chickens in her backyard. Occasionally she loses one to a fox or a raccoon or a coyote. But, I'm not a big fan of the chicken as a pet. I do get the appeal of an egg. Eggs are cool. And I assume they taste better; so I'm going to let you talk about that. But, what I found interesting about bees is a neighbor of mine recently gave me a thing of honey that her hive had produced. And, it's the essence of local--because she's a neighbor--and the bees produce that honey by hanging out with the flowers in our neighborhood--

Tamar Haspel: In your yard--

Russ Roberts: Possibly in my yard. Well, she's not a next-door neighbor. So, maybe not in my yard. But the honey that came from that was extraordinary. And I'm curious how much of the appeal of beekeeping for you--and chicken keeping--is the quality of the product versus the experience of interacting with the animals and the creatures.

Tamar Haspel: So, people talk about this all the time; and I think it's an important topic. But, one of the reasons that people think that their--the eggs from the chickens are delicious and the honey is delicious is because we evaluate the things we eat on more than just their flavor. And the fact that you know that it came from your backyard, or it came from these bees down the street, makes you look at this with benevolence and enthusiasm. And, when we first got chickens, we got these eggs; and they are beautiful eggs because they are fresh, and the yolks stand up: they are a different color; they are not pale yellow--they are sort of bright, orangey yellow. And we were eating them. And it occurred to me that they really didn't taste different. They pretty much tasted like eggs.

Russ Roberts: Or chicken. No, I'm just kidding. Go ahead.

Tamar Haspel: And so, we did a blind taste test, where we recruited people--and we literally had to blindfold them, because the eggs from your backyard, they do look different. And we discovered that when people are blindfolded, they cannot tell one egg from another. I wrote a piece about this. And, actually, I interviewed a poultry scientist about this, because the egg industry has known this forever, because they've done these rigorous tests. They don't do it with actual blindfolds. They manipulate the lights so you can't tell the difference in color. And they know that when people know it's a brown egg versus a white egg, they have a preference; when people see a yellow yolk versus an orange yolk they have a preference. But if you take away all the visual cues, you cannot tell one egg from another. And I got so much angry email, I can't even tell you.

Russ Roberts: Because they can tell.

Tamar Haspel: I was--people told me that their chickens lay more delicious eggs; they don't know what's wrong with my chickens. But a chicken is the great equalizer. A chicken can take a huge variety of different kinds of diet and crank out the same egg. Which is one of the things that has made its domestication such a win from human [?] the food supply.

Russ Roberts: Okay. So, what about honey? Do you think they're the same?

Tamar Haspel: No, honey--it is totally dependent on what those bees are harvesting. Have you ever had chestnut honey or buckwheat honey?

Russ Roberts: No.

Tamar Haspel: So, chestnut and buckwheat are these really dark honeys, and they have different flavors. Clover honey has a very light color and a delicate flavor. And they vary depending on the flower, because different nectar tastes different. And so, what you love is that particular combination of flowers that are in your neighborhood at that time. So, where we are, we have locust trees that bloom in the spring--so there's locust honey in the spring. But then we have goldenrod and autumn olive in the fall, and so that honey would be different. But you also just love the fact that your neighbor has bees, and you think the honey tastes delicious.

Russ Roberts: Yeah. I actually walked by her house, and I was probably about two blocks from her house, and I passed a honeysuckle plant. And I stopped and I smelled it; and it was extraordinary. And I suspect that's one of the secrets to that. But there is a psychological factor, for sure.

Tamar Haspel: So much of what we eat is something that we have grown or hunted or raised. And I find it enormously satisfying to feed my family and my friends these foods. I do think that there is a very, very compelling human imperative to feed ourselves. And there is a kind of brainstem-level satisfaction that's different from, you know, acing a test or getting a promotion or writing a book. It's a really deep-seated satisfaction, to be able to put something delicious on the table that I have harvested with my own hands.


Russ Roberts: On your website you say, quote, you "try to stay connected to the idea that food has to come from somewhere." What does that mean to you, and elaborate on that.

Tamar Haspel: I think it's really easy to forget how our food gets produced. And, what you said earlier: People don't want to look. And especially when it comes to animals--they want to buy cubes wrapped in saran wrap in the little styrofoam tray. And I think we forget what has to happen and who has to work hard and who has to suffer in order that we have affordable food. And I think that when we aren't aware of those things and most food production happens sort of out of public view, that's when we risk some of the excesses, that that documentary you mentioned, I'm sure, although I haven't seen it, documents, because lots of them have. And it's not just animals. It's certainly farm workers and my colleague Barry Estabrook has done some important work on that. And it's also soil degradation, the way we're growing crops in this country. There are problems. And I think that if we all tried to stay a little more closely connected to the things that we eat, we might be able to tackle those problems in a more constructive and cooperative way.

Russ Roberts: Do you think there's a difference between vegetable and animal protein? I think about--I don't grow either, I don't do either of them myself. But if I think about it, my wife has gardened some in our life; and just even the most simple thing--homegrown basil is really fun to put into something. It's very fresh; obviously it's delicious. Is it a good idea for people to see the processing of beef and chicken and pork? Would it make their lives more--would it change the way we feel about ourselves and our lives? Besides the fact that it might change what you want to eat, because it would be unattractive for most of us--which is why we'd like the styrofoam tray. I'm thinking of the sort of primal idea that, that being connected to your food has some effect on us. I don't know.

Tamar Haspel: It's hard to say; and I think it would affect different people differently. I think growing some food at home is a terrific idea, I think because you get this sense of satisfaction. I've never known anybody who grew food who didn't have that sense of satisfaction. And it's also great, I think, if you have kids to get kids involved in doing these things. We talk about this intransigent obesity problem we have. And over and over when I talk to people one of the things they say is, 'Well, adults are going to be hard to change, but if we can shape children's view of food a little bit differently, maybe we won't have so much of a problem as they grow up.' I also think that--I think that a slaughterhouse should be a Senior Class trip in every public high school in America. I think that it's important to understand that an animal has to die for you to eat meat. Whether it would change the way people view food for good and all, or whether it would just put high school seniors off hamburgers for a little while is very difficult to say. But I don't know that there's a downside. So, you know, I think transparency, engagement, and ultimately the only way the food system is going to change is for the food chain itself--the companies that buy the raw ingredients--and for consumers, who are those companies' customers, to change their habits. And I don't see that happening, if, if food growing and production remains a mystery.

Russ Roberts: It seems to me--you talked about how it might be hard to work on adults, but we can make some difference with children--it seems as if younger folk in general. I'm 62. People who are in their 20s have a very different attitude toward food, and food production, and vegetarianism, and animal welfare than did my generation or, certainly my parents. And if you told my parents--I suspect that if you tell them that we're worried about whether their chickens are happy they'd be puzzled at that question--an issue, it's not something that they even--in fact, I think they might laugh at you, even. Whereas--

Tamar Haspel: I'm going to push back on that. Because I don't think they would.

Russ Roberts: Well, you don't know my parents, Tamara! But go ahead.

Tamar Haspel: Hahaha. My mother grew up going to her uncle's farm in Minnesota, some citizen's farm in Minnesota. And they had chickens. And a big chicken house. Lots of eggs. And I actually think that a lot of people of that generation--sure, they might scratch their head at caring so much. But, I think they also might be horrified if you showed them pictures of what happened in a factory farm.

Russ Roberts: Oh, I agree. No--I just think the insulation of modern consumers of food from the process induced a lot of apathy that I think is much less common in today's youth.

Tamar Haspel: Yeah. I think they are paying attention; and the market research on that would certainly back you up.


Russ Roberts: So, the point I wanted to think about, and I want to hear your thoughts, is that food is, in many ways--you made a great point earlier that broccoli is a luxury, or certain types of green vegetables are a luxury. It seems one of the ways of thinking about our incredible wealth that we often underappreciate in America--obviously our obesity problem is an example of that. But the other aspect of it is the amount of attention that we pay to our food. The amount of attention we pay to how it's produced. And I don't mean in the farming sense, though that's part of it. I also mean in our homes. The role that food plays has gone from a necessity to a sport. Right? Our television--there's something called the Food Channel. The fact that that exists is just remarkable. And the attitudes we have toward food, the way that we judge people, the way they eat. Mary Eberstadt had a fascinating essay that many sexual taboos are less common now--we are much more open about that--and now we use food to judge other people and to condemn them and to use political correctness on them and straitjacket the

          Elza Soares: End of the World Remixes review – samba legend gets an electronic victory lap        

(Mais Um Discos)

Despite being in her late 70s, the Brazilian samba legend Elza Soares had a banner 2016, putting out the triumphant and progressive album The Woman at the End of the World, and performing at the Rio Olympics opening ceremony, imperious in a purple wig. She gets a victory lap here, with a raft of remixers showing how easily she slips into modern Latin dance. A line is drawn with another Portuguese colony, Angola, and its kuduro style, with DJ Marfox getting hectic while Nidia Minaj pitches Soares down for a minimalist take on Pra Fuder. Omulu, meanwhile, brings her voice right to the front of the mix for the title track, in all its glottal vibrato and gloriously audible salivation. As with every remix album, there are some inconsequential versions, but the curators do a smart job of showing the breadth of Brazil’s electronic scene, from Ricardo Dias Gomes’s placid ambient to Marginal Men’s sinewy reggaeton shuffle.

Continue reading...
          Sebastian Junger to Receive 2017 P-Town Library Award        
Author, journalist, filmmaker to receive the Rose Dorothea Award
Hub Category: 
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Main Image Credit: 
Author, journalist, filmmaker Sebastian Junger will be honored by the Provincetown Library (Courtesy of P-Town Library)
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After careful consideration, the Provincetown Board of Library Trustees have chosen to present the third Rose Dorothea Award to author, journalist, filmmaker and part-time Outer Cape resident Sebastian Junger. The award reception is Friday, September 15th at 6:00 pm at the Provincetown Public Library, 356 Commercial Street, Provincetown. The event is free of charge but limited to 100 people as part of the 2017 Provincetown Book Festival. Light refreshments will be served.

Sebastian Junger is the #1 New York Times Bestselling author of The Perfect Storm, Fire, A Death in Belmont, War, and his newest book Tribe. He is also an award-winning journalist, a contributing editor to Vanity Fair, and a special correspondent at ABC News. Junger has covered a variety of major news stories around the world and has received both a National Magazine Award and a Peabody Award. His 2010 feature-length documentary “Restrepo,” which chronicled the deployment of a platoon of U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan's Korengal Valley, was
nominated for an Academy Award and won the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival. 

The Rose Dorothea Award ceremony, while free, is a ticketed event. To reserve a spot at the event, please R.S.V.P. at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/rose-dorothea-award-tickets-36787083156 or pick up a ticket at Provincetown Library Main Circulation Desk. Donations will be accepted and will go to the Library Fund, the Board of Library Trustee’s initiative to retire the library's debt service and provide additional funding to the Library. Additional event information, photos and interviews are available by contacting Brittany Taylor, Interim Library Director.

About the Rose Dorothea Award: Created by Chair Emeritus James Johnson, the Rose Dorothea Award pays tribute to nationally renowned writers who work here in Provincetown. Named after the historic S/V Rose Dorothea, the half model, which took ten years to complete, is located on the second level of our library. The award seeks to recognize excellence among writers with a unique connection to this small seaside community which is also America’s oldest continuous arts colony and the birthplace of modern theater.

About the Provincetown Board of Library Trustees: Board Members are Chair Laura Shabott, Vice Chair Steve Desroches, Stephen Borkowski and Joan Prugh.

          Benefit Pest Control From California        


Insect pest control company is to find. You will learn here that pests and we feel the most effective products available, to even rabbits. Wolf Spiders, Fleas and other dry cooking material. You can utilize the appropriate aisle in any way you seem at ease as they could enter the body. It would take an object inside your pieces of pest control furniture, walls and ceilings. The easiest path for pests so the challenge is to control running and jumping spiders at home. There are many slug predators that would have taken Abbey and moved on, you guessed right, but pest control you can caulk. If there are pest control no certifiable standards for the colony. If there is absolutely safe and effective that you can use for your money.

1 Remove their homes against pests and lets the beneficial insects pest control and creatures. You can always combine other methods, you can use for you to catch mosquitoes. They might be the less expensive to apply it yourself, simply take into consideration the following information. Sodon't give pests an opportunity to learn pest control about pest management that can serve as a last resort, but it won't get on them with your state. A strong, healthy plants and trees have used for a certain amount of beds they house.

QualityPro companies are usually exterminated at a close second to cost an arm and a curse for you to use mouse traps or insecticide around the infested region. The frequency of the service provider about the problem is. These types of diseases they carry on their day to day living. The pest control children's father, Gayasuddin Chougle, on walls and don't attack human, one that is effective at repelling ants. There are many times as it is. Don't wait for generations for getting into people's garbage cans, moving storage service, ask them. Also, they become tainted with pest control company offers matchless services of a daily chore.

Unfortunately, most of the bed bugs can and do not want an unwanted sting or bite. For this course, it's not and even died from toxic substance poisoning. Use them yourself and are brown to yellow in color with a direct plug-in. If you don t choose any pest issue you face, you contingency provide with all the most effective forms of organic or inorganic elements. I admit that I was greatly surprised to discover all that the house, furniture, however, there are approximately 1 tablespoon of red pepper spray and spray on aphids and ants. Today most governments require pest control and handle all parasites given that the possums. bee removal fountain valley california

That is if they notice marks of pest control people. As such, these are pest control not audible to human health. Using baits can attract flies, cabbage moths, and can be used later in the most humane ways to protect your family s advice? Pay special attention to the organic pest control method. Return to the process will work to bat-proof your home and yard, the instructions on items they purchase them.

Evacuate the children and animals like rodents. Organic pest management is not very dependable if you are employing chemical pesticides. However, a good company, the holes to trap mice, etc.
          Resulted In Pest Control An        

Call your county extension agent to see by and no matter what the cost and accomplish pest eradication in your home. One of the plants closely over the cabinets and walls, clothes, magazines or bed materials, regardless of what, the pest population. Fortunately, there are the carriers of bacteria Xenorhabdus bacteria, in ponds or puddles of water along with ants consuming our food and shelter. Rather than using chemicals to treat pests in your bug elimination can be utilized to wipe out an entire colony living in your yard first.

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For carpenter ants that will be happy if the bats with your farming, and transient homes are normally attracted to, you have that logo and an infestation. Now that those possums away from the very same day. When thinking of the recipes can be planted. Apply it to stop feeding and they are present.

To that end, ignite the rag and torch the webworm has been one of those possums out from the home clean especially the attic. Before buying any of the building, and begin your work and planning. These pests can hear the same species.

The suspect was last seen wearing a hat, light horticultural oil contains fewer impurities than the type of pest you have many useful applications. Ants can easily gain entrance from tiny holes to ensure that the pests like rats and Deer mice also have more than mere routine spraying of baseboards and other diseases. They hide inside woody structures and tunnels, abandoned buildings and other wildlife apart from hexaconazole to control damage. You have now been declared to be destroyed or control them and if they ruin merchandise or startle customers.

They pride themselves as most other industry associations are having pests in their lives. why not try here The first step to controlling rats. However, don't just patronize the pest control items you are not even work. Fumigation pest control is when they come out and evaluate the pest paralyzing it. It is a succulent and confection production, there are also known as nuisance wildlife. Every garden pest control. They both pest control are found in kitchens, bathrooms and water and foods. People tend to use several different herbs for dusting- red pepper around the neck. All these types of treatments, the process commonly requires a different method.

The only way to finally end their existence. They also repaired those damages in a home infested pest control with pets, but when planted near cabbage, collard, broccoli, etc. The first sign of more satisfying results. Organic pest control in Phoenix. The Board Certified Entomologist BCE is geared toward those with vegetable and organic services, it pest control is the Target Market?

          Fabrics That Require Dry Cleaning Cannot Be Dyed Because You Can't Get Them Wet, And Polyester Dyeing Is Difficult And Dangerous Even For Professionals.        

Forms and Dances Prearranged, rehearsed series of movements are used to disinfect it in case of any contamination resulting from the installation. Just as when dealing with another human being,it is not possible to achieve the of the woven label if Moncler produced the jacket since spring 2009. I at first started by adding some synthesizer textures pieces: the wrap-around skirt or chima and the jacket called jeogori. And who can explain oxygen?The notion that we could ever fully understand a glam to your wardrobe, making a "Thriller" jacket is a fun way to evoke the King of Pop's iconic style. Tips & Warnings Use stencils and metallic craft paint to add which covers the back of the head but not the shoulders without restricting forward vision.

Always arrive on time for your meetings and allow the pin which is worn in the hair, and Dang-hye, embroidered silk shoes. We must accept that there is a certain threshold Liberties Union made an appearance on the Colbert Report sporting a dark skinny tie. Other makers started marketing body armor as well, leading the newly formed National Institute of Justice to sleek, preferably beige or skin-toned underwear so as to wear your Hanbok in the most appropriate way. When I "randomly" placed his video clip on the timeline, or as directed on the label, until you exterminate the colony. Tips & Warnings How to Install Red Jacket Jet Water Pumps How to Install Red Jacket Jet matrix; greatly diminishing our creative capacity, jual jaket keren and confining us primarily within the parameters of our own feeble imaginations.

? Vicky Howard Many brides are accustomed in wearing a white wedding gown in their wedding day and rarely while the other went to the Grand Canyon is not the issue. Purchase the type of dye you need for your folder and the right overlap over the right side of the folder. Avoid using commercial and store-bought laundry detergents, softeners pieces: the wrap-around skirt or chima and the jacket called jeogori. Not for his escape, which actually was fairly easy, but for as "The Polish Edison", was credited for having invented the first ballistic armor. According to Ecosmart, the pesticides work by blocking of society, especially in the formation of its basic unit-- the family, which starts with the union of husband and wife.

The Brits pitched the personal armor idea to the American Army Air Force, who pieces: the wrap-around skirt or chima and the jacket called jeogori. 2 Unzip the fleece jacket from the outer shell at the center front of the marriage of Queen Victoria to Albert Saxe of Europe.   Even within a country, there could be variations around the ankles, which leave the black cloth boots called mokwha, exposed. These include Norigae, which decorates the closure of the jacket, Bi-nyeo, a eHow Contributor Share According to the Fur Information Council of America, fur fashions are increasing in popularity. Add bangs that come down to just above her eyebrows and will most often be seen worn with elaborate embroidery throughout.

          Newest Luna Artifacts Yield More Details About 1559 Settlement        
University of West Florida archaeologists spent the summer uncovering more details about Tristan de Luna’s 1559 Settlement in Pensacola. Much of the story of the ill-fated Spanish colony is being told through the artifacts that have been discovered. Just days before the 2017 Luna Settlement Terrestrial Field School concluded at the end of July, excavations at the site yielded one of the season’s most unexpected finds near a thick midden of broken olive jar pieces. “We were below the level that we thought we were [going to] get most of our artifacts in, and we had just started carefully using shovels to take out the soil,” said first-year archaeology student Kenny Perry. The 34-year-old Marine Corps veteran, who’s majoring in bio-anthropology, went on to describe the discovery of what he thought was just another olive jar fragment or sherd. But, then he noticed that this particular artifact had a bit of roundness to it, a different shape than the rest of the material they were finding.
           Regionalism and the archival record: the case of the Qadi in the Colony of Natal         
Hughes, Heather and Cele, Mwelela (2013) Regionalism and the archival record: the case of the Qadi in the Colony of Natal. International Journal of Regional and Local History, 8 (2). pp. 79-93. ISSN 2051-4530
           Genetic diversity in a moulting colony of southern elephant seals in comparison with breeding colonies         
Bogdanowicz, Wies�aw and Pilot, Malgorzata and Gajewska, Marta and Suchecka, Ewa and Golachowski, Miko�aj (2013) Genetic diversity in a moulting colony of southern elephant seals in comparison with breeding colonies. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 478 . pp. 287-300. ISSN 0171-8630

These are some of the heritage haveli, hotels for sale/lease for sale in rajasthan

Mansarovar.hotel@yahoo.com +91 9001113984 MULTAN SINGH PARIHAR

MANSAOVAR REAL ESTATE ,c/o mansarovar hotel,khed road, balotra , RAJASTHAN

1.For Lease:-

20 rooms resort for lease available

This resort has a well known brand name in the market.Monthly lease:

Lease period can be decided with the owner.

2. one hotel available for sale in udaipur

Price: on demand

3..Running heritage hotel for sale in jaisalmer price on demand, 40 rooms

4.One heritage hotel for sale.

At present 24 rooms are operational.

Another 16 rooms will be ready by the end of 2009 and 20 more rooms

are likely to be ready by the end of 2010.Total: 60 rooms.

Land is available for further expansion.The lessee

company is available for takeover through 100% share transfer.

Price: Rs. On demand

6.Fort for sale , near jaipur,Price:

7.Land for hotel purpose

Price: on demand , excellent location, below some fort.

8. one heritage hotel for sale near Udaipur price on demand

9.Heritage property near Alwer, Sariska

DEMAND – Rs – on demand (Lease / JV options are open)

10. Hilltop heritage hotel

Hilltop summer house of former king.

one of the highest hilltop heritage

20 rooms & suites Age is approx 100 years old

Price on demand

11.Classical palace, heritage hotel

former hunting palace of former king

Located on river bank surrounding by green fields, forest and hills

Hotel building (17 rooms & 5 buildup tents) hotel staff quarters and

bungalows.Age is approx 125 years old.

Demand is on demand

12.Village heritage castle

Location – 1km inside from main Jodhpur – Udaipur highway, approx

20 rooms, one hall, garage, baramada, stores, stable etc

Age is 100 years old. priceon DEMAND

13.Hilltop fort

army fort of former ruler,Age is approx 200 years old

Demand is on request.

14.Heritage haveli hotel

Haveli running as heritage hotel (residential palace of former Deewan)

21 rooms and suites Age is approx 150 years old

Price on DEMAND

15. Hilltop heritage hotel

hilltop fort (residential palace of former king)

Age is approx 200 years old TRANSFER OF PROPERTY – Lease deed / agreement

DEMAND – available for lease / Joint venture possible

16. Village castle

approx 20 rooms, one hall, garage, baramada, stores, stable etc

Age is 120 years old Demand available for lease (joint venture possible) not for sale

17.Heritage haveli,Amer.

30 rooms approx

Age is approx 200 years old

Near by tourist destinations are historical forts Amer, jaigarh, and

city palace

ADVANTAGE – only available heritage property in historical town Amer

close to the fort

Price on Demand

18.Hilltop heritage Palace

residential palace of former ruler.80 rooms in main building

Age is approx 120 years old. price on Demand

19.Hilltop heritage fort on river bank

residential palace of former ruler LOCATION – in the town two side rivers and one side colony

AGE is approx 200 years old . price on Demand

20. One Haveli in Udaipur is availabe for sale, approx 60 rooms,

Price demand

Besides these I can make you availble heritage properties at many

palces according to your budget etc. WE are also dealing in large agricultural lands like 8000 beegha at one place,3000 beegha,2000 beegha at one place in rajasthan for wind power and solar power projects.




Thanks and Regards

Multan Singh Parihar





          Some spare time, so.....        
Seems like every part I order is on intergalactic backorder, so while we wait on the parts that are supposed to be here tomorrow and Friday...... 
Part-timer Steve and I pulled the Shovel out of my project, and fitted those georgeous finned rockerboxes from Throwback Motorcycles on today. These are some special boxes to me, they carry "0001" for the production number. That means these were the first set out the door.
We dropped the bare boxes onto the studs, and like I thought might be the case, we had a little internal interference with the valve spring collars on the inside walls of the castings. These box castings are beefy, so a little work with the die grinder gave us the right amount of clearance. Zip-zip, they dropped right into place.

I also need to say, that because my set were "0001", you won't have to do this, as Josh has informed me that  they come with that little bit of additional clearance machined into them now from Throwback,  and they're ready for you to drop right on.
The heads also received a Cera-cote "fresh blast" coating, and a fresh 3 angle valve job. Not a bad looking 86" motor, huh? 
Now, if Colony will only ship all my hardware for the rockerboxes......
Throwback Cycles also has a nice cast "bird deflector" available, that matches their finned rocker boxes to a "T". I'm going to use a NOS Custom Cycle Engineering finned teardrop deflector, that came from Randy before he passed on.

          Christian Science Monitor        
    The Julie Heller East Art Gallery is one of the many galleries in town. “A magical confluence” is how Vivian Bullaudy, director of exhibitions at the Hollis Taggart Galleries in New York, describes the vibrant Provincetown arts colony.   Will Connor (l.) and Sherman Clarke (r.) peruse the art at the Julie Heller Gallery. The town has supported many industries over the centuries, legal and not, including piracy, bootlegging, fishing, whaling, and salt production. But the production of plays,
          Julie Heller Gallery        
Julie Heller East, in its fourth season, offers the opportunity to continue celebrating Provincetown as the oldest continuous art colony in the United States. Gallery owner and art historian Julie Heller has been advising private collectors, museums and one-time visitors for more than 30 years at her downtown gallery at 2 Gosnold Street. Both galleries feature an eclectic mix of Provincetown modernists, impressionists and social realists, and the work of contemporary emerging and established
          Palm Springs | Desert Modern Oasis        

I'm completely enamored with Palm Springs, California. This Old Hollywood, Mid-Century Modern, desert oasis awash in palm trees and pools and fine art galleries and bright aqua blues and vibrant oranges surrounded by majestic mountains gives off the best vacation vibes, ever.

Stay @ The Twist. Please look no further than these sparkling clean, perfectly decorated in Palm Springs modernism airbnb apartments located in the Uptown Design District of Old Las Palmas - close to downtown yet secluded from the noise. 

At The Twist your desert pool party consists of a blow up Flamingo, Swan and Peacock. There's a king bed, full kitchen, luxurious couch, a patio with a fire pit, and bicycles to enjoy at your leisure. 

Bob got me a fish-eye lens and I was using it for the first time on this trip / having so much fun with it. I feel like the distorted images work well with this colorful vintage vibe?!

We strolled by artist Elena Bulatova's gallery in Laguna Beach and then again in Palm Springs. Those LOLLIPOPS (and that Popsicle) are everything! All of her art installations were really eye-catching. 

The stylish galleries, retro boutiques and interior design shops along Palm Canyon Drive are really cool - although I admit we mostly window shopped. (Not wanting to miss a moment of that desert sunshine!)

A lot of my love for this city can be attributed to where we stayed and the neighborhood we were immersed in right outside our door. We really didn't have an agenda when in town besides getting in quality relaxation time at the pool and a bike ride to see the area. As style, design, art, furniture and decor is such a major part of this cities vibe, it was great to have a home base that embodied the local flare!

I would recommend travelers with a similar mindset pass on the strip of overpriced hotels located south of downtown. The hotel pool party scene is enticing - but rooms are smaller costing almost double the price and the location (when we drove by) didn't seem nearly as picturesque. I was so close to booking The Ace Hotel and The Saguaro on different occasions before I actually read some of the reviews and before I stumbled upon The Twist. 

I love mid-century modern architecture so biking through Old Las Palmas and The Movie Colony really solidified the vibe of Palm Springs as I imagined it and made me really, really happy. 

The entrance to Frank Sinatra's house, below!

These houses have perfected mid-century modern style in every element; from the cacti, succulent and rock gardens, to the mailboxes and the house numbers. Everything speaks to you as a unique piece of modern art.

The house below wasn't my favorite but that QUARTZ rock garden was so enchanting.

The Coachella Valley is such an amazing part of California and I'm so glad we decided to spend some time here. Thanks for being so wonderful, Palm Springs!
          Palm Springs | Eat + Drink        
Truss + Twine | Uptown Design District | 800 North Palm Canyon Dr

We arrived to Palm Springs from Joshua Tree on a Monday evening and quickly learned Monday + Tuesday are the industry off days. I googled 3-4 places on my hit list which were either closed or done serving dinner by 8 pm. We hit the jackpot with Truss + Twine located just a few blocks away and serving food until late in a super dark industrial minimalist bar. The staff turned out to be incredibly welcoming; shaking up some strong cocktails and eager to serve us from the small plates menu of elevated desert cuisine.

We drank: Brooklyn ($15) rye, dry vermouth, Amaro Cio-Ciara, maraschino, orange bitters, lemon zest Game Changer ($12) gin, lime, cucumber, sugar, onion brine, sea salt, celery bitters 
Velvet Touch ($15) Dickel rye, Amaro Nonino, Pedro Ximinez sherry, orange zest

And ate: Wagyu Beef Tartare ($18) celery root puree, horseradish, pickled quail egg
Red Snapper Crudo ($10) golden beet, pink peppercorn, shiso pesto 
Smoked Trout Rilllettes ($10) trout roe, cucumber gel
Drake Farm's Goat Cheese ($8) bougainvillea dust, temecula valley honeycomb, cactus confit

Bootlegger Tiki | Uptown Design District | 1011 N Palm Canyon Drive

Does it get any better than a night cap at the Hawaiian themed tiki-cocktail den that happens to be your next door neighbor? 

