Saturday, November 5, 2011

Gail and Skipp: Thing of Beauty #35-101

All kind of folks are getting inspired by the revolutionary spirit of Occupy Wall Street.   The fellow who recorded this song and slide show is the husband of my dear bloggy buddy Gail, from Know Your Its.

This video goes to show you that there are all kinds of ways to use your individual talents and creativity to show solidarity and support for The Resistance. It's like Chris Hedges said in Power and the Tiny Acts of Rebellion:
It is time to think of resistance in a new way, something that is no longer carried out to reform a system but as an end in itself. African-Americans understood this during the long night of slavery. German opposition leaders understood it under the Nazis. Dissidents in the former Soviet Union knew this during the nightmare of communism. Resistance in these closed systems was local and often solitary. It was done with the understanding that evil must always be defied. The tiny acts of rebellion—day after day, month after month, year after year and decade after decade—exposed to everyone who witnessed them the heartlessness, cruelty and inhumanity of the oppressor. They were acts of truth and beauty. We must take to the street. We must jam as many wrenches into the corporate system as we can. We must not make it easy for them. But we also must no longer live in self-delusion. This is a battle that will outlive us. And if we fight, even with this tragic vision, we will lead lives worth living and keep alive another way of being.
When this article first appeared last year, the Occupy movement wasn't even a twinkle in anybody's eye.  Punk Patriot told me that Adbusters had been trying to instigate and facilitate a movement for years - Buy Nothing Day, for example, is nearly 20 years old now and is still a hard sell even in an economy when we could all benefit from opting out of the annual overspending binge we call Christmas.

Buy Nothing Day 2011 - Adbusters
Plenty of people have been working tirelessly to promote social and economic justice, peace and sustainability for years and years - and while many of us have supported these efforts in a variety of ways, we've all sort of been waiting on one charismatic individual to lead a national movement.

The cool thing about OWS is that there is no leader - and that's called anarchy in an anthropological context.  The Establishment - as represented by church, state and business leaders - inevitably says that society will deteriorate into chaos if they aren't in charge.  That's Patriarchy and Hierarchy.  Personally, I'm all about managing a community through consensus, but I have trouble imagining the sort of community governance I've observed at a small, idyllic Quaker sleep away camp in Vermont applied to a country with over 300 million people.

I guess that's where the spokesperson model comes in.  David Graeber (my current enthusiasm) writes about this concept in Enacting the Impossible.  I'm pretty sure David Graeber is not single, and even if he were, I don't know how I'd manage an introduction.  He's cute, intellectually stimulating and pervasively passionate, though, which I've come to realize is exactly what I'm looking for in a single, straight man in my demographic who is generally sober with his own source of income.

Indulging my little crush on Punk Patriot helped clarify my boyfriend criteria.  One thing I learned for sure while speculating on a relationship with someone a few years older than my son is that there's no way in hell I would get involved with someone a few years older than my son.  Not for longer than a weekend, at least.  Nevertheless, Punk has the essential qualities - Cute, Intellectually Stimulating and Pervasively Passionate.  My old buddy Woody has those qualities too.  He's hundreds of miles away, however, and cannot be called "reasonably sober."

I say Pervasively Passionate because too many folks associate Passion with Sex.  Certainly any man in my life would need to be passionate about that - but nearly every douchebag on Match dot com says he's passionate when the reality is that they are only passionate about getting laid, watching football and/or baseball and sucking down high fructose corn syrup. Pervasively passionate people are fully engaged in life on a number of levels.

As you can see,  Gail's husband Skipp (aka Babe) shows that he's pervasively passionate in his youtube video.  Some people might think he's goofy - but that didn't discourage him from joining in the Revolution in a way that suited him personally.  Not only that, but he and Gail have been snuggled up together for years and each still believes the other to be Cute, Intellectually Stimulating and Pervasively Passionate.

I'm going to declare that to be Thing of Beauty #35-10.

from realia by Jennifer Morrison


Woody (Tokin Librul/Rogue Scholar/ Helluvafella!) said...

Reasonably sober?
I don't even resemble that remark!

PENolan said...

Exactly. And you can thank your lucky stars that I would never shack up with a fellow who sleeps with a pit bull in the bed and a loaded pistol in the nightstand.

Not for more than a weekend, anyway ;

mbarnato said...

The way the Occupy crowds operate is a thing of beauty; the community microphone is just one small act of consensus... And there's the entire worldwide movement to share with.

Can this really be part of a new beginning - where we thoughtfully make widespread opposition & questioning part of the everyday process? That'd be cool...... Thanks for giving voice to that hopeful idea, Tricia.

Gail said...

HEY TRISH a big "THANK YOU" for posting "Second Revolution" and saying what you say. You still are, and always will be, my very favorite newscaster/reporter, EVER!!!
Love you Texas

PENolan said...

