Monday, June 20, 2011


This past weekend i attended Portland Pride.
So, here is emotional vomit rant # seven million and five.

For those who don't know, Pride is a weekend long festival for LGBTQ rights centered around a parade, and with some vendors and music.

Since i am certainly not a heteronormal person (ok if you insist i use an 'identity' word i'll use queer), i figured i'd drag my cynical self out and have a look at what the LGBTQ community has to be 'proud' of.

The Pride parade essentially consisted of this:
Police escort, military presence, corporate sponsors, church groups, corporate sponsors, OHSU (vivisectors), corporate sponsors, a variety of 'rights' organizations, and corporate sponsors.
Naturally, i was not impressed. It seemed to me it was a parade for heteronormal white corporate amerikkka.

Though i'm always bummed about it, i understand that in order to have a parade or action of this nature you have to get a permit and have the police escort you through your route. The obvious issues with having the symbol of the brute force and violence of the oppressors lead the parade for equal rights bothered me to say the least. Immediately following was a number of military groups, symbolizing the LGBTQ communities willingness to participate in corporate and political genocide, terrorism, war, hegemony, and imperialism. As i sat, relatively surprised by my own surprise, the parade continued into a never ending march of corporate logos. An alaskan airlines float, dozens and dozens of people in Nike shirts sporting Nike gear, a wells fargo horse and carriage, absolut vodka, sports teams (like Portland's soccer team the 'Timbers', what asshole came up with that name?) on and on and on.

I realized that this parade was not a celebration of diversity, or a call from the LGBTQ community for people to acknowledge that we are fine the way we are, but the message was rather close to 'just because we are LGBTQ doesn't mean we aren't normal corporate loving militant imperialist fuck bag amerikkkans'. It was around this realization that OHSU marched by. The local Portland school has a massive vivisection lab with hundreds of tortured primates within its cages. So yea, just because we aren't heterosexual doesn't mean we are not down to torture animals too.

Scratching my head in confusion, frustration, and the never ending feeling of alienation, i pondered whether my response should be one of two things. The first being, acknowledging to myself that the mainstream LGBTQ communities goal is relatively apolitical and centers solely around being accepted as normal amerikkans, which therefore means i want nothing to do with it and would like no association whatsoever. Or two, to throw a small hissy fit at the community in hopes of some sort of clarity or constructive response. The fit would be something like explaining that amerikkka and most of the western civilized world is based on a history of exploitative violence, religious fanaticism, imperialism, hegemony, resource mongering, war, bigotry, hatred, white supremacy, corporatism, and control over its workers/citizens. The logical conclusion here would be that we should be 'proud' that these assholes don't want us included in their evil society, and furthermore we should want nothing to do with it nor any overlap or association. Its far deeper than the obvious wish to celebrate diversity in sexuality, religion, race, beliefs, etc... its more political than that. This is our chance as an alienated community to accept the alienation and use it as a means to not take part in the imperialist, animal torturing, war raging, corporate culture that is destroying the planet and making life miserable for most humans (and certainly non humans). If i thought there was some hope of reaching a goal with response number two, i'd gladly go forth with it. But that is doubtful.

So once again, i suppose i'll wander back to my rock and climb under it.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

exploring the yard

moved into a new house this season so been gardening and exploring the yard for whats already here. there is quite a bit of lovely plants already hanging out! Things i will likely tincture: Lemon Balm, Mugwort, Cleavers, and what i think is Yarrow but not 100% sure yet... some edibles and culinaries: red clover, rosemary, two kinds of mint, thyme... lots more still need identified. Also noticed a few blueberry bushes in pots, weeded the pots (removed dandelion which i can also tincture) and got them some new nutrients and soil.

Got multiple beds formed and now have the following growing from seed: peas, kale, spinach, lettuce, mesclun mix, carrots, beets, nasturtiums, squash, and tomatoes (which are still indoors). Also planted a few starts... eggplant, basil, oregano, chives, cilantro.
Planting potatoes this weekend, and transplanted some amazing onion from a friends yard.

Should be a fun season!

Sunday, May 15, 2011


Stories rule us. They define our motivations, our understandings of our surroundings, our cultures, our values, our relationships with each other and ourselves. I often wonder if stories create us, as opposed to the other way around.

I find a lot of truth in Joseph Campbell's position on mythology. That myth and story are expressions of a culture trying to make sense of the universe around them. These stories become integral parts of the cultures psyche, motivations, reverence, philosophies, etc. So an indigenous culture might have stories revering local animal and plant spirits, because they count on these to survive, as well as elaborate stories using metaphor and symbol to talk about the relationships between the elements. These stories allow a culture to develop connections with each other and with the natural world, as well as provide a map for survival. In modern western culture, we have not only taken our stories literally instead of metaphorically, but we are using outdated stories that pertain to a lifestyle prevalent 2000 years ago in an entirely different scientific age. We are desperately trying to make these stories relate to modern science and life, which of course is not possible, nor is it useful. Stories and mythology need to be current as they are necessary elements to our culture and the psyche of our cultures inhabitants.

I believe it is the place of modern artists to be offering new mythologies and stories for our time. This is the only way i can see instigating a vast cultural shift. Stories create us, not the other way around.

But, how do we get people to listen to these new stories? How do we get these stories to shine through the old ones, when the old ones are so heavily embraced?

Sunday, April 10, 2011

i'm a slacker

yea i haven't written here in a while, i've been really busy working on a new project of mine called 'The Art of Dismantling'.
It's an interview series with politically charged artists and writers! I've been pretty excited about it and have launched a zine series, working towards a full book, and am doing a live panel version as well.

Check it out:


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