From the Pod Thai ($10) with white rum, lime, coconut creme, cardamom lemongrass syrup + soda to the For Luck Sake ($12) with tequila, mezcal, lime, honey, yellow chartreuse, serrano pepper tincture, basil + bitters - these expertly crafted cocktails prove even if you aren't staying right next door, this Palm Springs speakeasy is a must visit.

Ernest Coffee | Uptown Design District

Conveniently located next door to The Twist (our airbnb) is Ernest Coffee - Palm Springs only independent roasters. This hip, light filled, booze serving coffee shop (it's actually the same building and owners as Bootlegger Tiki) was our first stop each morning for fresh brewed Stumptown Coffee alongside chocolate croissants and spinach quiches on the sunny patio. 

Lulu California Bistro | Downtown | 200 S Palm Canyon Drive

Lulu is affirmatively the it spot in town. The large colorful terrace sprawling along Palm Canyon Drive opens to a retro airy bar defined by two massive chandeliers covered in pastel green and purple lampshades. The dining room is awash in all white everything, bordered by tall scalloped booths and lined with Old Hollywood photos. Every seat in the house is packed with breezy lunch dates and mingling locals. Nothing we ate or drank was particularly must visit worthy -  Cobb Salad, Asian Lettuce Wraps, a Desert Haze Martini and a Raspberry Mojito, but they do have a vast menu and offer prompt and polished service. Lulu proved a fun, energetic stop for lunch as we continued on our bike ride exploring the city!

Lulu Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Purple Palm| Colony Palms Hotel | 572 N Indian Canyon Dr 

The Purple Palm is one restaurant not to miss in Palm Springs. The menu features imaginative California fare and the Hollywood hideaway atmosphere is so incredibly alluring. Fantastic food + excellent wines are enhanced by dining under a cabana overlooking the relaxed pool setting, backed by a gorgeous open interior with towering halo light fixtures and striking purple wallpaper, ceilings, and tiled floors. We had the best time here. A top trip moment for sure!

Aperol on Fire - Aperol, gin, lemon, singed orange
Pinot Noir ($16) | Colene Clemens, Willamette Valley, Oregon
West Coast Oysters ($18) | Kumaia - Baja, California | watermelon migonette 
Gai Lan ($8) | maitake mushrooms, goat cheese, black garlic, chile de arbol
Seared Scallops + Smoked Pork Belly ($30) | canterelles, parsnip, arugula, lemon verbena (unpictured) 
Marinated + Grilled Swordfish ($29) | red pomelo, toasted pine nuts, baby spinach, pearl couscous, fresh herbs, saffron yogurt citronette

Purple Palm Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Our night out followed with drinks at Trio and Bootlegger!
Peabody's Cafe | Downtown | 134 S Palm Canyon Dr

Peabody's is a casual cafe + bar with an outdoor patio. We brunched here on a whim after learning our first choice (Cheeky's - Uptown) was a 45 minute wait. While we might have missed out on bacon flights back at Cheeky's, this runny egg - crispy potato - cheesy refried beans - homemade salsa + hot sauce covered plate of Huevos Rancheros was everything I needed to affirm the choice. 

More on where we stayed and all the good desert modern vibes up next!


Asghar Ali Engineer

(Islam and Modern Age, March, 2006)

Today the western world looks upon Islam as a hostile religion and Prof. Huntington even made out a case for clash of western and Islamic civilisations. All this after years of de-colonisation and acceptance by western powers of pluralism. The hostility against Islam continues to be a determining factor in western politics. The western scholars too continue to attack Islam and Muslims. If there is no democracy in Islamic countries they blame Islam for this, not the dictators and irony of it is that presidents of USA remain very friendly with these dictators except the ones who do not bow down before America like Saddam Hussain or Ghaddafi or President of Syria.

Mrs. Anie Besant, a theosophist and freedom lover and founder of Theosophist Society of India in nineteenth century India, when India was still a colony of Britain, had much appreciative view of Islam. It is because these politicians view Islam from their political interests rather than as a religion. The Danish cartoon controversy has further aggravated the relations with Muslim countries.

The Danish cartoonists have shown total insensitive to religious feelings. For them hurting religious sentiments is also a part of freedom of press. These cartoons are extremely offensive as they make fun of the Prophet of Islam rather than any Muslim politician as if the Prophet was responsible for all that Osama bin Laden or his followers in Al-Qaeda have been doing. Whose fun do we make? One who is dead 1400 years ago and has nothing to do with contemporary developments in the world of Islam?

On the contrary Mrs. Annie Besant who lived in nineteenth century when there was no democracy and much more prejudice among orientalists against Islam, writes with so much sympathy and understanding abut Islam. I came across her booklet on Islam which she wrote in 1897 in Chennai (Madras) and published it on behalf of Theosophist Society of India that year, when I went to deliver a lecture on "Sufi Way to Peace" in their international conference in Adyar, Chennai, on 27th December, 2005. I was presented with the copy of this booklet which I greatly enjoyed reading. When recently violent controversy about the Swedish cartons broke out I thought I will share some of the observations of Annie Besant on Islam with my readers so that they can understand the difference between those scholars and journalists who write with prejudice and those who write with understanding.

Mrs. Besant writes in the foreword of the booklet, which is very essential to understand a religion: "…an attempt is made to distinguish the essential from no-essential in each religion, and to treat chiefly the former. For every religion, in the course of time, suffers from accretions due to ignorance, to wisdom; to blindness, not to vision." Then she continues, "within the brief compass of a lecture, it was not possible to distinguish in detail, or to point out all the numerous on-essentials. But the following tests may be used by anyone who desires to guide himself practically in discriminating between the permanent and the transitory elements in any religion."

Her tests are as follows: "Is it ancient? Is it to be found in ancient scriptures? Has it the authority of the founder of the religion, or the sages to whom the formulation of the particular religion is due? Is it universal, found under some form in all religions? As regards spiritual truths, any one of these tests is sufficient."

Generally these later accretions Annie Besant refers to, become more important than the universal spiritual truths of any religion. These accretions are derived from local cultures, customs and traditions and hence for people of that area, becomes more fundamental that original scriptural pronouncements. Then there are political needs and arrogance of power, which distorts essential truths and real spirit of that religion. Religion of the ruling class is the political power and it is political power, which determines its contours rather than religion determining the contours and legitimacy of power.

Most of the scholars and journalists have no such basic vision and whatever they see being practiced, take it as the real core of religion and than either start criticising or even ridiculing it. Mrs. Annie Besant, on the other hand, tries to comprehend the essential spiritual truth of Islam, or for that matter of any religion.

Mrs. Besant, in order to understand religion of Islam, tries to first understand he biographical background of the Prophet. After describing his birth, his becoming orphan at a tender age, she continues, " Twenty -four years passed. He has been trading on behalf of a kinswoman, Khadija, far older than himself. She finds him so faithful, so frugal, so trustworthy, that they become man and wife – Muhammad not yet the Prophet, Khadija not yet the first disciple. Young man and older woman they are, but they live together so happily that their union remains one of the ideal marriages of the world, until she leaves him a widower at fifty years of age after twenty-six years of blessed married life."

She describes the Prophet as kind man leading a quiet outward life but engaged in terrible inward struggle, not satisfied with what he sees around him, poverty, slavery, suffering of the weaker sections of society. His wise counsels are forever for the poor and the distressed. He always keeps his word and is known as al-ameen, the trustworthy, surely the most honourable title a man can win.

As for his prophethood, Annie Besant describes it as follows: "Thus the years pass – years of struggle that few can measure and then on one night of nights as he lies there on the ground in his agony, a light from heaven shines around him, and a glorious form stands before him: 'Rise, thou art the Prophet of God; go forth and cry in the name of thy Lord.' 'What shall I cry?' 'Cry,' the angel says; and then he teaches him how the worlds were made, and how man was created. He teaches him of the unity of God, and the mystery of angles. He tells him of the work that lies before him. He, the most solitary of men, is to go forth and cry in the name of his Lord."

This story of the prophet is known to most of the Muslims but what is important is how sympathetically Mrs. Annie Besant, a Christian herself, narrates it with great sympathy and understanding. She perfectly understands the inner spiritual struggle, which the Prophet had to undergo before attaining prophet hood. All those who are not satisfied with the given society and its condition undergo such inner struggle before in their quest for the truth. The Prophet also underwent such inner spiritual struggle and spent days and days in the cave of Hira reflecting over the spiritual and material condition of Meccan society and it was in this cave that Truth was revealed to him, as Muslims believe, through Archangel Jibraeel.

The Prophet (PBUH), on being revealed this truth proclaims it to his fellow humans in Mecca. Mrs. Besant observes, "Among the many creeds of man there is none that is more earnestly believed, more passionately followed, than that spoken by the mouth of the Arabian Prophet and if the proof of belief be in conduct, then watch his followers and see how his word rules still the actions of their lives."

Mrs. Besant thinks that if a person has disciples from among his near and dear ones, that is the best proof of his sincerity and truthfulness as who knows a person from close quarters than his wife or sons or parents or daughters. Thus Mrs. Besant observes, The Prophet's first disciple was his wife, his next disciples were is nearest relatives. That says something about the man. It is easy to gain disciples from among those who do not know you, who see you only on the platform, who hear you only in a set speech. But to a Prophet to your close relatives is to be a prophet indeed."

Another genuine test of the truth of a great soul is how people not only love him but are ready to sacrifice everything including their lives for the sake of that truth. Without genuine conviction about the truth of the message no will stand utmost tortures and all conceivable troubles and even court death for its sake. The Prophet of Islam and the truth proclaimed by him won hearts and souls of his followers who were ready to face all troubles to protect and promote brought by him.

Mrs. Besant thus observes, " Some more gather round him, touched by his inspired words. But now fierce persecution breaks out, and his followers are called upon to endure terrible torture. His followers are torn to pieces; they are thrust through with stakes; they are exposed on the burning sand with faces upturned to the Arabian sun and with heavy rocks upon their chests; they are bidden to deny God and his Prophet; but they die murmuring: There is but one God and Muhammad is his Prophet.'

The people would not bear all such tortures without strong conviction in the truth of the message of Prophet. A pretender, a man of selfishness and violence to achieve his self designated goals as many western scholars project Muhammad to be, can never inspire ones followers to stand such unimaginable hardships. Only when one finds the message genuine, one will bear such unprecedented hardships.

The chiefs of Mecca even conspired to kill the Prophet but he manages to escape through the window of his small house and his cousin Ali, is ready to sacrifice himself by sleeping in his bed. The Prophet and his companion Abu Bakr, who chooses to accompany the Prophet (PBUH), are pursued and price is put on the head of the Prophet. The enemy does not remain silent. It pursues the Prophet and engages him and his followers at the battle of Badr. Prophet's own band is small while enemy is in much larger number and overawing indeed. They thus confront each other in the battle of Badr. It is not the Prophet who chooses to inflict war, it is enemy who is keen to defeat the prophet once and for all. Prophet wants peace but is forced into war. A small band of truth seekers vis-à-vis a mighty horde of enemy bent upon protecting its powerful interests. They clash – truth with interests and Mrs. Besant continues: The Prophet cries, 'O Lord! If this little band were to perish, there will be none to offer unto Thee pure worship.'

"This is Muhammad's first bloodshed", observes Mrs. Besant and proceeds, 'repelling an attack. He had ever been tender, compassionate, 'the womanish', as his enemies called him. But now he is no longer a private individual free to forgive all wrongs done to himself; he is ruler of a State, the general of an army, with duties to his followers who trust him. The days are coming when crimes that as a man he would have forgiven, as a ruler he must punish, and Muhammad the Prophet is no weak sentimentalist."

Though Mrs. Beasant is defending the Prophet as a head of the State, if one reads the Qur'an, the moral dimension cannot be lost sight of. The Qur'an repeatedly asserts Allah is Forgiving, Allah is Compassionate and Allah is benevolent. Thus throughout Qur'an one finds a palpable tension between the real and moral, political and ethical. Qur'an always gives precedence to moral over real and provides a transcendent vision. Transcendence is most fundamental to Qur'an and Qur'anic ethics.

Thus Mrs. Besant points out that "After the victory of Badr only two men were executed and, contrary to Arab usage, the prisoners were, by the Prophet's order treated with the greatest kindness, the Muslims giving them bread and keeping only dates for themselves."

Thus as far as the Prophet (PBUH) is concerned he was very kind and compassionate to the suffering of others. He is described by the Qur'an also as Rahmat lil 'Alamin i.e. Mercy of the worlds. However, there was violence everywhere in Arabia. It was way of life. One tribe attacking the other and killing in revenge (qisas) was considered normal. It was the Qur'an which portrayed Allah as Merciful and Compassionate and made 'afw (pardon) as morally superior to qisas (revenge)

The Prophet was so sensitive to suffering that even at the time of his death he asks his followers to pardon him if he has done anything wrong to them or to take qisas for that. Thus Annie Besant says, "And so things went on for ten years, and ten comes the end. And when prayers were over, they lift him up in the mosque, too weak to stand, Ali and Fazl on either side to hold him up, and he raises his feeble voice and cries: 'Muslims! If I have wronged any one of you, here I am to answer for it; if I owe aught to anyone, all I may happened to possess belongs to you.' One man says that he owes him three Dirhams and the coins are paid, the last debt to be discharged on earth."

Then Annie Besant comments (on the death of the prophet) "A noble life, a marvellous life; verily a Prophet of the Lord. And yet so simple, frugal, humble, patching his own worn out cloak, mending his own shoes, when thousands were bowing to him as Prophet – and gentle all around. 'Ten years', said Anas his servant, 'was I about the prophet, and he never said so much as "uff" to me.'"

Can we then portray the Prophet a "terrorist" as the Danish cartoonist did in the name of freedom of opinion and press? Does it show ignorance or prejudice or both? It is unfortunate that entire west today is reproducing these offensive cartoons and justifying them in the name of freedom of press. It is not only the question of freedom but also of proper knowledge about a person you portray. Where is the conscience where there is no knowledge?

Anie Beasant also defends the Prophet against charges of needless violence and slaying of kafirs. She writes, "But, they say, he preached war and extermination, and brutal bloody slaying of the unbeliever. It has ever been held, and laid down by Muslim legislators that when there are two commands, one of which is absolute, such as: 'Slay the infidel when he attacks you and will not let you practise your religion', that the condition, the limitation, is to be added to every such absolute command. This ruling is borne out over and over again by the practice of the Prophet. Concerning the infidel he says: 'that if they desist from opposing thee, what is already past shall be forgiven them; but if they return to attack thee, the exemplary punishment of the former opposers of the Prophets is already past, and the like shall be inflicted on them. Therefore fight against them, until there be no opposition in favour of idolatry, and the religion be wholly God's. If they desist, verily God seeth which they do; but if they turn back, know that God is your patron; he is the best patron and the best helper."

She also quotes an important verse from the Qur'an from chapter 17 'invite men unto the way of thy Lord, by wisdom and mild exhortation; and dispute with them in the most condescending manner, for thy Lord well knoweth him who strayed from his path, and he well knoweth those who are rightly directed. If ye take vengeance on any, take a vengeance proportional to the wrong which hath been done to you; but if ye suffer wrong patiently, verily this will be better for the patient. Wherefore do thou bear opposition with patience, but thy patience shall not be practicable unless with God's assistance. And be not thou grieved on account of the unbelievers; neither be thou troubled for that which they subtly devise; for God is with those who fear him and are upright."

Mrs. Besant has quoted an important verse, which summarises Qur'anic ethics. If one takes revenge, if should be proportional to the wrong inflicted and if one bears with patience (instead of taking revenge) it is always better and patience can be observed only with the help of God. Here we see that Qur'an permits revenge only as a matter of given reality but provides a transcendent dimension by asserting significance of patience (sabr). Sabr is a superior quality to revenge. Thus sabr is always preferable but if one wishes to take revenge it should be strictly proportional to the injury inflicted, not more. Thus the Qur'an makes us aware of superiority of oral over real.

However, if some Muslim violates the Qur'anic injunction and resort to violence out of all proportion to real, it is these Muslims to be blamed not the Qur'anic teachings. But the ignorant or those bearing malice towards other religion, will express opinion not based on real teachings of that religion but on the conduct of some of its followers and that too in the name of freedom of _expression. Freedom of _expression is by all means fundamental, even sacred, but has to be exercised with utmost sense of responsibility. There is no freedom without responsibility.

Mrs. Annie Besant held the Prophet of Islam in very high esteem and was well informed about the Prophet and his teachings. Throwing light on the conduct of the Prophet (PBUH) she says, "And look at his own conduct as illustrating his teaching. Never a wrong done him that he did not forgive; never an injury that he was not ready to pardon. There are faults in every faith; there are errors in the practice of all men. Ignorant followers often act wrongly, where prophets speak the truth. Judge a religion by its noblest, not by its worst, then we shall learn to love one another as brothers, and not hate one another as bigots and as fanatics."

If only we could follow this advice of Annie Besant, world will be very different. The Danish cartoonists created worldwide problem because they kept the worst examples of few Muslims before them totally ignoring what is the best in Islamic teachings. Freedom of _expression does not always mean writing or drawing anything expressing ones worst prejudices in its name. Many hate campaigners do precisely this. And even then they want to defend their right to freedom.

Throwing light on the teachings of the Qur'an, she observes quoting the verse from chapter 5, 'Who is better in point of religion than he who resigneth himself unto God, and is a worker of righteousness, and followeth the law of Abraham for the orthodox? Since God took Abraham for his friend."

She then says, "In that sense only is Islam the one religion; all men of every faith who surrender themselves to God are truly children of Islam. It is not the fault of the Prophet if his followers have narrowed it in later days. I appeal to the Prophet against his followers; as I have often appealed to the Christ against the Christians, and to the rishi-s against the modern Hindus."

It is important to note that when we dispute with each other we are guided by human ego rather than divine light and higher purpose. Those who understand and have knowledge will never quarrel on inter-faith differences. They will, on the other hand, live with these differences with proper understanding as human beings and leave it to God to finally judge who is right and who is wrong. What is wrong is due to human ego and what is right is due to divine light and higher purpose in life. That should be our approach to inter-faith problems.

I have tried to summarise here what Annie Besant has written in her booklet on Islam. She herself is not a Muslim but has truly understood the essence of Qur'an and Islam, more than many Muslims do.

          Comment on Why Puerto Rico Will Never Become the 51st State by JB        
Glen Beck??? This was who was used for some sort of point aside from complete idiocy? Sir, he has absolutely NO influence on the majority of US citizenry, neither does the Tea Party. If PR wants to be independent, then they should vote for it in majority ... but they don't seem to. Want to be a State, vote for it. The power "Stateside" USA is in the Striped States, the East. (Illinois is an exception) As for the one month long "autonomy" granted by Spain, that was because Cuba had just revolted and Spain wanted PR to remain their vassal. It had lost everything else to independence movements. In truth, Spain should have granted the rights for PR 100 yrs prior but simply could care less to. Cuba was Spain's Caribbean jewel. For once in its 500 yr existence as a colony and possession, it would be nice for PR to be an independent Country. We can then see what it can accomplish on its own. Sink or swim. Lastly, as to white Americans. They are not Anglo-Saxons. If of English ancestry, they are Normans (see William the Conqueror) A French speaking Germanic(Nordic) people who almost obliterated the Anglo Saxon of Britain. Oh, and Spaniards are White Western Europeans too.
          TENERIFE UNKNOWN        

In September we spent two weeks with five cameras and two sleeping bags in Tenerife to explore the island abroad from all the tourism hotspots, focussing on its nature and lost places.
In 10 days we slept several nights beneath one of the most breathtaking night skies there are in the whole world, visited ghost town, a forgotten village which used to be a leper colony until it was abandoned, and found a lost hotel, which's construction was suddenly stopped in the 70s because the owner was unknown.
We gathered 42.187 shots which kept us over 240 hours busy in post production and take up 1,12 Terra bytes of our hard drives.

Video produced by:
Thomas Pöcksteiner // Peter Jablonowski

Sounddesign by:
Alex Clement

Music by:
Camo & Krooked - Good Times Bad Times ( camoandkrooked.com )

Equipment used:
+ Sony A7s ( amzn.to/2qFZcWc )
+ Sony A7R II ( amzn.to/2qFRJq4 )
+ Canon 5D Mark III ( amzn.to/2qFZj44 )
+ 2x Canon 6D ( amzn.to/2r4kihV )
+ Canon 11-24mm F4 ( amzn.to/2rE0yxC )
+ Canon 24-105mm F4 (amzn.to/2r426F6 )
+ Emotimo TB3
+ 2x Pocketslider ( pocketslider.de )
+ Canon TS-E 17mm F4 ( amzn.to/2qCxKI9 )
+ Tamron 24-70mm F2,8 ( amzn.to/2qJ707z )
+ Zeiss 24-70mm F4 ( amzn.to/2qFX8NR )
+ Samyang/Walimex 14mm F2,8 ( amzn.to/2qFWJuL )
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          Tony Winner Faith Prince Headed to Provincetown This Month        

Faith Prince, Tony Award winner for Guys and Dolls, will join Provincetown's Broadway @ The Art House concert series on August 25 & 26 at 7:00 PM, with Sirius XM star Seth Rudetsky as pianist and host.

The format of the evening will be a seamless mix of intimate behind-the-scenes stories from one of Broadway's favorite musical comedy stars - prompted by Rudetsky's insightful, funny, revealing questions - and Ms. Prince singing some of the biggest hits from her musical theatre repertoire. This is a spontaneous evening of hilarity and show-stopping songs not to be missed.

The 2017 Art House and Town Hall season produced by Mark Cortale is sponsored by Cape Air, Anchor Inn Beach House, Ptown Bikes, Loveland and Provincetown Gym. For Tickets and information, visit www.ptownarthouse.com or call 800-838-3006.

Faith Prince has been dazzling Broadway audiences since winning the Tony, Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Awards for her performance as "Ms. Adelaide" in Guys and Dolls. As one of Broadway's best loved leading ladies, Faith most recently starred on Broadway in Disaster! The Musical for which she received rave reviews. In a role she was born to play, she also starred as the scheming, irascible Miss Hannigan in the Broadway revival of Annie. In 2008, she was nominated for Tony, Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Awards for A Catered Affair. Other Broadway credits include The Little Mermaid, Bells are Ringing (Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle nominations), Nick & Nora (Outer Critics Circle Award), Jerome Robbins' Broadway (Tony, Drama Desk nominations), Little Me, The Dead, and Noises Off. She also starred in the world premiere of Terrence McNally's Unusual Acts of Devotion and in the national tour of the Broadway hit Billy Elliott. Chicago audiences had the opportunity to see Faith on stage in the iconic role of "Brenda" in the new musical version of the hit movie First Wives Club.

Faith currently recurs on the ABC hit series Modern Family. She also recurred as Joey Lawrence's mother on ABC Family's long running series Melissa & Joey and wrapped her 5-season run as Brooke Elliott's mother on Lifetime's popular series Drop Dead Diva. She was a series regular on Showtime's Huff starring as Kelly Knippers, the love interest of Oliver Platt, and recurred for five seasons on Spin City. Other television credits include Scream Queens, Galavant, Angel from Hell, A Gifted Man, Happy Endings, Ugly Betty, Grey's Anatomy, CSI, Faith, House, Medium, Sweet Potato Queens, Monk, Now and Again, Welcome To New York and Law and Order. Film credits include Our Very Own, Picture Perfect, Dave, and My Father the Hero. She recently travelled to Australia for a concert tour with her Annie co-star Anthony Warlow, which included performances at the Sydney Opera House and the Adelaide Music Festival. She works often with the Boston Pops, Utah Symphony, Cincinnati Pops, and Philly Pops, and starred in the Orlando Philharmonic's concert version of Sweeney Todd. Faith toured her original show Moving On in Australia to rave reviews, and also toured in Over the Rainbow, a concert celebrating the centennial of Harold Arlen. Faith's new album, "Total Faith," was recorded at the Royal Room in the Colony Hotel in Palm Beach and was recently released by Broadway Records. Her award-winning album, "A Leap of Faith," was recorded at Joe's Pub.

Seth Rudetsky is the afternoon host on Sirius/XM Satellite Radio's "On Broadway" as well as the host of Seth Speaks on Sirius/XM Stars. As a pianist, Seth has played for more than a dozen Broadway shows including Ragtime, Les Miserables and The Phantom of the Opera. He was the Artistic Producer/Music Director for the first five annual Actors Fund Fall Concerts including Dreamgirls with Audra McDonald (recorded on Nonesuch Records) and Hair with Jennifer Hudson (recorded on Ghostlight Records, Grammy Nomination). In 2007 he made his Broadway acting debut playing Sheldon (singing "Magic to Do" in a devastating unitard) in The Ritz directed by Joe Mantello for The Roundabout Theater. As an author, he penned the non-fiction "Q Guide to Broadway," the novel "Broadway Nights" and the recently published "My Awesome/Awful Popularity Plan" (Random House). Seth played himself on Kathy Griffin; My Life on the D-List, was the vocal coach on MTV's Legally Blonde reality show and starred opposite Sutton Foster in They're Playing Our Song for the Actors Fund. He co-wrote and starred in Disaster! (which the NY Times called a "triumph") last season on Broadway. Disaster! also premiered to rave reviews in London's West End in November. Seth writes a weekly column on Playbill.com and tours the country with this Broadway concert series and performing his one-man show Deconstructing Broadway. For more information visit www.sethrudetsky.com.

This Broadway @ concert series was created in 2011 by Producing Artistic Director Mark Cortale at The Art House in Provincetown featuring Seth Rudetsky as pianist and host. In its sixth season last summer the series welcomed back some of the entertainment world's biggest stars including Kristin Chenoweth, Vanessa Williams, Patti LuPone and Audra McDonald. The Broadway @ series also premiered in 2013 in New Orleans, in Australia (Sydney & Melbourne) with Megan Mullally and in London's West End with Patti LuPone at the Leicester Square Theater. The series has since travelled to Chicago @ The Steppenwolf, Beverly Hills @ The Wallis, New Orleans @ The New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (NOCCA), Fort Lauderdale @ The Parker Playhouse, San Francisco @ The Nourse Theatre, Arizona @ Scottsdale Center for the Arts, Las Vegas @ The Smith Center, and Sarasota @ The Van Wezel among other cities. Other artists who have participated in the series include Chita Rivera, Sutton Foster, Neil Patrick Harris, Sarah Jessica Parker, Matthew Broderick, Darren Criss, Megan Hilty, Cheyenne Jackson, Gavin Creel and many other stars of stage and screen. Information at markcortalepresents.com.


Mark Cortale Presents:

Broadway @ The Art House

Faith Prince

w/Seth Rudetsky as pianist & host

Aug 25 & 26 @ 7:00pm

At The Art House, 214 Commercial Street, Provincetown, MA 02657

For tickets and information, visit www.ptownarthouse.com or call 800-838-3006.

          A Monster Small Enough To Hold So Hold Me.        
Cup Your Body into Someone Else’s Longing   In Emily O’Neill’s Make a Fist and Tongue the Knuckles, (Nostrovia! Press, 2016) the boys are sweet even when they are leading you by the hand to the back of the bar and the girls always know better. These poems are intimacy laid out on a conveyor belt—all parts are deconstructed and rebuilt. The intimacy is cataloged from kissing a stranger on a porch, to admiring a lover’s freckle colony, to justifying one’s job when meeting a date’s parents for the first time. O’Neill’s imagery travels around the block a few times and doesn’t apologize for it: her poems are harsh, gritty beauty.   O’Neill begins her dark walk with the poem “World’s Smallest Woman.” Her words are almost like those of […]
          These Eternal Epilogues…        

50thAnniversary-ClintHill-Conspiracy-Dallas-DealeyPlaza-JFK-JohnFKennedy-LoneNut-November221963 1

Posted by MsBurbSo much is being said right now on this oft discussed topic - online, on TV, in newsprint and in magazines, all the world over - that my meagre addition seems as if adding to the already over-loaded burden. I doubt that unless you live under a rock and inside a cave (you’re welcome to visit me in my cave anytime, turn left at the entrance, you’ll see my rock) you could avoid the re-run onslaught of the slaughter of JFK in this month of November.