Gail, you're quite welcome

Maureen, I honestly do believe it's a new beginning even though in many ways it's the same old story of the workers rising up against the Owners - a cycle that seems to repeat every 40 years or so. That we in the US are feeling solidarity with workers across the world seems to be new. Usually we Americans don't see much further than our own neighborhoods.
Today, I'm going to imagine a Global General Strike where Workers of the World really do Unite.

mac said...

Admittedly, I can be apathetic about many things. But, I can certainly understand why any man would be passionate over you. You are quite the woman. You are intelligent, physically attractive, a great communicator, and anyone that works with kids as you do must have great character.

Find your passionate man! But, remember, there's always an apathetic ignoramus if you need something to hold you over until he shows up ;-)

PENolan said...

mac, I'll keep that in mind.

Patricia said...

Thanks for the link to Chris Hedges article. Really gets right to the heart of the atrocity that's going in this country. I think I might have a crush on him, oh and that punk! I am single too and no one on Match. com is either that smart or informed. Good luck finding someone who isn't a beer swilling Nascar watching douche in our demographic. It really sucks out there in the single world. What's the point in staying reasonably sober?

PENolan said...

Patricia, now that you mention it, I suppose "reasonably sober" means that the individual in question can function in society (mostly) and that I don't have any issues with his behavior whether he's drunk or sober.

I don't want to have to have somebody help me carry my date to the car because he's too shit faced to walk, for example. I wouldn't want him to start fights in bars whether he was drunk or sober - or with my mother either, for that matter.

*sigh* I don't see it happening on Match dot com, however.

Jennifer said...

Yesterday I was in a taxi and we went by the Occupy camp in Toronto. The driver said, "They're still there eh?"

I half expected him to make some disparaging remark about the campers then. But he said, "It must be getting cold for them at night." I said, "yeah, good for them for hanging strong." He said, "yeah, good for them."

Maybe the next tiny step in my own revolutionary fight is to think more postively about how the quieter side of the revolution is progressing.

Oh, and based on my own adventures in dating, particularly middle-aged dating, is that men who say they are "passionate" rarely exhibit any such thing in conversation. And lack of passion in things of the brains/hearts always translates to lack of passion in the sack. Viagara doesn't create passion.

I expect it's the same for women, but I can't comment fairly on that one.

Jen said...

PS - LOVE Skipp and his powerful song. Skipp outstandingly conveys his passion in it. LOVE the carrying on of revolutionizing through music. It makes me wonder, what could have Woody Guthrie done with something like youtube?

Makropoulos said...

Gail's husband is not goofy! I love that video, and he has a great voice. Occupy Wall Street, too, has a great voice -- and may it keep getting louder.

Hey, I hope you're doing well. I'm having a hell of a semester, but I'm checking in every now and then. Yeah, those of us who are working our fingers to the bones should occupy Wall Street! I haven't done it; haven't had time to, but my heart and energy goes out to those who do. . . .

PENolan said...

Makropoulos, anybody can maintain the daily grind and participate in OWS. If you find yourself with a few extra bucks, send it to the Occupied Wall Street Journal ( I think) or to the general fund via There's always globalrevolution, too, who manages the live feeds from around the world.

Jen - Remember that line from Jesus Christ Superstar - "Israel in 4 BC had no mass communication"? Small, quiet steps are being made toward Revolution on the internet every minute. I'm pretty sure you've made about a thousand already.

Much Love,

Once Known as The Badger said...

...and this blog is also a thing of beauty, but I'm not sure of your numbering system, so I'll have to call it Thing of Beauty - 2PI

Vancouver Voyeur said...

Finding two people who are still in love, still find each other intellectually stimulating after years together is wonderful and rare.

As for "Buy Nothing" Day, that's most days in my life. I've never been wealthy. I've never been able to just scan a catalog and buy whatever I wanted. I've always purchased "used" unless there was no other option. I've always recycled and made do. That said, I do know I'm better off than a lot of people in this society today.

Also, even though I'm a consumer in this capitalist society, I'm not an over-consumer. I do live within my means. I don't have credit cards and I will be moving my money from BoA to a local credit union soon.

I'm doing my part the best I can. We need more people to do that as well. As for the OWS not having a leader, it's probably just as well. If it had a leader, the other side would know who to attack, discredit, arrest, etc. Better to keep them guessing.

Practical Parsimony said...

I just found you today. Great blog. I will be back.

Cali said...

I'm with VV. No "leader" = no assassination. I really hope that no single leader emerges, ever. If anything, perhaps a board, of some sort, who represents the group consensus with no member having a bigger/louder/stronger voice than any other.

I liked your singer friend. He reminds me of David Crosby in many ways.

PENolan said...

Cali - now that you mention it, I totally see the resemblance to David Crosby

Practical P - Your blog is outstanding! Thanks for stopping by

OKatB - go over to Jen's realia, and you'll find out all about the Exploring Beauty Challenge. You may even want to do it yourself.

V.V. - That's exactly how I feel too. The problem is not consuming, per se. MINDLESS consumption is the big problem. it's the same with Capitalism. I'm cool with Capitalism as a concept, but I have an issue with Dick Heads.

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