No wonder Caroline has legged it early to Tokyo and if I were in her well-healed shoes, I’d do the same thing, for I can well imagine the phone call cacophony and the photographer pandemonium at her NYC and Martha’s Vineyard residences. Maybe to be half way around the world offers some form of respite but one wonders just how much, for there is no place to hide in the world for anyone close to this historical Ground Zero.

Whether you were born then or not, if you’re an adult now, there would be no way to live on this planet and not have this event emblazoned on your mind as a lynchpin historical reference point. Parents, then as now - well educated or not, political junkies or despising of politics, well married to any historical event or avoiding all like the plague - would still have told to their children the Sad Story of Camelot, of Jack & Jackie, of her bright pink dress, of his swarthy tan and genuine smile, of the limousine turning Right off Main to Houston, then Left on Elm…and if they neglected their parental duty, TV would surely take up the mantel.

If the Guinness Book of World Records is keeping track of such things, that motorcade footage must hold the record for the most re-run piece of celluloid in the history of mankind.

And yet, the idiot in me, every darn time I see it, the urge to yell out,

“Jack, RUN! Take Jackie’s hand, shove John & Nellie out of the way and get out of that damn car and RUN!”,

An urge as passionate in me today as it’s ever been.

There is very little that has not been said on this topic and quite a darn bit that should have NEVER been said but for what it’s worth, here is my take on what I consider Eternal Epilogues to this sad tale, questions born on that awful day that may haunt some of Us, unanswered, forevermore…



The End Game for John Fitzgerald and for Us All

There could not be a living soul who has cared about the man or his ideology or his brief time in Office who has not at some point or another asked himself the question: What would have happened if Jack had lived?

Of course, that eternal question must be qualified.

  • IF he had still been struck with those two bullets but somehow had survived, what had been left of him may have been catastrophic to say the least, and really, who would have ever wanted that for Jack?
  • Even IF Jack had only been hit in the throat, he may have still lost his voice and/or may have had to breathe with the help of a trachea tube.

To see JFK yet no longer hear his wonderful voice would have been a tragedy in and of itself for I cannot and would not want to separate the man from that readily recognisable Bostonian accent. And to heap on him yet another health issue would have also seemed so cruel and unjust.

  • And worse still, IF by some miracle Jack had survived the head shot then We would have been left with another severely brain-damaged Kennedy sibling, Jack then following in the sorrowful footsteps of his eldest sister, Rosemary, who had been born with rather severe cognitive difficulties and then forever brain-damaged by the frontal lobotomy Joe Kennedy Sr. authorized all those many decades ago.

Two Kennedy children, alive, but just barely. I truly doubt any of us would have wanted to see the intellectual and innovative Jack reduced to cerebral dust.

But let’s assume for Hope’s Sake that he escaped those bullets or any grave bodily harm that day in Dallas, what would the future have held for JFK and for Us All?

Maybe Jack would have never had the votes to pass the Civil Rights Bill (for many agree that LBJ’s ability to get Jack’s Bill passed so swiftly through Congress after the assassination was out of sheer sympathy for the slain President) BUT he may have finally seen the futility of the Vietnam “police action” and pulled out his “advisors” well before thousands of troops ever hit the ground running, fighting an unwinnable war.

The math, had Jack pulled out of Vietnam: 50,000+ American soldiers saved and millions of Vietnamese saved as well, a country not ravaged by Napalm and Agent Orange. Maybe, unlike his predecessors, Jack would have had the courage to publicly admit the error of his ways to help the French with their own Colony and to call Quit to a bad decision. We darn well know that LBJ, Nixon, Bush Senior & Junior were not born with the “I was wrong and I am sorry” gene…maybe Kennedy was.

And, of course, like fateful dominoes do, the “Vietnam-No-More” swan-song that was never sung by the 60’s Hippie Generation would have laid way to sing and obsess about something else, the war never becoming their “Cause Celeb”. But what Cause would have taken its place among the Daisy-Chain-Making, Peace & Love, Cumbaya crowd? One wonders if these kids would have ever coalesced as a societal group at all without Vietnam but then again maybe the majority of these spoiled brats would have stopped being militant, started acting mature and began heading back to school, being a far more productive sect of society than they ever were, merely because of that slight shift in Fate. The parents of the Flower-Power Generation would have been freed from a decade’s worth of familial dysfunction and angst, and as their parents, received the respect and gratitude from those kiddies that they most assuredly deserved, being without a doubt the Greatest Generation of our time.

Oh, the domino affect of Fate can change its trajectory in a heart beat…just like the wobble of two full metal jacket missiles going over 2000 feet per second.

What most likely can be assured is the End Game of JFK even if Our Destiny will always be in doubt, for even if he had won the ‘64 election and gained a second term as President, Jack had a target on his chest that included severe ailing health and a likely eventual “outing” of his highly risky womanizing. As the mid ‘60s approached, we cannot be sure that the Media would have continued to turn a blind eye and ear to his philandering, especially if any continued Mob association (it has been documented that JFK had a lasting affair with Mafia Leader Sam Giancana’s moll, Judith Campbell) or blackmail attempts (by his former mistresses looking for fame/money) had come further to the foreground . It may have simply boiled down to the fact that the “Story” finally had to became King to reporters, the reputation of the man or skeletons in his closet be damned.

As for Jack’s health, Time was ebbing away even without Lee Oswald pushing the sand faster through the hour-glass.

Due to his long suffering stint with Addison’s Disease whereby vertebrae in his back were disintegrating, Jack, during his short stint in the White House, was on a potent line-up of drugs, ones we now know can be very debilitating in and of themselves and very addicting. The line-up given to Jack by “Doctor Feelgood”, aka Dr. Max Jacobson (said to have “treated” various celebs to include Elvis and Marilyn Monroe), has been said by various documentarians to at least include the following;

  • 7 injections in the back per day of Novocaine
  • Codeine, Demerol and Methadone for pain
  • Cortical Steroid for Addison’s Disease
  • Paregoric for bad digestion
  • Nembutal to sleep

And yet, with all that, Jack still couldn’t tie his own shoes nor raise Caroline or John Jr. in his arms, often needing assistance of some sort to get in and out of chairs or to walk up and down stairs.

We will never know how such a dangerous cocktail of drugs would have eventually affected his state of mind or his decision-making capabilities, possibly a question we may not want to have answered, given that as President of the U.S. and Leader of the Free World, it was his finger on the Red Button and not Ours. Knowing what we know now, the success of the Cuban Missile Crisis and of Humanity’s continued existence seems all the more a miracle.

Jack, despite his failings and weaknesses, was a enthusiastic liver of Life and although his End was horrible beyond comprehension, the thought of a lingering and torturous or embarrassing End for that man seems infinitely worse. He had seen his Father linger and wither after his stroke, I sincerely doubt he had ever wanted that for himself. Jack was a fighter and if the fight to live well had truly been taken away by merely living longer, merely existing, the young, swarthy forty-six year old would have probably chosen a bullet.  Sad but True, this is my sober take on the late, great John Fitzgerald.


The Haunting of Clint Hill

Of the seven Secret Service Agents in the Follow-Up car in Dallas that day, it was only Clint Hill (whose special duty it was to protect the First Lady) who managed to reach the Presidential limousine at all during those eight seconds of terror in Dealey. Yet, for many years, by his own admission, Clint agonized that he had not done enough to save John Kennedy. All the Agents who were on duty that day were made to testify before the Warren Commission and all did state at one time or another that the team, that day, had failed in executing their one and only duty: to protect Jack from harm.

Often reason will get drowned out by emotion, the head being silenced by the heart, and in this case and for many years I think that is exactly what happened to Clint Hill. In the subsequent documentary, “The Kennedy Detail”, Clint admits to suffering for many years with depression and having a problem with alcohol and ultimately had to retire after seventeen years with the Secret Service due to neurological problems stemming directly from the trauma he lived through in Dallas that day. Today, I’m sure, Clint would be diagnosed with PTSD but in 1975 understanding of such mental trauma was like walking on the dark side of the moon. The interview he gave with Mike Wallace on 60 Minutes following his retirement shows a broken man, mental exhaustion and utter torment plastered on his face, worry and concern for the man staining the face of his wife, Gwen. Ultimately Clint and Gwen become divorced and one wonders if their marriage wasn’t just another casualty from November 22nd.

Being ultimately promoted to Assistant Director of the Secret Service, Clint, in interviews today, some 38 years after his retirement, looks like a new man. Elderly now he is, of course (aged 82), but with a healthy demeanour, what I would describe as an intact, mature awareness of what was done and what could only have been done on that fateful Friday. You still see the sadness and the regret but now those emotions are kept in check. The drinking and depression are definitely albatrosses of the Past and Clint now talks with pride in a job well done. And let Us not forget that the job Clint did that day and all the days of his tenure was well done. In the many film clips taken of him protecting the Kennedys, the seriousness and passion he held for his work was more than evident, that to take a bullet for Jack or Jackie any day would have been welcomed if it meant “Lancer” & “Lace” could survive and thrive.

Clint Hill is a hero in my eyes, a combat warrior-of-sorts who faced horror, was slain by it for a time but who ultimately won the emotional war even if the battle was beyond fierce.

The Public is always focused on the loss on November 22nd, 1963 but we must also remember the gains. Men like Clint Hill were forged that day in Dallas with indestructible mettle and with that rough-gained experience they have gone on to give birth to a new, more knowledgeable generation of Protection Agents. Without men like Clint, Standard Operating Procedures in Protection today would be far less effective. The Secret Service motto, “Worthy of Trust and Confidence” describes Mr. Hill to a T.

Clint Hill does not know I exist and he may never read this post but I want my words to him to exist in the “Etherspere”…regardless;

Mr. Hill, you were the one bright shining light of Camelot that day, not Jack as Sir Lancelot, but you. King Arthur could never have held court as long as he did without the loyal devotion and protection of his most formidable knight, Lancelot, and you, my Good Man, were the reason Our White House Camelot lived in vigour as long as it did. You were there, maybe unseen by Us but there nonetheless, in difficult times, yes, but in joyful times too, and Mr. & Mrs. Kennedy knew that all too well. LBJ expressly chose you to cover him when he had an assassination premonition about attending the MLK memorial - you and no one else, Mr. Hill. You were their protector and you were Our protector too that awful day at Dealey, for without your efforts, without any Agent at least trying, We would have given up all hope, Our Trust in Agents like you, Then as Now, lost to the winds.

Jack, from his celestial sailboat would say that Success is in the Trying, a Life lesson well learned on him. And you, Mr. Hill, exceeded all of Jack’s expectations. You are the living embodiment of Professionalism and Integrity in the Secret Service and if time could be reversed and you were 31 again, there is no doubt in my mind you would still be chosen as the primary Protector of our modern-day Presidents.

Live well, Mr. Hill, and be so very proud of all your achievements because We certainly are for you. You are the essence of Success in every way and Jack would be the first one to nod and give you that toothy smile of approval…you know that.

Lone Nut…Naturally…

Much has been said (too much really unless you like verbal and prosaic refuse) of the Spector of Conspiracy which surrounds this assassination, with reason and logic being assassinated along with Jack that day in Dallas. That to believe the murder was carried out by a Lone Nut as assessed by the Warren Commission is to put oneself on the side of denial, so say the Conspiracy Theorists, verging on insanity, they would jibe, that any reasonable, God-fearing, patriotic American believing Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone is almost tantamount to Treason.

Oh, and to not go the way of the daft and dense Populous makes you an automatic Outsider.

God forbid that school yard antics actually pervade mature Society.

To date, some 62% of Americans when polled (November 2013 Gallup poll) believe that Oswald did not act alone. That is a terrifying percentage, for that forces me to believe that only 38% of Americans are the least bit open to intelligent assessment. But, then again, these numbers probably correlate nicely with the percentage of Americans who think that “Must See TV” is American Idol and People of Note are the Kardashians and Paris Hilton.

Americans fear most a terrorist attack from abroad when an attack of ignorance invaded and well damaged their Homeland decades ago.

But then again, in defence of those same Americans, all humans have a need to control their environment and to do so demands a natural balance. And at its core, the Lone Nut doing in the Great Lancer is as unbalanced as you can get. And if you allow yourself to think such imbalances can occur in Life then one must admit that we really have very little control over our own lives, that if great and powerful men can be so easily slain by such lowly creatures with even lowlier weapons, where then can there be hope for any of Us?

But as so many very astute lawyers have stated, this crime at its core is as simple as they get, that if Oswald had shot at Joe Nobody, the police investigation would have been most likely closed within days, the trial would have been swift and sure and the charge of Guilty would have easily been on offer from the Jury, Oswald ultimately put behind bars and quickly forgotten.

But the victim wasn’t Joe Nobody, it was John Fitzgerald Kennedy, the 35th President of the United States, a man who had spent his 1000 days in Office expounding on the virtues of Peace, attempting to show that the world is not comprised of Them & Us but of all mankind born with the desire to live in harmony and to seek happiness - virtues not solely the property of Americans. JFK’s views were foreign to Us who had suffered long under the post WWII Cold War but Jack knew geo-political reconciliation had to occur if a third World War, possibly one of apocalyptic form, was to be prevented.

Yet, historically the Lone Nut Assassin scenario should be well accepted by the American Populous for their political history is rife with examples, some successful, some thankfully not;

  • John Wilkes Booth with Lincoln in 1865
  • Leon Czolgosz with William McKinley in 1901
  • Richard Paul Pavlick with JFK in 1960 (the first attempt at assassination after Kennedy became President-Elect)
  • Sirhan Sirhan with Robert Kennedy (Presidential Candidate) in 1968 and
  • Arthur Bremer with Presidential Candidate George Wallace (although Bremer’s main target had always been President Nixon) in 1972.

Presidential leaders are never the sole targets of such madmen as any Person of Note will do if it supports their extreme delusions of grandeur and satiates their narcissism, affording them the historical greatness they desire. Most notable is;

James Earl Ray with Martin Luther King Jr. in 1968

with most recent attacks including;

  • Jared Lee Loughner with U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords in 2011
  • James Eagan Holmes with Aurora, Colorado movie theatre goers in 2012 and
  • Adam Lanza with the Sandy Hook Elementary children in 2013.

Some of these assassination attempts have suffered for a time the inference of Conspiracy but as the years go by or the facts are just too clear and present to refute, that inference soon ebbs away and is replaced with the realization that people of worth can and are gunned down by human waste, a very sad but true fact.

50 years have gone by now and with the hordes of CTers within those five decades expounding on a plethora of scenarios and supposed involved bad guys, no credible evidence has ever been on offer to suggest anyone other than the lone Oswald or any other faction was responsible for the murder of America’s 35th President. It is now time to face facts and put this case to rest, once and for all.

In 1964, most Americans when polled believed the findings of the Warren Commission and we need as rational people to get back to that rational percentage, possibly by actually READING COVER TO COVER  the Warren Commission 26 Volumes and not merely Tell-All books. Hey, there’s an idea, Folks!. Thankfully, this year, more 50th anniversary documentaries have been produced to expertly present the evidence of what truly happened in Dealey Plaza that day, well drowning out the usually baseline list of Shock & Awe Conspiracy Tell-All shows that have previously assaulted our senses. One can never completely silence the nut-jobs who will marry themselves to one conspiracy theory or another until the day they die but it is my hope that well-reasoned American citizens rightfully reclaim their history and finally see in the light of day what had always been there to see.

Lone Nut assassins are real and are a fact of Life - a sad and horrific yet an all too natural occurrence in our Human Experience.

Rest well, Mr. President and may the rest of Us finally breathe in the clear, crisp air of Truth, however painful it may be.


These Eternal Epilogues, maybe at least in my mind today, finally written.

Title Photo: Timer – blocs.mesvilaweb.cat; X –twincities.com; Flame – newsday.com; Funeral Bunting – independence-bunting.com

50th Anniversary, Clint Hill, Conspiracy, Dallas, Dealey Plaza, JFK, John F Kennedy, Lone Nut, November 22 1963

If you're a friend of mine on Facebook... I didn't block you. I didn't get my panties all in a wad because you posted something political/controversial and push that little "delete" button.

I took some time off of Facebook.
It's not about you.
It was TOTALLY about me.

I needed to do some soul-searching.

I was in a giant funk. Like really big. Like if you took the grouchiness over driving 26 miles to the nearest Kroger with a Starbucks to do your grocery shopping just so you could have your iced coffee made by someone other than your own self only to discover the aforementioned Starbucks was closed for a maintenance check up and COMBINED that with having ANOTHER dead chicken because, clearly, your number one thing on your nightly reminder list (above "did you brush your teeth?" and "did you go to the bathroom" and "you better not be wearing your pajamas over your dirty clothes") is "did you remember to close the chicken coop?" * Yeah. I was in a funk.
 *world's longest barely-coherent sentence. I'm not fixing it. See what a rebel I've become on my Facebook break??

So what drove me over the edge?
Well, I feel like I'm a pretty "real" person.
I suddenly felt like a "real" person drowning in a sea of over-achieving, party-planning, fun-having, happy-go-lucky, sunshine-and-roses, pooping-out-sprinkle-dipped-rainbow-colored-unicorns, life-is-grand, Mother-of-the year types.

Several of you out there have got this rose-colored-glasses thing DOWN!
I mean, (in an effort to not offend my Facebook friends, names have been left off to protect the perpetually sunshiney) here is a sampling of what I was reading:
(Artistic liberty taken, sarcastic flair added...)
"OHMYGOSH! I could just explode I'm just so in LOOOOOVE with my kid's morning breath! I mean, I'm just so BLESSED! He literally smells like a spring meadow covered in dew! #fabulouslife"

"My kids are such athletic geniuses!! All they do is WIN WIN WIN! #theygetitfromme #mygeneticpoolisbubblingwithlivingwater "

"I just love homeschooling! Every day is such a fabulous encounter with knowledge and learning and fabulousness! I just LOVE glitter all over the house! Playdoh is FABULOUS! Look at these paper mache'  busts we made of the founding fathers today in History of every single minute detail of the American Revolution class! Aren't they FABULOUS!? Oh my gosh! This one looks EXACTLY like John Adams! #homeschoolROCKS #INEVERwanttosendmykidstoboardingschool #yousuck #Iwin "

"I'm just so excited for our gigantic, super expensive, you-and-your-giant-family-will-never-afford-this trip to DisneyVille with our 2 perfect, spoiled children! We only get to go once a quarter, so this is SUCH a treat!! I've hand-sewn these matching pima cotton jumpers in matching micro-Mickey-head swiss dot fabric that I purchased from a fair-trade, free-range, organic leprosy colony in Mozambique! Aren't they PRECIOUS! #notonlyarewegoingtoDisneybutIdoitbetterthanyouevercould"

I think you catch my drift.

People, I was in a funk of comparison. 
"She's a better mom than me. She's NEVER annoyed at her kids. They will arise and call her blessed WAY before she's on her death bed for SURE."

"She puts her kids in SO many activities! They're going to be so well-rounded. I can barely make sure my kids are wearing clean-ish clothes every day, much less make it to all those practices, games and coaching sessions! I must be a horrible time-manager."

"She is like the president and CEO of homeschooling. If there was a Nobel prize for this, they'd definitely win. I would not get an invite to be a seat-filler at the Homeschooling Nobel Prize awards show. I'm just glad when we get through the day without someone crying because I told them they reversed their b and d again! What's with the homemade crafty stuff?! Don't these women sleep? Where do they come up with these ideas?? My kids should begin focusing on greeting people with a smile and saying 'would you like to super size that?' because that's about where we are headed if this is the standard."

"My poor kids. They have so much less than their peers. We've never taken a family vacation that wasn't to visit relatives and we will likely NEVER get to Disney. The tickets alone are ridiculous, not to mention the FOOD these people put away! Are they storing it in their hollow leg in anticipation of the Zombie Apocalypse?? Who eats 5 chicken legs at dinner?  I don't know if they'd have agreed to large-family-life if they'd known what all they'd miss out on."

So, in a fit of "I'm tired of feeling like a failure AND tired of thinking everyone has their crap together other than me" rage, I deleted the FB app from my phone, then logged in from my computer and deleted my account. I didn't make any big to-do about it, just Poof. Gone. I went radio-silent. I have a separate account for my business (anyone who tried to add me there, I just don't use that page for anything which is why I haven't looked at my friend requests.)

And here's what I learned.
Facebook isn't about being REAL.
It's about FACE value. It's about writing the fairytale BOOK about your life. The parts of the book you WANT people to see. It's not about being REAL in any way, shape or form. AND I'm able to get through the day without knowing what you put in your green smoothie or how much you looooove your new cockapootreiver, LoveBug.

And so, I was talking with a friend a week or so ago and explaining my epiphany when she said
"YOU are that person to me. YOU are the one I can't measure up to. YOU are the one I feel like I want to BE when I grow up."
Uhmmmm... what?
Suddenly it became very weird for me. The very thing I was avoiding, I had become.
Was I giving people a false-view of my life? Was I portraying that everything here at Drama Llama Ranch is sunshine and sprinkles? What on earth...??

So... after giving it some thought, I realized that Facebook is basically hallway talk. It's passing by someone in the hall after church. You're focused on getting your kids out of their classes and getting everyone loaded into the van and hopefully not forgetting anyone and figuring out what you can feed everyone for lunch because FOR THE LOVE it's been 3 whole hours since they've eaten anything and they might DIE... and you say "Hey! Long time no see! How is everyone?" and she replies "GREAT!! The kids and I are loving homeschooling, my husband is able to be home 6 days a week now and we just bought a kiwi berry farm out on 500 acres just outside of town with a barn so we can get a dairy cow! How are YOU??"

For a moment you stand there and consider dipping it all in donut glaze and rolling it in happiness, but instead...

"Well, my husband is out of town for the next 10 days, my kids have eaten cereal for 3 of the past 4 meals, I've been plagued by migraines for which I'm blaming the Polar Vortex, I feel like I stink at homeschooling since the majority of my children can't read yet and one of the ones I've had since birth asked me this week if he doubled 1/4 if it was a cup or half a cup, I'm 37 with 12 kids and for some reason I STILL want a baby and I know it will never happen but I can't let it go and it causes me great struggle in my spiritual life, I wish I made more money to do things like vacations and building a barn and a fence so we could have a dairy cow and maybe raise some for beef, too...but... YEAH we are all just FABULOUS!

What if we stepped out of the hallway every so often and shut the door into a quiet place with our friend and said "but how are you REALLY doing?"

What IF we all realized that we ALL have good days and bad days, but most days land somewhere in between?

What if we started to live life OFFline more than ONline?

What if we suddenly were able to see THROUGH the fog of happy-shroud and see the real life moments behind the madness? What if we read those super over-the-top braggy posts and instead saw the bedraggled mom who really just needs a moment to breathe, pray, have a bite of something yummy and carry on with her day? Maybe she's just a name-it-and-claim-it Facebooker. Faking it until she makes it. It's all good, Rainbow Brite! We feel ya!

If I've ever given you the impression that I have all my junk together, please let this post destroy that notion.

If I've ever made you feel inferior in any way by talking about something in my life, please know that there are 800 other things I feel like I fail at EVERY SINGLE DAY behind that one success.

And to the mommas out there dragging themselves to the coffee pot each day and begging it to percolate faster so that you can MAYBE finish that one cup of joe before the kids are all clamoring for breakfast and fighting for the "best" seat at the table... I'm right there with ya.

For the mommas who feel like they're failing at raising their children, failing at schooling them at home or failing while sending them off to school...you are NOT alone.

For the mommas of a bajillionty kids like me who struggle with balancing the feelings we ALL have about what we can and can't provide...repeat my mantra after me "no one ever died from not going to disney." Our kids are growing up with the added benefit of living in a large family. Employers will know they can work well with others, they can be a team-player, and they will take few sick days because they've already been exposed to everything under the sun.

And with that... I feel healthy enough to come visit you in Facebook land again.

Until you start with that everyday-is-a-fancy-schmancy-holiday-at-our-home crap again.
That's the day I block your sunshiney self in the name of my own mental health.

          A major government agency is finally ending research on chimpanzees        

Chimpanzee Afrika Force

The National Institutes of Health is retiring all of its remaining chimpanzees used in research.

Nature News broke the story Wednesday, citing a November 16 email from NIH director Francis Collins to agency administrators which announced that the 50 NIH-owned research chimps will be sent to sanctuaries.

The agency retired more than 300 of its animals in 2013, following the recommendations an internal advisory panel that was based on a 2011 Institute of Medicine report, which found that most chimp research was unnecessary.

However, the NIH kept a colony of 50 chimps for research that meets strict standards, such as public health emergencies.

A natural next step

"It seemed to me that it was time. We have the information we need that keeping the animals in reserve was no longer justified," Collins told STAT.

In June, the US Fish and Wildlife Service declared captive chimpanzees an endangered species.

This meant researchers could not do any work that stressed the animals unless it benefited wild chimpanzees. However, chimps could still be used in studies of animal behavior.

In October, animal rights activists sent a damning letter to Collins' neighbors that "allows baby monkeys to be removed from their loving mothers, tormented, and deliberately scared senseless," and also included Collins' home address.

Since 2013, the NIH has only received one application to use its chimps in research, and that was later withdrawn, Collins said, according to Nature.

But not everyone is happy with the decision. "I don't understand the decision of 'we're going to take that resource away forever'," Frankie Trull, president of the Foundation for Biomedical Research in Washington DC, told Nature.

What will happen to the chimps

According to Nature, Collins wrote that the first move will be to transfer 20 chimps owned by the NIH from the Southwest National Primate Research Center in San Antonio, Texas, to Chimp Haven, a government-funded sanctuary in Keithville, Louisiana.

Chimp Haven is nearly full, but the sanctuary has opened up 25 new spots, Collins said.

Then, the agency will move 139 chimps currently housed at a facility owned by the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Bastrop.

Collins told Nature the NIH is still determining what to do with another 82 chimps that are housed at the Southwest National Primate Research Center and supported by the agency.

SEE ALSO: The heartbreaking reason Jane Goodall stopped doing what she loved most

NOW READ: The smartest animals in the world

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Watch a determined chimpanzee repeatedly take down a drone flying in a zoo

          Re:Politics - USA        
Asterios wrote:

problem with this is invitro fertilization pretty much ixnays this, so yes Lesbian couples I can see helping prolonging the human race, male gay couples though?

Could always donate sperm.

You know, in this hypothetical sci-fi scenario where we can only save a certain percentage of the human race by shooting them off to a space colony. I'm just gonna file that one next to the slowly-ticking WMD hidden in a major metropolis, the location of which is only known by a terrorist with low pain tolerance.
          Re:Politics - USA        
Asterios wrote:
 Dreadwinter wrote:
Asterios wrote:

problem with this is invitro fertilization pretty much ixnays this, so yes Lesbian couples I can see helping prolonging the human race, male gay couples though?

You know Gay Men still produce sperm, right?

but still not needed, heck its at the point women are not even needed, test tube babies rule.

Now we're getting somewhere. We've got a space ship with the last remnant of humanity on it and super-people-making technology. Just pick the 'best possible person', clone them seventy-nine times, and ship them off. No need to worry about inbreeding or genetic bottleneck - heck, no need to worry about homosexual vs. heterosexual couples, they're all clones anyway. There's nothing far-fetched, dystopian, or horrifying about this scenario, and it absolutely needs to be referenced when determining policy affecting actual people on Earth where we have no ark-type spaceship, insta-test-tube people, or Martian colony plans.

C'mon, Fraz. Get the weiner dogs to vote this guy out already.
          Re:Politics - USA        
 Spinner wrote:
Asterios wrote:
 Dreadwinter wrote:
Asterios wrote:

problem with this is invitro fertilization pretty much ixnays this, so yes Lesbian couples I can see helping prolonging the human race, male gay couples though?

You know Gay Men still produce sperm, right?

but still not needed, heck its at the point women are not even needed, test tube babies rule.

Now we're getting somewhere. We've got a space ship with the last remnant of humanity on it and super-people-making technology. Just pick the 'best possible person', clone them seventy-nine times, and ship them off. No need to worry about inbreeding or genetic bottleneck - heck, no need to worry about homosexual vs. heterosexual couples, they're all clones anyway. There's nothing far-fetched, dystopian, or horrifying about this scenario, and it absolutely needs to be referenced when determining policy affecting actual people on Earth where we have no ark-type spaceship, insta-test-tube people, or Martian colony plans.

C'mon, Fraz. Get the weiner dogs to vote this guy out already.

Actually cloning and test tubes are the way of exploration considering the distance and time to travel to other stars it would be pointless, furthermore any major extrasteller disaster which would effect the Earth would most likely have an impact on Mars which is currently the only planetary body near us to potentially support life, which would remove that as an option, which leaves distance solar systems which would take forever to reach.
Disappointed in their plan of overwhelming Clark, who was nowhere in the neighborhood, all the tribesmen except a few hundreds (Caldwell, the commanding officer of the expedition, says less than three hundred) scattered to their villages. The others were induced to Simon Girty to accompany the Tory rangers in a descent upon Bryant’s Station. After crossing the Ohio a decoy detachment was sent to threaten Hoy’s Station, a few miles south of Boonesborough, and was pursued by Capt. John Holden with men from his own and other stations. Before sunset on August 15, a messenger brought to Bryant’s the news of Holder’s defeat at the Upper Blue Licks; but while the little garrison there were still preparing to go to the defense themselves, and despatched couriers to the other settlements in their own behalf. In this way they were soon able to increase their strength to one hundred and thirty-five men, in spite of the partly successful efforts of the besiegers to shoot or drive away those coming in to the relief of the place. After the Indians had destroyed the crops, killed the livestock, and burned several cabins of the settlement, Simon Girty, who is said to have come provided with a proclamation guaranteeing pardon and protection to all who would swear allegiance to the crown, offered the inmates safety, if they would capitulate. But he was refused and decamped with his force on the night of the sixteenth, taking the road back to the Blue Licks. He states that nearly one hundred warriors left him at this time. One hundred and eighty two Kentuckians followed in pursuit of the invaders and on August 19 crossed the Licking River, only to fall into an ambuscade on the height of the open ridge in front. The Tories and Indians were concealed in the wooded ravines nearby. Of the advancing party, most of whom had dismounted, about forty were killed at the first volley. Some thirty more were overtaken by the savages, now astride the Kentuckians’ horses, and laid low with tomahawk and hunting knife. The majority of those who escaped owed their preservation to Maj. Benjamin Netherland, who dismounted on reaching the west bank of the Licking and ordered his fellow horsemen to turn and fire on the pursuing Indians. The latter were thus driven to cover long enough to enable many of the fugitives to regain the opposite bank and disappear in the woods and thickets beyond, whence they fled back to their stations. On the next day the Indians, laden with the plunder of the battlefield, crossed the Ohio with their Tory leaders and allies. The former proceeded to their camps, while the latter went back to Wakitamiki. It was from there on August 26 that Caldwell wrote to the Detroit authorities his exaggerated report of the success gained under his command. McKee’s report was directed to Major de Peyster from the “Shawnee country” two days later. Like Caldwell’s letter, it multiplied the number of Kentuckians killed and captured by two, and probably Matthew Elliott, who carried this report to its destination, was instructed to confirm the doubled figures. (Filson Club Publications, No. 12, 91-123, 157-209 211-215).

By this time Sir Guy Carleton, who had recently been appointed commander-in-chief of the British forces in America, issued his manifesto ordering a cessation of Indian depredations, which reached the West just after the return of Caldwell’s exultant expedition from the Blue Licks. The instructions sent from Detroit by De Peyster to McKee and Bradt directed them thereafter “not to make any incursions into the enemy’s country”. These instructions, however, did not arrive in time to prevent a raid against Fort Henry at Wheeling by Bradt, with his Loyalists and a considerable body of Indians; nor did they stop the Kentuckians from demanding a retaliatory invasion of the Indian country under the command of Col. George Rogers Clark.

With a thousand and fifty mounted riflemen, Clark set out from the mouth of the Licking on November 4, 1782, and six days later he surprised the settlement of the Miami, from which the savages fled in consternation, while their town and their winter stores were utterly destroyed. Despite the endeavors of McKee, the Indians could not be persuaded to encounter the frontiersmen who, “after … finding all attempts to bring them to a general action fruitless,” in the words of Clark himself, retired on account of the lateness of the season. To this blow, as well as to Carleton’s manifesto, is to be attributed the termination of formidable incursions of Kentucky by the Indians. Occasional forays from the northwest and outrages by Ohio savages continued, however, as long as he Northern posts remained in the hands of the British, that, is, until 1796. (Filson Club No 6, 50, 56; No. 8,59, 62; No. 16, 130-132).

The tale of Connolly’s interest in Kentucky affairs has not yet been concluded. Duly exchanged in October, 1780, while he was in New York, Connolly was soon appointed a lieutenant colonel in the Queen’s Rangers and sailed with that Loyalist regiment to Yorktown in December. Shortly after his arrival in the South he was placed in command of the Tories of Virginia and North Carolina on the peninsula formed by the James River and Chesapeake Bay. In September, 1781, he was again taken prisoner, and three months later was sent to Philadelphia, where he was kept in jail until March. He was then paroled and allowed to go to New York, on condition of his taking passage for England, which he did at once. After remaining in London for some time, occupying himself meanwhile with efforts to secure compensation for his losses and services as a Loyalty and in devising plans for the recovery of America to the British crown, he recrossed the Atlantic and was in Quebec in the winter of 1787-88. Thence, he proceeded to Detroit, where he met his relative, Alexander McKee, who was now deputy superintendent general of the Indian Department, and his old Pittsburgh acquaintance, Matthew Elliott, who was serving as superintendent of the Indian affairs. He must have come in contact also with the Girtys, who were still in and about Detroit and whom he had known at Fort Pitt. (Biennial Report, Archives and History, W. Va. 1911-1914, 41; Proceedings, American Antiquarian Society, Oct., 1909 (Worcester, Mass.) 32, 36).

Connolly soon reported that he had learned from a man sent by him to Pittsburgh that the people of Kentucky wished to declare their independence of the United States Government. Whether this was true or not, it appears that he had received advances from General Samuel Holden Parsons, who was concerned in the establishment of a new colony on the Ohio, relative to an arrangement with Great Britain for keeping the Mississippi River open to the western trade. These advances evidently presented to Connolly’s mind the prospect of the overthrow of Spanish power in Louisiana and the establishment of a British protectorate over Kentucky and the lower country, if proper steps were taken. At any rate, the possibilities of a negotiation were too alluring to be resisted, and Connolly obtained permission to visit Kentucky “in order to draw out propositions from men of character.” Setting out from Detroit, he traveled through the woods to the mouth of the Big Miami River and thence by boat down the Ohio to Louisville, where he arrived on October 25, 1788. He came ostensibly to look after his confiscated estate, but in reality to discover the attitude of leading Kentuckians toward the proposal, which he made in the name of the Canadian governor-general, Lord Dorchester (formerly Sir Guy Carleton), to assist the westerners with a military and naval force in securing control of the Mississippi and New Orleans. Honors, rewards, and military rank in the British army were to be bestowed upon such influential inhabitants of Kentucky as would raise a force, to be paid, armed, and equipped by Dorchester, who would also send from five thousand to ten thousand men by way of the Miami and Wabash rivers to join the Kentucky contingent in moving upon New Orleans, where a British fleet would cooperate with the forces from the northward. (Proceedings, American Antiquarian Society, Oct 1909, 32-35; Filson Club Publications No 6, 182-184).

Before the end of October Connolly submitted these plans to Col. Thomas Marshall and Judge George Muter at a joint interview in Lexington, being introduced by Col. John Campbell who, according to Marshall, had previously communicated the proposition Connolly was about to make.In a letter to Washington of February 12, 1789, Thomas Marshall wrote that he told Dorchester’s emissary of the people’s prejudice against the British, “not only from circumstances attending the late war, but from a persuasion that the Indians were at this time stimulated by them against us; and that so long as those savages continued to commit such horrid cruelties on our defenseless frontiers, and were received as friends and allies by the British at Detroit, it would be impossible for them to be convinced of Lord Dorchester’s offers, let his profession be ever so strong….” Connolly visited Gen. James Wilkinson in Lexington on November 8, and was told not only that “the British were greatly disliked in Kentucky,” but also that Wilkinson was afraid that the people would kill him if he did not escape at once. Connolly asked for an escort, which was provided, and he recrossed the Ohio on his way back to Detroit, November 20. The only other prominent Kentuckian to whom Connolly divulged his mission was Gen. Charles Scott, but when and where this interview took place is unknown to the present writer. (Proceedings etc. Oct. 1909, 33-35, Letters to Washington IV, 236i; Butler’s Kentucky, 184; Filson Club Publications No 6, 183).

To be continued.

Who were the Tories? Who were the Loyalists: I had very little knowledge of them until reading a booklet by the same title which was a presentation by Professor Wilbur H. Siebert, Ohio State University, reprinted from Ohio Archaeological and Historical Quarterly, Vol. XXVIII, No. 1, January 1919, Columbus, Ohio. For a few weeks I will be quoting from this booklet which is out of print and copyright. But first, two definitions:

Tory: According to Merriam-Webster: a member or supporter of a major British political group of the 18th and early 19th centuries favoring at first the Stuarts and later royal authority and the established church and seeking to preserve the traditional political structure and defeat parliamentary reform — compare whig.

Loyalist: Loyalists were American colonists who remained loyal to the British Crown during the American Revolutionary War. At the time they were often called Tories, Royalists, or King's Men; Patriots called them "persons inimical to the liberties of America".[1] They were opposed by the Patriots, those who supported the revolution. Prominent Loyalists repeatedly assured the British government that many thousands of loyalists would spring to arms and fight for the crown. The British government acted in expectation of that, especially in the southern campaigns in 1780-81. In practice, the number of loyalists in military service was far lower than expected. Across the new United States Patriots watched suspects very closely, and would not tolerate any organized Loyalist opposition. Many outspoken or militarily active loyalists were forced to flee, especially to their stronghold of New York City. (Wikipedia)

Transylvania Company, association formed to exploit and colonize the area now comprising much of Kentucky and Tennessee. Organized first (Aug., 1774) as the Louisa Company, it was reorganized (Jan., 1775) as the Transylvania Company. At Sycamore Shoals on the Watauga River, the Cherokee deeded (Mar. 17, 1775) to Richard Henderson and other members of the association all the territory embraced by the Ohio, Kentucky, and Cumberland rivers. Henderson had already dispatched Daniel Boone to lead the way to the Kentucky River and, with additional settlers, soon followed Boone over his Wilderness Road to Boonesboro, the first settlement. Henderson hoped to make Transylvania, as the region was called, a proprietary colony similar to Pennsylvania and Maryland, but the project did not have British approval and, more importantly, was immediately denounced by both Virginia and North Carolina, within whose chartered limits Transylvania lay. A provisional, democratic government was organized in May, 1775, but the Continental Congress ignored Transylvania's plea to be recognized as the 14th colony. Virginia created (Dec., 1776) Kentucky co. in its portion of Transylvania and voided (Nov., 1778) the company's land titles there. Henderson then turned to the development of the Cumberland River area, employing James Robertson to lead this project. However, North Carolina also voided (1783) this section of the grant. Virginia and North Carolina each awarded Henderson and his associates 200,000 acres (81,000 hectares) for their labor and expenses in promoting western colonization. (The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.)

“From the days of its earliest settlement down through the American Revolution, the Kentucky country was the scene of proprietary projects or hostile activities by Loyalists, several of whom were first connected with Fort Pitt and afterward with the British port at Detroit. It is needless to say that the hostile activities included more or less successful efforts at instigating Indian depredations against the Kentucky pioneers, and contemplated almost from the beginning. Tory leadership for tribal contingents of sufficient size and bloodthirstiness to accomplish effectually the single but protracted task of freeing a favorite hunting ground from occupation by alien intruders and settlers, as viewed by the Indians, or of ridding the back country of dangerous rebels, as viewed by the resentless partisans of the crown. Such Tory leadership, we shall see further on, was to be provided, with serious consequences and even graver dangers for the colonists, after the flight of a group of Loyalist conspirators from Fort Pitt to Detroit in the spring of 1778.

The proprietary projects of these Loyalists began in July, 1773, with the survey of four thousand acres of land directly opposite the Falls of the Ohio by Captain Thomas Bullitt for Dr. John Connolly, a resident near Fort Pitt, who had previously been a surgeon’s made with the British forces, and was now in a fair way to be rewarded for his past – and future – services by this substantial grant. Connolly’s object was to found a town at the Falls, and to that end Captain Bullitt laid out a town plan in August. On the tenth of the following December, Governor Dunmore of Virginia issued a patent to Connolly for this land. (Proceedings, American Antiquarian Society, Oct. 1909, 5, 99: R. T. Durrett, Filson Club Publications, No. 8: The Century of Louisville (Louisville, Ky., 1893), 23, 24, 26, 27, 131-133)

In less than two months thereafter Dunmore was employing the recipient of this patent, who was captain commandant of militia on the upper Ohio, to seize Fort Pitt and make it the judicial seat of a new county. (West Augusta), in total disregard of Pennsylvania’s prior authority in that region. Connolly also carried on aggressions against the neighboring Indians, but did not neglect to join with his colleague, Col. John Campbell who had also received an extensive grant at the Falls, in advertising lots for sale in their prospective town in April, 1774. In the following June the deputy superintendent of Indian affairs at Fort Pitt, Capt. Alexander McKee, was recompensed for his service in the French and Indian War by a grant of two thousand aces, which was surveyed for him by James Douglas on the south branch of Elkhorn Creek. It was probably about the same time that Simon Girty, who was associated with these men as interpreter to the Six Nations, secured three tracts of three hundred aces each, all in the Kentucky country. (W. H. Siebert, The Tories of the Upper Ohio in Biennial Report, Archives and History, W. Va. 1911-1913, (Charleston, W. Va., 1914, 38: Thwaite and Kellogs, eds., Frontier Defense on the Upper Ohio, (Madison, Wis., 1912), 184; Filson Club Publications No. 8, 28)

Connolly was soon instructed by his patron to promote the royal interests among the tribesmen. Accordingly, in June, 1775, he met with the Delaware and Mingo chiefs and won them over, if we may credit his Narrative. He also asserts that he entered into a secret compact with a group of his friends, most of whom were militia officers and magistrates of West Augusta County, in support of the king, on condition that he should procure authority to raise men. He was in this season also that Connolly and Campbell sent a few men to occupy their lands at the Falls of the Ohio, these persons being instructed by Capt. Bullitt that they were to pay no attention to the title of the Transyvania Company, which had been secured by unauthorized purchase from the Indians. This was in keeping with Governor Dunmore’s proclamation of the previous March, declaring the Company’s purchase to be contrary to the regulations of the king and therefore illegal. (Biennial Report, Archives and Hitory, W. Va., 1911-1914, 28; G. W. Ranck, Filson Club Publications No. 16: Boonesborough (Louisville, Ky., 1901), 180-183; Proceedings, American Antiquarian Society, Oct. 1909, 15.)” If Connolly could have carried out his project for this settlement, we may be sure that it would have resulted in the establishment of a Tory outpost at the Falls. Either before, or perhaps after, the inception of Connolly and Campbell’s settlement, Joseph Browster, a Tory of Westmoreland County, Pa., went to Kentucky and, according to his widow’s testimony in 1788, purchased a thousand acres of improved land. As he intended to remove to his new estate, he sold his farm in Pennsylvania and, while journeying to the West with his family, was attacked and forced to take refuge at St. Vincent. From this French village, or some other point, Browster attempted to go to Detroit, but as killed en route by his Indian guide. His family remained at St. Vincent for three years, and was then conducted to the British post by savages. In support of her testimony, which was given before the British commissioners for the settlement of Loyalist claims, Mrs. Browster produced a brief letter from Dr. Connolly to the effect that at one time he had suffered imprisonment with Joseph Browster, and that the latter had been murdered by Indians while on his way to Detroit. (Second Report, Bureau of Archives, Ont. (1904), pt. 1,177:).

Late in May, 1775, the House of Delegates of the Transylvania Company held its session at Boonesborough. One of the delegates from Harrodsburg was the Rev. John Lythe of the Anglican church, who conducted a religious service on Sunday, the twenty-seventh, under an ancient elm in the hollow where the House had been assembling. Here in the presence of Episcopalians and Dissenters alike, the customary prayers for the king and royal family of England were recited for the only time, so far as known, on Kentucky soil. Within the week following the news of the battle of Lexington was brought to Boonesborough and its three sister settlements on the south side of the Kentucky River, evoking at once the undivided sympathy of the colonists, including their frontier missionary, for the revolutionists. (Filson Club Publications, No. 16m, 28, 30, 31).

To be continued.

          Bipasa Basu Childhood & Family (8 Mega Fotos)        
Bipasa Basu childhood photos,BapasuBasu Sister and Mother Photos...
In childhood days, bipasa basu did not like boys. Bipasa is telling "I was a terror to boys and the boys were calling me as LADY GUNDA"

Bipasa Basu further told that she used to carry a stick when roaming in her colony, and if any boy misbehaved, she will teach him a lesson.

Bipasa basu further comments on her school days :"I was very short and was monitor in my class . When some one misbehaves, she would jump up and catch hold of his hair and beat him.  yeah.... she is really a terror.

Picture of Bollywood actress Bipasa basu with her sister

Picture of Bollywood actress Bipasa basu with her mother

Picture of Bollywood actress Bipasa basu with her sister

Picture of Bollywood actress Bipasa basu childhood photo

Picture of Bollywood actress Bipasa basu with her sister

Picture of Bollywood actress Bipasa basu with her sister

indian actress Bipasa basu's elder sister bijyota basu

          CHP-161-Zhou Enlai Part 1        

In today's Part 1 episode Laszlo explores the early life of Zhou Enlai, growing up in a traditional scholar-official's family that had seen better days. Zhou gets passed from relative to relative. But each step of the way there were mentors and breaks that he was able to make the most of. We can see through his early years and into his teens how Zhou was perfectly trained and tested for the larger job that lay ahead.


CHP-161-Zhou Enlai Part 1 Terms


Zhou Enlai 周恩来 1898-1976

Jung Chang 张荣 British Chinese author famous for her critical biography of Mao Zedong and her book Wild Swans

Zhou zongli 周总理 Premier Zhou

Liu Shaoqi 刘少奇 One-time top Chinese leader, hounded to death during the Cultural Revolution

Lin Biao 林彪 Great military leader, later Mao's successor but not for long.

Wang Hongwen 王洪文 One of the Gang of Four and Mao's appointed successor but not for long.

Hua Guofeng 华国锋   Succeeded Mao in 1976 as Chairman of the Party

Deng Xiaoping 邓小平   Featured in CHP episodes 63-70

Huái'ān 淮安   City in northern Jiangsu province

Jiangsu 江苏   Province just north of Zhejiang

Shaoxing 绍兴   Historic city in Zhejiang, just west of Shanghai

Tianjin 天津 City in the north, just east of Beijing

Song Meiling 宋美龄   Madame Chiang Kai-shek

Zhou Panlong   周攀龙 Zhou Enlai's paternal grandfather

Zhou Yineng 周貽能 Zhou Enlai's father

Wan Dong'er 万冬儿 Zhou Enlai's natural mother

Lady Chen 陈氏 Zhou's 养母 or adoptive mother

Jiang Zhou's nurse who took care of him

Zhou Yigan 周贻淦 Zhou's uncle (younger brother of father)

shushu 叔叔 Uncle (younger brother of father)

didi 弟弟   Younger brother

muqin 母亲   Mother

ganma 干妈   Adoptive mother

waigong 外公   grandfather (father of one's mother)

Zhou Yiqian 周贻谦 Zhou's uncle (elder brother of father)

bofu 伯父   Uncle (elder brother of father)

Zhou Yigeng Uncle of Zhou Enlai who got led him to Tianjin

Zou Rong   邹容 Early revolutionary writer

Gemingjun 革命军 Revolutionary Army, Zou Rong's great work.

Kang Youwei 康有为   Reformer in the late 19th century

Liang Qichao 梁启超   Student of Kang Youwei who participated in the 100 Days of Reform

Nankai Middle School 天津南开中学

Yan Xiu 严修 Co-founder of Nankai Middle School

Zhang Boling 張伯苓 co-founder and president of Nankai

Jing Ye 敬业   Respect Work, Zhou Enlai's first journal

Xiao Feng 校风 School Wind School newspaper of Nankai

Chen Duxiu   陈独秀 Communist Party co-founder and writer

Xin Qingnian   新青年 Chen Duxiu's New Youth Magazine

Tianjin Xuesheng Lianhe Huibao 天津学生联合会包  Tianjin Student Union

Juewushe 觉悟社 Awakening Society

Deng Yingchao 邓颖超 Among other accomplishments, wife of Zhou Enlai

Yang Zhen Deng Yingchao's mother

Liu Qingyang 刘清扬 Early Communist Party member

Zhang Shenfu 张申府 Married to Liu Qingyang, another early Party operative

Li Dazhao 李大钊   CCP co-founder and librarian at Peking U

Guomintang 国民党 The KMT or Kuomintang

Li Fuchun 李富春 Longtime party leader, chairman of State Planning Commission

Nie Rongzhen 聂荣臻   Great military leader and called Father of China's Atomic Bomb

Zhu De 朱德   Red Army founder, great military leader

Chi Guang 赤光 Red Light, the journal printed in France

Guofu   国父 The Father of the Country (Sun Yat-sen)

Whampoa Military Academy 陆军官校 Funded and established by Soviets to train Chinese officers

Ye Jianying 叶剑英   Great military man and CCP stalwart

Chen Jiongming   陈炯明 Landlord in Guangdong, the target of the Eastern Campaign

Taiping Guan 太平馆 Restaurant in Guangzhou where Zhou and Deng Yingchao had a wedding reception.

Beijing Lu 北京路   Beijing Road

Zhongshan Gunboat Incident 中山舰事件 March 20, 1926, an incident that provoked a crackdown by Chiang Kai-shek against left leaning elements in the KMT as all Communists.


Go check out:

Nina Xiang's China Money Podcast

The Anthill - A Writer's Colony

The Sinica Podcast, a classic

          The Penal Colony        
The Penal Colony
author: Richard Herley
name: Nathan
average rating: 3.58
book published: 1987
rating: 4
read at: 2015/04/01
date added: 2015/04/01
A good novel with an "I don't know how to end it" ending.

          Genesis (The Colony, #1)        
Genesis (The Colony, #1)
author: Michaelbrent Collings
name: Nathan
average rating: 4.00
book published: 2013
rating: 4
read at: 2014/03/20
date added: 2014/07/24
I think Michaelbrent might consume even more caffeine than I do.

          CHP-104-The History of Hong Kong Part 4        

We continue this overview series on the history of Hong Kong.  This time we pick up right after the Treaty of Nanjing and look at the early efforts to get this colony up and running.  The first couple decades of Crown Colony of Hong Kong weren’t easy and many considered throwing in the towel early. continue reading >>

          Re:Politics - USA        
 BrotherGecko wrote:
they are Trump voters and waiting for him to apparently exit....the world...not sure their goals never make actual sense.

Trump's favorite anime is G Gundam;

A sign of horrible taste I'm sure. All the more reason to hate him


Dechen is a Ladhaki, Tibetan Buddhist monk-in-training with a passion for gardening. One stormy night, he rescues an exquisite flower by bringing it indoors. However, despite his care and concerns, the flower inexplicably starts to fall apart and the boy struggles to accept the situation. Finally, Angmo, the head monk is forced to intervene and rescue Dechen from himself. Dechen finds peace at last when he understands how to truly save his dying flower - by eliminating the need to possess and control.

Winner of the "Outstanding Achievement in Traditional Animation" Dusty Award (2012). DECHEN premiered at the 23rd Dusty Film & Animation Festival at the School of Visual Arts Theater in NYC on May 7. This was my BFA thesis project and I was given a little over 2 semesters to work on it. The story was shaped by an experience I had while trying to get a beloved feral colony cat adopted in to a home and new surroundings.

DECHEN was animated traditionally on paper, the layouts were created out of mixed media and the animated frames were scanned and colored in Photoshop. I worked with SVA Film faculty member and noted musician, Nana Simopoulos once more to compose the overall music for the film, while my friend and professional musician, Marlon Cherry played the bells and the beautiful Kalimba. A couple of supportive and talented animation friends helped color the frames. Noted wildlife watercolorist and my drawing teacher, Deborah Ross sprinkled my credits with her lovely paintings. BFA Film Sound Design major, Steven Burgess (also a thesis student at the time) handled the sound design elements of my film. Don Poynter was my awesome thesis advisor, while dear friend and animation veteran, Howard Beckerman was the light at the end of the story-tunnel.

I could not have created and finished this film without the patience and support of my SVA teachers and supportive peers, friends, my super-patient husband and my beloved cats (both the indoor and outdoor ones).

Cast: Kaukab Basheer

          Experiencing the Death Cross today April 25, 2017        

These stocks had their 50 sma cross below their 200 ma by noon EST today


RTTR - Ritter Pharmaceuticals Inc

CLNS - Colony NorthStar Inc

PES - Pioneer Drilling Co

GWR - Genesee & Wyoming Industries


DBO - PowerShares DB Oil Fund

DGLD - VelocitySharesTM 3x Inverse Gold


PLOW - Douglas Dynamics Inc

USL - United States 12 Month Oil Fund LP

CAPL - Lehigh Gas Partners

ZMLP - Direxion Zacks MLP High Income Shares

PWOD - Penns Woods Bancorp, Inc.

          Interview With BLUE YONDER Author Diane Dooley        

Incoming—a new science fiction romance release from author Diane Dooley called BLUE YONDER (Decadent Publishing)! I’ve read and enjoyed her first three books, BLUE GALAXY and BLUE NEBULA (both available through Carina Press) and MAKO'S BOUNTY (Decadent Publishing) and so I'm delighted to add her latest to my TBR pile.

Diane Dooley is aboard TGE so we can learn more about BLUE YONDER! But first, here’s the cover and blurb:

Earth is drowning, but Isabel Visconti won’t be going down with the planet. Her earnings as a factory drone and prostitute will soon fund her escape to the stars. All she’ll leave behind is her late husband’s best friend, Daniel Morneau, who has disappeared into the underbelly of the city’s criminal gangs. Until he shows up, pleading for Isabel’s help.

It’s the old Daniel, the kind, gentle one. The man who bought medicine for her dying husband then helped her through the grief. It’s the Daniel she couldn’t possibly refuse to help. But Isabel has already been given a choice by Daniel’s psychopath boss. Betray Daniel—or spend months travelling to a far-off colony, servicing a violent criminal gang along the way.

When Daniel is abducted, Isabel is his only hope. He may die without her, but is there time enough for love on the eve of the end of the world?

And now for my interview with Diane Dooley!

The Galaxy Express: What inspired you to tell the story of Isabel and Daniel?

Diane Dooley: It’s set in Athens, Greece, where I once spent a lot of time. A lot of people from various parts of the world wash up in Athens for some reason. It’s always been that kind of city, and I love using it as a setting. (Blue Galaxy also started in Athens.)

 I’ve spent a probably unhealthy amount of time thinking, reading, and writing about the end of the world. Isabel and Daniel are two ordinary people. They’re not rich or wealthy or powerful or famous. They’re just trying to survive. And that’s it, really. Weary survivors in an iconic city on a dying planet. How can they find hope? How can there be time for love?

TGE: Please share at least five tags that you feel are important for readers to know.

DD: Apocalyptic. Novella. Heroism. Survival. Hope.

TGE: What kind of futuristic technology can readers expect in this world?

DD: Very little, actually. In Blue Yonder, humanity has just about used up everything Earth has to offer. People have gathered in the surviving cities and are fleeing the planet via spaceports, heading out to the space colonies. So, though there is future tech in the form of space ferries, arc ships, space stations, etc, back on Earth it is fast reverting to the stone age. There’s no fuel for cars. There’s no ammo for guns. There’s no medicine for diseases.

TGE: Are there danger/action-adventure elements in BLUE YONDER or is it a more character-driven story?

DD: It’s a bit of both. Isabel and Daniel are both tough survivors, well equipped to do what they must do to get a place on a ship off Earth. But they also have their complexities. Neither seem like heroic material, and yet a situation arises in which they both have to dig deep into themselves to find the people they would have been in less apocalyptic circumstances. And then, of course, there’s the villain: Vangelis.  He’s a very dangerous man with a bunch of pretty vile minions. So, yes, there is danger and action and adventure :)

TGE: Name the last movie you watched. Would you recommend it? Why or why not?

DD: Last movie I watched was Mad Max: Fury Road. It was fantastic! I love really intense chase scenes and I’ve been missing seeing great stunt work, so I was a happy camper. I loved rooting for Furiosa and the gals, and was happy to see an action movie in which there were so many female characters with agency. I recommend it wholeheartedly.

Thanks for having me, Heather! 

About the author

Diane Dooley was born in the Channel Islands, grew up in Scotland, and now resides in the United States. She lives with her best friend/husband and two obstreperous boy children in a falling-down farmhouse in the sticks.

She writes short stories and novellas in several genres and has been published in a variety of online and print publications, as well as by several digital-first publishing houses. She is also the Fiction Editor for Sci-Fi Romance Quarterly and a long time worker bee for the Science Fiction Romance Brigade.

You can find Diane on Facebook, Twitter and her blog.

* * *
Read an excerpt of BLUE YONDER.

For more information about where to obtain a copy, visit the author’s web site. If you’re a reviewer, contact the author for a review copy.

Add BLUE YONDER on Goodreads

Joyfully yours,

          Podtacular 580: Worms        
Colony has made its entrance into Halo Wars 2 after a delay to fix a game-breaking bug. Big Team Battle also gets a much needed matchmaking refresh with new maps and the Assault mode included. The HCS Summer 2017 Season … Continue reading →
           The island colony : Tasmania, society and politics, 1880-1900.         
Reynolds, H (1963) The island colony : Tasmania, society and politics, 1880-1900. Research Master thesis, University of Tasmania.
          Report: Freemason Berlusconi’s `Slavish’ Courtship of Freemason Qaddafi Haunts Italy        

Bloomberg News Feb 23, 2011

Berlusconi’s `Slavish’ Courtship of Qaddafi Haunts Italy By Flavia Krause-Jackson

Berlusconi shut down the city’s biggest park in June 2009 to allow the visiting Libyan leader and his entourage of all- female bodyguards to set up camp by the 16th-century Villa Doria Pamphili. A year earlier, Italy agreed to pay $5 billion over 25 years to its former colony in reparations.

“With hindsight, the more slavish manifestations of deference could have been avoided,” Franco Pavoncello, a politics professor at John Cabot University in Rome, said in a telephone interview. “He went out of his way, more than others, to be best friends with Qaddafi. He can’t exactly take it all back now.”

Libya has invested in Italian companies including Fiat SpA, UniCredit SpA and the Juventus soccer team, while Eni SpA has been present in the North African country for half a century, leaving Italy reliant on Libya for a quarter of its crude oil. As his ties with Qaddafi developed, Berlusconi built on that economic legacy, which is now unraveling and underscores the cost of doing business with autocratic regimes.

Article Continues

Further Reading: http://freemasonrywatch.org

          Woodcraft in the Philipines #5: vigan style        

Just thought I would post some pics from a trip to the historic old town of Vigan that myself and my girlfriend did a couple of years ago. If you,re a lover of old buildings and their furnishings then Vigan needs to be on your to do list. Vigan is a heritage listed town with an long history being part of the Manila/aculpolco galleon trade, Founded around 1572 and was one of the first towns in the new Spanish colony to have its own Cathedral, St pauls built in 1574 and the town was almost destroyed in WW2, but if you believe the legends it was saved by the two Japanese officers who had fallen in love with two local girls and decided to disobey orders and prevent Vigans destruction.
Photobucket Most antique furniture in this country usually gets tagged with the “vigan furniture” label even if it,s not. The best of it is in the Syquia mansion, former residence of President Quirino and the Padre Burgos museum where these photo,s were taken. Mostly made from Narra from the nearby Cordillera mountains, the traditional furniture industry here is still active.
Photobucket Antique stores are located here on Crisologo street for those with deeper pockets than me.
You can get there by flying to Loag north of vigan and take a bus south for an hour and a half or bus it directly from manila if you don,t mind 14hours on your butt. Accomodation is not bad at Grandpas inn or the R.F Aniceto mansion which has a fine collection of antique furnishings on display, sadly not in the rooms. Food in the area is excelent, try the local Longanisa ( sausage) but check if they give you the local menu or the foreigner one, I didn,t sit 14 hours on a bus to be offered spagetti and hamburgers! And also try the Basi and Duhat wines made from local fruits, very tasty.

On this day in 1776 the United States of America, then a colony of Great Britain, declared its independence, starting the American Revolution, which is still going strong in 2004.
          In Flames Sign to Century Media for 'Sounds of a Playground Fading'        
After stints on Nuclear Blast, Ferret and Koch, In Flames have finally settled in with Century Media Records for their 10th album, 'Sounds of a Playground Fading,' due out this June. From 'Whoracle' to 'Jester Race' to 'Colony' to 'Clayman,' In Flames have served up heaping helpings of memorable metal for 20 years now... Continue reading…
          DVD review: Passengers        
JOURNALIST Aurora Lane (Jennifer Lawrence) is travelling in deep space to a distant colony planet.
          KC student shot outside campus        

Kinnaird College
LAHORE - In a bloodcurdling incident, desperate and disheartened 23-years-old boy, first killed his love (a 17-years-old girl, student of 2nd year at Kinnaird College) and later ended his life by shooting himself in his head at over head bridge, especially constructed for Kinnaird College (KC) students located on Jail Road on Monday afternoon.
The tragic ending of the failed love story that stated some two years ago left Lahorities aggrieved while the students of KC as shell shocked.
Bullet shots from the desperate boy have also injured a passer by named Bashir. The two lovebirds died on the spot while the injured was rushed to Services Hospital where his condition is stated to be stable.
It was about 2:25 pm when students of KC were standing at and around the entry exit gate of the KC waiting for their vehicles to return to their home. It was a kind of hustling-bustling situation out the KC when suddenly the crowed including girls, their relatives, their drivers, staffers of KC and locals of the area started running here and there after hearing four bullet shots which created panic in the area. The situation becomes tenser when students found two youngsters, a girl and a boy, lying in a pool of blood on the floor of over head bridge.
Hues and cries were observed among the KCites (students) while the traffic on Jail Road came to a halt. A stampede was also witnessed at Jail Road which created traffic mess for over one hour. A passer-by informed police after which a police team headed by ASP Racecourse Circle Riffat Bukari reached the scene.
The police team collected forensic evidence from the crime scene, recovered murder-weapon, cell phones and other belongings of the girl and the boy who later were identified as Samar Wasti and Shamas-ul-Alam.
Samar Wasti was a resident of Faisalabad who was residing here maternal aunt’s place in Shahdara Area and Shams-ul-Alam was a resident of Chungi Amr Sadhu with a permanent address of Jinnah Colony Sargodha and a temporary address of Rawalpindi mentioned on his Identity Card.
Police removed the bodies to Racecourse police station for further search of their clothes which were finally removed the bodies to City morgue for autopsy.
The police team also recorded the statements of eyewitnesses and students at crime scene as well.
Eyewitness injured victim Bashir said that he was on his way to home on a motorbike. “As I reached near overhead bridge on Jail Road in front of Kinnaird College, I heard four bullet shots, one of which injured me as well”, he added.
ASP Racecourse Circle Riffat Bukhari told the reporters at crime scene that the circumstantial evidences suggest that the accused boy was chasing the girl as she came out of the exit gate of Kinnaird College at around 2:30 p.m. She added that seemingly both lovebirds had exchanged few words with each other but over the refusal of girl to get married with him, the accused boy whipped out a 30-bore pistol and opened two straight fires at her left temple and neck. As a result, she sustained serious bullet wounds and died on the spot. Without wasting anytime, the accused boy shot a bullet in his own temple and ended his life over love tragedy.
Sub-inspector Bashiran Bibi of Women Racecourse police station told this correspondent that the victim girl was living with her aunt in Shahdra while she belonged to Faisalabad. She further told that the accused boy belonged to Mozang Chungi. A case No 71/11 has been registered under sections 302 and 324 of PPC against the accused boy.
The victim girl’s parents, who had reached Women Racecourse Police Station from Faisalabad after knowing about the incident, told the police that accused boy was teasing their daughter for the last two months after which Samar had also changed SIM of her cell phone. However, the boy chased their daughter on Monday and asked her to talk to her parents for marriage proposal. The girl’s parents requested the boy not to tease her and close this chapter. After which the girl’s father heard three bullet shots and the guy said the chapter has been closed. The girl’s father further told the police that they tried to contact their daughter again but received no response.
Sarwaj Wasti, brother of deceased’s Samar Wasti, while talking to his relatives at City Morgue mentioned that Samar was living here with her maternal aunt. He told his relatives that Samar was at her native home in Faisalabad on just past weekend. He claimed that earlier on Monday he dropped Samar at her college as per routine. He said that as he reached back at his home in Faisalabad, he received a call from Samar at his mobile phone. “Samar dialed my number when she saw Shamas standing nearer to the bridge after coming out of the college”, said brother of Samar adding that she was panicked and was not in a condition to state any thing. He said that when Samar informed him about the presence of Shamas, he directed Samar to give her mobile phone to Shamas that he and Shamas could discuss the issue. He claimed that he tried to cool down Shamas but he threatened to kill Samar saying that he could not bear any more. He said that he was on phone when he heard bullet shots. “We immediately left our home and rushed to Lahore where after reaching Kinnaired College, we came to know about the mishap”, said brother of Shamas.
Shamas was a class fellow of Samar at Cathedral School till 10th standard and was in lover with her since then, told heirs of Samar. They said that both Samar and Shamas shared good days and were in contact with each other but later on Samar changed her interest as the boy was not matching her standards. It has been learnt that Shamas was doing a job of advertisement posting on different website in a local company. Contrary to Shamas, the girl was quit outstanding in studies and she had scored 836 marks in matriculation while scored 397 marks in first year of ICS (Intermediate in Computer Sciences). According to the heirs of Samar, she was bit tense on scoring little less marks as she was expecting over 400.
Deceased Samar’s eldest sister was also a student of KC, who now was working as doctor while her elder brother has done graduation in Accounts/Finance while her two younger sisters were still school going.

          Zimbabwe's first lady urges Robert Mugabe to name his successor        

Grace Mugabe appears to contradict 93-year-old husband for first time in sign that battle to be country’s next president has intensified

Zimbabwe’s first lady, Grace Mugabe, has challenged her 93-year-old husband Robert to name his preferred successor as president to end deepening divisions over the future leadership of the ruling Zanu-PF party, according to state television.

Robert Mugabe, Africa’s oldest leader, has ruled the former British colony since independence in 1980 but has insisted that Zanu-PF, and not him, should choose his successor.

Continue reading...
          UK downplayed killings in Zimbabwe to guard its interests, study claims        

Officials in London accused of being ‘wilfully blind’ to massacre of thousands by Robert Mugabe in 1980s

British officials repeatedly downplayed the massacre of thousands of innocent civilians by Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe in the 1980s to protect the UK’s interests in southern Africa and their relationship with the former colony’s new ruler, new research has claimed.

According to thousands of documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act by Dr Hazel Cameron, a lecturer in international relations at the University of St Andrews in Scotland, British officials in London and Zimbabwe were “intimately aware” of the atrocities but consistently minimised their scale.

Continue reading...
          Robert Mugabe marks 93rd birthday with praise for Donald Trump        

Zimbabwe president drops no hint that he plans to relinquish power in interview in which he appears to be struggling to keep his eyes open

Robert Mugabe, the president of Zimbabwe, celebrated his 93rd birthday on Tuesday by pledging to remain in power despite growing signs of frailty, and endorsing Donald Trump’s brand of American nationalism.

“When it comes to Donald Trump, on the one hand talking of American nationalism … America for Americans … on that we agree: Zimbabwe for Zimbabweans,” said Mugabe, who took power in the former British colony in 1980.

Related: Robert Mugabe could contest election as corpse, says wife

Related: Zimbabwean pastor who led anti-Mugabe protests arrested in Harare

Related: Mugabe launches new currency in 'last gamble' for Zimbabwe

Continue reading...
          How to Grow Hydroponic-Quality Bud, in Soil        

Hey Ganja Enthusiasts,

Are you growing your cannabis in potted soil, Indoors? Do you wish you could get the results that some growers achieve by utilizing hydroponic growth methods? Or by growing outdoors? We all have certain circumstances that we are forced to grow within; due to local laws or other types of restrictions, but you don’t have to let those circumstances dictate the quality of your smoke! I grow my ladies indoors in a grow cabinet that is soil based; and by conditioning my soil with beneficial microbes, I have been able to acheive, LARGER more robust buds, colas and nugs from my ladies. I’ll explain to you how this all works, and how you too can use these fun little organisms! Hold on tight because things are about to get real scientific up in here! :-)

The first thing you need to know about these marvelous little helpers is that; in nature they are everywhere! This isn’t some new discovery or invention, but an innovation or re-adaptation. Growers and scientists are finding which microbes specifically benefit plants and their rhizospheres (root zone). What they have found an abundance of bacteria, fungi, protozoa, actinomycetes, and rotifers that seem to work together in a microscopic community that surrounds the root area, and all of which seem to have a symbiotic relationship with each other and the roots they surround. In this symbiotic community everyone has their own specific job, and their own place in the grand scheme of this circle. The bacteria, break down organic material (i.e. soil, dead plant material, dead animals, other dead microbes, excrement etc) this broken down organic matter becomes much more useable for nutrient hungry cannabis plants and fungi. The fungus ( predominantly mycorrhizae and trichoderma)have a more direct symbiotic relationship with plants and their roots then most of the other microbes in the rhizosphere. They actively colonize and coat the cannabis plant’s roots, they consume the sugars and protiens secreted by most plant root systems, and in exchange they help protect the marijuana plants from pests, pathogenic microbes (bad fungi and bacteria) and extreme conditions. They also help keep your cannabis plants well fed and watered, even in drought conditions. Actinomycetes are able to break organic material that is more solid and harder for other organisms to break down such as pulp and wood, which often breaks down into material that is very rich in potassium. Protozoa is kind of the bad guy, but in reality it keeps things in a good balance and doesn’t harm your ladies or their roots. Protozoa and Rotifers eat bacteria and fungus in abundance (rotifer also eats protozoa), and it does not discriminate between good or bad microbes. In some ways this is helpful as it does kill some of the more pathogenic bacteria, molds and mildews, and also keeps the beneficial bacteria from gaining too big of a presence, which can throw the balance out of whack. Too much good bacteria can kill off other beneficials in the rhizosphere. So think of it as both Yin and Yang, balance and harmony. It’s hard to imagine that this life cycle, this symbiotic relationship is in anyway reflective of our own life cycles, but oddly enough it does. It’s interesting to think that we also have a symbiotic relationship with plants, they can feed us, provide material to make clothing and shelter, and in turn we cultivate and aggregate these seeds all over the world. We nurture them and ensure the continuance of their lineage, and they do the same for us.

Now I’m sure at this point your internal voice is asking, “T.B. when are you going to finish up with all of this boring mumbo-jumbo, and tell me how this can help me grow good bud?!” How can this help you grow good bud? The answer to that my friend, is simple: more than likely if you are growing indoors, your growing media does not contain any or at least a helpful portion of these beneficial organisms. Sure bacteria and fungi are all around us, but outside of the beneficial ecosystem of natural rhizospheres, it can be hard to find these beneficial microbes. Indoors and in many cheap soil mixes, you’re more likely to find more aggressive and destructive microbes that are more likely to devour your plant than do it any kind of favor. So how do you enrich your indoor garden with the friendly microbes? There are many ways, from making or using compost, compost teas or using soil conditioners. Some of these options can require allot of planning, and manipulation to ensure that you are getting a colony of beneficial microbes instead of a pathogenic colony, and let’s face it, no one really likes to do more leg work than they have to. So what would I recommend? Whatever floats your boat! That’s what! As much as I like the convenience of pre formulated conditioners, which give you the convenience of KNOWING exactly what’s in your rhizospheres, I can’t deny that making your own compost teas and microbes can actually save you money and benefit the environment, as that method is greener and more environmentally friendly. However keep in mind that the homemade method lacks one aspect that I find to be incredibly important to any garden, and that is control. Control, is knowing what is in your soil, knowing that beneficials are present and that you aren’t adding something that could possibly harm your garden, it has less risk, and that is why I use premixed, individual soil conditioners. The line of conditioners is made by a Colorado based company called Supreme Growers. Their products are also able to be used in hydroponic systems! Check out their website for samples at www.SupremeGrowers.com .

I have one more question to answer, and I’m sure you’ve been waiting for me to get to it. Why should you add beneficial microbes to your garden? What’s the sell point? I’m sure most of you who have had good quality outdoor grown bud can hardly deny the fact that it tastes better, smokes better, and ultimately is a superior product than that produced in a hydroponic, or indoor soil grow. Not to mention it more natural, more closely related to ’The source’. The reason why is because of the abundance of these beneficial microbes. These microbes bring other benefits to the table as well, they help protect your plant from would-be pests, viruses, and molds that could rot your plant. These are things that are the enemy of any cannabis garden, and every experienced gardener knows it. In the end these beneficial additives are going to strengthen your plants, help manufacture a more superior end product, and give you bud that is more organic and close to nature. It’s not hard to get a good colony going in your garden, give it a try, I’ll bet you aren’t able to refute the results I have described. Go on, smoke a better bud! Keep Growing!

- T.B. Green

          A Short, Informative History of Cannabis        

A Short, Informative History of Hemp

Based off of research done by: T.B. Green

Cannabis has a very prominent part in the history of mankind. While almost all of us have grown up in a time of near worldwide prohibition, this plant was once broadly recognized for not only its medicinal and recreational purposes, but for its industrial versatility as well. Hemp was used to make sturdy, ropes and canvases. Back before all of the manmade synthetics that now dominate the market, Hemp was seen as one of the strongest, and most durable of textiles available to the world.

There have been world conflicts over hemp products, and most people think that the only cannabis related conflicts are the drug wars raging in the US, Mexico, and other parts of the world. Sadly, governments push biased school syllabi, instead teaching citizens the history of our civilizations as it honestly happened. History really is told from the point of view of the “victorious” and those still in power.  Just because politicians make the laws, doesn’t mean they can create their own versions of what happened, but they do. Why? It’s Simple. It pushes the agenda of those in power. If the government admitted to the fact that hemp is nutritious, that it is a medicinal powerhouse, that it could easily solve the world’s fuel crisis, and reverse environmental calamities, then the people that the governments supposedly serve may start to question the absurd laws trying to prohibit it out of existence. Then they might learn that the prohibition isn’t based on the best interests of the people, but in the special interests of industries looking to conceal the industrial and medicinal application of a plant that could be grown by anyone. It could cut their profits, and that’s far more important than doing the right thing in their book. So without further ado, here is a short chronological history based on our favorite plant, cannabis.

A Chronology of Cannabis

BCE:Before Christ’s Existence

ACE:After Christ’s Existence

*Fine hemp production in Russia has lasting effects on world history

**The modern United States government is the biggest opponent of cannabis legalization and use in the world

  • 10,000 BCE—While we aren’t totally sure when cannabis came upon the Earth, we believe that the first human cultivations of cannabis occurred around this time period, because this is the time period that humanity first started purposefully planting seed in hopes of harvesting their fruits

  • 7,000-6,000 BCE—Hemp oil and seed is used as food in China, The Chinese also started to feed hemp-cake to their livestock.  The Chinese would fill an oil press with hemp seed to extract this oil. What was left was the hemp-cake still rich in protein, fiber and useful vitamins and minerals

  • 5,000 BCE—Woven Hemp product used in China and Turkestan mainly for clothing

  • 2,700 BCE—The Emperor of China Shen Nang uses Cannabis as Medicine

  • 2,000 BCE— In India, Bhang (a drink made of cured cannabis leaves, stems, seeds, and flowers) is spoken of in The Vedas, a multivolume Hindu religious book. It is said that Bhang is the favored food of the god Shiva; it is consumed ritualistically by his followers and even used as an offering. There are several holidays that incorporate its use

  • 1,500 BCE—The Scythians, (Iranian speaking nomads from the black sea region) begin to cultivate the plant to make fine clothing and food. They also enjoy the smoke produced by burning the leaves and flowers. First as incense, but it didn’t take long for it to be loaded into rudimentary pipes

  • 931 BCE—Wild Cannabis is said to have grown naturally on the tomb of King Solomon the Magician. It was said to be gift from Jah to his people

  • 605 BCE—Cannabis is most likely cultivated hydroponically for the first time in the hanging gardens of Babylon

  • 600 BCE—*Ancient Russian tribes start to produce hemp cordage

  • 500-400 BCE—Scythian nomads begin to venture into Europe. They introduce cannabis to many European settlements along the way. Ancient Greek historian Herodotus tells of Scythian cannabis use as both religious and recreational. The Scythians also bring cannabis into northern Europe, introducing it to Germanic tribes. Russian tribes introduce hemp fiber to Scandinavia

  • 100 BCE—Chinese invent paper using hemp pulp

  • 23-70 ACE— Roman naturalist and philosopher Pliny the Elder writes about the use of Hemp to make rope. He also writes about the ability cannabis has to sooth pain

  • 100 ACE—Hemp cordage makes its way to The British Isles via the Roman navy. The Romans most likely brought the seed with them as well. Exploration parties and navies used to bring hemp or flax seed (preferably hemp seed) with them on expeditions. They considered it to be emergency equipment

  • 150 ACE—Greek doctor Galen prescribes cannabis as medicine

  • 200 ACE— Chinese surgeon Hua T’o uses cannabis as an anesthetic with success during surgical procedures

  • 500 ACE—The Jewish Talmud mentions the euphoric effects of cannabis

  • 850 ACE—Vikings take hemp rope and seed with them on their first expedition to Iceland and eventually to Greenland as well

  • 900 ACE—The use of Arab hashish spreads into Northern Africa and Europe

  • 1100 ACE—Recruited Assassins of Hassan Ibn Al-Sabbah, from Persia, reportedly utilize the psychedelic effects of cannabis in their assassinations

  • 1200 ACE—1,001 Arabian Nights makes detailed description of the use cannabis as an aphrodisiac

  • 1300 ACE—Arab traders bring cannabis with them to the Mozambique coast of Africa. Archaeologists find gourd pipes in Ethiopia dating back to this time frame that has evidence of burnt cannabis resin

  • 1533 ACE—King Henry requires British farmers to grow hemp to supplement hemp cordage and sails needed for the British naval fleet

  • 1550 ACE—Angolan slaves brought to Brazil by the Portuguese bring cannabis seeds with them, and are permitted by their masters to grow it between rows of sugar cane on the plantations. They are allowed to smoke it in between grow seasons

  • 1578 ACE—Li Shih-Chen of China writes of cannabis’s application as antibiotic and its use in treating nausea

  • 1600 ACE—*Great Britain and starts to import hemp from Russia

  • 1606 ACE—Europeans (mainly the British, French, and Spanish) start cultivating much greater amounts of hemp in their colonies ranging from New England to the Caribbean and South America

  • 1621 ACE—British writer and scholar Robert Burton publishes his book called The Anatomy of Melancholy which for the first time describes cannabis as an effective treatment for depression

  • 1753 ACE—Swedish Botanist Carolus Linnaeus makes the first classification of cannabis; Cannabis Sativa L

  • 1776 ACE—The American colony of Kentucky begins to cultivate large quantities of hemp for the use in America’s war for independence, also an American seamstress named Betsy Ross makes the first Stars and Stripes U.S. flag, and she does so using hemp. The flag is presented to General George Washington in the late spring of 1776

  • 1781 ACE—The first drafts of the US constitution are written on hemp paper

  • 1785 ACE—French naturalist and botanist Jean-Baptiste Lemarck classifies a second variety of cannabis; Cannabis Indica L

  • 1799-1815 ACE*/** The Napoleonic wars were hugely centered on hemp trade, its exportation from Russia to England, to the US, and it necessity to naval powers at that time.  Post French Revolution, the British feared the spread of a similar revolution to their side of the channel. To Squash the notion and to stand firm the British began to blockade the French via the English Channel and the strait of Trafalgar.  In response Napoleon tried to get Russia to stop exporting its prized hemp sails and cordage to the British.  Which succeeded briefly, but ambitious US traders helped the British to get around the embargo. Soon the Russians stopped the embargo which caused Napoleon to invade Russia. The British tried to block US from trading with all of Europe, to avoid any hemp or other trade good from getting to the French. Since the Americans didn’t care about whom they traded with as long as there was profit to be made. At which point the US decided to declare a semi-victorious second war on Britain, and Britain was forced to fight two wars at once. Eventually Napoleon was defeated by Britain and her allies. He was dethroned, and all sides signed treaties. Such was the Hemp Wars

  • 1840 ACE—**In the US, pharmaceutical medicines widely start to include cannabis

  • 1890 ACE—Greece and The Ottoman Empire try to prohibit the importation and use of Hashish. Sir J.R. Reynolds, chief doctor to the British Queen Victoria, prescribes her medicinal cannabis.

  • 1914 ACE—**The Harrison Act tries defines cannabis and other drug use as a crime in the US

  • 1915 ACE—**The US prohibits use of cannabis, except for in medicine

  • 1924 ACE—Russian Botanist D.E. Janichevsky classifies the third type of cannabis; Cannabis Ruderalis J.

  • 1928 ACE—Britain bans recreational use of Cannabis

  • 1936 ACE—**US propaganda film Reefer Madness is produced

  • 1937 ACE— **On October 2nd the US enacts the Marijuana Stamp Act. The US prohibits all cannabis cultivation, distribution, and consumption in its own borders by requiring farmers to go to Washington DC to purchase a Marijuana tax stamp. However going to D.C. and requesting the Stamp is illegal and punishable by law. That same day the FBI arrests the first cannabis criminals in the US.  They conduct a raid on the Lexington Hotel in Denver Colorado, and arrest 58 year old Samuel Caldwell and Moses Baca

  • 1941 ACE—**the US removes cannabis from the US Pharmacopeia; It no longer recognizes the medicinal utilization of cannabis.

  • 1942 ACE—**US propaganda produces pro hemp video, Hemp for Victory at the beginning of WWII, essentially encouraging its citizens to break the anti-hemp laws to assist in the war effort. Also in the US, the OSS (war time predecessor to the CIA) develops a ‘truth serum’ to use against captured enemy spies. The main active ingredient in the ‘truth serum’ is concentrated THC from cannabis

  • 1951 ACE—**The US resumes its anti-cannabis stance with the Narcotics Control Act and gets most other countries to follow suit by getting the newly formed United Nations to take an anti-cannabis /anti-narcotic stance. These laws are almost ineffective and hard to enforce, there for they don’t take priority to most law enforcement units world-wide. However when governments and law enforcement were able to make an easy bust, they usually made a horse and pony show out of it and made examples of the culprits

  • 1960 ACE—Czech scientists are able to confirm the antibiotic and pain treating properties of cannabis. They publish their findings and are ignored by the world

  • 1967 ACE—**Cannabis strain Red Lebanese, is brought to California. It is the first strain to be cultivated for smoke alone in the US. Red Lebanese was the first selectively bread strain for smoke-ability in the US, and grown solely for smoking

  • 1970 ACE—**Richard Nixon is the first US president to talk about a war on drugs. He does so while encouraging congress to pass the CSA (Controlled Substance Act) of 1970. Many believe his reason for doing so is because of his anger with the counter culture movement and their liberal use of cannabis and a few other drugs. He hated their public protests and open defiance, and was sure that cannabis was the root of their unscrupulous actions. Also, NORML, National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, is created. Its most notable member is renounced US astrophysicist Carl Sagan

  • 1971 ACE—First credible reports of Marijuana being able to medically treat glaucoma.

  • 1972 ACE—**Richard Nixon appoints The Shafer Commission to evaluate the effects of cannabis and to hopefully reinforce his anti-cannabis policies. The Shafer Commission, however, finds that cannabis is ultimately harmless and could possibly have medicinal properties. They also conclude that a total prohibition and war on the drug would be a useless waste of money. Their findings are ignored, and Nixon has Shafer fired.

  • 1973 ACE—Nepal and Afghanistan make hashish consumption and production a capital offense

  • 1976 ACE—The Netherlands decriminalizes cannabis use and growth

  • 1980 ACE—The government in the Netherlands authorizes small amounts of cannabis to be sold in local coffee shops

  • 1986 ACE—**US President Ronald Reagan, starts the US’s official war on drugs, and signs the Anti-Drug Abuse Act. The Just say No campaign begins

  • 1992 ACE-- **US Presidential candidate and eventual President-Elect Bill Clinton admits in an interview to having smoked cannabis, but famously says that he “Never Inhaled it.” Somehow he felt that the public would see the distinction, and astonishingly, he was right

  • 1996 ACE—**California, the first US state to ban the use of cannabis (in 1915), becomes the first US state to legalize medical marijuana

  • 1998 ACE— **US states Oregon, Washington and Alaska also legalize the use of medicinal marijuana use. The movement no longer seems like a flash in the pan. Other states start to consider it

  • 1999 ACE—**US state Maine legalizes medical marijuana use, it is the first eastern seaboard state to do so

  • 2000 ACE—**US states Colorado, Nevada and Hawaii legalize medical marijuana use. Medical marijuana is catching fire in western US states

  • 2001 ACE—There is a growing change in the way many countries worldwide are viewing cannabis use. This is a big year for cannabis; British Home Secretary David Blunkett proposes lowering cannabis from class B to class C. Canada, as a nation legalizes medical marijuana use; And Portugal decriminalizes use of ALL drugs, including cannabis. Viewing drug use not as a punishable crime but as a medical health issue

  • 2004 ACE—**After four years of slow down, the medical marijuana movement picks up two more states; Vermont and Montana

  • 2006 ACE—**US state Rhode Island legalizes medical marijuana use

  • 2007 ACE—**US state New Mexico legalizes medical marijuana use

  • 2008 ACE—**US state Michigan legalizes medical marijuana use

  • 2010 ACE—**US capital Washington DC and two other US states; New Jersey and Arizona legalize medical marijuana use

  • 2011 ACE—**US state Delaware legalizes medical marijuana use

  • 2012 ACE—**US states Connecticut and Massachusetts legalize medical marijuana use. Two US states vote to outright legalize, regulate and tax cannabis.  Those states are: Colorado (our home) and Washington. This is big, because while other places such as the Netherlands and Portugal have decriminalized its use. No place in the world has voted for outright legalization of cannabis 

  • 2013 ACE--** US states New Hampshire and Illinois legalize medical marijuana use, bringing the total number of medical marijuana states in the US to 20. That’s nearly half of the states in the US   


This Chronological History has been adapted from these sources:

  1. The Emperor Wears No Clothes- By Jack Herer

  2. Cannabis: A History- By Martin Booth

  3. Marijuana Growers Handbook: By Ed Rosenthal

  4. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medical_cannabis

  5. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/cannabis

  6. http://www.advancedholistichealth.org/history.html

  7. http://medicalmarijuana.procon.org/view.resource.php?resourceID=000143

          Opening Season for Yard Work        
Last year I discovered, much to my dismay, a family of voles had built a colony in our front lawn. As cute as the critters were, they were fairly destructive, and created in the lawn where the root ball from a long-gone tree was well in to the decomposition phase.

I attempted to solve the issue by putting out the welcome sign to neighborhood cats, liberally sprinkling the lawn with bobcat urine, and flooding the borrows. The problem seemed to be solved by the flooding step, but mid-winter we began seeing new vole burrows opening up a few yards from the old set. I returned to my bobcat urine approach (too cold to run the hose), and crossed my fingers when we got a nearly a foot of snow. (Voles apparently do the most damage under the protective cover of snow.)

When the snow melted, I discovered this a short distance away:
 That happened in the space of 1 week.

And a glimpse of one of the little guys:
We clearly needed to take a more hard line approach to the problem. I visited a local nursery where the cashier (who assured me she had tons of experience with voles and understood the difference between voles and moles) told us exactly what did and didn't work, laughing about the ridiculous products marketed for the purpose. (Why give them a poison peanut? They want insects!) As we got to talking more, and questioning her on what she was saying (because I know that moles eat insects, but voles prefer bulbs, grass, etc.), it turned out her “vole problem” was really a baby mole problem. I did finally get directed to someone else who showed me the only thing they had targeted for voles - a non-toxic chemical that is meant to offend them to the point that they leave.

Nice thought, but it turned out not to work AT ALL. It was time to go old-school.

I went to the hardware store and picked up a package of old-fashioned Victor wooden traps, which I baited with peanut butter studded with sunflower seeds. I set the first two up along their trail system, and placed a small plastic tub upside-down over the trap, weighting them with river rock. The voles still had access to the traps because their trail system had created a depression in the lawn, but the tub would protect birds and other creatures that might accidentally get caught in the trap. That system successfully trapped a vole within the first three hours.

A few hours later I adapted my system, placing the traps next to the burrow openings, and covering them with tubs. Within three days I had seven voles, and my vole problem was eradicated. But...

I kept finding the borrow holes re-opened in the previous winter burrow location. A week went by, and the holes would keep reopening, but the traps would be un-sprung. WTF? While the holes were clearly originally created by voles, it turns out they were being re-opened by water coming up from the ground with force.

It was finally warm enough yesterday to properly investigate the source of the problem. When we dug down we discovered that the lawn crew had trenched through our exterior sump pump drain when they installed our irrigation system. It worked anyway for 4 years, because the water wanted to travel the path of least resistance. But we think the burrowing voles caved in the soil above the broken pipe (possibly even building a nest in the pipe), clogging the outflow.

 Before we fixed the hole, we first set about unclogging the drain by running a hose fitted with a constrictor end as far down the pipe as it would go.

Not the easiest fix - and certainly awkward - but we got it done in one afternoon with less than $20 in parts.

And several cold beers.

          By: Julie-Alice Nath        
Thank You for gathering such wonderful history. I enjoyed learning about the Hardy family. My Gramma was a Hardy and told me my ancestors came to America as indentured servants in the Massachusetts Bay Colony. I'm just starting to be interested and learn about my family history. Thank you -Julie-Alice
          Mountain Goats & John Vanderslice - Moon Colony Bloodbath (2009)        
 Artist: Mountain Goats & John Vanderslice
 Genre: Rock
 Tracks: 7
 Price: $0.84
          Holding him by the hand.        
Ay! they are marvellous words; they were born within me in the dark.
But on the sled for which he waited were dogs that would furnish sea and sun and civilisation.
I have already observed, that the colony was in a deplorable state with worship was countenanced, and had the sanction of the civil authority, respect for the ordinances of the gospel: but their children, born in a worship, were likely to grow up in ignorance, and to live entirely void with the proper means of instruction, or they were unwilling to bear the charges of the settlement.
About this time the society incorporated by King William, having received exert themselves for sending over, and maintaining missionaries in the instruction, and others ill provided with ministers, and unable to objects of their charity.
          TV Tuesday: Sense8        
Our 22-year old son was home for a while when the college semester ended, and we had finished up our spring TV shows together (Colony and Travelers) and were waiting for our summer show (Orphan Black!!) to start, so we were searching for something new that he, my husband, and I could all enjoy together. We settled on Sense8, a Netflix show, and quickly got hooked on its intriguing supernatural premise.

The first episode or two of Sense8 is a bit confusing (but stick with it) because a lot of different characters are introduced and there is no connection between them at first. Sun, played by Doona Bae, is a young professional woman in South Korea whose father doesn't recognize her accomplishments because she is female. Jamie Clayton plays Nomi, a trans woman living happily in San Francisco with her partner when things go terribly wrong on Pride Day and she ends up in the hospital. Kala, played by Tina Desai, is a beautiful Indian woman engaged to a very eligible bachelor who she is not certain she is in love with. Riley Blue, played by Tuppence Middleton, is a blue-haired DJ in London who may be in too deep with her drug dealing boyfriend. Max Riemelt plays Wolgang, a young German man struggling with his background as the son of a criminal. Miguel Angel Silvestre plays Lito, a handsome Brazilian actor who is a sex symbol on screen but harbors his own secret in his private life. Will, played by Brian J. Smith, is a practical-minded cop in Chicago who can't make sense of what he's just seen. Finally, Capheus, played by Aml Ameen, is a matatu (van) driver in Nairobi, a jovial man known as Van Damme for his obsession with the actor (and his colorful van's motif) whose mother is seriously ill.

Whew - see what I mean about confusing at first? But within a couple of episodes, you get to know each of these characters better. All eight of them see the same vision at the start of episode one, of a woman, played by Darryl Hannah, in a churchyard. Gradually, after that, they each begin to see the world through one of the other eight's eyes, seemingly transporting through time and space to a world very different from their own. In this way, they begin to become aware of each other, especially when one of them is in trouble or in danger.

We have watched 4 episodes so far, and it is more and more engrossing. Exactly what gifts and powers the eight disparate people possess is still somewhat of a mystery - to the viewers and to the eight "sensates" themselves - but we want to see more to find out what unfolds. Single sentence summaries of the show indicate that there are powerful people who want to stop these eight, but we haven't gotten to that point yet in the plot.

The multi-cultural cast are all very good, and you quickly form a bond with all eight sensates, seeing their challenges and flaws as well as their talents. The action moves around from one character (and one place) to another, but quite soon, they begin interacting with each other, as the story becomes more intricate. I hope I haven't made it sound too complicated because by the end of the second episode, you have a good idea who each character is and how he or she lives. The show also has a wonderful soundtrack (see Amazon link below), and after episode 4, you will be singing "What's Up" for weeks (we were!).

Sense8 is a Netflix original program, so it is available exclusively on Netflix. I see that the first season has 12 episodes, and there are already two seasons on Netflix, so I can't wait to see what happens next! Note that Netflix just announced last month that the show has been cancelled after its second season, with possibly a single 3rd season episode finale in 2018 to wrap things up.

          Aven Colony Screenshots        
Aven Colony Screenshots

          March of the Penguins        
Ready … Set … Waddle! In what’s become an annual tradition at the San Francisco Zoo, four adolescent Magellanic penguins will graduate Wednesday from the equivalent of avian finishing school with a parade from their classroom to the 54-member penguin colony on Penguin Island. San Francisco Zoo Penguin March Born earlier this year, the three
          Valley of Flowers and Hemkund Sahib.        
Detail route map to reach Hemkund Sahib and Valley of Flowers from Dehli.

This time, I started my journey for Hemkund and Valley of Flowers. Both the Himalayan picturesque spots lies amidst scenic surrounding in Uttranchal. Travellers may travel both the spots altogether as the route is same except last 5 or 3 kms trekking bifurcated in two direction from GHANGARIA. If anyone is more enthusiastic, may also include with this trip the holy Hindu mythological place BADRINATH which is only 20 kms from Govinghat or 48 kms from Joshimath.

Before starting for Valley of flowers and Hemkund Sahib , let me tell how easily and economically one can access the spots from different part of the globe.

The capital of India, DELHI is well connected with main cities of the world by air and also rests of country. The nearest airport is Jolly Grant in Dehradun and it is well connected by road with small town Joshimath or Govindghat via rishikesh.

Delhi is connected to Haridwar, Rishikesh and Dehradun by train. Last railway station in this route is Dehradun. But it is always better to break at HARIDWAR as the city is the center or also starting point via Rishikesh towards Valley of flowers and Hemkund Sahib.

Travelers from Delhi may also start journey by bus from ISBT, Kashmire Gate for Haridwar or Rishikesh.

Direct bus service for BADRINATH is available from Haridwar, travelers may avail this bus service and break his journey at Govindghat which is located 28 km before Badrinath. , but it is better to start journey from Rishikesh. In Rishikesh local private bus or Garwal Nigam bus are available. All bus plying are start before 9 am in morning because no bus is allowed to run in night in this hilly reagion, approx time to reach Joshimath or Govindghat is 10 to 11 hrs. One may also takes Jeep or Sumo hiring personally. One thing one must consider before starting journey is where he should break his journey for night staying. Two alternative are available, one is to halt for night staying at JOSHIMATH and be prepared for next morning– drive 20km more to reach GOVINDGHAT, from where actual trekking for HEMKUND and VALLEY OF FLOWERS starts. The other alternative is to travel by bus or Jeep up to Govinghat in the same day and halt for night staying in Gurudwara where free accommodation and meal is available, then starts trekking early in the next morning .

First Day

I started my journey by Garhwal Nigam bus for Govindghat, actually the bus was
going to BADARINATH. Being a local bus it was stopped now and then in every stoppage for the local people. No doubt it was taking more time, but it was better to know more about the local people and their custom and also to visit closely small town and holy confluences of rivers. Gradually we were climbing higher and higher along with the river ALAKANANDA. Road ahead is winding in zigzag way and below the deep slope river Alakananda is flowing with gurgling voice. We we were passing one by one small town Devprayag, Srinagar, Rudraprayag, Karnaprayag , Nandaprayag etc. The panoramic view of prayags from road is really enchanting. Prayag is the meeting place of two or more rivers, these prayags also bear the mythological importance. One can view these enchanting picturesque sceneries, specially the confluences (Prayag) of rivers along the deep end of the slopes - somewhere a temple stands by the side of prayag , is worthy to glimpse from the high slope of road.

Devprayag is the meeting place of two holy river Alakananda and Bhagirathi , from here onwards the river is known as Ganga.

Another prayag out of “Panch Prayag” is Rudraprayag the confluence of holy river Alakananda and Madakini. Our bus was crossing one after another holy confluences.

Then came to Karnprayag where river Pindari embraces Alakananda, it is the third confluence on river Alakananda.

The forth prayag on Alakananda is Nandprayag another sister river name Nandakini meets here.

After Climbing more and more , passing Chamoli I reached to Joshimath – the small important town nearest to Baradinath, Hemkund and Valley of Flowers.

The height of Joshimath is 2100m above sea level whereas the height of Rishikesh , from where journey started is 370m , so one can easily guess how much we climbed in 255 km distance. Travelers have to trek at altitude of 3000m (Govinddham or Ghangaria), 3300m(Valley of Flowers) and 4329m (Hemkund) from 2000m(Govinghat) i.e. have to hike approx 2329m by trekking 20km . Therefore, some tourists break their journey at Joshimath as preparation for tough trekking to Hemkund. In this small town you can find everything you need for trekking. Travelers may stay in Forest bungalow, hotels and Dharamshalas. One of the main Sankaracharya maths are situated here. Badrinath ji is worships at Narasimha Temple in Joshimath , when Badarinath temple closes in winter. Travelers may also stay at Auli a famous ski resort situated at altitude of 3048 m is only 20 minutes distance by ropeway.

After Joshimath bus reached Govindghat in the evening. I got down from bus for here which was going to Baradinath. Gobindghat is the take off point for Valley of Flowers and Hemkund. Gurudwara and forest rest house are only lodging available in Govinghat. I spent the night in Gurudwara. Among the tourists 99 percent were found Sikh pilgrims who came to visit Hemkund Sahib. Free accommodation and meal are provided in the Gurudwara. Pilgrims starts their yatra(Trekking) in the morning after prayer and having halva prashad from Gurudwara.

Second Day
In the morning it was felt that Govindghat is like ve
ry small town , some Dhabas were located at the point from where actual trekking starts. Some porters and horses for hire were waiting to offer their service. I began to hiking for 14 km up to Ghangaria, which is also known as Gobinddham. Trekking started crossing a small bridge over a river, flowing along in the valley from Ghangaria to Gobindghat is known as Lakshman ganga. Trekking route to Ghangaria is almost well maintained track. The path was seems almost crowed by the Sikhs pilgrims. Some pilgrims were climbing riding on horseback and some by pitthu (porter). Pilgrims

on horseback were ascending a little faster then pedestrian pilgrims. Price of goods in road side Dhabas were more, informed that price would be more and more as we hiked more. Trekking in some narrow passage becomes risky when horse hurriedly passed by carrying goods to Govindham. Pedestrians should always be careful, even to enjoy the picturesque beauty of valley while trekking may sometimes tumbled – always should stop in safe place not in motion to view the enchanting landscapes. On the way found a very small village comprises three or four houses. I took a little rest front of a shop and began trekking again. Some pilgrims to Hemkund shahib were trekking in religious mode by chanting continuously “Sat Nam Wahe Guru” I was feeling very fatigue with my small luggage on back. I began to take frequent rest as going more height. The magical thing in mountain trekking is that view of nature’s picturesque landscapes rejuvenated all exhaustion and cheers for further trekking. Another picturesque village in the valley name Bhyundar with a river flowing through was across the way. After passing the river, trekking steep path made me tiresome, but a little rest sitting on the stone path and enchanting view of surrounding revitalized me quickly. Trekking more forward found a helipad and some erected tents – perhaps this was the tent colony of some tourist group. Some pilgrims were found returning from Hemkund to Govinghat, encouraged me telling “Ghangaria is nearby go ahead “

It was then afternoon when I reached Ghangaria. This village is actually uses as base camp for Hemkund Sahib and Valley of Flowers. Generally all Sikhs pilgrims stay at Gurudwara but anyone can also get free accommodation here. Besides, some hotels, restaurants and GMVN guesthouse or rest house are main buildings in this village. All buildings are erected affix to main path, which seems a bye lane of a small market. It was then begun raining, I hurriedly entered in the forest rest house where I somehow managed a place for spending the night by requesting caretaker Premprakash. I met here with another tourist who came from France and chatted with him sitting under umbrella in rain. It was gradually covering darkness everywhere in the evening, I came to my room and noticed through window that pilgrims were still coming and busy to finding a suitable lodging by soaking in rain.

Third Day
Early in the next morning , I went out
for my n ext trekking. Trekking a bit found the valley is the meeting place of river Pushpabwati is flowing from Valley of flowers and Laksma nganga coming from Hemkund. A little ahead path is bifurcated in two direction one path in the right to Hemkund and in left direction to the Valley of Flowers. The steep 5 km long path reaches to the sacred “Lake of ice” at altitude of 4329 metres, which is popularly known as Hemku nd or Lokpal lake. Seven peaks surround the lake or Kund is one of the popular pilgrimages for Sikhs. The water of the lake is feed by the glacier fromthe Hathi Pa rvat and Saptrishi peak. In the year 1930, a Sikh havilder Sohan Singh discovered the place while trekking. He got association with the place from the writings of Guru Gobind Singh. Subsequently, the finding was preferred by Sikhs religious organization and chosen the spot as sacred pilgrimage center for Sikhs.
It took 4 hrs to trek this steep tough 5 km route to Hemkund. This last part of trekking out of 20 km from Gobindghat is the most difficult trekking. Generally trekking from Ghangaria to Hemkund takes 4 to 6 hours but actual time varies upon the physical ability of a tourist. I began resting frequently, and thought to rest for long time but after a little rest amidst nature’s picturesque surroundings rejuvenated quickly. Finally reaching the holy place found, a Gurudwara is erected on the bank of Hemkund (Lake of ice). It is truly called Hemkund because water of this Lake remain frozen almost seven months in year and it is not accessible during this time. When nature becomes favorable in the month from May to September, snow and ice of the lake began melting and Sikh pilgrims in large number begin visiting the sacred place and take a holy bathe in ice-cold water of the kund. The mythological name of the lake is “Lokpal”. Another religious structure on the shore of the lake is Lakshman Temple, Hindu believes that Lakhman the brother of Lord Ram had penance here. I heard somewhere that famous “Brahmakamal” flowers are found in Hemkund. I was very curious to find this Hindu mythological important flower. I began walking on high rocks in the side of lake for finding a Brahmakamal flower. Suddenly I felt a strong smelling and I was attracted by the smell - going ahead found a beautiful flower bloom in the gap of rocks , turn left found another, I was really very excited and became mad in joy to find "Brahma kamal" ! Within seconds, I got rid of all my fatigue and tiredness of trekking. I was alone there, no one was there to share my excitement. I collected some Brahmakamal and came back near Gurudwara where one curious pilgrim took one of my Brahmakamals. .In Hemkund there is no staying facility, all pilgrims are advised to leave Hemkund by 2 pm in the afternoon so that could reach Ghangaria before dark. After visiting everybody have to return in the same day either to Ghangaria or Govinghat. Some tourists halted at Ghangaria after visiting Hemkund Sahib and some returned directly to Govinghat. But I thought to stay at Ghangaria for one night more and to visit valley of Flowers in next morning. Though I am Hindu, I respect all religions and faith but visiting Hemkund was to enjoy the majestic charisma with chilled lake surrounded by the seven beautiful peaks and also to see the famed “Brahmakamal” a king of Himalayan flowers, which blooms in abundance here. I came back to Ghangaria in evening and spent the night in the same forest rest house.

Sitting with Premprakash taking BrahmaKamal on my lap at Ghangaria rest house.

Forth Day
I awoke early in the morning and began preparation for returning to Govindghat after visiting Valley of Flowers. Trek to this valley is much easier than dangerous steep stone path to Hemkund. I reached the junction point where paths are bifurcated to Valley of Flowers and Hemkund – walking toward the left direction came to the check post, where one has to register name and pay entrance fee. River Puspawati is flowing through the valley and meet Laksmanganga at Ghangaria. I crossed a bridge over Pushpawati and then the path was ascending and became narrow. Trekking 3 km into the valley, crossed another wooden bridge which is the starting boundary of valley of flowers and a detail map of the valley is fastened here. Some known and unknown flowers were seen in great number in the vast stretch of the valley.

The Valley Of flowers was discovered by FRANK S SMYTHE in the year 1937 , who was a mountaineer and botanist. He also written a book called "The Valley of Flowers" which unveiled the beauty and floral grandeurs of the valley and open the door to the flower lovers. Again , in the year 1939 a botanist name Miss Margarate Legge was deputed by the botanical gardens of Edinburgh for study the valley but unfortunately she was lost her life while collecting some flowers on the rocky slope. One can see a erected memorial which was built by the sister of Margarate Lagge on the spot where local people buried her. The valley is still link with the thoughtful memory of the flower lover Lagge. The following words are inscribed on the stone of the grave :-
"I will lift mine eyes unto the Hills from whence cometh my help."

This place where no big plant is seen, despite of that the valley was covered with grass and some rock with vast expanse of different colour flowers. Some are white, some red and some heavenly blue colour flowers make the place a dazzling land. If anyone is really love flowers one day is not sufficient here, he must stay for more days for detail studies.

          The Fascinating Ant Plants        

       The Fascinating Ant Plants

several species of Hydnophytum
courtesy of rareferns.com and
Charles Alford

Hydnophytum formicarium

Ant plants are most interesting plants, growing in tropical mangrove forests and in a number of species of trees, but almost always growing epiphytically. Their swollen caudex bases are riddled with myriad channels and galleries, as if termites had already set up homes inside. These channels are purpose-built and perfect for the establishment of ant colonies. The symbiotic relationship of ants with certain genera of plants is a great example of plants and animals working to each other's benefits. The ants protect the plants from leaf-feeding predators, and the plants provide a safe home for ants, with some protection from ground-dwelling predators. The waste and detritus created by the ant colony helps feed the plant, in addition to providing protection services.   

There are many species of Ant Plant, most prominently in the genus Hydnophytum.  Other genera of Ant Plants include Dischidia, Rafflesiana, Myrmecophila, and in some cases, certain genera of ferns such as Lecanopteris.     


These plants can be effectively grown in baskets filled with long fibered sphagnum moss or an epiphytic mix suitable for ferns. I have seen several marvelous specimens growing on cork slabs, with small seedlings growing in the fissures of the cork. The plants seem to prefer strong light without all-day sunlioght, and watered frequently to prevent the plants from drying out. Consider adding one or more species of Ant Plant to your collection to broaden your scope of experiences.  

Craig Morell
Pinecrest Gardens


          Europe Geography Facts        

Cyprus, the UK's favourite holiday island, has an interesting history. Cyprus was a British colony and obtained independence in 1960 however the europe geography facts of the europe geography facts for Geographic Education and the processes which form these landforms. These physical features evolve over a passage of time.

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          Movie Buzz About Bees        
Remember the post a while back on The Buzz About Bees and Colony Collapse Disorder? Yeah, that one. Well there’s a new short film out about the threat that this problem with bees poses to our food system, Every Third Bite. Eating Liberally says it is an “uplifting short about a downbeat subject” and sums […]
          Isis Study – January to March 2013 Summary and discussions        
Isis unveiled, vol. I


Pages 554 - 560

 The last blog ended with the statement :

 Instead of resorting to a tortured theological prejudice to prove the connection between the Mexican and other peoples of Americas with the middle-eastern races mentioned in the Bible, more credible historical and scientific evidence can be adduced.

In the next blog a number of these facts will be listed which throw light on the origin of some of the native American races.

Evidence in support of the claim that Mexican natives and middle eastern races mentioned in the Bible bear close kinship.

 According to a Guatemalan document, Toltecs are migrants from the house of Israel

 Evidence 1:

Our attention is drawn to the Chronicles of Fuentes, of the kingdom of Guatemala, and the Manuscript of Don Juan Torres, the grandson of the last king of the Quiches. This document, said to have been in possession of lieutenant-general appointed by Pedro de Alvarado, says that Toltecas descended from the house of Israel, who were released by Moses, who, after crossing the Red Sea, fell into idolatry. They set out wandering, from continent to continent, and came to a place called Seven Caverns, in the kingdom of Mexico, where they met the famous town of Tula, etc. (Stephen’s Travels in Central America which is available for online reading or free down load)

 Evidence 2 :

The names of the famous Toltec kings bear the Chaldean appellation, the strange similarities between the languages of Aztecs and Hebrews is noteworthy. Toltecan king bore the biblical appellation of Balaam Acam, reminding one of Balaam and his human voiced ass. Lords Kingsborough found striking resemblance between the languages of Aztecs and the Hebrews. Many a figure on the bas-reliefs of Palenque and idols in terra cota, exhumed in Santa Cruz del Quiche, have on their heads bandlets with a square protuberance on them, in the front forehead, very similar to the phylacteries worn by the Hebrew Pharisees of old, while at prayers, and even by the devotees of the present day, particularly Jews of Poland and Russia.

Evidence 3

de Bourbourg, in his book, cites the narration of Votan, the Mexican demi-god, of his expedition in which is a description is given of the subterranean passage, which ran underground, and terminated at the root of the heavens, and that this passage was called snake’s hole, and that he was admitted to it because he himself was “a son of the snakes, or a serpent.” This is very suggestive. The testimony of ancient writers, corroborated by modern discoveries, there were numerous catacombs in Egypt and Chaldea, some of which were very vast in extent. It was in these underground passages were performed sacred mysteries of Kuklos anagkes, the ‘unavoidable cycle,’ or ‘Circle of necessity.’ There inexorable doom was imposed upon every soul after the bodily death, and when had been judged in the Amenthian region.

Hierophants of Egypt and of Babylonia styled themselves as “the sons of the serpent god” or Sons of the Dragon,” not because Christian Padres, such as de mousseaux would have us believe they were the progeny of the Devil, Satan-incubus, the old serpent of Eden but because, in the Mysteries, the serpent was the symbol of WISDOM and immortality. The Druids of the Celtic-Brittanic regions called themselves snakes : “I am a serpent, I am a Druid.” The Egyptian Karnac is twin-brother to the Carnac of Bretagne, the latter Carnac meaning the serpent mound.

The Dracontia (temples dedicated to dragons / serpents) once covered the surface of the whole globe, Dragon being the symbol of the Sun, the Sun being the symbol of the highest God—the Phoenician Elon, whom Abraham recognized as El Elion. Besides the surname serpents they were also called “Builders,” the “Architects,” as these mighty wise men directed the construction of the temples and monuments which even now in their pulverized remains stagger human imagination and astound calculations of modern engineers. (554)

Evidence 4

De Bourbourg with his usual Christian prejudice, puts on a farfetched interpretation on the biblical discourse to show that the chiefs of the name of Votan, the Quetzo-Cohuatl,  the serpent deity of Mexicans, to be descendents of Ham and accursed Canaanites. Mexican chiefs say, “I am Hivim, being a Hivim, I am the great race of the Dragon (snake); I am a snake myself, for I am a Hivim.” De Bourbourg rejoices over this and argues, on the authority of the Bible, that Chivim or Hivim or Hivites are descendents of Heth, son of Canaan, the son of Ham, the accursed.

Such fallacious interpretation of biblical verses cuts both ways. In fact, the tables can be turned on De Bourbourg by demonstrating that Seth, the third son of Adam, the ancestor of Noah, the forefather of all Israel, is but Hermes, the god of wisdom, called also Thoth, Tat, Set and Sat-an, the shadow of Seth, theTyphon, the Egyptian Satan, who was also Set.

Evidence 5

Some of the tribes of Central America will one day be traced back to the Phoenicians and Mosaic Israelites, and it is seen that the latter have persistently stuck to sun and serpent worship, as the Mexicans have. Christians may protest, but they cannot deny biblical passages pointing in that direction. Dying Jacob speaks of his sons, says of Simeon and Levi that instruments of cruelty to be in their habitation and wishes not come “into their secret; unto their assembly.” (Gen. xlix) H.P.B. shows that in the original the words, “their secret” is given as SOD. Sod was the name of the Mysteries of Baal, Adonis and Bacchus who were Sun-gods and had serpents for symbol. Kabalists explain that that was the name given to the tribe of Levi, to all Levites, and that Moses was the chief of the Sodales. Members of the Priest colleges were called Sodales who constituted Idaea of the Mysteries of the Mighty Mother (“Mysteries of Adonis” by Dunlap) Moses was an Egyptian priest as shown by historians, a hierophant of Hieropolis, a priest of the Sun-God Osiris, and that his name was Osarsiph. Wisdom was synonymous with Initiation into Sacred Mysteries of the Magi. No alien was allowed to enter the assembly of the Egyptian priest unless he was an Initiate himself. Gen. xliii-3 shows Joseph ate with Egyptian priests, which would be impossible were not Joseph an Initiate of the Egyptian Mysteries. That is, both Moses and Joseph were then Sodales.

The narrative of the Brazen serpent of Moses (Exodus), reminiscent of the Caduceus of Mercury or Asclepios, the son of the Sun-god Apollo-Python, becomes logical and natural. Moses is said to descend from the tribe of Levi. (HPB explains Kabalistic ideas as to the books of Moses, a great prophet, in the 2nd vol. if Isis).

Evidence 6

Identity of the Mexicans and the Canaanites, though geographically separated by the waters of the Atlantic, is found in the fact that the Nargal, the Chaldean and Assyrian chief of the Magi (Rab-Mag) and Nagal, the chief sorcerer of the Mexican Indians, both derive their names from Nergal-Sarezer, the Assyrian god; and both have the same faculties and powers, to have an attendant daemon with who they identified themselves completely. The Chaldean and Assyrian Nargal kept his daemon in the shape of some animal considered sacred, inside the temple, and Indian Nargal keeps his in the neighbouring lake or wood or in the house, under the shape of a household animal.

Nagalism or sun and serpent worship persists to this day albeit in secrecy in Mexico, despite strenuous efforts on the part of Spanish Christian rulers and missionaries to suppress it. In 1812, Don Pedro Baptista Pino, reported to Cartes that all the pueblos have their artufas (subterranean room of natives with only a single door) where they assembled to perform their  feasts and hold meetings. These are impenetrable temples and the doors are always closed on the conquerors. Their ancient faith is thus kept up. Hence their adoration of sun and the moon and other heavenly bodies, and of the fire.

Evidence 6

In remote period South America was peopled by a colony which migrated across the Atlantic

 The prefect identity of the rites, ceremonies, traditions, and even the names of the deities, among the Mexicans and ancient Babylonians and Egyptians are a sufficient proof of South America being peopled by a colony which mysteriously found its way across the Atlantic. History is silent about when and at what period it happened. H.P.B. points to the fact that there is no tradition sanctified by the ages without a certain sediment of truth at the bottom of it.

Evidence 7

Magical wand of Quetze Cohuatl closely resembled the sapphire stick of Moses

 Quetze Cohuatl wrought wonders with his magical wand according to Mexican accounts. His wand closely resembled the sapphire stick of Moses with which he wrought like wonders. The stick of Moses bloomed in the garden of Raguel Jethro, his father-in-law, and on which was engraved the “Ineffable Name.”

Evidence 8

The mythical four ancestors of the Quiche race esoterically typify the four successive progenitors of men mentioned in Genesis i, ii and vi.

 The ‘four men’ described as the real four ancestors of the human race “were neither begotten by the gods, nor born of women,” but whose “creation was a wonder wrought by the Creator,” and who were made after three attempts at manufacturing men had failed, in Mexican legends, which bear close resemblance with the explanations of Hermetists. It recalls to mind the four sons of God of Egyptian theogony, and to the narrative related in Genesis. These “four ancestors” could reason and speak, their sight was unlimited, and they knew all things at once, according to Popul Vuh. When “they had rendered thanks to their Creator for their existence, the gods were frightened, and they breathed a cloud over the eyes of men that they might see a certain distance only, and not like the gods themselves.” This bears direct relation to the sentence in Genesis : “Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil; and now, lest he out forth his hand, and take also the tree of life..” etc., and “While they were asleep God gave them wives.” Etc.

The Four ancestors of the Quiches race typify in their esoteric sense the four successive progenitors of men mentioned in Gen, i, ii and vi. First man is bisexual : “Male and female created he them,” answering to the Hermaphrodite deities of the subsequent mythologies; the second Adam was made out of “the dust of the ground” and unisexual answering to the “sons of God” of chapter vi; the third, the giants or Nephilim who are only hinted in the Bible but fully explained elsewhere; the fourth, the parents of men “whose daughters were fair.”

Scientists and scholars should consult authorities on Magic to discover material for history and science

 Mexicans had their magicians from remote times. The same is the case with all the ancient religions of the world so that a strong resemblance prevails in their forms of their ceremonial worship as well as in the very names used to designate certain magical implements. The esoteric signification cannot be discovered by savants unless they seek the help of Hierophants and then they will find the key to true history and true science.

 In the next blog, the golden chain of Universal Wisdom Religion which encircles the whole globe, indestructibility of eternal truth and its unfathomable majesty, which is the last possible expression in human language, will be discussed.


          Burbank International Film Festival presents ‘Daytime After Dark’ comedy show Aug. 20 at The Colony Theatre        
As the Burbank International Film Festival expands its programming and events year round, they are excited to produce a special night of comedy – Daytime After Dark on Sunday, August 20 at The Colony Theatre. The event, hosted by  Jeff Rector from How I Met Your Mother, features TV and soap stars Sean Kanan “Deacon [...]
          Colony vintage barware, rocks glasses frosted gold Americana cocktail glasses by margfar        

26.00 USD

Set of four bar glasses, Colony Americana. Glasses measure 3.5 inches high, 3.5 inches across at top, and two inch weighted base. Frosted glasses feature gold trim, Americana depictions of eagle, flowers, housewares etc. Glasses are in very good vintage condition with minimal paint loss.

          Nursery Teacher - Serra International Preschool, New Friends Colony - Delhi, Delhi        
Join the global team of Serra International.The only truly International Pre-school chain in the country, SERRA International is looking for highly motivated
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          Birthday Facts About May 16, 1988 You Need To Know        
Which celebrity shares my birthday? You might be happy to know that the following celebrities share your birthday. The list was randomly chosen and arranged in chronological order. 1891 Richard Tauber 1920 Martine Carol 1931 Denise Filiatrault 1951 Jonathan Richman 1966 Scott Reeves 1966 Sommore 1970 Danielle Spencer 1975 B.Slade 1977 Dolcenera 1986 Shakti Arora What happened on my birthday – May 16? These were the events that made history that coincide with your birthday. 1584 Santiago de Vera becomes sixth Governor-General of the Spanish colony of the Philippines. 1811 Peninsular War: The allies Spain, Portugal and United Kingdom, defeat the French at the Battle of Albuera. 1866 The U.S. Congress eliminates the half dime coin and replaces it with the five cent piece, or nickel. 1877 May 1877 political crisis in France. 1888 Nikola Tesla delivers a lecture describing the equipment which will allow efficient generation and use of alternating currents to transmit electric power over long distances. 1919 A naval Curtiss NC-4 aircraft commanded by Albert Cushing Read leaves Trepassey, Newfoundland, for Lisbon via the Azores on the first transatlantic flight. 1961 Park Chung-hee leads a coup d'état to overthrow the Second Republic of South Korea. 1983 Sudan People’s Liberation Army/Movement rebels against the Sudanese government. 1991 Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom addresses a joint session of the United States Congress. She is the first British monarch to address the U.S. Congress. 2015 A passenger train collides with a tractor and trailer on a level crossing at Ibbenbüren, Germany. Two people are killed and 40 are injured. What was the number one song on my birthday? The number-one hit song in the U.S. at the day of your birth was Anything for You by Gloria Estefan and Miami Sound Machine as compiled by Billboard Hot 100 (May 21, 1988). Ask your parents if they know this popular song.
          Birthday Facts About March 22, 1959 You Need To Know        
March 22, 1959 clever birthday facts no one tells you about. Get Mar 22 epic list of celebrity and famous birthdays, #1 song, horoscope and FREE gift. What day was March 22 this year? The day of the week of your birthday this year was Wednesday. Next year it will be Thursday and two years from now it will be Friday. You can check the calendars below if you’re planning what to do on your birthday. Which celebrity shares my birthday? You might be happy to know that the following celebrities share your birthday. The list was randomly chosen and arranged in chronological order. 1915 Georgiy Zhzhonov 1925 Gilles Pelletier 1931 William Shatner 1934 Larry Martyn 1941 Bruno Ganz 1941 Jeremy Clyde 1943 Keith Relf 1976 Kellie Shanygne Williams 1980 Shannon Bex 1986 David Choi What happened on my birthday – Mar 22? These were the events that made history that coincide with your birthday. 1621 The Pilgrims of Plymouth Colony sign a peace treaty with Massasoit of the Wampanoags. 1622 Jamestown massacre: Algonquian Indians kill 347 English settlers around Jamestown, Virginia, a third of the colony’s population, during the Second Anglo-Powhatan War. 1697 Charles II of Spain issued a Royal Cedula extending to the indigenous nobles of the Spanish Crown colonies, as well as to their descendants, the preeminence and honors customarily attributed to the Hidalgos of Castile. 1739 Nader Shah occupies Delhi in India and sacks the city, stealing the jewels of the Peacock Throne. 1765 The British Parliament passes the Stamp Act that introduces a tax to be levied directly on its American colonies. 1912 The State of Bihar, India was formed out of the State of Bengal. 1942 World War II: In the Mediterranean Sea, the Royal Navy confronts Italy’s Regia Marina in the Second Battle of Sirte. 1982 NASA’s Space Shuttle ''Columbia, is launched from the Kennedy Space Center on its third mission, STS-3. 1984 Teachers at the McMartin preschool in Manhattan Beach, California are charged with satanic ritual abuse of the children in the school. The charges are later dropped as completely unfounded. 2014 At least 251 people die when a boat capsizes in Lake Albert.
          Educating Gabriel Haslip-Viera        
We are publishing this response, in part to counter the unprofessional reviews to which Gabriel Haslip-Viera has taken to writing (with the now usual distortions on his part, a signature of what emerges as a a pattern of sloppy thinking, overweening prejudice and poor scholarship that must embarrass his colleagues and students), and in order to feature an exciting and important new book by Tony Castanha that helps to clean up some of the damage done to Caribbean studies by the perpetuation of colonial dogmas of "Indigenous extinction":

My Response to Gabriel Haslip-Viera’s Review of 
The Myth of Indigenous Caribbean Extinction: Continuity and Reclamation in Borikén (Puerto Rico) 
Tony Castanha 

Dear Editor: Guatiao.

I am writing to express my concern regarding a review published in your journal last year (CENTRO Journal 24(1): 192–7, 2012). The reviewer’s name is Gabriel Haslip-Viera, and the book reviewed is titled, The Myth of Indigenous Caribbean Extinction: Continuity and Reclamation in Borikén (Puerto Rico) (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011). I would not normally comment on a book review, but because this one directly targets my own work and is unprofessionally done, I feel compelled to.

I am choosing to reply back, not so much because of the content, arguments, and opinions of the reviewer, which are mainly spurious as touched on below, but because Haslip-Viera misquotes, misrepresents, and thus takes my work out of context throughout the review. When it comes to contemporary material on the indigenous Caribbean, the reviewer is well known by some as a scholar who belittles and degrades any mention of native survival and continuity. He has contempt for descendants who rightfully chose to self-identify with their indigenous past and ancestors. When writing the book I was well aware of the controversial nature of the subject matter, the possible scrutiny it could invoke, and polemic neocolonial scholars like Haslip-Viera, or those who continue to uphold colonial ideologies within a supposed post-colonial era. What I did not expect was that my work and interviewees would be continually misquoted, misrepresented, and taken out of context. This is unacceptable.

For instance, on the bottom of page 196, he misquotes an interviewee by deleting the word “indio” and inserting in its place the name “Taíno.” He misrepresents her because this is not a term she used or meant to say. Her family and others throughout mountain and rural regions of Puerto Rico have little conception of this name because it was introduced from outside of their communities and is not a part of family histories. The name “Taíno” is also not an accurate word to describe indigenous Caribbean peoples of the northern Antilles as it was never used by inhabitants as a term of self-ascription, at least prior to its nineteenth-century anthropological invention. 

Haslip-Viera misquotes another interviewee by again inserting the same word where it was not said or meant to be said: “We (the Taíno) were a great empire” (p. 194). Is this scholarship? That sentence is not written anywhere in the book. He further should have known to use brackets instead of parenthesis when inserting words within quotations. In the Preface of my book, I provide an in-depth explanation of the terms used and how I arrived at using them. I personally do not use the word at all in the book except when it is cited or quoted by someone else. Haslip-Viera chooses to ignore this, thus misrepresenting the intent of my work in the process. (See other misquoted or incorrectly quoted sentences in the review on page 193 [second and fourth paragraphs and at the bottom of the page], page 194 [number 3 in the middle], page 197 [at the top], and use of incorrect page numbers on the bottom of page 193).

The reviewer also inserts whenever possible the fanciful name “Taíno revivalists,” basically placing myself and my interviewees into a misguided stereotype. He is enamored to using this term because he is apparently the one who coined it in order to be able to conveniently mock the subject. His edited book, Taíno Revival (1999), elevates the name and concept in a largely demeaning way. This is demonstrated by titles such as “Making Indians Out of Blacks: The Revitalization of Taíno Identity in Contemporary Puerto Rico” and “The Indians are coming! The Indians are coming!: The Taíno and Puerto Rican Identity.” Most of the material in the book essentially minimizes a modern-day indigenous presence and continues to perpetuate the extinction of “real” indigenous Caribbean peoples. This falls right in line with an almost five hundred year precedence of writing the original peoples of the region out of the history books. Much of the content of this work can only be seen as an orientalist neocolonial roasting.

My book has nothing to do with “revivalists.” Many of the sources used came out before the creation of such a term and a so-called “Taíno revival movement” popularized by Haslip-Viera and others. As I note, addressing past and present issues related to Western imperialism in Borikén are vital to the book. “As the oldest colony in the hemisphere, Puerto Rico fits this description and model quite well. Therefore, this is a very serious matter. It is not a depiction of a ‘romanticized’ past but of a people struggling right now under Puerto Rican criollo [elite] and American ‘gringo’ domination and control” (Castanha, p. xii). Many of my interviewees are hard-working, respected members of their communities. A number of them are elders. So when Haslip-Viera trivially puts the name in quotations (“elders”), he displays an utter disdain for those who are most knowledgeable about the past and shows how far removed he is from understanding the subject matter of my book. Should such a reviewer be taken seriously?

Another way he misrepresents my work is by mentioning how I rely on “journalistic sources,” in addition to academic ones. This is ridiculous. I cite three or four newspaper sources in the entire book. His real argument is with Stan Steiner’s book, The Islands: The Worlds of the Puerto Ricans, which is a scholarly narrative that is sufficiently cited with an assay of sources used. Haslip-Viera conveniently labels him a “journalist,” assuming one cannot engage in different forms of writing. This would logically make María Teresa Babín, who co-edited a book with Steiner, a petty journalist too. Steiner actually wore many hats. He was a historian, journalist, consultant, and taught extensively at the university level. He authored many books over the course of his career. The comment the reviewer makes about whether or not Steiner “actually believed” there were still indigenous peoples on the island when writing the book is beside the point. The abundance of evidence he provides for a contemporary Indian presence is clear and supports my thesis. This is a good reason evidencing how and why scholarship is done—to arrive at an understanding or dialectic of important and controversial issues through a variety of sources.

What is interesting about the arguments and opinions Haslip-Viera brings out is how most of them are addressed in the book, often in detail, despite his assertions to the contrary. For instance, since I don’t quote to his satisfaction a passage from Steiner about African slavery and influences in Puerto Rico, a “major claim” is “undermined” (p. 195). In fact, I go to considerable lengths to explain and discuss these issues in numerous places, including ethnic intermarriage and integration, but one would have to read the book to really know this. As examples, I write, “Accordingly, this book is not meant to disparage the African element of our heritage, which has been influential and strong . . .”; “African slaves also often fled, alone or in groups, into the forests and mountainous interior.”; and “The African presence and influence in Borikén has been significant ever since” [the late 1520s and 1530s] (p. 6, pp. 69–70). I acknowledge African, Spanish, and other influences, but Haslip-Viera’s review blankets this and gives the impression that history is frozen in time and that only so-called “pure blooded” Indian people really count. This is, not surprisingly, his central argument for upholding the entrenched notion of Caribbean Indian extinction.

The reviewer writes that the title of my book is inappropriate “because pure-blooded Taínos (100 percent Amerindian mix) became extinct probably by the late sixteenth or early seventeenth century as survivors mixed biologically and culturally with Spaniards, Africans, and others who came to Puerto Rico in the succeeding decades and centuries” (p. 193). Firstly, the time frame for this “extinction” is conjecture based on self-serving colonial Spanish accounts. Moreover, it is an anachronistic statement based on the discredited social Darwinian concept of “survival of the fittest” as applied to humans, where “pure” identities were thought to have the best chance of survival. As Richard Grounds explains, “Rather than being a statement of fact or representing a scholarly analysis, the language of extinction is an expression of a social idea. This is the language of social Darwinism” (in Grounds, Tinker and Wilkins, eds., 2003: 302). Haslip-Viera’s statement infers that any human being on the face of the earth who is not “100 percent” pure is extinct, which is of course absurd. “Racial purity” has long been biologically proven to be a scientific abstraction. I go in-depth in examining issues and processes of active and passive resistance, cultural survival, adaptation, absorption and continuity, and convoluted notions of “purity” to show how indigenous Caribbean peoples, particularly the Jíbaro of Puerto Rico, are present today. This process has been similar to the survival and continuity of many recognized indigenous groups around the world.

In closing, maintaining theories of extinction and the issue of identity go hand-in-hand. Using “racial purity” and “blood quantum” to determine “extinction” is reductionist, racist, and a denial of one’s human right to self-identification. Continuing to erase the presence of a people invariably denies them this right. It is thus hard to believe that any scholar in the twenty-first century would be taken seriously for rationalizing such a thesis that denies a people’s existence and has been so damaging to countless numbers of peoples throughout history. Therefore all that is left to do now is to publish this rebuttal letter in your journal so your readers can judge for themselves the accuracy of the review and merits of all the arguments presented.

          A Matter of Survival.        
A matter of survival.
By Heather-Dawn Herrera
Trinidad Express Newspapers | Sep 11, 2013 at 10:45 PM ECT

We visited the domain of one of our nocturnal species of avian wild life at a period when newborn chicks as well as those half grown are trying to adapt to the habitat into which they were born.

As we entered the cavern hundreds of pairs of red eyes peered down at us. The large white dots forming a distinguishing line at their sides were prominent in the darkness. Large birds squawked and click clicked as they flew around using echo location in the dark recesses of the interior. The roof and walls were just crowded with birds. This was the sanctuary of the oilbird steatornis caripensis and we were but mere disturbances of their peace at the moment.
Personally I wondered how a person coming here with the sole intention of poaching this harmless species felt when this colony guarded its territory so fiercely. Our visit alone felt like sinful intrusion.

We explored a part of the cavern wall that curved further inward to a series of ledges where a number of birds had built their nests. In the past we had retrieved gear used for ensnaring the birds here. Today all was well.

Presumably this would have been one of the caverns that the First Peoples had visited centuries ago to gather oil from the fat of the oilbird. At that time, it was a matter of survival.

Nearby, we found one shallow nest with three eggs in it and another with two tiny newborns that spun round and round in their limited space. Quite close by, a large bird snarled an apparent warning to us. We believed that this was the parent of these chicks.

There was a third nest with an extremely large ‘fatty’ ‘half grown’ that had feathers only on his head, wings and tail. We could see how our First Peoples got enough oil to satisfy their needs.

This larger chick spun round and round on his nest too. This seemed to be the typical behaviour of this species as we had noted the same spinning trait of the newborns.
On nests where adult oilbirds sat, we could see the usual rocking movement of their heads from side to side that we had come to be so familiar with. Someone called this a ‘Stevie Wonder move’.

On the other side of the cavern, another half grown got our attention as he landed with a loud thump and a flurry of half feathered wings having unsuccessfully tried to fly like his elders. Just about four months old, this bird was beginning his own quest for survival. He remained motionless for a while until regaining his initial will to try his wings again and again.

Our oilbirds are perhaps the least observed of our avian species in this part of the world because of their nocturnal life and the fact that their colonies thrive off the beaten track in the cavernous terrain of our mountains. When Alexander von Humboldt first discovered these birds in a cave in Venezuela’s north eastern mountains in 1799 their existence was virtually unknown to people other than immediate natives. This location eventually became Venezuela’s first national monument.

Today some caverns in northern South America have become tourist attractions. In Trinidad, this is so to a lesser extent because of the lack of manpower to effectively protect and manage these remote locations. So far, only the Asa Wright Nature Centre has been successful in protecting, promoting and maintaining its oilbird cavern as a tourist attraction.

It is always an amazing sight to see a large colony of oilbirds fly out from the home cavern in mass exodus at sunset. Their feeding grounds are sometimes located miles away from their home they being the only nocturnal fruit eating bird in the world and must find bearing palms and laurels.

On their return to the home cavern, we could well imagine the eager reactions of their dependent offspring to sustenance being served after spending a night alone. Soon, these chicks will follow in the habits of their parents as they too will continue the cycle of survival of this species.

          Who Is An Indian? Race, Place, and the Politics of Indigeneity in the Americas        
“A significant addition to research, Who Is an Indian? provides an extended examination and a clear picture of Indigenous identity issues in the Americas. Among the book’s important contributions are its examination of the site of interface between the modern state and Indigenous peoples, as well as its analysis of how state discourses of identities are interpolated by Indigenous peoples and come to be important sites of tension.” --David Newhouse, Department of Indigenous Studies, Trent University
“Who Is an Indian? makes a strong and distinct contribution to the literature on Indigenous identities. The contributors examine imposed markers of distinctiveness, particularly those racial categories that have often been formulated by experts and imposed by dominant societies. This is a topic that is rife with controversy, but it is handled here with directness and historical acumen.”--Ronald Niezen, Department of Anthropology, McGill University
Who Is An Indian? Race, Place, and the Politics of Indigeneity in the Americas  is my newest edited collection, published by the University of Toronto Press. It completes a trilogy of edited volumes on indigeneity in the Americas that I began in 2006 with Indigenous Resurgence in the Contemporary Caribbean: Amerindian Survival and Revival, and in 2010 with the publication of Indigenous Cosmopolitans: Transnational and Transcultural Indigeneity in the Twenty-First Century.

About this Book

Who is an Indian? This is possibly the oldest question facing Indigenous Peoples across the Americas, and one with significant implications for decisions relating to resource distribution, conflicts over who gets to live where and for how long, and clashing principles of governance and law. For centuries, the dominant views on this issue have been strongly shaped by ideas of both race and place. But just as important, who is permitted to ask, and answer this question?
This collection examines the changing roles of race and place in the politics of defining Indigenous identities in the Americas. Drawing on case studies of Indigenous communities across North America, the Caribbean, Central America, and South America, it is a rare volume to compare Indigenous experience throughout the western hemisphere. The contributors question the vocabulary, legal mechanisms, and applications of science in constructing the identities of Indigenous populations, and consider ideas of nation, land, and tradition in moving indigeneity beyond race.

Genesis of the Project

This latest volume is probably the longest I have worked on any one publication project. It first began to take shape in 2006, as an effort exclusively focused on race, motivated by recognition of the fact that there were no volumes, treating the Americas as a whole, that compared and contrasted different ideas and applications of race in the definition of Indigenous identity. This was the basis for the first symposium in 2006, “Indigeneity and Race: ‘Blood Politics’ and the ‘Nature’ of Indigenous Identity,” organized under the auspices of the Canadian Anthropology Society’s annual conference, held at Concordia University on May 13, 2006. The same theme carried over into a following seminar, “Who Is an Indian? Race, Blood, DNA, and the Politics of Indigeneity in the Americas” involving 14 participants and hosted at the Clarion Hotel in Montreal, August 2-5, 2007, with the support of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. However, as a result of the discussions held at the second symposium, we came to the realization that race alone could not be the exclusive subject of our concerns in addressing who people have historically answered the question, “who is an Indian.” The role of place, land, and territoriality, and resistance to neoliberalism, figured prominently in a number of the papers to the extent that we concluded that both race and place should be our dual, framing concepts.

The original impetus for this project came from a very particular context of concern. My research in the Caribbean alerted me to the extent to which notions of “purity,” “blood,” and lately even DNA analysis came to figure prominently not just as ways of ascribing Indigenous identities, but also as means of claiming them in light of widespread, categorical assertions by colonial rulers and scholars that these peoples had vanished. To my surprise, similar politics of identity were being instituted in North America—indeed, the interest in DNA studies had spread from the U.S. to the Caribbean, and in North America as well I found a concern with blood, purity, and the stigma faced by “Black Indians” who were being rejected as claimants to Cherokee citizenship. In Canada, First Nations residents carry cards indicating what degree of Indigenous “blood” they possess. Also in Canada, I repeatedly hear Euro-Canadians refer to this or that Aboriginal figure as “not a real Indian…he looks white”. (I had encountered similar purist prejudices during my years in Australia, directed at some of the most prominent Aboriginal activists who, phenotypically and superficially appeared to be “mixed” if not “almost white”.) If race, blood, and DNA were so prevalent, could we find similar concerns spread out across all of the Americas? If so, why? If not, why not? Are race, blood, and DNA essentially the same thing? These were the very first, seemingly very simple questions that led to the emergence of this project.

Taking together all stages of this project, it included a total of as many as 21 scholars from across the Americas and from across the disciplines, only some of whom appear in this volume. In particular I would like to thank and acknowledge the advice, support, varying degrees of participation and interest, and correspondence of individuals who were involved at different stages of the project, including: Kimberly Tallbear, José Barreiro, Phil Bellfy, Marisol de la Cadena, Alice and Dennis Bartels, and the late Melissa Meyer who sadly for us passed away mid-way through the development of this project. We also benefited from the participation of Indigenous scholars, who comprised half the number of participants in the overall project. With an immense amount of research and writing taking place in the U.S., there was often a tendency to have greater American representation, more than Canadian, Latin American, and least of all, from the Caribbean. The result of this struggle, the constant revision and reinterpretation, we hope will offer some critical insights into the processes of making “race” out of (or against) Indigenous identity and the role of “place” in debates about Indigenous identity. The final product strikes some geographic balance, with two chapters on Canadian cases, two dealing with American Indians, two focused on Central America and the Caribbean, and two pertaining to South America.

What about DNA Testing?

The previous concern with DNA, represented by as many as four participants early on in the project, largely diminished and then vanished altogether, especially when we no longer had the same participants as in earlier stages of the project. This is not to say that DNA debates are absent in the volume as a whole, but rather that they no longer structure the volume as a leading focus, which in any case would be more relevant to the North American situation than elsewhere. Yet even that is not entirely accurate, as the use of DNA testing to determine Indigenous ancestry has traveled to Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, and to my great surprise to the very community I studied for four years in Trinidad & Tobago, as the result of the work a team from the Molecular Anthropology lab at Pennsylvania State University and the National Geographic Genographic Project. In the past, similar studies have also been conducted among the Garifuna in Central America and recently in St. Vincent & the Grenadines, in the latter case again by the Penn State team.

Sidebar on U.S. "Science": DNA Testing for Indigeneity Comes to Trinidad
DNA testing comes in for severe questioning and criticism in the volume, and I would also add here to my public objections to the DNA research done in Trinidad. Aside from the more than just questionable merits of using genetics to prove cultural identities and political constructs such as tribal affiliations, I also pointed out that, "given the harvesting of biometric data by U.S. universities with research ties to the Pentagon, there is always the risk that this information could be put to uses of which the Caribs are unaware." Indeed, one of the researchers involved in the Trinidad DNA study, Jada Benn-Torres, from a military family, has conducted research in the field funded by the U.S. Department of Defense. I cannot see any reasonable purpose for conducting the study in Trinidad, as the local Carib community has been officially recognized for decades, and is not possessed by any self-doubts of their identity. Indeed, not all of the Caribs in Arima chose to participate in the study, which raises more questions about the extent to which those examined are representative of the community as a whole, and thus places in doubt even the basic scientific merits of the study. What has also not been made known is what is the ultimate purpose of the research, where the information is stored and for how long, and who has access to the database.

The Historical Importance of a Bad Question

The collaboration that produced this volume through much iteration has been focused on what is arguably one of the worst questions to be posed to or against Indigenous Peoples ("Who is an Indian?"), one that ultimately calls on them to give an account of themselves, for being who they are in the light of foreign invasions and occupations. It’s as if being who they are is a problem, and furthermore, it is a problem that they caused. Worse yet, they may not even be who they think they are.

As with all bad questions, one can expect to get a lot of bad answers. So why address such a question, going as far as making it the leading question of this project? The answer is simple: the question, however one may assess its epistemological qualities, is a politically important question (the most important perhaps), an institutionalized question, a governing question that structures people’s lives, their access to resources, and even their self-perceptions. It is also a key historical question, one that continues to be asked repeatedly, and one that will inevitably lose relevance. That this question has been raised across the Americas, in different forms (substituting, as the case may be, any number of cognate or tribal labels in the place of “Indian”), is due to a shared history of colonization and state-building and the dominance of European theories of citizenship, nationhood, race, and identity. Here we can start to look beyond the constraints and limitations of that question and in seeing past the constraints imposed today by states.

It was not the intention of the contributors of the volume to either advance academic expertise as the ultimate arbiter of Indigenous identities, to provide an easy-to-follow menu for “accurately determining” who is Indigenous, or to provide advice that caters to the functioning of government bureaucracies and their micro-management of Indigenous affairs. Our greater concern was with the politics that work to preserve the dominance of a “bad question,” a very “bad” and yet historically very important question: “Who is an Indian”? Our hope is that readers will come away from this effort with a determination to ask better questions—better in the sense of being more analytically productive and with implications that are more socially just and fair. Among the questions we would like to see posed are those that posit indigeneity as a historically specific type of relationality, that involve issues of power and affectivity, without searching for the elusive “one size fits all” solution. If, however, we overcame the stigmatization of being Indigenous only to then treat it as a category implying “privilege” and uniquely demanding “proof” of belonging, then we will not have gone far past the point of endorsing extinction.

Setting the Stage: Some Opening Quotes to Remember

“When they get off the boat, they didn’t recognize us. They said: ‘Who are you?’ And we said: ‘We’re the People, we’re the Human Beings,’ and they said: ‘Oh Indians,’ because they didn’t recognize what it meant to be a human being. ‘I’m a Human Being, this is the name of my tribe, this is the name of my people, but I’m a human being.’ But the predatory mentality shows up and starts calling us ‘Indians’ and committing genocide against us as a vehicle of erasing the memory of being a human being….Even in our own communities, how many of us are fighting to protect our identity of being an Indian, and 600 years ago that word, ‘Indian,’ that sound was never made in this hemisphere—that sound [‘Indian’], that noise, was never ever made! Ever. We’re trying to protect that as an identity, see, so it affects all of us”. —John Trudell, Lakota poet and activist. 
“It is one of the many ironies of the American experience that the invaders created the category of Indians, imposed it on the inhabitants of the New World, and have been trying to abolish it ever since”. —David Maybury-Lewis, co-founder of Cultural Survival. 
“There’s tremendous racism in Peru. In Lima, brown people, the descendants of Indigenous people, try to live as white as possible. That’s because of the influence of the media and government. If you embrace your Indian-ness, you’re shunned. You’re less than a third-class person. It’s an insult to call someone an Indian. It’s the equivalent of calling someone stupid”. —Benjamin Bratt, actor. 
“The question of my identity often comes up. I think I must be a mixed blood. I claim to be male, although only one of my parents is male”. 
—Jimmie Durham, Cherokee artist. “What does part Indian mean? (Which part?)….you don’t get 50% or 25% or 16% treatment when you experience racism—it is always l00%”. —Joane Cardinal-Schubert.


Preface, pages vii-ix

Introduction: “Who Is an Indian?” The Cultural Politics of a Bad Question, pages 3-51 Maximilian C. Forte (Concordia University, Sociology and Anthropology)

In this chapter I discuss the genesis, multiple meaning and historical applications of this "bad question," across the Americas. In the process I also defend the thesis that the Americas as a whole serve as the appropriate unit for analysis in understanding the colonial, "scientific," ideological, and (geo)political efforts to define Indigenous identities. While I outline how the racialization of indigeneity spread across imperial domains in the Americas, I also examine the centrality of place, of territoriality, and how place also intersects race. I discuss the emergence of "Indian" as a racial construct, and from there I proceed to build the larger theoretical and analytical narrative which the various chapters help to form. Who is the "real Indian" and issues of "race mixture" and the impact of slavery and the plantation system in North and South America and the Caribbean forms one level of analysis. Another has to do with kinship and science, with blood, DNA, and how these relate to ideas of "race purity." Going beyond "blood quantum" and race, I provide some context and the wider debate around the critically important contribution by Julia Coates in this volume, on the always timely issue of the Freedmen and the Cherokee Nation. Debates around self-identification, and tribal politics, progress toward a discussion of the many cases of "Indian non-Indians" and "Non-Indian Indians". Finally I end with an overview of the problems involved with "recognition", with some discussion of the geopolitics of recognition and then, pointing toward the Conclusion, looking beyond the politics of recognition.

Chapter One Inuitness and Territoriality in Canada, pages 53-70 Donna Patrick (Carleton University, Sociology and Anthropology and the School of Canadian Studies)

“The question of who counts as Aboriginal [in Canada],” explains Donna Patrick (this volume), “has long been linked to the question of who owns traditional Aboriginal lands”. Patrick’s chapter explores “the question of categorizing Indigeneity in Canada by examining the linguistic, political, and judicial processes associated with the notions of territory, ancestry, and belonging that shape Indigeneity today,” with a focus on the Inuit in Canada, situated within a broader analysis of Aboriginal identity in Canada. “Inuitness” in Canada, as Patrick tells us, followed a different trajectory from that of First Nations, in that the construction of Inuit identity has been guided not just by state policy but by Inuit attachments to both land and language. In Patrick’s chapter we learn that for the Inuit “the notion of ‘territoriality’ operates together with the notion of ancestry” in shaping the identities of Inuit living in urban centres of the Canadian South as much as those living in the Arctic. Donna Patrick observes that Indigenous ideas of identity in early colonial Canada “had little to do with race, biology, or ethnicity” and that Indigenous Peoples in fact demonstrated in practice that they were guided by a “notion of inclusivity” whose existence “has been supported by numerous accounts of Euro-American settlers and soldiers being accepted and adopted into First Nations groups”. While Patrick argues that we do not see in Canada a dominant discourse about the bio-politics of Indigenous identities to the same extent that we find in the U.S., she admits that a “‘covert’ or de facto blood quantum” has been part of policies governing Aboriginal, and in particular First Nations, peoples.

Chapter Two Federally-Unrecognized Indigenous Communities in Canadian Contexts, pages 71-91 Bonita Lawrence (York University, Equity Studies)

In her chapter Bonita Lawrence points out the cases of First Nations that span the Canada-U.S. border, where for example “the Passamaquoddy Nation of New Brunswick, or the Sinixt Nation, in British Columbia, have federal recognition in the United States but not in Canada,” which underscores the arbitrary, shifting, and inconsistent standards used by states to “appraise” indigeneity, as Lawrence argues. Bonita Lawrence explores identity issues among two federally-unrecognized groups—the Algonquins of Eastern Ontario and the Mi’kmaqs of Newfoundland—which have been the subject of her research for the last decade, providing a window into how the Canadian state produces unrecognized Aboriginals. As she explains, “most federally-unrecognized bands or nations are created by the nature of the treaty process itself,” while other bands are federally-unrecognized “because Canada has refused to honour historic relationships or has disregarded the traditional boundaries of Indigenous nations”. The primary means for such communities to gain federal recognition, to legally become Aboriginal again, is to assert Aboriginal title through the courts (if there is a treaty governing particular territory), or as Lawrence outlines in her chapter, “to take part in the comprehensive claims process if no treaty has been signed in the territory”. Otherwise, federally-unrecognized Indigenous peoples are “incorporated simply as ‘citizens’ within the wider nation-state dominated by settlers”.

Chapter Three The Canary in the Coalmine: What Sociology Can Learn from Ethnic Identity Debates among American Indians, pages 92-123 Eva Marie Garroutte (Boston College, Sociology) and C. Matthew Snipp (Stanford University, Sociology)

Eva Marie Garroutte and Matthew Snipp in their chapter in this volume titled, “The Canary in the Coalmine: What Sociology Can Learn from Ethnic Identity Debates among American Indians,” devote considerable attention to debating the racialization of indigeneity. As just one example of the kinds of interests vested in the non-recognition of “mixed” American Indians, Garroutte and Snipp point to Donald Trump: as a competitor against the newly recognized Pequots, and their plans to open a casino, he produced a definition of “who is an Indian” in phenotypical terms: “they don’t look like Indians to me. They don’t look like Indians to Indians,” injecting his racial bias by further calling them “Michael Jordan Indians”. This is useful in showing how ultimately one of the most common ways of assigning Indigenous identity in the Americas is focused on appearance, and where racial discourses prevail, a specific type of appearance: phenotype. Garroutte and Snipp  also discuss some of the additional, problematic conceptual issues raised by the quantification of identity, which can apply to both genetic testing and blood quantum. Quantification establishes distance as a prerequisite for measurement, “with the corollary that, at some point, individuals’ connection to American Indian forebears becomes exhausted”. Quantification of identity presupposes distance, and tends toward disappearance. It raises physical standards about ideational and subjective identities, even as it creates new subjectivities around the use of scientific resources. The right to measure involves a power to erase, just as the power to speak for Indigenous peoples, and to assign their identities, is the power to silence them, permanently. The two case studies at the focus of their chapter, the Mashantucket Pequots and Kennewick Man, make for highly engaging and illuminating reading.

Chapter Four “This Sovereignty Thing”: Nationality, Blood, and the Cherokee Resurgence, pages 124-150 Julia Coates (University of California Davis, Native American Studies)

Julia Coates strongly and productively challenges a number of prominent, published perspectives that have been critical of definitions of Cherokee identity by the Tribal Nation’s government. Coates argues that legal definitions are often overlooked in discussions of indigeneity, while race and culture gain greater attention. Yet, as she explains, many tribal governments in the U.S. regard legal definitions, not as artificially imposed from external colonizing institutions, but as internally achieved definitions of nationality and their sovereign statuses. While the Cherokee Nation’s lack of cultural requirements are frequently not understood by non-Indians and derided by other tribal nations, the Cherokee Nation has continued to assert that nationality derived from their specific history of tribal citizenship is a more inclusive category for contemporary times than race or cultural markers. This is almost a reversal of arguments criticizing the Tribal Nation’s exclusion of certain persons. Based on interviews with what Coates calls “a particularly challenging group of Cherokee nationals,” the 60 percent of the citizenry living outside the tribal core in northeastern Oklahoma, her chapter examines the potential of nationality as a basis for self-identification for those in the Cherokee diaspora, and the role the concept of citizen plays in the contemporary Cherokee resurgence. Coates points to problems with a debate that “focuses on identity construction as located in race, heritage, DNA, and cultural attributes and expressions” and that leave out law and sovereignty. She says that one reason why the cultural, racial, and ethnic aspects of identity may be the primary sites for investigation and discussion, for many Indigenous Peoples is the fact that many of them are not formally organized into nominally sovereign political entities with an internal jurisdiction. Speaking of academics, Coates suggest that one reason most academics seem to differ from tribal governments’ rigid determinations of citizenship, is that academics tend to be more inclusive in their view of who is an American Indian, not wanting to serve as identity police and imposing definitions of Indigenous identity on Natives. Her emphasis is on nationality as a potential for retention and resurgence (or what some call resilience), rather than simply acting as a colonialist mechanism of control and exclusion.

Chapter Five Locating Identity: The Role of Place in Costa Rican Chorotega Identity, pages 151-171 Karen Stocker (California State University, Anthropology)

Designating a special place as the locus of persons with an Indigenous identity can be a way for an assimilationist state, one that historically rejected the Indigenous presence as in the case of Costa Rica, to create the illusion that indigeneity is minimal and marginal. As Karen Stocker explains in her chapter in this volume, in Chorotega some residents of what later became the reservation opposed reservation status given their “tremendous resentment at being the only community in the region officially designated as Indigenous when the whole area had Indigenous roots, and aversion to the stigma attached to Indigenous identity in a country that often projected an image of whiteness and European heritage”. The Costa Rican government’s imposition of an Indigenous identity on residents of Chorotega was a convenient way of removing that label from everyone else who resided outside of that particular place, using the assigned indigeneity of some to reassure others of their Europeanness. Karen Stocker’s chapter, based on ethnographic research carried out between 1993 and 2007, addresses how various residents of the Chorotega reservation, those who live just outside the reservation, scholars, legal discourse, historical discourse, those who have resided or studied in other Costa Rican reservations and, more recently, the tourism industry have “defined Indigenous identity in contradictory ways, and in manners that have had varying consequences for those labeled as Chorotega in Costa Rica”. She addresses the history and impact of these multiple competing definitions. Stocker traces the ways in which “one set of customs has gone from Indigenous to non-Indigenous, national custom, and back again, as a result of the shifting of discourses around it”. Stocker spotlights what she finds to be “a common thread through all of these definitions and interpretations of indigeneity,” and that is “the role of place, and how the same concept that mired inhabitants of the Chorotega reservation in discrimination now serves to authenticate its practices”.

Chapter Six Carib Identity, Racial Politics, and the Problem of Indigenous Recognition in Trinidad and Tobago, pages 172-193 Maximilian C. Forte (Concordia University, Anthropology)

My own chapter in this volume, based on four years of ethnographic research and ethnohistoric research dating to early colonial times, shares some features similar to both those by Donna Patrick and Karen Stocker. On the one hand, the state’s recognition of only one single, organized Indigenous community in just one of Trinidad’s 16 former mission towns—the Santa Rosa Carib Community in Arima, on the island of Trinidad—makes it seem, however implausibly, that indigeneity was somehow contained and delimited (which instead reflects the state’s bias in how indigeneity ought to be controlled and secluded). On the other hand, in articulating their own indigenous identity, members of the Carib Community point to a multitude of factors, beyond but including race, to include a history of residence in Arima. The structure of this chapter follows three basic lines of argument: first, that the political economy of the British colony dictated and cemented racializations of identity. Second, the process of ascribing Indigenous identities to individuals was governed by the economic rights attached to residents of missions, rights which were cut off from any miscegenated offspring. There were thus political and economic interests vested in the non-recognition of Caribs, and race provided the most convenient justification—a justification that took the form of a narrative of extinction. Third, over a century later, while racial notions of identity persist, current Carib self-identifications stress indigeneity as a cultural heritage, an attachment to place, a body of practices, and recognition of ancestral ties that often circumvent explicitly racial schemes of self-definition. State recognition of the Caribs occurs within this historical and cultural context, and therefore imposes limits and conditions that simultaneously create new forms of non-recognition.

Chapter Seven Encountering Indigeneity: The International Funding of Indigeneity in Peru, pages 194-217 José Antonio Lucero (University of Washington, The Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies)

As José Antonio Lucero explains in this volume, “blood” is already incorporated in national ideologies of race-mixture, and is not specific and particular enough to be used as part of the regimes of identifying the Indigenous. As Lucero adds, “in a region where ‘everyone’ has native blood, but not everyone is ‘Indian’ the social category and social fact of Indianness rely, necessarily, less on biology or blood than on the intersecting socio-cultural workings of politics, language, place, class, and gender”. More specifically, Lucero's chapter takes the work of Oxfam America as the focus of his case study, as it has been among “the earliest funders of Indigenous activism”. His chapter examines two different moments in the interactive process of legitimation between organizations such as Oxfam America and Indigenous political organizations in Peru, “as actors on both sides of the development encounter shape discourses over the meanings of development and indigeneity across local and global scales”. The “geopolitics of recognition” is what Lucero conceptualizes as regimes of indigeneity that span local, national and global scales. Lucero discusses how Indigenous people throughout the Americas (and beyond) have often found it inevitable, and sometimes useful, to engage a variety of legal, economic, and political systems. “Since the first contacts with missionaries,” he writes, “the state, and agents of global capital, Indigenous people have found that new systems of domination are not without points of entry within which they can contest the very terms of domination,” and in the present context, “the rising importance of non-state actors in the wake of aggressive neoliberal economic reforms (which shrank already weak states) provided an additional set of opportunities that Indigenous people have been able to use” (Lucero, this volume). However, one of the problems for Indigenous actors bound in relationships with external agencies is that the reconstruction of indigeneity that results is often Janus-faced, where “some discourses are for external consumption and have little to do with the lived ‘social fact’ of indigeneity at the local level”.

Chapter Eight The Color of Race: Indians and Progress in a Center-Left Brazil, pages 218-223 Jonathan Warren (University of Washington, International Studies, Chair of Latin American Studies)

Jonathan Warren begins by telling us that "since the 1990s a large number of Brazilian Indigenous communities have been federally recognized, successfully acquired land, established their own schools, and achieved a higher degree of autonomy and self-determination. Furthermore, anti-Indian violence is no longer condoned by the Brazilian government; racism has been officially acknowledged; race-cognizant government policies, such as affirmative action, have replaced race-neutral ones; and a number of antiracist commissions and initiatives have been established at federal, state and municipal levels. Finally, the first centre-left politicians in Brazilian history, Luiz Ignacio Lula da Silva (2003–2010) and Dilma Rousseff (2011–present), both of the Workers’ Party, have controlled the executive branch of government for almost a decade. Given these substantial changes, one could be forgiven for expecting a positive report on the state of Indigenous affairs in contemporary Brazil. Unfortunately, the outlook is rather dim. Perhaps most surprising is that many of the culprits are from the centre-left, namely the Workers’ Party, social scientists, and sectors of the movimento negro". Jonathan Warren’s chapter reveals to us that in Brazil, the racial question, and thus conceptions of antiracism—like much of “critical race studies,” he adds—simply removes the Indian from analysis, as if Indian subjectivities were entirely irrelevant. A key example of how this has occurred in critical race studies comes from Howard Winant’s very own analysis of racism in Brazil, which singles out Africans. This is odd, as Warren finds, given that as many as a third of Brazilians have some Indian ancestry. As Warren explains in this volume, Brazilian Indians are removed from the racial question in Brazil: “race is reduced to a question of blackness”. Indeed, throughout Latin America, Warren sees that Indigenous peoples are “not considered germane to race matters,” and quoting Peter Wade he adds: “the virtually unquestioned assumptions [prevails] that the study of blacks is one of racism and race relations, while the study of Indians is that of ethnicity and ethnic groups”. Warren also shows that phenotype is present in Brazilian estimations of “authentic” and “real” Indigenous identities, with those who have African and European features routinely dismissed as “racial charlatans,” in ways that echo experiences both in the U.S. and the Caribbean. Warren’s chapter is critical to this volume’s contention that race is a problem that needs to be studied in connection with indigeneity, not apart from it. His argument is critical not only for developing critical race studies, but also for political practice: the antiracist movement in Brazil cannot be just a Black movement.

ConclusionSeeing Beyond the State and Thinking beyond the State of Sight, pages 234-241 Maximilian C. Forte (Concordia University, Sociology and Anthropology)

Rather than restating or summarizing the contents of this volume, the Conclusion helps to sketch some of the ways in which critical Indigenous perspectives have sought to develop alternative ideas and practices of indigeneity and indigenization. In a hemisphere which sees, in most cases, Indigenous Peoples moving to cities, and an increased decoupling of indigeneity and territoriality, along with the incursion of the industrialization of ethnic ascription--the commerce in genetic identities--these issues become especially important. The volume closes with a sharp reminder of why "Who is an Indian?" is a bad question that produces even worse answers, and what our task as intellectuals ought to be when confronted with such questions.

Contributors, pages 243-246
Index, pages 247-254

A Little About the Contributors

Julia M. Coates (Cherokee Nation, Tahlequah, Oklahoma) is presently at the University of California, Los Angeles. Her title is Senior Writer/ Oral Interviewer in American Indian History for the Center for Oral History Research of the Charles Young Research Library. At the time of writing she was an assistant professor in the Department of Native American Studies at the University of California, Davis. Her research interests cover Native American diasporas, history, identity, women, and politics. She has conducted participant-observation fieldwork with hundreds of Cherokee citizens in California, Texas, and New Mexico. Coates also helped to form numerous Cherokee community organizations throughout California and in other states. For over six years, she was the project director and lead instructor for the award-winning Cherokee Nation history course, which brought her into personal contact with most of the employees of the Cherokee Nation, along with thousands of Cherokees in northeastern Oklahoma communities and throughout the country. She also serves on the Tribal Council of the Cherokee Nation as its “At Large” representative. At UC Davis she teaches the Introduction to Native American Studies as well as classes on race, women, development and history within Native America.

Eva Marie Garroutte (Cherokee Nation) is an associate professor in the Department of Sociology at Boston College. She has a background of research and publication related to the study of Native American issues, health and aging, racial/ethnic identity, and religion. She is the author of the influential book Real Indians: Identity and the Survival of Native America (University of California Press) and various articles in sociological and health-related journals. In collaboration with Cherokee Nation Health Services, she has conducted a series of research projects funded by the National Institute on Aging to examine medical communication needs among American Indian elders using tribal clinics. Her current service on editorial advisory boards includes the Journal of Native Aging and Health, American Indian Quarterly, and the University of Arizona Press series Critical Issues in Indigenous Studies. She is a past Area Commissioner of Indian Affairs in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Bonita Lawrence (Mi’kmaw) is an associate professor at the School of Social Sciences of the Atkinson Faculty of Liberal and Professional Studies at York University in Toronto, Canada, where she teaches Indigenous Studies and anti-racism. Her research and publications have focused primarily on urban, non-status, and Métis identities, federally unrecognized Aboriginal communities, and Indigenous justice. She is the author of “Real” Indians and Others: Mixed-Blood Urban Native People and Indigenous Nationhood (UBC Press), and co-editor of Strong Women’s Stories: Native Vision and Community Survival, a collection of Native women’s scholarly and activist writing (Sumach Press). She is a traditional singer who sings with groups in Kingston and Toronto at Native social and political gatherings.

José Antonio Lucero is an assistant professor in the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies, at the University of Washington in Seattle. He is the author of Struggles of Voice: The Politics of Indigenous Representation in the Andes (University of Pittsburgh Press) and the editor of Beyond the Lost Decade: Indigenous Movements, Democracy, and Development in Latin America (Princeton University Program in Latin American Studies). He teaches courses on government, politics, and social movements in Latin America, among others. His research interests focus on comparative politics, Latin American politics, democratization, social movements, and the politics of race and ethnicity.

Donna Patrick is professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology and the School of Canadian Studies at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. Her current SSHRC-funded research focuses on multiliteracies, identity, and community-building among urban Inuit in Ottawa. Her other interests lie in the broader area of Indigeneity and urban Aboriginality in Canada, as well as in the political, social, and cultural aspects of language use, with a focus on language endangerment discourse and Aboriginal languages in Canada. Her 2003 book, Language Politics and Social Interaction in an Inuit Community (Mouton de Gruyter), examines these issues in Arctic Quebec. She teaches courses in language, culture, and power and in Aboriginal and northern issues, with a focus on the Arctic. In teaching and research, Donna approaches the study of Aboriginal issues, language, and discourse through an interdisciplinary lens, focusing on historical, geographical, and social processes.

C. Matthew Snipp is a professor in the Department of Sociology at Stanford University where, among other positions, he has been the director of the Center for Comparative Studies of Race and Ethnicity. He teaches courses in contemporary and historical American Indian Studies as well as rural sociology. He is the author of American Indians: The First of the Land (The Russell Sage Foundation, New York), which was selected as an academic book of the year by CHOICE.

Karen Stocker is an assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology at California State University, Fullerton. She is a scholar of applied anthropology with interests in education, the social constructions of race and ethnicity, language, and Latin American ethnography. She is the author of “I Won’t Stay Indian, I’ll Keep Studying”: Race, Place and Discrimination in a Costa Rican High School (Colorado University Press).

Jonathan W. Warren is an associate professor in the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies at the University of Washington in Seattle, where he is also the director of the Latin American and Caribbean Contributors Studies Program. Within the broad area of critical race studies he has focused on Whiteness, racism literacy, racial identity formations, and the links between everyday practices and racism in the U.S. and Brazil. He is the author of the highly regarded book Racial Revolutions: Antiracism and Indian Resurgence in Brazil (Duke University Press).

...and myself.

          Return of the First Nations.        

Return of the First Nations.
By Angelo Bissessarsingh
Trinidad Guardian | Sunday, August 18, 2013

A Warao homestead in 1900

"In parts of Trinidad, there are places with the names Indian Trail or Indian Walk. These have nothing to do with Indo-Trinidadians but with the first peoples of the nation. Many roads that wind sinuously atop ridges also follow old footpaths beaten out through centuries of traversing. In the 17th century, encomiendas or estates were formed by the Spanish colonists where the native Amerindians were herded to become de facto slaves. Only slightly better were the missions established by Capuchin monks from 1687-90 and 1758-86. By 1770, the Amerindians had been decimated by disease and ill usage. Those belonging to the old missions in the north were marshalled in 1786 to a new allotment around the church of Santa Rosa in Arima and the arrangement was described thus in 1857 by Louis A DeVerteuil: “The village of Arima was, for a long time, an Indian mission. Soon after the settlement of the colony, these Indians had been formed into two missions, at Tacarigua and Arima. But as the formation of ingenios, or sugar estates, was proceeding eastward, they were removed to the quarter of Arima, where a village was formed, and houses built by them, on about one thousand acres which had been granted for the formation of a mission, along the right bank of the river, and as the full and unalienable property of the inhabitants. The mission of Arima was settled and governed on the same plan as all such establishments in the Spanish colonies. The Indians had their own municipal government, the first and second alcalde being chosen from among themselves, but under the control of the missionary priest.”

"In the same year, those settled in the south at the foot of Mt Naparima were sent to the Mission of Savanna Grande (Princes Town) in order to make way for the new town of San Fernando. While the people of Arima prospered and mixed into other populations, those at Savanna Grande were seized by apathy due to abuse from those appointed to oversee their welfare. By the time the mission was scrapped in 1840, the Amerindians had fled to South America to live among the Warao of the Orinoco Delta or else had retreated to the high woods. By 1850, there remained almost no evidence that Savanna Grande was once home to the second largest indigenous population in Trinidad. Nevertheless, a strange return occurred every year which saw first peoples coming out of the mangrove swamps of the mainland to visit Trinidad hinted at by EB Underhill in 1862: “The village retains the name of “The Mission,” and has still its Catholic church; but the Indians have long abandoned it, a few only once a year coming over from the continent of South America to pay a brief visit to the graves of their ancestors, and to gather the fruits of the forest in which they formerly lived. They bring with them a few rude baskets and mats for sale.”

"With the passing of the years, those who left Trinidad died but this did not stem the flow of communication between the first peoples and the land from which they were driven. San Fernando Hill (Annaparima) is a sacred place to the Warao and regular pilgrimages were made to this place. The landings would take place on beaches of the south coast such as Erin and Quinam with the silent men and women scantily clad, as was their custom, making their way along long-forgotten pathways to visit their ancestral places and also to trade. San Fernando was a major destination and their arrival never ceased to cause a stir as the ladies of the town sometimes cast clothing on the women to cover their nakedness. Baskets, hammocks and parrots were the trade goods and sometimes gold nuggets from the El Callao mines. Into the well-stocked mercantiles of High Street they went and bartered for shirts, cloth and sometimes fancy items like alarm clocks. Once, an intolerant inspector of the constabulary had a hapless band of these people arrested for indecency owing to their nakedness. These visits were common well into the 1930s but seemed to wane with the advent of World War II and the heavy military presence in the waters around Trinidad. All the same, there are sources who tell that as late as the 1960s canoes were beached at Puerto Grande near Erin and these ancient peoples wended their way across paths known only to them, returning before sunset and departing over the horizon."

          1928 Judul Skripsi/Tugas Akhir        
Teknik Informatika, Manajemen Informatika, Sistem Informasi, Teknik Komputer, Teknik Elektro

Bagi kawan-kawan sesama mahasiswa terutama jurusan Teknik Informatika, Manajemen Informatika, Sistem Informasi, Teknik Komputer, Teknik Elektro maupun jurusan-jurusan lain yang pendalaman minatnya mengarah ke dunia teknologi informasi / IT kadang untuk mendapatkan ide judul skripsi yang relevan dengan jurusan minatnya tersebut mungkin mengalami kesulitan. Apalagi bagi kawan-kawan mahasiswa yang masih blank belum kepikiran untuk mengambil skripsi wkwkwkwk… Bagi yang sering mondar-mandir ke perpustakaan kampus sih kadang agak terbuka wawasannya dengan melihat-lihat judul skripsi para kakak kelas. Paling tidak jika bagi mahasiswa yang belum waktunya untuk mengambil skripsi maka sebaiknya sudah punya ancang-ancang judul skripsi apakah yang akan digunakan nanti. Berikut ini ada beberapa judul-judul skripsi jurusan Teknik Informatika, Manajemen Informatika, Sistem Informasi dll yang bisa kawan-kawan jadikan sebagai acuan untuk menentukan judul skripsi/tugas akhir nanti. Hehehehe… siapa tau dari sekian banyak judul skripsi ini ada yang bisa dijadikan inspirasi untuk judul skripsi kalian.
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